To the box

3/4. From workbench to the box
Preparation of the Tobacco
On arrival from la Vuelta, the containers or “Tercios” are dismantled. Each of the 5 types of leaves is treated differently before being passed to the “Galera” or the cigar workshop.
Outer Layer Leaves
Their very delicate nature requires that their suppleness and smoothness is returned before they are classified and sorted for the last time. The wetting or “Moja” is carried out exclusively during the cooler hours of the early morning. The leaves are then shaken to remove any excess water and are then hung overnight to ensure a uniform humidity.
The next day, the affectionate and expert hands of the “Despalilladoras”, or gromder, eliminate the central section and so divide the leaf in two. Following this the “Rezagadoras”, or sorters, place the leaves in piles depending on their size, colour or texture before the leaves go to the “Galera”.
Core of the cigar and Undercoat
These leaves must not be wet. The drying time for each of the four types of leaf is different.  The “Ligeros” must be allowed to mature for a minimum of two years, whereas the "Volados” or “Capotes”, about 12 months.
The head mixer keeps a watch on the development of each of the leaf varieties. Once perfection is reached, the leaves are admitted to the “Liga” or mixing room. It is in this room that the mixing recipes for each mark of Habano cigar are enviously kept.
Making the Cigar
The heart of the creation of the cigar is “La Galera”. It is here that the craftsmen, “Torcedores”, create the different brands and formats. Their only tools : a wooden table, a sharp knife (Chaveta), a guillotine, a jar of vegetable resin and… their fingers.  Each craftsman rolls about 120 cigars a day.
Quality Control
The team in charge of quality control, regularly collects a sample of 50 cigars from each craftsman. The length, shape, diameter, appearance and weight is controlled.  The craftsman is paid for each cigar finished to the required quality standard.
The Packaging Room
The cigars leave the workbenches and are taken to the “Escarpate” or Packaging Room. It is a protected room in which draw cupboards made of cedar are lined up.  The cigars rest here for a minimum of three weeks or several months, in ideal conditions; temperature of 16 to 18 degres and humidity of 65% to 70%.
Sorting by Colour
The presentation of “Habanos” must be perfect : The “Escogedor” or colour sorter starts by sorting in no less than 65 different shades. A second “Escogedor” sorts the cigars in a provisional box, in such a way that they are placed in order of dark to light and he selects the finest side of the cigar, the side that is seen when the box is open.
Ring Tagging
“L’Anillador”, or tagger, removes the cigars from the provisional box in order to put on the ring tag. In no case can she modify the order established by the “Escogedor” or choose a different side.
Labelling and Finish
The partially decorated boxes are returned from the “Anillado” for final packaging including the Governmental Stamp of Guarantee. The boxes, made of cedar wood allow the cigars to breathe and continue to mature.

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LA CAVA DEL CIGARRO - design & concept by BLUEWAVE ©2000-2007

Havana... "El HABANO"... The pleasure of smoking!