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REFLECTIONS
“A cigar blend is only as good
as its weakest component.”


Philosophy of
Agio Cigar Company
SPECIAL
From 7 December, 2017 to 17 January we offer you less 25% on Selected Cigar Ashtrays
COLIN'S BLOG: ACROSS THE COUNTER
Cigars - on the move!

Nothing new here.
Cigars have been moving around the world for many years.

But this year, at InterTabac in Dortmund, one of the hot talking points was the migration of the traditional Dutch, Belgium and German manufacturers of small cigars to the Dominican Republic.
The problems of European labour and taxation were cited as the main reasons for this move.

However there was a train of thought that business economics were also playing a part.
The number of independent cigar manufacturers in Europe had dropped to single figures, most having been swallowed up by the tobacco giants of the world.
These giants also have a strong presence in the premium larger cigar industry and combining the two operations in one location makes sense, especially if it also resolves the shortage of labour problems.

This was virtually confirmed to us by our Belgium suppliers of the De Hertogh small cigars.
In line with the general trend, Ton has decided to move production of his cigars (machines and all) to the Dominican Republic.
Whether he has actually given up his independence, or has undertaken the move on his own, was not made clear to us in our very brief meeting.
We will have to wait and see how the story unfolds.

Until then what?

Balmoral short filler cigarsFortunately one of last independent European manufacturers of small cigars produces the Balmoral brand.
Agio (meaning added value) cigars were started as A Wintermans & Son in 1904 by Jacques Wintermans in the small Brabant town of Duizel. Four generations later, they are the last independent cigar company in the Netherlands, with Boris and Jonas Wintermans in control. Over the years they expanded their production, opening factories in Sri Lanka, Belgium and Dominican Republic (for handmade long-filler cigars).
In 1983 as part of the expansion they bought the “Balmoral” brand from Douwe Egberts – and this is their premium brand both in short filler produced in the Netherlands, and in the long filler Dominican cigars.

The blends, of 100% tobacco, are carefully conceived in line with their philosophy that a blend is only as good as its weakest component.
Balmoral short filler cigars
Filler
Cuba : Havana Remedios, from one of the protected Denomination of Origin regions. This region is also the source of leaf for José L Piedra Cuban cigars.
Java: Indonesian Bezuki leaf native to East Java,  for the distinctive aromatic flavour.
Brazil: Brazil leaf is dark brown to black in color after fermentation, with a mild to medium strength and rich flavor; it is very aromatic, and has a natural sweetness.

Binder is Java Bezuki

Wrapper is fine Sumatra Sandblatt (sand leaf).
Sandblatt are the leaves which grow just above the ground and are in contact with sand. Normally these leaves are used basically for filler, but the Sumatra Sandblatt leaves are very rich in flavour and offer a mild yet aromatic smoke. They are cultivated only in very small quantities and are sought after by aficionados worldwide.

The three Balmoral cigars we have chosen are all the same blend.
More flavour develops when you smoke the larger formats.

Diana Mini Cigarillos (85mm x 7.9mm)
A quick smoke – more flavour than you would expect for the size; a higher proportion of wrapper to filler.

Oxford Tuitknak format (91mm x 12.6mm)
The unusual Tuitknak shape means that your light up smoke almost is entirely flavourful wrapper.

Highlands Senoritas (111mm x 12.2mm)
A true senorita size – relatively slow-burning, and the flavour develops as you smoke - ideal for a pleasant 20minutes.

We offered the Oxford Tuitknak as the opening cigar at our October Cigar Dinner – and it was very well accepted. Subsequent shop sales have confirmed this.
A 100% tobacco, premium short-filler cigar plays an important part in your collection.

With any size cigar, from the tiny minis to the largest Double Corona, you need an appropriate cigar ashtray. Capable of holding the cigar horizontal;
Plenty of room for ash.

Amongst our range are 3 very elegant models:

Crystal Cigar Ashtray with one cigar rest
73-J3539 R995.00

Crystal    15x10/7x3cm

Crystal Cigar Ashtray with two cigar rests
73-J3431 R995.00
Crystal    18.5x9/6x3cm

Black Ceramic Cigar Ashtray, with sliding Bridge
73-J3292 R795.00
Black Ceramic Cigar Ashtray,
with sliding Bridge   
20x12x3cm

And they are our special offer until after Christmas:

From 7 December 2017 to 17 January 2018, we offer you less 25% on
Selected Cigar Ashtrays
Crystal with one cigar rest 73-J3539 R746.25 Normal price R995.00
Crystal with two cigar rests 73-J3431 R746.25 Normal price R995.00
Black Ceramic with adjustable sliding bridge 73-J3292 R596.25 Normal price R795.00

To really enjoy your cigar – choose the right size for the time available!
And no matter what the size, a proper cigar ashtray will finish your smoke neatly.

Colin Wesley

No.418 November 30, 2017 – January 2018

Note:
By law, no South African citizen, living in South Africa can buy a tobacco product via the internet or postal system.  In fact, you may not receive a tobacco product through the post.
In addition we may not receive payment through the internet for tobacco products.
We may only supply tobacco products within the trade – not to private individuals. The fine is substantial
Contact us for help in getting tobacco to your area.

You can read previous articles from “Across the Counter” in The Library.

PS If you can’t visit a Wesley’s Bricks and Mortar, remember that if you’re not completely happy with your mailsale choice, you can always return it for a full refund.

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New Tobacco Control Legislation
       Prohibitions in respect of tobacco products
(5) (a)  No person shall sell, offer to sell, supply, distribute or buy any tobacco product through the postal services, the internet or any other electronic media.
(b) The prohibition contained in paragraph (a) does not apply to any commercial communication between a tobacco manufacturer or importer and its trade partners, business partners, employees and shareholders.

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