It started with Amazon Basin and the journey contines with CAO Fuma Em Corda, a new limited edition release made with the world’s most rare Brazilian tobacco.
A trilogy is in the making…
Known as the Indiana Jones of the cigar business, Ernest Gocaj traveled to Brazil in 2012. There, in the Amazon, he met natives who cultivated a rare variety of tobacco. The tobacco Ernest discovered was Brazilian Bragança tobacco, the foundation of CAO’s Amazon Basin.
Fast forward to 2015. Ernest returned to Brazil, this time to the Alagoas region in the center of the country. There he was witness to an ancestral fermentation method that produced tobacco with flavor like nothing else. In the Alagoas, the natives fermented Arapiraca tobacco in ropes and call the tobacco Fuma Em Corda. Ernest put the fermented tobacco in his mouth and chewed it to experience the aroma and flavor. He instantly knew he was on to something. To get his hands on as much of this tobacco as he could, Ernest told the farmers he would take all of that year’s harvest, right then and there.
The tobacco ropes were shipped to Honduras and CAO’s blending team took over. This is the story of CAO Fuma Em Corda.
With the tobacco delivered safely to Honduras, Ernest stepped out and Rick Rodriguez (blender/ambassador) stepped in. Together with the CAO blending team, Rick built the blend around the Brazilian Araparica tobacco. In a nod to Amazon Basin, Rick and the team included Brazilian Braganca in the blend for Fuma Em Corda. They added Honduran and Nicaraguan tobaccos, to bring a deeper dimension of spice to the salty, earthy flavor of the Brazilian leaves. A Cameroon binder was chosen to deliver a solid burn, and the blend was wrapped in a Honduran Colorado wrapper to deliver a cigar with notes of leather, roasted coffee and black pepper.
CAO Fuma Em Corda is a limited edition blend that will never be re-released. Just 3,000 boxes have been made for sale only at cigar shops, and by the time the cigars hit retail later this month, they will sell out in the blink of an eye. The cigars are made in Honduras, packed in rustic wooden boxes and only available in a 5 x 50 Robusto, selling, if you can get them, for $8.99 per cigar. Twenty-count boxes will sell for $179.80.
CAO Fuma Em Corda is also being released in limited quantity, in a 6 x 58 Toro. Selling only through Internet and catalog retailers, the Toro will retail for $10.49 per cigar, or $209.80 for a box of 20.
One final note: Ernest returned to Brazil for one last time. He scored his last batch of Amazonian rainforest tobacco, for another limited release. Stay tuned for more on the final installment of the CAO Brazilian tobacco trilogy.