The track record for companies who opt to skip an IPCPR Trade Show is not good, but for Southern Draw Cigars they went against all odds. They returned to the IPCPR Trade Show in 2017 and the consensus was they had an excellent IPCPR. The company returned in 2018, and they knocked it out of the park – earning the Cigar Coop selection for Best Performance by a Small Company at IPCPR.

Coming into IPCPR, the company had pre-announced two new lines in its portfolio – Cedrus – The Hogan and 300 Hands. While these announcements provided details of the releases, Southern Draw opted to literally “world premiere” these cigars at the Trade Show – complete with an unveiling and a presentation by the company on the releases.

Both cigars featured some unique blends combined with some innovative packaging.

Day One was for Cedrus – The Hogan. This was a project that paid homage to two people who co-owners Robert and Sharon Holt say were instrumental in the success of the company, Phil and Shelly Hogan. The Hogans were on hand for the unveiling and the presentation.

The Cedrus blend consists of a Sumatra wrapper from the Besuki region of Indonesia over a Habano 2000 wrapper from Nicaragua and a filler consisting of Habana ’92, Corojo ’99, and Criollo ’98 from Nicaragua as well as Piloto Cuban from the Dominican Republic. While The Hogan is the first size being released under the Cedrus brand, there are other sizes planned for the future. The Hogan is a 5 1/2 x 52 box-pressed Belicoso Fino. The packaging features a uniquely designed box where the top is removed to reveal ten Cedrus – The Hogan cigars standing from the base.

While Cedrus was unveiled at 11am PST day one, it would be some 27 hours later before the world would see the 300 Hands line on day two. Originally the unveiling for 300 Hands was slated for 11am PST on day two, but the electrical fire that occurred at IPCPR pushed back the unveiling three hours.

The 300 Hands name pays homage to the people of Nicaragua involved in the 300 steps needed going from seed to store to deliver a hand-made premium cigar to the consumer. Many people live in poverty in Nicaragua, so the 300 Hands project has a charitable angle. Southern Draw will donate 25% of the profits of 300 Hands to (according to Southern Draw) “those Nicaraguans that offered us their honest stories and identified specific needs in and around their own communities.” The cigar is positioned as a premium value priced line with the cigars having an MSRP between $5.99 – $6.49.

300 Hands consists of two blends – a Maduro and Habano. The 300 Hands Maduro consists of a Nicaraguan wrapper from Estelí, an Indonesian binder, and fillers from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua. The Habano blend known as 300 Manos Habano consists of an Ecuadorian wrapper, Cameroon binder, and a combination of Nicaraguan and Dominican fillers. Both blends are available in five classic Cuban sizes: Petit Edmundo (4 3/4 x 52), Coloniales (5 1/4 x 44), Corona Gorda (5 5/8 x 46), Piramides (6 1/8 x 52) and Churchill (7 x 48).

Southern Draw also positioned some unique packaging for this line. The company unveiled a patent-pending vertical display tray that holds 10 cigars of each size from both blends. The cigars also come with a series of cards that feature stories of the people involved with the activities around 300 Hands.

2018 Product Reports

Photo Credits: Cigar Coop