In the verdant depths of the Amazonian Rainforest, a rare tobacco discovery has led to the re-emergence of the CAO Amazon Basin, a small batch, limited edition offering. First introduced in 2014, this unique blend is now gracing the shelves of U.S. retailers once again. Marking its return on January 8, 2024, this year’s batch is somewhat more exclusive than its 2022 predecessor.
Ed Lahmann, the Senior Brand Manager at CAO, reflects on the journey, “A decade ago, Amazon Basin introduced the world to Amazonian tobacco, crafting a smoking experience unparalleled in the market. We’re thrilled to bring back this special blend. The production is more limited this year, a direct result of the rare tobacco scarcity and the meticulous care it demands. My tip to CAO enthusiasts: if you spot the Amazon Basin, don’t hesitate to acquire it.”
At the heart of CAO Amazon Basin is the “Bragança” tobacco, a gem grown organically in the untouched Amazonian terrain, harvested only once every three years. These plants are spaced a yard apart, leading to a yield less than half that of typical tobacco crops.
The leaves undergo a unique process, hand-rolled into “carottes” and left to ferment naturally for six months. The journey from the rainforest involves transportation by canoe to the mainland, before reaching the CAO factory in Esteli, Nicaragua.
Here, CAO’s expert blenders let the Bragança leaf shine, complemented by tobaccos from four different nations. Wrapped in a robust Ecuadoran Sumatra leaf from the highest primings, coupled with a Nicaraguan binder and fillers from Dominican and Colombian origins, the Amazon Basin blend is a tribute to its Brazilian Bragança heart.
Crafted at STG Esteli, this medium-bodied blend is a symphony of earthy, nutty flavors, enriched with caramel notes, subtle briny touches, and a pleasingly dry finish. It’s an invitation to explore the unknown, reminiscent of the rainforest it hails from.
Presented in 18-count rustic wooden boxes, the CAO Amazon Basin is available in a 6” x 52 size, priced at $14.29 per cigar. This limited edition is not just a smoke; it’s an odyssey into the heart of the Amazon, a rare opportunity for aficionados to experience the essence of a hidden world.