The Spanish Language Blog

Cuba is best known for its rum and cigars. Cuba is the number one country when it comes to cigar production. Rum and cigars are one of the island's main export products.

Cuban cigars

There are 180 million cigars produced in Cuba. Cigars have been produced in Cuba since the 15th century. The word cigar is derived from the Spanish verb turn "girar." Being one of the island's main exports, Cuban cigars are still very important to the Cuban economy today. There are 40 types of Cuban cigars and the most famous of them is Cohiba. Pinar del Río province is one of the most beautiful areas of the island and also the center of the Cuban tobacco industry. A cigar roller is called a "torcedor. A torcedor rolls an average of 120 cigars a day. While working, cigar rollers are allowed to smoke as many cigars as they want, are read to to combat boredom, and are allowed to take home two cigars each day.

Tobacco Plants

To make cigars, one needs tobacco plants. First, the tobacco plants are sown on a special bed where they must remain for 6 weeks. Then they are put in a field where they are given the opportunity to grow and after about 3 months the tobacco leaves have the right size and the leaves are picked. After these leaves are picked they are hung on long sticks for a period of about 7 weeks to dry. The final process is letting the leaves ferment in a dark room. Here, among other things, they are selected for color and packed per 25 leaves for the cigar factory. To this day, all work on the tobacco plantations is maintained manually, this is what makes Cuban cigars of good quality. It was a Cuban tradition to give cigars as business gifts. Only since the 1980s have cigars been available for sale to everyone.

Cuban rum

Columbus discovered Cuba. Already on his second voyage to the island, he brought sugar cane with him. The African slaves who were in Cuba had their own drink, "guarapo." When Columbus brought sugar cane to the island they started applying the same process to the sugar cane. This created the first Cuban rum. It wasn't until the 19th century that Cuban rum became a high-quality product.

There are three types of Cuban rum. The youngest type is the white rum, it is mostly used for making cocktails such as the mojito. The amber rum is about 3 years old and is usually drunk pure or used for exclusive cocktails. The oldest rum is the dark brown rum. This rum is as much as 7 years old and is almost always drunk pure or with a little ice, which ensures that the flavor is better released. The rum brand "Havana Club" is one of the most famous rum brands and dates back to 1878, the brand was nationalized in 1959.

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