Cigars 101

Cigar 101: What is Cuban Seed Tobacco?

What’s the deal with Cuban seed Tobacco?

Cue Seinfeld theme music. The story of Cuban Seed tobacco isn’t simply a tale of transporting seeds from one country and planting them in another. It’s a story of revolution and resilience, of expertise, and the global spread of Cuban cigar heritage and traditions.

After kicking around some of the most common questions heard around Famous HQ and Leaf Cigar Lounge, we thought it was time to get to the heart of these Cuban Seed tobaccos. Plus, the age-old question: Do they make a blend taste like a Cuban cigar?

Check out our answer below, and remember that you can submit your inquiry by reaching out to us on Facebook and Instagram or by leaving a comment below!

The Cuban Revolution and its Impact on Premium Tobacco

Let’s begin at the beginning—1959 to be exact. That’s the year the Cuban Revolution led to the overthrow of the Batista government. The new Cuban government then nationalized the tobacco industry, prompting many of the most skilled tobacco growers and cigar makers to leave the country with their prized tobacco seeds.

cigar advisor cigar 101 what is cuban seed tobacco? - tobacco leaves hanging in an air curing barn
“…while it’s an easy jump to think that cigars containing Cuban Seed tobaccos will taste like a Cuban—they won’t.”

The migration of Cuban tobacco seeds to countries like the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Honduras, and Ecuador was not just a matter of transportation. It involved adapting growing practices to new environments—including soil, climate, and even the water–while attempting to preserve the characteristics of native Cuban tobacco.

And, while it’s an easy jump to think that cigars containing Cuban Seed tobaccos will taste like a Cuban—they won’t. These tobaccos have developed their own unique characteristics with all but an echo of their Cuban past remaining.

See my full video answer for the downlow on Cuban Seed Tobaccos!