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CIGAR GLOSSARY

  • Anilla (Cigar band) Cuban term for the band of the cigar (in Spain: vitola).

  • Aporque (Heaped up earth) Earth is heaped up at the foot of the tobacco plant to promote a strong plant growth.

  • Bonche (Wrapping, chrysalis) Cylinder shaped wrapping which ensues by wrapping (rolling up) the filler with the binder.

  • Boquilla (Foot) End of the cigar which is lit.

  • Capa (Wrapper) The outer visible leaf of the cigar. It covers the binder (which in turn contains the filler).

  • Capote (Binder) The leaf in which the filler is wrapped (see Wrapping); the longest leaf from the lower part of the plant (volado).

  • Casa de Tabaco (Tobacco house) Drying barn where the traditional air curing of the tobacco leaves in the tobacco plantations takes place.

  • Casquillo (Husk) Cylinder shaped element used to cut out a small round piece from the wrapper to form the cigar head.

  • Catadores (Taster) The people who taste the cigars every day in the factories.

  • Cedros (Cedar wood) Cedar wood which is used to wrap cigars. It can also be used as partition between cigar layers in the box.

  • Cepo (Measuring gauge) Measuring tool used to check length and diameter of a finished cigar. Also a synonym for the diameter (band size) of a cigar.

  • Chaveta (Cutter) A semi-circular knife used by the cigar rollers.

  • Claro (Light) The hue of a light brown wrapper.

  • Colorado (Crimson) The hue of a chestnut brown wrapper. There is also COLORADO CLARO (medium chestnut brown) and COLORADO MADURO (dark chestnut brown).

  • Cortaperillas (Cutter for the mouthpiece) Name of the tool used to cut the side of the cigar (perilla) which is put into the mouth.

  • Cuje (Pole, crop) Pole over which the leaves are laid, threaded up by pairs which are subsequently hung up for air curing in the tobacco barn.

  • Curación (Drying) Air curing process which the leaves are subjected to in the tobacco barn.

  • Desbotonar (Removing the buds) Work step in which the upper buds are removed to concentrate the plant’s energy on the development of the other leaves.

  • Deshije (Removing shoots) Removing the side shoots to limit the growth of the plant to the leaves which have already formed.

  • Despalillo (Stripping) Workplace in which the lower parts of the central leaf-veins of the chosen binder and filler leaves are removed. Here the second fermentation also takes place.

  • Despalilladoras (Workers who strip) Workers who strip the binder and filler leaves (in leaf-vein removing) and the wrappers (in the factories).

  • Ensarte (Threading) The harvested leaves are threaded on a string, laid on wooden sticks and hung next to each other for the traditional air curing in the curing barn.

  • Escaparate (Maturation storage room) A special storage room in the factories where the cigars are stored at a temperature of 16 to 18° C and a humidity of 65 to 70 per cent to complete their maturation.

  • Escogida (Selection) Work place where the leaves are selected as wrappers, fillers and binders. Here the first fermentation also takes place.

  • Figurado (Irregularly shaped cigar) Cigar shape which is not cylinder like, and is pointed at one or both ends.

  • Fortaleza (Power, strength) Term for time periods. Fortaleza 1, 2 and 3 are also synonyms for the filler specifications Volado, Seco and Ligero.

  • Galera (Production site) Production site in the factory where the cigars are manufactured by hand.

  • Gavilla (Bundle) Bundle of selected leaves; bound together for easier handling.

  • Goma (Glue) Natural scent- and tasteless glue, which the cigar rollers use to fix the cap to a cigar.

  • Habanos (Havanna cigar) Protected original designation, which guarantees the origin and the production process of the best cigars in Cuba.

  • Habanos SA, Corporación Export association with head office in Havanna, which markets Cuban tobacco products worldwide.

  • Habilitaciónes (Ornamentation) Ornamentation used to decorate the traditional Havanna cigar boxes.

  • Ligador (Mixture manufacturer) Skilled workers who manufacture the tobacco mixtures for the various formats and Habanos brands.

  • Ligero (Light) A specification for fillers. Despite its literal meaning (light), ligero designates the leaves of the upper part of the plant which normally have a dark hue and are also stronger.

  • Maduro (Ripe) The hue of a very dark, chestnut brown wrapper.

  • Manojo (Bundle) Bunch of four leaf bundles.

  • Mecanizado (Machine made) Machine made.

  • Media Rueda (Half wheel) The name of a bundle of 50 cigars.

  • Moja (Moistening) Moistening of the tobacco leaves which is carried out - if necessary.

  • Pacas (Bale) Designation for the packaging in which the fillers and binders grown in the sun are matured.

  • Parejo (Cylinder shaped) Cigar shape with parallel, straight sides.

  • Perilla (Head) Head end of the cigar; the side of the cigar closed with a cap, which is to be cut before lighting.

  • Seco (Dry) A specification for filler leaves. They are leaves of medium strength from the middle part of the plant which have a great impact on the cigar aroma.

  • Tabaco (Tobacco) Sole component of Habanos. On Cuba also synonymous with cigar.

  • Tabaco Negro Cubano (Cuban black tobacco) Original tobacco plant, which Christopher Columbus discovered on the island in 1492.

  • Tabacuba State agricultural association which is responsible for all agricultural and manufacture related aspects of the Cuban tobacco production.

  • Tabla (Wooden board) Wooden board on which the cigar rollers make the cigars.

  • Tapado (Covered cultivation) Cultivation method for tobacco plants under fabric panels, especially top quality for wrappers.

  • Tercio (Bale packed in yagua leaves) Packaging of yagua leaves (Cuban royal palm) in which the leaves selected as wrappers are stored for maturation.

  • Tiempos (Time duration) Corresponds to Fortaleza. Sorting of various filler leaf kinds which are combined in the production of the mixture for a Havanna cigar.

  • Torcedor(a) (Cigar roller) Cigar roller who makes cigars in the factories.

  • Totalmente a mano (Completely made by hand) Designation used to distinguish the traditional Cuban production method – cigars completely made by hand – from partly machine made production methods used in other places.

  • Tripa (Filler) Heart of a Habano. It consists of a mixture of leaves specified as ligero, seco and volado, and to a great extent determines its taste.

  • Tripa Corta (Cut filler) Cut or hacked tobacco leaves in the filler; sometimes also designated as picadura.

  • Tripa larga (Filler of whole tobacco leaves) Whole tobacco leaves in the filler

  • Vegas Finas de Primera (Cultivation of top quality) Designation for tobacco cultivation in the tobacco cultivation regions confirmed to be the best by the Cuban Tobacco institute, and in which the tobacco is grown used to produce Habanos.

  • Vitola (Format) A word with various meanings. In general: format and measurements of a cigar. Production name: v i t o l a d e g a l e r a (production name). Trade name: v i t o l a d e s a l i d a (trading name). Also: special cigar format in a special type of packaging. In Spain: designation for the band of a cigar. (V i t o l f i l i a is the term for collecting the cigar bands).

  • Volado (Ephemeral) A specification for fillers. Leaves with less strength from the lower part of the plant, very important for the cigar burning off well.

  • Yagua (Yagua leaf) Bark of the Cuban royal palm (national tree of Cuba), which is used to manufacture the bales in which the wrappers are stored for maturation.

  • Zafado (Take apart) Work step in which leaves are taken from the wooden poles to put them into bundles.