Owner and CEO of Tabacalera Palma
Not sure what the weather’s like where you are. But at Boveda HQ, it’s a winter wonderland and we’re headed for another deep freeze. “Light up those cigars, guys, we need an additional heat source.”
On a day like today, it’s hardly work to reminisce about our trip to the Dominican Republic to visit José “Jochy” Blanco of Tabacalera Palma. But since they pay us in blends and Boveda, it’s an even trade! Dream along as Jochy takes us through the tobacco fields and cigar workings of Tabacalera Palma.
Feel warmer already?
Your virtual tour transported you to the luscious Cibao Valley, home to Tabacalera Palma.
This cigar paradise produces some of the finest tobaccos in the world–flavorful fillers, sturdy binders and exquisite wrappers.
And you journeyed there with cigar elite, José “Jochy” (pronounced hoe-chee) Blanco. His cigar lineage dates back to the mid-1800s when his great grandfather José Manuel Blanco Lozada started growing tobacco in the Dominican Republic. By 1936, the Blanco family opened one of the first cigar manufacturing facilities in the country. Over four generations, the Blancos have specialized in growing tobacco and producing cigars for many high-end brands. Currently, Tabacalera Palma works with Sans Pareil, Bella Dominicana and Matilde, just to name a few.
As a prolific tobacco grower and producer of other guy’s brands, Jochy has been more of a behind-the-scenes force in the cigar world. As CEO, he guided the family company to develop and improve tobacco growing, harvesting, curing and processing techniques. (To know Jochy was to be a true cigar aficionado. You now know Jochy, puff, puff.)
From private labels to releasing his own brand
Jochy is now stepping out into the frontlines with his La Galera line of cigars, the first brand he officially released under the Tabacalera Palma factory name. Named after the heart of a cigar factory, La Galera is where the art of hand rolling premium cigars is performed.
Launched in 2015 with just two blends, La Galera now boasts the Maduro, Habano, 1936 Box Pressed and Connecticut cigars. Oh, and La Galera Tins, which are billed as “the perfect cigar to take the dog for a walk or for a break at work.” (A La Galera Tin is the just-right cigar for a quick smoke on a cold winter’s day.)
To commemorate the anniversary of opening its first cigar factory, Tabacalera Palma also released La Galera 80th Anniversary Box Pressed Limited Edition. This balanced and pleasant smoke was declared World Favorite Cigar for 2017, by the European Council on Tourism and Trade (ECTT).
La Galeras are selling fast at brick and mortar shops all over the nation. Cigar enthusiasts and tobacconists will see Jochy’s cigars taking up more shelf space. Halfwheel called out Tabacalera Palma as one of the top “five companies to watch” at the 2017 IPCPR (International Premium Cigar & Pipe Retailers Association) show.
When it comes to your cigar reputation, protect it with Boveda
Whether an acclaimed cigar bears the Tabacalera Palma name or not, Jochy recognizes quality when he sees it. And precision is what Jochy was looking for in cigar humidification. He turned to Boveda, the 2-way humidity control that ensures that when his cigars reach you, they are as fresh as when they left the hands of the rollers.
Boveda preserves a cigar’s condition, flavor, burn and aroma
“When I began to try Boveda, I know that we found a big change in keeping the quality of the cigars,” Jochy said.
True cigar aficionados, like Jochy, trust Boveda to achieve and maintain a precise moisture level for their premium cigars. During winter, keeping cigars properly humidified is difficult for cigar collectors who live in a climate that experiences seasons. (Or one lo-o-o-ong winter season, like we do here in Minnesota.) Boveda creates the perfect environment for your cigars no matter what time of year it is.