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Infusing Distinction Into Cigars: Tobacco Aging In Rum Barrels

Aug 25th, 2023

If you're a cigar enthusiast, you know that smoking quality cigars is an experience unlike any other. The flavors and aromas of a cigar are what make it truly special, and the ingredients that are used to make it are what determine these characteristics. One ingredient that can make a huge difference in the flavor profile of a cigar is the type of tobacco that is used. The world of premium cigars is an art form where craftsmanship, expertise, tradition, and innovation intertwine to create unique and memorable experiences. La Aurora, a renowned name in the cigar industry, has continually pushed boundaries to deliver exceptional tobacco blends that captivate aficionados worldwide. One such intriguing technique La Aurora employs is the aging of tobacco in rum barrels, which adds a unique touch to some of our cigars. This article delves into this distinctive approach.


The Essence Of Tobacco Aging

The aging process plays a pivotal role in shaping the character and quality of premium cigars. Much like the maturation of fine wines or spirits, the aging of tobacco allows for the development of nuanced flavors, enhanced complexity, and refined aromas. For specific blends within the portfolio, La Aurora introduces an innovative twist - the use of rum barrels. This process, as explained by master blender Manuel Inoa, seeks to impart a touch of aged smoked wood distinct from the traditional use of cedar wood. The flavors and aromas of the rum-infused tobacco are not overpowering, but rather they add a subtle and distinguishable flavor. Inoa further emphasizes that this technique is employed only when it serves to enhance the blend to its intended profile and is featured within the blends of Fernando León, Preferidos, and Karl Malone cigars.

La Aurora utilizes barrels that have been used for 15 to 20 years in rum production, allowing enough time for all the rum distillate to be processed and the aromas of alcohol to dissipate. To further prepare the rum barrels for aging tobacco, they are burned on the inside to remove any remaining traces of rum. This careful preparation aims to ensure that the tobacco can fully absorb the flavors and characteristics of the American oak barrel.

Usage Of Barrel-Aged Tobacco

The specific type of tobacco used for this process is known as dark tobacco, typically employed for the binder and filler of cigars. However, in the case of La Aurora Preferidos Edición 1903 Doble Figurado Barrel Aged, they have aged tobacco leaves in this manner for use in all three parts of the cigar - wrapper, binder, and filler. Unfortunately, this particular cigar is no longer in production, making it a rare and sought-after treasure for cigar enthusiasts. As mentioned in the recently published article in 'Cigar Journal,' we introduced our initial line of cigars utilizing barrel-aged tobacco in 2004, which included La Aurora Preferidos Platinum, Emerald, and Gold.


La Aurora's In-House Rum For The Perfect Cigar Pairing

In addition to our dedication to aging tobacco in rum barrels, La Aurora produces a unique super premium rum - E. León Jimenes 110 Aniversario. This exceptional rum undergoes a two-step aging process to develop its exquisite flavor profile. For the first eight years, it is aged in virgin American white oak barrels, which impart the majority of its flavors. In the final two years, the rum is aged in virgin French oak barrels, contributing roundness, homogeneity, and character to the spirit.

The shared philosophy between La Aurora's rum production and tobacco aging in rum barrels lies in the pursuit of distinctiveness and exceptional quality. By employing these specialized aging techniques, La Aurora creates products that offer a truly unique and memorable experience for cigar and rum connoisseurs alike.

Final Notes

In the world of premium cigars, where tradition meets innovation, La Aurora has carved a niche for itself as a purveyor of exceptional tobacco blends. Seeking to elevate the smoking experience wherever possible, La Aurora has incorporated a unique and captivating technique into our craftsmanship: the aging of tobacco in rum barrels. This process of aging tobacco in rum barrels at La Aurora represents just one of our meticulous endeavors to explore all methods to achieve a perfect blend. This innovative approach and our commitment to craftsmanship showcase La Aurora's dedication to pushing boundaries and providing unparalleled smoking experiences for enthusiasts worldwide.