Culebra Cigars - Corona Cigar Co.

Culebra Cigars

  06/18/2021 at 11:29 am

What... what the heck is this weird looking thing?

Well, first of all... they’re very odd looking. Culebra cigars are actually three individual panatela cigars, braided into one interesting looking bundle, then tied together with ribbon or string. Usually, they consist of a thinner ring-gauge, about 38-44, by a 6-inch length, or so. The word “culebra” translates to “snake” in Spanish, and is aptly named due to its writhing appearance. Unique to the eye, and even more unique in history, let’s dive in to the twisted story behind the culebra cigar.

How did they come up with these things?

Here’s where things get a little confusing. Possibly the most famous version of the origin story is that they were created out of necessity to prevent theft in cigar factories. Factory workers were given a ration of three cigars per day, and in order to reduce these workers from taking their ration and re-selling it, they created these convenient little bundles of twisted cigars for workers to smoke. The shape was odd, so it would prevent these cigars from being desirable on the black market, and allowed for the rations to be divvied up easily. However, this story leads to a few other concerns, such as the practicality of taking up valuable rolling time to make these things, and rollers taking any tobacco they wanted to make up the culebras.

Another story originates in the Philippines, during the mid-19th century, as a cigar factory innovation. The idea was that by weaving these individual, smaller cigars together, the tobacco would mature quicker than if they were kept separated.

While we may never really know its true origins, the culebra maintains interest and mystique in the cigar community to this day.

How do you smoke them?

All at once. Just kidding, that’s not how you smoke a culebra. You could, but it probably wouldn’t be a good time. First, you want to undo the ribbon holding the three cigars together. Next, carefully separate them from one another, and hand the other two to some buddies (or save ‘em for yourself). Finally, cut, light, and smoke. Expect the draw to be fairly loose, as they are normally a tad underfilled to allow for easier shaping. It may not be the best smoking cigar you’ve ever had, but it will sure be a memorable one!

Culebra cigars these days.

While not the easiest cigars to find on the market, there are a good handful being produced these days. Villiger has been making their Original-Krumme to this day, Drew Estate released their Medusa some years ago, and Davidoff even created a Discovery culebra which featured blends from their Nicaragua, Escurio, and Yamasa lines.

If you are looking to give culebra cigars a go, you’ll want to pick up one of our Corona Dominican 10th Anniversary Dos Capas Culebra, or the newly released Fausto Old Man and the C Culebra.Grab a couple of your buds, and share a unique smoking experience!

By Corona Cigar Co.