Heberto Padilla, father of Padilla cigars owner, Ernesto Padilla, was a important figure in the Cuban Revolution of the later half of the 20th century. Heberto Padilla was an outspoken poet that, alongside his wife, Belkis Cuza Male, originally supported Fidel Castro’s overthrow of the Batista dictatorship that existed in Cuba. Poetry was something that was incredibly prevalent in Pinar del Rio, where Heberto Padilla grew up, as there were often poetry face-offs. Heberto and his wife began to notice that Castro was using their writings for propaganda, and their opinion of him and the revolution began to change. Naturally, Castro wasn’t going to allow for a well-known poet in Cuba be outspoken about his government. In 1968, Heberto Padilla was awarded the Julian del Casal prize for his book, Fuego del Juego (Out of the Game). This was a tremendous honor, but it came with a price as there were incendiary comments directed at Castro’s regime. In 1971, he was put under house arrest, and then taken prisoner along with his wife. In prison they were tortured and Heberto was forced to sign a “self criticism” of his book, which he turned around on them. This event was called The Padilla Affair. In his son’s words, “It was a message from a guy who almost had a gun to his head...When you come unarmed, what threat are you?” After Padilla had his son, Ernesto, Senator Ted Kennedy quicky came to the Padilla’s rescue and helped them immigrate to the United States where Heberto taught at Princeton University for many years.
Ernesto Padilla started Padilla cigars in 2003 and a short amount of time, he has produced many quality brands from a myriad of countries. In their first year, they produced roughly fifty thousand cigars, which isn’t anything compared to the million cigars they are currently producing. Ernesto Padilla met with up and coming master blender Don Pepin Garcia to create a Nicaraguan blend that suited his taste for fuller blends. Padilla also used Oliva to make the Padilla Habano in Nicaragua up until October of 2007 when he changed manufacturers, as well as using Tabacalera Aguilar for his 1968 line. Padilla has a factory in Miami for his - surprise surprise - Miami 9/11 line. It’s pretty shocking to see a new company have so many lines in different countries, but it is definitely working for Padilla. He decided to base his cigar company after his father, and every line has a reference to Heberto. His father was born in 1932, he published his first book of poetry in 1948, and he published Fuego del Juego in 1968.
Ernesto Padilla’s motto behind his company is that he wants to be known for making traditional cigars. The ring gauges for his cigars aren’t monstrous because he doesn’t want the larger gauge to affect the taste that he has painstakingly worked to achieve. These cigars have all been received well by the cigar community, as the Padilla Miami, 1968, and 1932 received a 92, 90, and 90 rating respectively. The Padilla Serie 1968 cigar was ranked number fourteen in Cigar Aficionado’s Best Cigars of the Year in 2006. It should be noted that master blender Don Pepin has now ceased working with the Padilla family in order to concentrate more on his own blends in the wake of his popularity. The last Padilla batch from Pepin will be arriving in the late spring of 2008, so act quickly. Rest assured Padilla will continue to produce quality cigars and we here at BestCigarPrices.com will do our best to provide them to you at an affordable price as quickly as we can.