El Artista Cigars Launches Artista Studio Works

Tabacalera El Artista may be one of the best kept secrets to come out of the Dominican Republic. Like most boutique cigar makers, the Tamboril-based El Artista Cigars is a family affair and has been quietly making a name for itself since 1956. Owned, operated and managed by the Rodriguez family, El Artista is one the few family-run cigar artisans to be a veritable “crop-to-shop” enterprise with all business aspects from farming, distribution and sales vertically integrated. El Artista is now led by the third generation of the Rodriguez family, President, Radhames “Ram” Rodriguez.

The Dominican boutique maker currently offers 8 lines under their brand, including such favorites as Buffalo TEN and Big Papi by David Ortiz, but also offer their in-demand services for contracted products as well. One of the perks of vertical ownership is that it keeps cigar prices low for consumers, but don’t think for a minute they skimp on the quality or varieties of tobacco (e.g. Buffalo TEN is a 5-country blend). This independence also allows the company to dabble in special projects like their latest effort in launching Artista Studio Works.

“We make tobacco and cigars and that is our art. But there is so much artistic expression around us here on the island and I wanted to make an opportunity to share that with anyone who is curious about the Dominican
Republic; we are so much more than just tobacco.”

Radhames “Ram” Rodriguez

Rodriquez eschews being painted into a corner as being just a tobacco family, stating, “we are so much more than just tobacco.” In their November 10 press release, the company “seeks to bring the life and culture of the Dominican Republic to the rest of the wor[ld] through works of art and inspiration.” The idea that the “Dominican Republic flows with artistic expression” is central to their vision and the company plans to collaborate on multiple projects with Dominican artists. The first project was to create unique pieces, like custom humidors, using inspiration and imagery from particular cigar lines like Big Papi and Buffalo TEN.

David “Big Papi” Ortiz Humidor

El Artista pegged Dominican artist, René Peña, for their inaugural collaboration whose colorful style will adorn not only the custom humidors but also 3-panel “wall art” used as promotional material which will also be given away to retailers and El Artista faithful. The 50-count Humidors are hand signed by Peña and limited to only 200 pieces. MSRP for the humidors is expected to be $150 for the Buffalo TEN and $190 for the David Ortiz box. The limited edition humidors will be available to select retailers beginning on December 1, 2020. – In Fumo Pax!

Buffalo TEN 3-Panel Wall Art & Humidor

Tabacalera El Artista S.R.L. started operations in Tamboril, Dominican Republic in 1956. Today TEA
is one of the nation’s largest producers of premium cigars. TEA produces millions of cigars each
year and distributes throughout Europe, Canada, United States, and Asia. Additionally, TEA
manages farms in the Caribbean and South America where it grows premium tobacco leaf which it
utilizes in its proprietary blends as well as sells to top cigar manufacturers in Nicaragua, Honduras,
and Dominican Republic. El Artista Cigars.

You can download the full press release here.

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