Being a well known brand acknowledged for the mild favour and taste, the Por Larrañaga Cuban Cigars are very pleasant on the palate. These are perhaps the best option for the new smokers, who are still adjusting their palates to the strong taste of cigars. Compared to the conventional varieties, these cigars are not overwhelming and should serve as an excellent introduction to cigar smoking. Many may complain about its appearance but it can be said without hesitation that its flavours very well make up for it. A blend of complex flavours and creamy textures that will slowly build up and unravel overtime, the Por Larrañaga Cuban Cigars indeed offers a great balance between quality and value.
The Por Larrañaga Cuban Cigars is considered as one of the oldest cigar brands from Cuba existing today. Way back, it has also proven itself to a very well-known brand. In fact, Por Larrañaga was widely produced and in the past and loved by cigar smokers till date.
Establishment and Early Years
The brand name Por Larrañaga was established by Ignacio Larrañaga back in 1834. By the end of the 19th century, this brand had risen to success, making it a very popular brand name all around the world. Following its early success, the company moved on to producing very pricey cigars, although they also manufactured variants that are very affordable. The company was the pioneer of machine-produced vitolas especially that it was Por Larrañaga that first made use of such machines in making their cigars.
When the factory workers opposed the use of machinery in the manufacturing of cigars, a boycott took place. The workers grew more and more concerned and afraid that they would lose their jobs in the long run, seeing that the machines are taking over their tasks in the factory. In the end, the company gave in to the protests of their workers and continued making their vitolas by hand, although machine-made vitolas are also in production.
By the 1950s, Por Larrañaga rose to become a very popular brand. By this time, it rose to fame as one of the most widely sold brand of Cigars. In other words, it became one of the best selling cigars. In fact, it ranked sixth in among the biggest manufactured cigar brand in the whole country of Cuba. Such a trend continued on until the Cuban Revolution.
End of the Cuban Revolution
The Cuban Revolution ended in 1960. This brought about so many changes to the country, now that Fidel Castro had risen to power. Under the administration of Castro, numerous amendments were pursued through the Agrarian Reform Law which was implemented on May 17, 1959. This included the nationalization of private properties owned by the locals, as well as those properties owned by foreign entities, particularly those handled by Americans. Such a restraint among American properties in the country influenced the United States to counter the act by freezing all Cuban assets in America. They also placed an embargo against Cuba.
After the nationalization of properties owned by Cubans and foreigners, the cigar industry greatly suffered because, following such implementation, cigar brands will now had to be nationalized. By the 1960s, the ownership of all brands of Cuban cigars was passed on to the Cuban government in accordance to the implementation of the nationalization moves in the country.
Now that the government had control over the cigars industry, Cuba constituted a state-owned tobacco company in 1962, known as the Empresa Cubana del Tabaco. This company was more popularly known as Cubatabaco. The governing body that is responsible for the regulation, production and distribution of the all the tobacco products was called Cubatabaco, functioning on a local and international level.
That time, Por Larrañaga was taken by Cubatabaco from its legitimate owners. Since then, Cubatabaco has continued the manufacturing of the cigar brand.
Decline in Popularity
Because of some unknown reason, the production as well as the popularity of the Por Larrañaga brand suffered a decline. The trademark litigation of the brand has also not helped the matters at all. In fact, it might even have made the matters worse, especially that the export of these cigars had been reduced to only a few countries. Despite all these, the cigar brand remained in existence. For some time, its production almost became machine-made and hand-finished, with it being primarily sold in Canada as well as some countries in the Middle East.
Production of Por Larrañaga Today
Today, the Por Larrañaga comes in two versions. One is the already known Cuban version and new one, a Dominican version.
Habanos SA - Cuban Por Larrañaga
The government of Cuba created a formal body that is held responsible for all affairs in relation with the management of the brands of Cuban cigars. This formal body was then the Cubatabaco, established in 1962. It was made responsible for the manufacture and distribution of all cigars. A branch of Cubatabaco was created in 1994 which handled the promotion, distribution, and export off all the cigars and other cigarette products all around the world. One of those cigar brands produced and exported today is the Por Larrañaga.
Altadis SA - Dominican Por Larrañaga
Since then, two versions rose from this cigar brand -- the Cuban Por Larrañaga and the new Dominican Por Larrañaga. Due to the trade embargo of the United States against Cuba, a number of Cuban cigar products were illegally made in America. So in order to cater to the American market, Altadis SA produces Por Larrañaga cigars that are to be on sold in the United States. Only the Por Larrañaga brand is legal in the country, with its tobacco leaves and other ingredients for production coming from various regions like the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua and Honduras. The Dominican Por Larrañaga cigars are produced in the Dominican Republic and the Honduras.
Many of the line ups of the Por Larrañaga cigar brand might have already been discontinued since then, but this brand is slated for a comeback. Today, a few violas of this brand are being produced, making this cigar brand still in existence.