Written by Puff Staff

Saturday, 29 December 2012

User Rating: / 3

island princejack klugman
tobacco legislation

Kauai Cigar Co. Farms tobacco in Hawaii

The Garden Island of Kauai is one of the last places you’d expect to find a tobacco farm, but that’s just where owner Les Drent founded his Kauai Cigar Co. Here, under the warm tropical sun, his hobby has grown into a very big business.

Drent sort of drifted into tobacco farming back in 2006, after discovering a tobacco plant in a friend’s hot-house garden. The friend gave him seeds native to the island called Sumatra, and that’s when his adventure in tobacco growing began.

“We planted a few rows in 2006. I really started smoking cigars in 2005, 2006. My grandfather used to smoke cigars when I was growing up. I loved the smell of a good cigar.” The aroma brought back memories of his childhood on the Jersey Shore. “Everybody smoked cigars and drove Cadillacs. I loved smelling the cigars.”

Since then, Drent’s business has blossomed into a flourishing business whose products can be found in liquor stores and gift shops all over the islands. Drent boasted to a reporter, “We’re now growing about 4,600 pounds of tobacco a year and we sell between 80,000 and 100,000 cigars a year.”

Tobacco is a crop that is native to very hot, less humid areas, because the leaves thrive on direct sun. Drent explained,  “It rains so much here. It helps the coffee, but tobacco likes sun. We’re finding we have to let the tobacco mature longer because we have so much moisture.”


Drent partnered with Victor Calvo of Tabacalera Tambor in Estelí, Nicaragua, to produce his Island Prince line of cigars, which sell for $10-$20 each and come in six sizes: The Kohala, Iki, Nui Loa, Momona (“sweet and fat”) a robusto, the Laka, the Luana Iki (“short pause for pleasure”) a 46-ring, 4.5-inch petit corona; and the Bumboocha, (“the big one”) a Churchill-sized 52-ring, 6-plus incher.

They also come in light or dark varieties. The Island Price site states, “Our Kauai tobacco is wrapped in a Connecticut shade leaf grown in Ecuador. This silky cream like cigar has a medium to full bodied taste. Our Kauai tobacco is wrapped in a dark Habano leaf grown in Nicaragua. It is a full bodied smoke and is filled with deep complex flavors.”

Drent’s products are starting to gain national attention, and he was chosen by the NFL to provide cigars for the 2011 Pro Bowl Party on Oahu. The Island Prince cigars proved to be so popular that more were ordered for the 2012 party.

Island Price cigars may be ordered at


0 # Mr.Bob Shaw 2012-12-29 13:27
I live in OH and the anti smoking zealots have forced their opions on us with no thought to how many bunesses have been afffected or how many jobs have been lost. I wish Dana all the luck and hope he is able to stop these gestapo idiots.

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0 # RE: New Year’s Wishes and a Fond FarewellWalt Priestley 2012-12-30 11:04
Bachmeier is an A$$wipe.

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0 # RE: New Year’s Wishes and a Fond FarewellWalt Priestley 2012-12-30 11:06
RIP Jack Klugman

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0 # An Excellent Tobacco!Janet Garnett 2012-12-30 14:44
I've just sampled the Hawaiian Vintage Series and I would put it on a par with the best Cuban tobacco! It was fantabulous! Practically got my
"Twang" from it! I'd HIGHLY recommend the Vintage Series. I have yet to try the Island Prince . Three Thumbs Up! ;-)

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