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Written by Staff

Saturday, 05 April 2008

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John Vogel, 40-year tobacco agronomist and current director of Costa Rican tobacco and cigar producer Tabacos de la Cordillera (Mountain Range Cigars), has developed a startlingly effective method of bunching premium cigars, called “Bull’s-Eye Ligero”™ (patent pending). Vogel claims it places and locks the ligero “dead center” in the bunch, which virtually eliminates uneven burning cigars, the top complaint by cigar smokers. Vogel further claims to have improved “draw” as well, by incorporating the little-used, old-Cuban school entubado bunching technique.

“All our new Fundación Ancestral™ series of cigars feature the unorthodox, yet common-sense Bull’s-Eye Ligero method of cigar construction. Its benefits are further enhanced by the more precise entubado method of building base filler, with superior burn and draw characteristics.

“Bunching with Bull’s-Eye Ligero creates a cigar inside a cigar,” explains Vogel, which he believes has never been done before. “First, the worker makes a small bunch out of the ligero leaves. He then wraps them in their own, small binder, forming a ‘cigar’ that is then centered within the base filler leaves.

“To bunch the base filler leaves in the entubado method, our worker doesn’t lay base filler leaves across the hand upon which he lays loose ligero leaves. That relatively loose bunching style often permits the ligero to shift off-center during bunching, binding and pressing.

“Instead, our unitized ligero rests in a concentric array of base filler leaves that have been previously entubado (rolled into ‘soda straws’). The leaf tips are at the foot end of the tubes, the leaf bases at the head end. During manipulation and pressing, the ligero stays put in the Bull’s-Eye of the bunch ... you can see it as a darker, round spot on the foot, about half the diameter of the cigar. It’s assuring to the smoker to see visual evidence ... the dark round spot at the foot ... he knows he’ll get an even burning cigar, with no problems or bad taste.”

Vogel, in whose name the patent application was filed, believes, “this simple remedy to the most plaguing cause of bad cigar experiences may become the accepted way of the future. Today’s smokers are well-enough informed to know this is a quantum leap in cigar-construction quality and performance.”

Vogel’s latest cigar series, Fundación Ancestral, is creating a stir in the industry, with the claim that its cigars are made exclusively from 100% pure, right-off-the-island Cuban seeds that date back to Cuba’s Golden Age of tobacco and cigars. Three blends are offered, in the four most popular shapes: Churchill, Corona, Robust, and Torpedo. The blends are named after the Cuban growing region and year they were developed and distributed to major Cuban leaf producers, by the now-disbanded Cuban tobacco-research institutes: Vuelta Abajo 1940, Pinar del Rio 1941, and Artemisa 1944.

Two more in the series, also Bull’s-Eye Ligero bunched, are aging now, for IPCPR 2008, the industry’s major trade show. According to Vogel, the new techniques will also be incorporated into other cigar lines from Tabacos de la Cordillera. Vogel states, “Our Fundación Ancestral cigars are priced to reflect the higher costs incurred in producing these prestige-level cigars, but also for the peace of mind they offer smokers.” Cigars from Tabacos de la Cordillera are available at better tobacco retailers, and on the company’s Web site, www.tabacordillera.com.

(Above Photo)
Cigar with revolutionary new Bull’s-Eye Ligero bunching (right) shows captive, centered ligero.

Cigar with visible Bull’s-Eye Ligero (bottom) burns more evenly than conventional bunching.




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