HOW WE'VE MADE IT
The Rebirth of Cigars
“The collaborative consortium of creative talent at every level is our core competency.”
The Drew Estate story is one of daring, heartbreak & success but, most of all, one of passion for cigars and the country of Nicaragua, where we have been making cigars since 1996
Jonathan Drew & Marvin Samel are not your average cigar makers. The early days were fraught with peril. Picking themselves up, dusting themselves off and never backing down would become a trademark in the years to come for them & their fledgling cigar company, Drew Estate.
One of the most, impressive cigar factories in all Central America, our old factory in Esteli was home to us for nearly a decade. It's amazing to think of the many millions of cigars that we were able to produce there. Cigars are so much more than the factory they are made in. It is the people who make them that really make it special. Viva Estelianos! You are the best!
We purchased a pristine piece of land overlooking a valley and tobacco fields, and broke ground for our factory in September 2006.
Opening in July of 2007, La Gran Fabrica Drew Estate is truly a sight to behold. At over 96,000 sq. feet, it is the largest cigar factory in Nicaragua, and one of the five largest premium cigar factories in the world. While others have built simple, economical cinder block cube-like structures, we understood the importance of making our factory special. It isn’t just the place where we make around 200,000 handmade cigars a day, it is a reflection of who we are and what Drew Estate means.
From its stunning architecture, endless hand painted murals and bright, open work atmosphere, this factory has “wowed” everyone that has had the privilege of a tour. Art is a very big part of the La Gran Fabrica experience, at every turn large colorful murals and intricate border paintings adorn nearly each and every wall. A mixture of Nicaraguan culture and brand inspired art is painted by the talented artists of Drew Estate’s Subculture Studio.
WHO WE ARE
Founder and President Jonathan Drew is intimately familiar with premium cigars all the way from seed to stick!
When it comes to our Barn Smoker events, you can expect JD to dive deep into the preparation process of the tobacco leaves we use to make your favorite cigars like Liga Privada and Undercrown. Learn about the journey that tobacco goes through once it’s cut from the stalk and undergoes the many techniques perfected throughout history. Depending on the brand, the tobaccos we use go through different types of curing. Jonathan is going to walk you through the art of each of those methods as they pertain to the different farms we visit and he’ll explain why these techniques make all the difference!
Drew Estate’s Master Blender Willy Herrera is a veteran in the industry, so he’s got a lot to teach about the art and science of blending premium cigars!
Come to a Barn Smoker event to hear Willy talk about Tobacco Selection. He’ll discuss the various types of tobacco used in cigar production, including wrapper, binder, and filler tobacco. He may talk about the unique characteristics of each type of tobacco and how they contribute to the overall flavor profile of a cigar. Hear him share his techniques for blending different types of tobacco to create a well-balanced, flavorful cigar and how to create a cigar that is consistent from one batch to the next. Willy may also discuss the various steps involved in producing a premium cigar, including the rolling and shaping process, the application of the wrapper leaf, and the final inspection and quality control.
Pedro Gomez is a well-known figure in the premium cigar industry and has been a key player in the success of Drew Estate. Pedro joined Drew Estate in 1998 as a factory worker, and he quickly proved to be a valuable member of the team.
When he’s on the Barn Smoker farm, you can expect Pedro to talk about the magic that happens in the field! He and our farmers will tell you everything you need to know about the conditions required to grow the amazing tobacco that goes into Drew Estate smokes. From the seeds, soil and water to the hard work required to make sure the tasty leaves are growing just how you like them.
Just a small sampling of the cigars you might find at the Barn Smoker events
Just a small sampling of the cigars you can find at the Barn Smoker events