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James broke the news on Cigar Aficionado of Don Alejandro Robaina grandson Hiroshi and their plantations in Equador.

http://www.cigaraficionado.com/Cigar/CA_Bl...695,513,00.html

There are some disturbing rumours coming out of Cuba in regards to possible retaliation against the family.

The family does not deserve any retaliation. They have always been at the forefront of the Cuban tobacco industry in terms of quality, accessibility and promotion.

I believe if we were in their position we would do exactly the same thing in terms of advancement of our business and family.

I wish them every success and should they eventually have their own Robaina Ecuadorian cigars I will be among the first to enjoy them and if they meet expectation, import them into Australia.

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I think it's ridiculous that some people feel the necessity to retaliate.....

I also love Hiroshis' honesty when he stated: “I want to be clear that we can never make tobacco as great as Cuba,” he said. “That’s the greatest in the world. But I have the intention to make tobacco with my know-how as close as possible to the quality of Cuban tobacco.”

If they do work out and the standard/quality is there as I am sure it will be, I'd deffiniately give his stogies a try. :unsure:

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“I want to be clear that we can never make tobacco as great as Cuba,” he said. “That’s the greatest in the world. But I have the intention to make tobacco with my know-how as close as possible to the quality of Cuban tobacco.”

Fascinating statement in my opinion

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As with other NC producers, rather than a context of comparison to Cuba (or anywhere else for that matter), I'd much rather he simply say he'll try to

produce the best Ecuador has to offer (fair is fair).

As to retaliation, can anybody be truly surprised?

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As with other NC producers, rather than a context of comparison to Cuba (or anywhere else for that matter), I'd much rather he simply say he'll try to

produce the best Ecuador has to offer (fair is fair).

That's what I thought, its as if he has condemned it before it even began.. Nearly as if he has settled for second best by growing in Ecuador.

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That's what I thought, its as if he has condemned it before it even began.. Nearly as if he has settled for second best by growing in Ecuador.

For me, it's more about hypocrisy on my part. In the past, I've voiced my disappointment with NC producers who try to use the Cuban comparison for

their tobacco, instead of touting it on it's own merits. I'd be a hypocrite to say otherwise here. There's nothing wrong with growing tobacco elsewhere,

and I wish them the best.

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There are some disturbing rumours coming out of Cuba in regards to possible retaliation against the family.

1st, I sincerely hope that these rumours are and will leave as such, just rumours.

2nd, I cannot see what anyone or any Institution in Cuba would gain from retaliation of

any sort against a legendary and Internationally respected name such as ROBAINA.

It would be pure suicide.

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That's what I thought, its as if he has condemned it before it even began.. Nearly as if he has settled for second best by growing in Ecuador.

sorry can’t agree, this is merely showing the needed respect to those in power that have the power to make life easy or greatly difficult for the family.

remember these Cubans do not have the freedoms we take for Granted.

in respect to this i read it between the lines, a family at the forefront in every aspect in Cuba are still doing it tough, accolades, international respect as well as an amazing network of friends can be shallow when food May still be tough to put on the table, But Take the same work ethic, knowhow, and expertise to Ecuador and the possibility for serious money and human nature takes over. a small operation in Ecuador can feed his family back in Cuba 10 fold i am assuming.

it must be tough to be visited so often by international friends and global distributors who make buckets of money from the robaina family hard work (Cuban cigar people in general i have to think)

this is how i read it. rather than backing down before it begins

Spiro

PS ROB (Prez) we are yet to find things in common other than a love for cigars, (simply no time as yet to get to know each other) but i respect that you are willing to support those who need or deserve support as you are willing to do hear (and with JOE, Hamlet etc) well done

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What rumors and from where are you seeing coming out of Cuba? I saw this article posted when it came out and thought a lot about what the Robaina family is doing and wondered out loud if the Cuban gov't actually had something to do with this move. I think the family is going out on their own, but wondered what if the Cuban gov't is being proactive and is planning ahead for when the US embargo gets lifted and that they will have everything set in motion to deliver the first cuban/other country blended cigar on the market?

Anyway, I would love to hear what rumors you are hearing and from where. Obviously if they are coming from friends who are from there, you don't need to share, but I was just curious.

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. . . my disappointment with NC producers who try to use the Cuban comparison for their tobacco, instead of touting it on it's own merits. . . .

Exactly. Agree 100%.

It is interesting news. Brings up several possibilities -- for one, a Cuban/Ecuadorian blend sometime down the road. Many Cuban cigar smokesr have turned up their collective noses at the notion of a Cuban/non-Cuban blend but I wonder if the response would be different if the Robaina family is involved.

And why Ecuador? If you're going to take the risk, why not Nicaragua or Honduras?

In any event, the best of luck to them. I trust that the rumors of retaliation are just that -- rumors. As Guy says, what would anyone have to gain by retaliation (either financial or physical) against the Robaina family.

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I would cut him a break.

He would know how sensitive this issue would be at home.

There are numerous posts here that regale the plights of ordinary Cubans and the distasteful things most everyone has to do just to survive. The fact that the family may have incurred the wrath of those in power just reaffirms how difficult life in Cuba must be. I applaud the man for his bravery. Such an undertaking would be difficult in the States, let alone in Cuba.

As for cigars… Well we are all here because we love Cuban Cigars. Doesn't mean there are some equally stunning cigars from other parts of the world, just not our cup of tea. I look at cigars like liquor. I love a great bottle of scotch and great bottle of cognac. Tequila on the other hand tastes like motor oil to me, but I have plenty of friends who guzzle tequila like a breath of air and can't stand the smell of my scotch (I'm sure they will pay for such heresy in the next life ;) ).

So here is wishing him the best of luck in his endeavors, and I hope that he is able to keep his family safe back in Cuba.

Cheers,

Chris

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Rob I cannot believe that Hiroshi started this business without permission from Habanos and Cuban authority ? so what kind ofretaliation could they expect.

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3 things to consider

Ecuador is one of the few countries where Cubans need no visa for visiting or working.

Ecuador rather than Nicaragua, has not had the help or know how of Cuban researchers or technicians in the past. Nicaragua in the eighties witnessed the arrival of waves of Cubans technician to improve and grow cuban tobacco varieties there.

Habanos s.a. was not aware of such entrerprise...but something was on the air since August 2009 though

May I think this is completely unknown from some authorities? Sure not. But who are backing this or somehow involved is the question I find difficult to answer. Hope the best for the family and there´s many ways to make life harder for anyone specially if you are a sensitive grower with a great heart.

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I think it will be a grand feat if Hiroshi can pull it off. And Im very sure that with the knowledge of the Robaina's, they will no doubt be a quality cigar. Most Americans never get the chance to enjoy something with the Robaina signature on it, and it will be to the advantage and enjoyment of NC consumers to have a Robaina cigar.

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