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The Mombacho Story – While backpacking through Central America in 2005, Cameron Heaps, co-owner of Steam Whistle Brewing, discovered a family cigar factory next door to the school where he was taking Spanish lessons.

He and backpacking partner Markus Raty made regular visits to the factory in Granada, Nicaragua, during their stay and the owner regaled them with stories about the country’s history, culture and tobacco.

“We just fell in love with the country and the spirit of the people,” said Heaps. “We thought, ‘Man, we have to share Nicaragua with the world.’ ”

In 2006, the family agreed to let Heaps and Raty use its recipe. They opened their own factory in 2010 in Granada and Mombacho Cigars was born. Its name was taken from a prominent volcano overlooking the 500-year-old colonial city.