Blind Man's Puff - Cigar Reviews, Ratings, News, Tips, Tricks
Blind Man's Puff - Cigar Reviews, Ratings, News, Tips, Tricks

Travel

This third day was largely taken up by travel from the city of Granada to Estelí. The two plus hour trip was also lengthened by a stop at a restaurant to have a quick snack and drink, and of course, a smoke. Once we arrived in Estelí we were taken to ’s Casa Hacienda El Tuco where a nice catered lunch was waiting for us. Here we see some familiar faces not encountered yet on the trip like Steve Saka and Skip Martin.

Tour

After lunch, we split up into our various assigned groups in which we would be joined-in for the remainder of the trips activities. I chose group 5, in no small part because our first stop was NACSA (North American Cigars S. A.). Most consumers had never heard of NACSA until it was learned that this was where Steve Saka would be making his second release, Mi Querida. In our interview with him at last year, he told us that in an effort to turn this factory into a premium cigar factory, whereas previously it had been making more inexpensive and bundle cigars, he had invested his own money into it and became a partial owner.

Steve lead the tour with the enthusiasm we all know and love him for. He showed us every nook and cranny of this humble factory leaving nothing to hide. While NACSA still uses some cost saving techniques like the vein-stripping machine and the leiberman, they are gradually seeing this goal of producing premium cigars come to light. We learned from Christian Eiroa himself that C.L.E. has actually been making quite a few cigars here under the radar, even before Steve Sake took his Mi Querida project on. Most of the Asylum brand as well as the C.L.E. Chele and Prieto have been made here for a few years without anyone knowing. This says quite a lot about the turnaround of this factory.

Blind Man's Puff - Cigar Reviews, Ratings, News, Tips, Tricks

Blending

After the main tour we were treated by a little taste of how Steve goes about his process of blending a cigar, showing us how to roll our own little test blends or little chroot looking cigars. Most of us failed miserably, but looks aren’t everything in this case.

After getting checked into our new hotel rooms, we were shuttled by police escort to an even more lavish dinner than the previous nights, which included excellent food as usual, a speech from the mayor of Estelí Francisco Ramón Valenzuela Blandón, and of course dancing by the lovely cigar tray girls, and Omar de Frias (see pictures) (sorry Omar, not sorry :D )

Blind Man's Puff - Cigar Reviews, Ratings, News, Tips, Tricks

Dinner

After the main tour we were treated by a little taste of how Steve goes about his process of blending a cigar, showing us how to roll our own little test blends or little chroot looking cigars. Most of us failed miserably, but looks aren’t everything in this case.

After getting checked into our new hotel rooms, we were shuttled by police escort to an even more lavish dinner than the previous nights, which included excellent food as usual, a speech from the mayor of Estelí Francisco Ramón Valenzuela Blandón, and of course dancing by the lovely cigar tray girls, and Omar de Frias (see pictures) (sorry Omar, not sorry :D )

Blind Man's Puff - Cigar Reviews, Ratings, News, Tips, Tricks
Blind Man's Puff - Cigar Reviews, Ratings, News, Tips, Tricks