There was plenty of excitement and enthusiasm over what Kristoff Cigars was bringing into the 2023 Premium Cigar Association (PCA). Kristoff is a company that has not been afraid to innovate, and this year they introduced two new regular production offerings that are the company’s first Nicaraguan puros. On top of that, they also delivered another PCA Exclusive cigar. At the same time, Kristoff has also announced it will be making some significant changes to the packaging of its portfolio.
One year ago, at the 2022 PCA Trade Show, Kristoff unveiled two new releases – the Kristoff Guardrail and the Kristoff PCA 2022 Signature Series. Both of those releases featured packaging that was unlike most of Kristoff’s packaging. Most of Kristoff’s packaging is what company Glen Case calls “rustic elegance” – rough cut boxes where the cigars are packaged in loose tobacco. In the case of the Guardrail and the PCA 2022 Signature Series, they featured sleek, modern boxes without the loose tobacco. This trend continued with Kristoff’s three new releases for 2023. Owner Glen Case also broke the news during our interview that the plan is to move the Kristoff portfolio away from the rustic elegance look to this sleek, modern look. One note – this isn’t the first time Kristoff has moved away from the rustic elegance. A decade ago saw, Kristoff delivered products with sleek packaging with the (now discontinued) Kristoff Galerones.
The first of the two Nicaraguan puros is the Kristoff Nicaragua. While it’s produced in the Dominican Republic at Tabacalera Von Eicken, the cigar features 100% Nicaragua tobaccos from the main growing regions of Condega, Estelí, and Jalapa. The cigars will be available in three sizes: Robusto (5 x 50, $9.50/cigar), Toro (6 1/4 x 54, SRP $10.50), and 6 x 60 (SRP $10.75/cigar). It’s a regular-production cigar that will be available later this summer. Kristoff Nicaragua is the first release of what Glen Case calls the Kristoff Heritage Series – which is a planned series of puros that will be released from various countries.
Kristoff also is releasing a second Nicaraguan puro known as Kristoff Tres Compadres. Tres Compadres pays homage to two friends of owner Glen Case. Case’s friend of 42 years, Chuck Finch, passed away a couple of years ago. This was followed six months later by the death of Case’s friend and mentor Rolando Villamil. The initials of Case and his two friends are on the packaging. The tobaccos in this blend also come from the Condega, Estelí, and Jalapa regions. It is available in the same sizes and pricing as Kristoff Nicaragua: from the main growing regions of Condega, Estelí, and Jalapa. Robusto (5 x 50, $9.50/cigar), Toro (6 1/4 x 54, SRP $10.50), and 6 x 60 (SRP $10.75/cigar). This is also a regular production cigar that will be available later this summer.
Finally, for the second year in a row, Kristoff has an exclusive cigar for retailers who attend the PCA to carry – the Kristoff PCA 2023 Signature Series. I’m impressed by the effort put in by Kristoff to make their PCA Exclusive Cigars special. The Kristoff PCA 2023 Signature Series is highlighted by a Brazilian Maduro wrapper over a Dominican binder and a combination of Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers. The cigar is a 6 1/4 x 54 box-pressed Toro. Kristoff has not done a lot of box-pressed cigars, and the majority of them have been held for limited releases. There will be a total of 1,000 20-count boxes. Pricing is set at $12.00 SRP per cigar—the cigars are due to ship later this summer.
Interview with Glen Case, Kristoff Cigars
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- Kristoff Nicaragua to Debut at the 2023 PCA Trade Show
- Kristoff Tres Compadres to Debut at PCA 2023
- Kristoff PCA 2023 Signature Series Announced
Photo Credits: Erron Nielsen for Cigar Coop