During the cigar boom of the 1990s, Asylum co-founder Tom Lazuka was just getting the cigar itch. At the time, he was a young restaurant entrepreneur, but the itch was strong. So from there, Lazuka became a sales rep for Colibri and Camacho. During this time, he’d meet his future business partner, Christian Eiroa, already a man with numerous 90+ ratings who was then running Camacho Cigars at 26 years old after it was purchased by his family
Camacho sold to Davidoff in 2008. Eiroa would leave the industry for a bit while Tom formed Asylum Cigars in 2012 with Kevin Baxter. Eiroa returned right around this time and the trio was complete. Asylum Cigars did not hesitate to move in on one of the main cigar opportunities they saw left on the smoking table—ring gauges, big ones, far larger than the usual 6 x 60 industry ceiling. The Asylum brand is known for tossing out the rulebook. They’re not afraid to create bulging smokes upwards of 8 x 80.
While a bit daring, and what could be seen by an industry steeped in tradition as gimmicky, Asylum and their big ring gauges were met with near-immediate success. That success included a spot in Cigar Aficionado's top 25 Cigars of the Year for 2013 and an impressive 94 rating for the Asylum Premium 2012 Vintage 44 x 4.
Among Asylum Cigar’s quality blends is Asylum 13, which does a fine job using Nicaraguan tobaccos to power the smoke without losing the space needed to detect a wide variety of flavors. Another is the full-strength Asylum 13 Ogre, which features a fun barber pole that delicately utilizes both a Habano and candela leaf to create the pole. And of course, there's the mild Asylum Insidious with its sweetened cap and desire to appeal to all cigar lovers, no matter experience level.
Whatever your pleasure is, Asylum Cigars offer you a way to get that and more.
Currently, Asylum Cigars are primarily produced in Esteli, Nicaragua, with a few lines coming from Eiroa’s Honduran factory. One cool thing about Asylum is their desire to run as hygienic an operation as possible. They use no toxic chemicals. The process is expensive and time-consuming, but worth it to Lazuka and the team. The goal is to eliminate every impact they might have on the environment every step of the way.