Calixto López Cigars Nobles Extrafinos
Size: 6 1/2 x 50
It begins toward the end of the 17th century. The Spanish galleon San Clemente on the Acapulco-Manila trade route brought 200 ounces of Cuban tobacco seeds to the shores of the Philippine islands. These exquisite seeds propitiously found their way into the hands of the Spanish missionaries. Aside from sowing the seeds of the Catholic faith, the Spanish friars took it upon themselves to cultivate the tobacco seeds in Cagayan Valley, Isabela, a fertile region north of Manila, named after Queen Isabela of Spain.
With land as rich and climate as favorable as that of Cuba’s, tobacco-growing soon flourished throughout the Philippine archipelago and gave birth to a burgeoning cigar-making industry under colonial Spain.
To this day, how Tabacalera Incorporada manufactures cigars remains unchanged – totalmente hecho a mano or totally hand-made. Some of its wood presses are over a hundred years old.
For those who doubt the Philippine cigar’s quality, Filipinos may point to the words of famed British writer Rudyard Kipling, who attested its excellence with a stanza in his 1886 poem “The Betrothed”. “Open the old cigar box – let me consider a while,” he wrote. “Here is a mild Manila – there is a wifely smile.”