The Cuban Cigar Industry Darwin Award Winner – And A Sour Kraut

14 Dec

I had a few boxes reserved at La Cabaña’s La Triada Casa del Tabaco, among them the newly released SLR Marquez ER Cuba.

When I went to pick them up I was asked to pay the entrance fee to the fortress, 6 CUC, even though I was only going around the corner to the cigar store 10 metres away.

I tried to explain this to the guard but he insisted on the entrance fee so I refused while picking up my mobile and calling the store manager who came out with the boxes, fully pissed off at the new rules, and started selling the boxes to me in full view of all the tourists coming into the grounds and snapping pics – it truly looked awkward and that was fully his intention, to demonstrate how silly the regulation was.

This action plus my arguing in Spanish embarrassed the guard enough to show some common sense and let the transaction take place inside the store.

There I learned that starting Nov. 1st an entrance fee has to be paid to enter the fortress, but it is collected before you enter the fortress so it is also applied to the cigar store.

This has lead to a 99,9% decline in sales as nobody will pay 6 CUC or can argue in Spanish with a guard just to enter a cigar store.

Now the government run cigar store is complaining to the government run fortress administration that the entrance fee is ruining its business.

Sales have dropped dramatically, Cueto is fuming, staff is busy doing nothing while drinking cafecito and watching tv and nobody understands the new regulation. Cuba and its system at its best.

I had box # 747 signed by Cueto for me while promising I would post about this stupid nonsense, which I have, see my nomination for the Cuban Cigar Industry Darwin Award below.

Leaving the store with my purchases I had to laugh when I heard the heavily Kraut accented voice of Oberzigarrengruppenführer Kotzbrocken insisting in English to the guard on not paying and leaving his boxes behind …

Talk about shooting yourself in the foot … 🙂


My very special Cuban cigar industry Darwin Award goes to whoever had the brilliant idea of charging 6 CUC to be able to enter the Casa del Tabaco at La Cabaña fortress starting Nov. 1st. this year by claiming the shop is “part of the fortress”.

Now the store is empty, hardly no sales whatsoever, staff happy to drink cafecito and watch tv doing nothing and Cueto and other staff cursing the idea of charging an entrance fee but not able to change anything as the people in charge of the fortress won’t realize their foolish idea hurts their cigar business.

It would be easy to charge entrance to the fortress 10 metres further inside or use common sense that people are only going to the Casa del Tabaco and not into the fortress – but no, let’s charge the fee it as it has been ordered from “above”…

One hand collecting some cookies ( and seriously pissing off cigar buyers and customers ) – the other hand losing thousand in sales.

Darwin, throw some brain down into the fortress administration … it might help.








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