Editor’s Note: A lot of tidbits of cigars that we haven’t mentioned this week, but the two major stories are the information regarding the El Rey de los Habanos lawsuit and Michael Herklots’ departure from Davidoff of Geneva. I’ll use this editorial space to comment on some of the interesting reactions to Maryland’s most recent (possibly short-lived) tobacco law which prohibits out-of-state retailers from shipping to Maryland residents. First, if this law is unconstitutional I would expect that Cigars International (owned by STG Group, owners of General Cigar Co.), JR Cigars (owned by Altadis), Famous Smoke Shop and Thompson’s will be the ones fighting it out in the courtroom, not the small shops we know and love. Secondly, the reaction is interesting given the same thing happened in Utah last year with little fanfare. I understand that Utah is not the largest of cigar markets, but still… I imagine if there was legal grounding the major retailers above would have already taken it, given the risk of other states passing similar laws before the court system settles the case. — el niño diablo.

Casa Fernandez Edición Miami 2011 Rare Maduro.png

  • Casa Fernandez Edición Miami 2011 Rare Maduro — No word on production numbers, timing, pricing or sizing; but, the pic above comes from Paul Palmer. This is apparently made at the Casa Fernandez Miami factory, first time I’ve heard of that, but I presume it’s the same place that’s making these pipes.

Casa Magna Sanchos.png

  • Casa Magna Sanchos — These are 4 1/4 x 60 offered in packs of three. These will be debuted at IPCPR in July, but won’t ship until a bit after.
  • San Lotano Limited Edition — Clay Roberts tweeted that there will be a new San Lotano Limited Edition, more details later this week.

La Sirena

  • La Sirena “A” — Limited edition, made for brand ambassador Arielle Ditkowich. In an interview with Ron Melendi of De La Concha, Arielle stated, “the size might be big enough that the band looks normal…” In addition, the Miami Cigar & Co. distributed product is getting a smaller band underneath the gigantic one.
  • Fonseca CXX Anniversary — Now shipping according to Terence Riley.
  • New Di Fazio — Carmelo Di Fazio announced a four-hundred box run to be launched on June 12th. He described it as, “100% nicaragua 1000% full body amazing cigar…”

Casa Magna Domus Magnus.png

  • This is a Casa Magna Domus Magnus, now scheduled for a late June release.

AKACigars Hybrid.png

  • AKA Cigars have made it to shelves. According to Jay Lundy, the wrapper is a hybrid of Cameroon and Camacho’s original Corojo. These are made at Rancho Jamastran.

Avion Logo.png

Avion Bands.png

Tatuaje Fausto Artwork.png

  • Pete Johnson posted a bunch of artwork for his two newest brands Avion and Fausto, for more info on both, click here.
  • May 15th was the latest date given by Pete Johnson for Tatuaje’s Saints & Sinners (originally scheduled for April 1st.) Sunday came and went, Pete commented earlier this morning saying, “Ali and Casper are still working out a few kinks while I’m still in France. I am sure it will be ready this week.”
  • You might have seen the floating magnetic rotating Rocky Patel tubos over lighter and cutter displays at local shops, they are allegedly for sale for $100.
  • Tosa Cigars has announced it has samples in from the Toraños, this new boutique hails from Cleveland, look for product on shelves later this year.
  • 262 Cigars sent out information about its future including adding an Ideology and a limited edition cigar for early 2012. I didn’t get the e-mail, but you can steal the (inside) information from Barry.
  • Speaking of Barry, you can see New York City’s favorite cigar blogger at the grand reopening week of Primo Cigar Shop & Lounge in Santa Fe, NM, where he is friends with the new owners.
  • Imperial, parent of Altadis S.A., owners of half of Habanos S.A. reported a rise in the sale of Cuban cigars and notably declined to speak of Manuel García and reports of corruption.
  • Michael Herklots is leaving his position of General Manager of Davidoff of Geneva for a new position at Nat Sherman. The position is called, “executive director, retail and brand development,” accompanying him will be Pat Felitti, the former general manager of Rothmann’s Steakhouse in Manhattan, who will now be “director of retail sales and hospitality.”
  • el niño diablo went to court and dug up some information regarding The El Rey de los Habanos lawsuit involving the Garcia family and Eduardo Fernandez.
  • David Savona has some info on the ever-changing state of Cuban cigar factories.
  • Rumors of the IPCPR moving to Orlando, FL for the 2012 show have emerged, we apparently should know more this week.
  • Mitchell Orchant of C.Gars Ltd posted the schedule for their upcoming July auction.

I’m not sure if this really should come as a surprise to anyone, given the success of the Master by Carlos Toraño BFC, but Toraño sent out the following in regards to the newest size for the Exodus 1959. (We shall see what this lock and key business is all about…)


The BFC 6×60 is the fifth vitola to be introduced by the family in this line, which has become a true staple of the Toraño portfolio. The Exodus 1959 50 Years has received many accolades, including being awarded a 93 rating by Cigar Aficionado and ranked number 12 on their list of top 25 cigars of the year in 2010.

“The popularity of larger ring gauges continues and we felt that the Exodus 1959 50 Years blend worked very favorably in a 6×60,” said Charlie Torano, President of Toraño Family Cigar Company.

The Exodus 1959 50 Years is dressed in a Brazilian Arapiraca sun-grown wrapper, that is accompanied by a Honduran binder with fillers from Estelí and Pueblo Nuevo Nicaragua. The blend offers a unique and flavorful profile which provides sweet, creamy notes that dominate the palate with subtle hints of spice, dark chocolate, and raisin. This line is also available in a 5×50 Robusto, 51/2×52 Torpedo, 6×48 Short Churchill and a 5×55 Box Press. For those still unclear what “BFC” stands for, the Toraño’s have left that up to the creative minds of cigar smokers…

The new line extension for the Exodus 1959 50 years isn’t the only new product Toraño is working on for the upcoming IPCPR. Charlie Toraño and the gang are currently putting finishing touches on two new exciting brands which are sure to turn heads in Las Vegas. When asked to elaborate on the new brands Charlie Toraño can hardly hide his grin and simply says, “Would love to talk about it but all I can say is that they are currently under lock and key”.


Shiroma’s Wine And More, the shop getting the Tatuaje SWAM 5th Anniversary, is hosting a party this Friday that includes whiskey and raising cigars for troops, I believe tickets are all gone for this one.

SWAM Armed Forces Event.png

This Saturday a few manufacturers are getting together to end an era, smoking in Central Park. Invite below…

Central Park Cigar Event.png

Bill Paley of La Palina Cigars and Glynn Loope are hosting a legal outdoor smoking even in the private park named for Paley’s grandfather, Samuel Paley.

La Palina Invitation.png

Finally, the Dallas area saw the opening of two In-N-Out burger locations this past week. el niño diablo spent almost two hours in line during opening night to procure: Double Double Animal Style, Animal Style Fries & a Root Beer Float, more milkshake.


Avatar photo

Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I have written about the cigar industry for more than a decade, covering everything from product launches to regulation to M&A. In addition, I handle a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff here at halfwheel. I enjoy playing tennis, watching boxing, falling asleep to the Le Mans 24, wearing sweatshirts year-round and eating gyros. echte liebe.