The Dominican Republic is a major producer of top quality tobacco. The principal tobacco growing area in the country is the Cibao River Valley area in the northern half of the country near the city of Santiago.
Tobacco RegionsThe Connecticut Valley is a major source of some of the world’s finest wrapper leaves. This golden-colored wrapper tobacco is highly regarded and praised by many cigar makers and connoisseurs. Connecticut Shade, which emanated from the Hazelwood strain of Cuban seed, is shade-grown under huge tents to protect the delicate leaf. Also from this area is Connecticut Broad Leaf. Grown in the sun, this wrapper tobacco is coarser, darker and produces a smoother taste.
Indonesia has gained an excellent reputation for wrapper tobacco. It is dark, tasty, and fragile in nature. In recent years, special strains of Java married with Connecticut tobacco have been cultivated with particular emphasis on the process of fermentation to produce a rich, flavorful and fine burning wrapper and binder tobacco. Grown under shade, it is commonly referred to as TBN.
Many Mexican cigars are made with 100% Mexican grown tobacco. The San Andreas valley is world-famous for producing a sun-grown variety of Sumatra-seed tobacco, called Mexican Sumatra. This is used for wrappers. Dark tobacco, used for long fillers and binders, is also grown here. It is the finest burning tobacco grown, and gives the cigar a distinctive smooth, peppery, light texture. Mexican wrapper leaves are often used as Maduro wrappers.
Nicaragua’s bold, full-flavored tobacco, attributed to the region’s optimal climate and soil, is said to rival the best from Cuba. There are three main tobacco-growing regions in Nicaragua. Esteli produces full-flavored tobacco, Jalapa is smoother and Condega falls somewhere in between the other two.
This West African country is known for its high-quality wrapper leaf that is neutral in character. It’s ideal for cigars with full-flavored filler blends. Recently, availability of the Cameroon tobacco has suffered because of bad weather and political climate, but the leaf remains a favorite among cigar connoisseurs.
In Ecuador, much of the tobacco is grown using Connecticut and Sumatra seeds and tends to be less strong than the leaves grown in those regions. Growers here produce both filler and wrapper tobacco as well as shade and sun grown.
Honduras produces quality Cuban seed and Connecticut seed tobaccos, both full-bodied, with strong, spicy flavor and heady aroma. A Connecticut seed variety is shade-grown in Honduras and is similar to Connecticut grown shade leaf tobacco.
Tobacco RegionsTobacco from Brazil tends to be dark, rich and smooth with a slightly smooth flavor. In fact, the Brazilian tobacco leaves are a deep brown after fermentation.
Cuban tobacco is acknowledged as some of the finest tobacco. The primary tobacco-growing region is the legendary Vuelta Abajo area of the Pinar del Rio province in the western part of the country. Because of the U.S. embargo in 1963, Cuban-grown tobaccos are not used in cigars sold in the United States.