Cigarmaker Ernesto Padilla has moved production of his Finest Hour cigar lines to A.J. Fernandez’s cigar factory in Estelí, Nicaragua.
The Winston Churchill-inspired Finest Hour series, which began shipping to retailers in January 2019, was previously made at an undisclosed factory in Honduras. The A.J. Fernandez-produced versions of the Finest Hour cigars are expected to begin shipping to retailers in November.
Finest Hour is currently available in three wrapper varieties: Connecticut, Oscuro and Sun Grown. Padilla and Fernandez are developing a fourth line, Finest Hour Sumatra, which is expected to start shipping early next year.
This is not the first collaboration between Padilla and Fernandez. Their relationship goes back to about 10 years ago when Fernandez was mainly a manufacturer of third-party cigars. During that time, he made several Padilla cigars under contract exclusively available online, along with the Padilla Habano line that was a brick-and-mortar exclusive.
The pair have also collaborated more recently on the Padilla Poética line, which is slated for release later this year as a tribute to Padilla’s father, the late-Cuban poet Herberto Padilla.
Padilla told Cigar Aficionado that one of the draws to working with Fernandez on this project was the large inventory of aged tobacco that Fernandez keeps in stock. Padilla also said that the blends and packaging will not change and pricing will remain in the $8 to $10 range.