Cigar birthdays in April. Like every month we celebrate some of the people in the cigar industry. If we miss anybody on our calendar, please let us know and we will add him or her. Here are the birthdays for March.
April 3: Erik Nording. The legendary pipe maker from Denmark who makes cigars in a collaboration with Rocky Patel. A true gentleman, a true Viking, an extremely funny man with entertaining stories about all his adventures. He lived a life that many of us dream off.
April 10: Manolo Quesada. A legend in the industry. Born into tobacco with roots in Cuba. Yet the Quesada name became a powerhouse in the industry in the Dominican Republic. With the Matasa factory, now called Quesada cigars. With the new world Fonseca (now owned by My Father cigars), Casa Magna, and cigars carrying the family name.
April 17: Michael Serota. The Vice President of sales for Alec Bradley. He joined Alec Bradley in 2011 and before taking over the role of Vice President he was involved in operations, sales support and, key account management.
April 20: Todd Vance. Vance has been in the industry for a long time. He was the sales manager for A.J. Fernandez, Cornelius & Anthony, La Familia Robaina but most recently he joined Padilla Cigars.
April 24: Riste Ristevski. The owner and founder of Jas Sum Kral. A boutique brand with an edge. And a brand with innovation judging by the Nuggs cigars. Bored and annoyed with the quality of Cuban cigars, Ristevski flew to Nicaragua to start his own brand. With success.
April 25: Nick Melillo. The chief of broadleaf. Born in Connecticut, overlooking the tobacco plantations in the Connecticut River Valley. He started as a cigar salesman before asked to be Jonathan Drew’s right-hand man in Nicaragua. There he gained more knowledge. And now he’s on his own, with Foundation Cigars. Quite successfully I might add.
April 27: Jeremy Casdagli. A gentleman with an exciting family history, which includes breeding horses in Northern Africa, trading tobacco with Cuba and heroism during World War II. Casdagli met a Cuban master roller, whom he started to work with. They supplied cigars to London hotels. From that his brand Bespoke spawned, which was later renamed to Casdagli Cigars.