Don Gonzales Cigars: From Cuba to Nicaragua – By Zach Riley

Last night I had the pleasure yet again of spending time with another owner, blender, and man of the cigar business. That man’s name is Don Pedro Gonzales. In this article I am going to tell you about the event at my home shop, Cigar Room Shoals had with him last night, but also info about him, his company, and more. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the read.

Don Gonzales Cigars

Don Pedro Gonzales and Zach Riley

This was not my first time with Don Gonzales. He had been at the shop a couple of months back in October, but I wasn’t writing for Stogie Press back then, so I couldn’t introduce his brand, because he is not on our fine website.

When Don Gonzales travels to shops to introduce his brand, he brings with him one of his Cuban born master rollers – the same roller that was at the shop last time. He has been rolling premium cigars for 24 years. He started as a Cuban roller in the Habanos SA Partagas factory. Partagas, founded in 1845, is one of the oldest Cuban brands still on the market. On September 15, 1960, Fidel Castro’s revolutionary Cuban government seized 16 cigar factories, including the Partagas factory and related assets.

I had a moment to sit with Don Gonzales and briefly talk to him about his brand and he was gracious enough to share some info me.

Don Gonzales Cigars is a family business through and through that dates back to Cuba, farther back even than the infamous Fidel Castro. Don Gonzalez has ties to tobacco that date back to the 1930’s in the Pinar Del Rio region of Cuba.

Don Gonzales cigars are produced in Esteli, Nicaragua and they have a warehouse in Miami, FL.

Although it is a family business, Don Gonzales took full control of the company 13 years ago. Once he took the reigns, he completely revamped and re-blended the entire line. Nothing in production now is the same as it was 13 years ago. He changed everything to fit the ways of how people are smoking today, their palates, and what worked best for him and his brand. The Don Gonzales cigar company only uses pure Nicaraguan tobacco. He also has all types of cigars in his stable, from the creamy Connecticut to one I smoked last night,  the triple ligero .

Not only does the Don Gonzales Cigars have a diverse selection, but his product is delicious and well priced. Let me show you one of his specialty cigars and note the craftsmanship on this. As a pipe smoker too this one covered both bases for me.

Don Gonzales Cigars

Don Gonzales Cigars

Moving on to the event. The roller was there doing fresh hand rolled cigars where everything had already been aged, but rolled fresh and smoke-able. Very tasty smokes. The Cigar Room Shoals doesn’t have the full line up of Don Gonzales, but our main location in Madison does. We carry around half of what he produces. Last night I had one of the hand rolled specialty cigars which will be pictured in the article, one of the hand rolled cigars, and a triple ligero that was super tasty! Best heavily ligero cigar I’ve ever had. No kidding.

Don Gonzales Triple Liegro

Don Gonzales Triple Liegro

We had a really good time. We played Texas Hold Em, we smoked wonderful Don Gonzales cigars, and I got to make a wonderful new contact in this great industry. I plan on starting to review his line around the first of the year or so. I am just introducing him to you all. I’m sure a lot of you have heard of him, but this is for those who haven’t. I look forward to smoking more of his product. Until then I will see you guys later. This is the first solo article I’ve done in a while and it feels good. Take care and I hope you enjoyed this. Be on the lookout for more articles from me soon!