Kafie 1901 Candela coming. The Honduran cigar manufacturer is currently working on an extension of its portfolio with the addition of a Kafie 1901 Candela. The brand already has a San Andres, Habano, Connecticut, and Sumatra blend on the market.
The cigar will be regular production, with one vitola for now, a 6×50 Toro. The launch is expected in the second quarter of 2020 with an initial release of 500 boxes of ten cigars.
The unique green color from the Candela wrapper is the result of heat. It takes a lot of work to keep the wrapper leaves green, instead of drying them naturally. It is much quicker though. And it all started during World War II when the demand for cigars was high. Cuban tobacco farmers were looking for ways to speed up the curing of the tobacco. And the result was Candela. It’s still unsure if the first Candela wrappers were an accident or created as a result of an experiment.
To make Candela wrappers, the barn has to be prepared. The inside of the barn is covered with cardboard, covering all cracks. Normally, cigar tobacco is picked, hung in barns and allowed to cure, slowly, over a period of one month or even longer. But Candela is cured with a lot of heat. Propane burners or charcoal fires are lit at the bottom of the barn. The temperature rises quickly to 38 degrees Celsius of 100 degrees Fahrenheit within three hours.
That dries the leaves quickly, and after two days the temperature is cranked up to 75 or 80 degrees Celsius which is 165 to 175 degrees Fahrenheit for another 24 hours. Then the fire is killed, and by opening the barn for the night, the natural dew hydrates the crisp leaves so they can be handled. This process leaves the tobacco green, without the need for further fermentation.
Right after the war, up until the early 1970s Candela tobacco was very popular. It creates a milder, sweeter smoke that was very popular. Nowadays, Candela is seen as a gimmick. Only a few companies use Candela nowadays. And Kafie 1901 cigars are joining the handful of brands that are using Candela tobacco soon.