Maestro Level Cigar Maker
Jorge was born & raised in Havana, Cuba in 1976. After his parents divorced, he lived mostly with his paternal grandmother. He was always a hustler when it came to finding odd jobs to make a peso or two.
In 1987, his paternal great grandmother, Natividad, started making cigars in the home from black market tobacco. She taught Jorge and he quickly was selling cigars beyond his neighborhood.
Seven years later when he arrived at the H. Upmann factory, he was already very accomplished. So much so that the senior rollers were amazed when he was able to complete the apprenticeship test in one month. He wanted to learn additional skills from the best cigar makers. But he knew that the real money was in the black market.
When he worked in the factories, he made $7.00 per month. Yes, per month. On the streets of Havana, he was making $15 or $20 per DAY. When the police cracked down on the streets, he went back to the factory. He did this until he had to serve two years in the Cuban army. After a short time off, he was back in the cigar biz.
He escaped from Cuba in 1999. Joe & Elaine met him in April 2001. He had started his business by purchasing tobacco from the warehouses in Miami and by 2009; the quality of his tobacco was such that he replaced Davidoff and the sole source of supply of Joe’s private label premium cigars.
But it’s not only good tobacco that makes a great cigar. It’s also how it’s put together. There are several methods of bunching the interior tobaccos. Maestro’s like Jorge use the most complex & time consuming method called, entabado or mini tubes.
That technique provides the best draw and the cigars never taste ashy. Many cigar aficionados across the country have called our proprietary blend, the best cigar they have ever smoked.
Jorge also provides all the tripas (bunches) for Elaine’s shows so our cigars are consistent. Of course, she also gets the capas (wrapper) from Jorge’s factory.
More information about Jorge can be found in Joe’s book, “Long Ashes, Baby.”