If you’re an American smoker of premium cigars, there’s a chance you still aren’t familiar with Royal Agio. But make no mistake; the company is a powerhouse in Europe, with a multi-generational history that has led to its position as one of the largest manufacturers of cigars in the world — when you count machine-made products that is.
While machine made cigars have some negative stigma attached to them in the U.S., Agio products don’t compromise on quality and craft. Just a few years ago, the company expanded its Balmoral brand to include handmade products made at its Dominican factory. Our publisher Erik Calviño sat with Agio’s Boris Wintermans to talk about the company’s history, his family’s fascination with Brazilian tobacco, and their latest project, Dueto, which they launched with a cigar that came out of a collaboration with Ernesto Pérez-Carrillo.