Today Hoyo de Monterrey cigars, one of the oldest Cuban heritage brands, are split into two versions. You have the Cuban and the Honduran. Different companies and different countries,...
Today Hoyo de Monterrey cigars, one of the oldest Cuban heritage brands, are split into two versions. You have the Cuban and the Honduran. Different companies and different countries, yes, but their origin stories are intertwined, and both start in 1831. This was the year that 13-year-old José Gener y Batet made his way to Cuba by way of Spain. In Cuba, José Gener found work on his uncle's tobacco plantation located in the Vuelta Abajo region of Cuba.
After working these fertile soils for twenty-some years, José Gener took the knowledge and skill he acquired and opened a cigar factory in Havana where he started cranking out his own brand by the name of La Escepción. José Gener used the profits from his factory to purchase a leading tobacco farm back in Vuelta Abajo. The farm's name was Hoyo de Monterrey, and soon José Gener registered its name for his new brand of cigars. It didn't take long for the brand to become extremely popular. The British especially went crazy for Hoyo de Monterrey cigars. Soon José Gener's factory was among the largest in all of Cuba.
In 1895 José Gener would travel back to Spain, where he died in 1890. It was then that his daughter, Lutgarda, took control of the brand. By this time, the factory employed 350 workers, producing over 50 million cigars per year. It would stay within the family for another 30 years.
In 1931, in order to shift focus to their sugarcane properties, the Geners sold their cigar brands, Hoyo de Monterrey and La Escepción, to Fernández, Palicio y Cía, the same firm that owned the Belinda and Punch brands. Fernando Palicio took over the firm after the death of his partner Ramón Fernández. Palicio left Cuba in 1958 after Castro’s communists began nationalizing the cigar industry and taking over factories. He ended up in Florida, and a few years later, Villazon & Co. bought his cigar brands.
Villazon & Co., which would eventually become a subsidiary of General Cigar, produced the cigars at their factory in Honduras. As the story goes, this non-Cuban side of Hoyo de Monterrey got its start when tobacco seeds were hidden in a diplomatic pouch and smuggled out of Cuba. It was under the expert eye of Estelo Padrón that the brand established itself as the first Cuban-style cigar cultivated outside of the country.
Post-production, they would bring the sticks to Tampa, where they added the finishing touches, such as banding and getting them into boxes. Today one version of Hoyo de Monterrey cigars is produced in Cuba and the other in Honduras. Both remain widely popular.
One of the more popular Honduran Hoyo de Monterrey cigars is the Hoyo de Monterrey Dark Sumatra, which uses an ultra-dark sun-grown Ecuadorian Sumatra leaf that Estelo Padrón came upon in one of his warehouses. The result is a rich, creamy smoke filled with flavors of pepper, leather, and wood.
Whatever your pleasure is, Hoyo de Monterrey cigars offer you a way to get that and more.
Please enjoy Hoyo de Monterrey cigars at your leisure.