Selecting the Best Cigars for any Occasion
The Tobacconists’ Association of America (TAA) was founded by retail legends of the cigar industry in 1968. The business of cigars has been through many changes since then, but the commitment to supporting its members with access to great cigars has remained steadfast. Each year the TAA hosts an annual convention comprised of its membership that includes the top cigar makers and the top retailers in the United States. This private event is surrounded by the mystique it deserves considering the agenda provides an opportunity to enjoy new creations from the best cigar makers. The excitement of the event builds with numerous premium cigar experiences throughout the three-day social gathering. Although the pandemic impacted the scheduling and format of this year’s event, the TAA is keeping with tradition by hosting one of the most coveted experiences in the Cigar industry at the luxurious Casa de Campo Resort in La Romana.
The Selection Process for Great Cigars
Finding the best cigars for new enthusiasts is a labor of love. That journey often starts by discovering the levels of boldness and flavor profiles to match personal preference. The next consideration when choosing the right cigar is the occasion that it will be enjoyed in. Breakfast cigars may be paired with an espresso, while a celebratory cigar could be matched with a fine whiskey. Even the most ardent cigar lovers frequently look for guidance when searching for the exact profile to enjoy. The TAA Limited-Edition ESP Cigar series was created to help occasional and experienced cigar fans alike, to find the best cigar for any occasion. Each cigar in the series is released to TAA member retailers in stages which provides opportunities to enjoy the unique range throughout the year.
The Limited Editions sellout fast, and there is often a waiting list at TAA retailers before the cigars are released. That is why TAA also offers the Ongoing ESP cigars for fans to enjoy at any time during the year. The current Ongoing ESP cigars include sections from world renowned artisans at Drew Estate, Alec Bradley, Ashton, Joya de Nicaragua, Kristoff, and Padron. The cigars go through the same rigorous selection process as the Limited Editions and are only available at TAA member retailers. The series has options that range from medium to bold, so there are great cigars to match individual preferences.
The Limited Edition and Ongoing series go through a vetting process that takes several months before the final selections are announced. Each cigar is submitted for consideration by a committee of cigar industry experts from top TAA retailers from around the United States. The cigars are evaluated based on stringent criteria before the annual convention each spring. The big moment arrives when both ESP cigar lines are announced, and retailers start preparing their orders.
The Dream Machine
The October convention for TAA is unique because it provides top retail members of TAA with the opportunity to participate in the coveted “Dream Machine” event. The pandemic placed a damper on many of the traditional buyer events in the cigar industry, so TAA is very excited resume what many consider the best cigar buying event of the year. The leading cigar makers offer top cigar retailers the opportunity to place orders for the hottest new cigars hitting the market while also securing orders for the legacy premium cigars that aficionados know and love.
Back to Business
The unique fall TAA convention is a great opportunity for the top cigar makers and retailers to get back to business in the post pandemic world. The event includes numerous excursions and world class experiences sponsored by the leading cigar brands. Much of the effort that goes into the event will be seen by cigar lovers on the shelves of retailers through the best cigars on the market into next year. That’s when the next big annual TAA convention takes place in Mexico along with the selection of the TAA Limited Edition Excusive Series of cigars. Cigar aficionados don’t have to wait until spring of 2022 to enjoy the Limited-Edition Cigars though. The 2021 selections are available now at TAA retailers across the United States.
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