Nestled in the foothills of Esteli, Nicaragua, where arguably the world’s best tobacco is being grown and primed for consumers worldwide, sits La Zona. A strikingly beautiful 2-story building that was once used as an Inn, is now the centerpiece of Erik Espinosa’s cigar domain.
As you approach, you are lured inside by the blended aromas of delicious tobacco wafting into the street. Once you step inside, you are greeted by pairs of cigar rollers sitting side by side, honing their craft. The rustle of tobacco leaves, the sound of chavetas cutting freshly rolled cigars on the rollers tablas and the sight of endless rows of freshly bundled cigars awaiting inspection and aging rush your senses.
But La Zona is not just a cigar factory; it is much more. When in town La Zona is the center of operations for Espinosa Cigars in Nicaragua. A hub, with a virtual who’s who of cigar insiders stopping in for a shot of Cuban coffee, a smoke and a story as Erik Espinosa and his staff hold court in their new digs.
For more than a decade Erik has been creating cigars that smokers have come to love. Opened in 2012, La Zona serves an instrument for him to create new blends, re-introduce old ones and add his own flavor along the way. La Zona gives Erik complete autonomy allowing him to do things his way, A Mi Manera. His first solo release, Espinosa Habano, is a solid medium-bodied cigar, that is beautifully crafted and packed with rich cocoa, pepper and cedar tasting notes.