Many towns all across the Americas bear the name San Cristobal. The name honors Saint Christopher, the guardian of travelers. The San Cristobal cigars represent the freeing nature of traveling by showcasing a colorful parrot with widespread wings as the main feature of the band.
There is a Cuban niche brand that goes by San Cristobal but its full name is San Cristobal de La Habana and it was established in 1999. Its predecessor was also a Cuban brand which was extinguished by the nationalization of the tobacco industry and it had the same name. Habanos SA claims the two brands have no relation.
Outside the United States, Ashton’s production of San Cristobal is sold under the name Paradiso. This is because the Cuban government internationally registered the name, San Cristobal, before first.
Ashton launched the San Cristobal brand in 2007. They had been interested in producing the brand for a few years beforehand but their main cigar producers, Tabacalera A. Fuente, did not have the capacity to produce another brand.
According to Sathya Levin, the Vice President of Ashton, as soon as they met Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia they were sure he was the perfect candidate to produce San Cristobal. Don Pepin was named “America’s Hottest Cigar Maker” in 2008 by Cigar Aficionado.
The quality of their work is truly evident. San Cristobal has over 4 dozen ratings at 90 or above with Cigar Aficionado alone.
The Garcia family and Levin family both run their respective companies, My Father and Ashton, with family values focusing on creating high-quality products. These family businesses have a great collaborative working relationship that has expanded to include other cigar brands including Ashton’s La Aroma de Cuba. Janny Garcia, the manager of the My Fathers Cigars headquarters in Miami, was asked how she felt about the initial collaboration and responded: “It’s like a dream to do a cigar for Ashton.”
The blends were designed by Pepin, his son, Jaime, and Manny Ferrero, the late Vice President of sale for Ashton. The cigars are handmade in Nicaragua at the Garcia Family Industrial Park. The San Cristobal line features cigars of all strengths.
The original San Cristobal is a full bodied blend with a superlative Oscuro wrapper. The San Cristobal Elegancia is mild to medium bodied and wrapped in Blonde Connecticut-seed Ecuadoran-grown tobacco. In 2015, Ashton began releasing limited edition cigars within the brand such as the San Cristobal Ovation.
Ashton is a well-respected distributor of premium cigars. The Garcia family is known for their impeccable work with tobacco and cigar rolling. Combining these talented companies was the answer to every aficionado’s prayer.
Whether you’re smoking one on vacation or at home, a San Cristobal is bound to give you the joy of feeling free. Freedom to enjoy your cigar, spend time with your family, or travel. No matter what you’re doing when you enjoy a San Cristobal, as Ashton’s motto states “Trust your taste”, it really is that good.