One of the most frustrating bits of being a writer is when you've got a great story and can't find anyone to buy it from you. Last year, on the canary island of La Palma, José, Carballo and I went to visit the last remaining cigar maker, Don Antonio González García.
The deal was Carballo gave him wine, Don Antonio gave him cigars.
James Suckling wrote a story for Cigar Aficionado in 1998, where he erroneously indicated that no Canary manufacturers use local tobacco. Wrong. I saw the plantation with my very own eyes.
Perhaps it was a little rustic. Perhaps the drying under plastic might not pass muster, but it exists and the Canary terroir, so distinct for fruits and vegetables must work for tobacco as well.
One of the more compelling tidbits of this story is his tale: as a young man, after the tobacco blight, he searched the island for wild tobacco plants, saving their seeds, now the basis of his plantation today.
Approaching the compound, we confonted it's mafia-like bouncer and fierce, barking dogs.Inside was lush, grapefruit and orange trees. Every male worker had a stogie jutting from finger or lips.