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How a Habano is Made
Time has done its work, and the leaf is ready at last to play its part in the making of a Habano.
Preparing the Wrappers

Stripping and Grading
Wrapper Ready

The wrapper leaves are now fully aged and it is time for their final sorting and classification. They must also be stripped of their stems.

A moistening, or moja, brings them to the supple condition required for stripping and sorting, and their final purpose of wrapping a cigar.

The gavillas or bunches of 40 leaves are held under a fine spray of pure water. Excess droplets are then shaken off with practised flourishes to avoid any staining, and the leaves are hung on racks overnight so the moisture is absorbed evenly.

Next morning the tender hands of highly skilled women perform the despalillo (stripping) and the rezagado (grading). One movement deftly removes the central vein of the leaf leaving its two halves ready to be graded into some 20 finely distinguished sizes and shades.

These women work from piles of leaves on their laps, lending weight perhaps to the popular myth that Habanos are rolled on maidens' thighs!

Preparing the Fillers

Filler and binder leaves are carefully removed from their bales for examination.

If necessary they are aired on racks to remove excess moisture. Then they are placed in wooden barrels for storage until they are judged to be ready.

Composing the Blend

La Barajita

The task of selecting the blends for each brand according to its own recipe starts well before the bales reached the factory.

As soon as the factory's future production schedule for brands and sizes is known, the Ligador or Master Blender draws up a list of all the tobaccos he will need to make them.

At the central warehouse a selection is made from a huge stock of bales containing every type of leaf, each classified by its tiempo (ligero, seco, volado and capote), its size, its age and, most important of all, by its zone of origin.

There is an established link between the factory and the zones that supply the leaf for the brands it manufactures. Nevertheless it is the Master Blender's responsibility to sample the flavour of the tobaccos in use from day to day. He carries the recipe for each brand and size in his head and is the guardian of their consistency.

The ratio of each type of leaf that the Master Blender specifies for the cigars in production is assembled by the blending department in batches issued to the cigar rollers for the
day's work.

They call the blending department La Barajita - literally 'the pack of cards' - because the process of assembling the leaves for a blend is similar to shuffling cards.

Finally, three years or more since the oldest leaf was picked, it is now about to become a Habano..

How a Habano is Made
Time has done its work, and the leaf is ready at last to play...

Methods of Making
All but a small number of Habanos are made totally by hand...

Checking the Work
There are strict quality control tests at all stages of hand making.
Looking Good
No product on earth enjoys a more painstaking treatment in its presentation...

In compliance with applicable federal, state and local laws enforced and applied in the USA territories. We certify that our sales and shipments are legal to the satisfaction of ATF and any applicable State Attorney General. (ATF being the United States Department of justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives).
For this reason, US Residents are not able to purchase Cuban Cigars from our Store.

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