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Travel Diary

  • Katja

The Day of the Blind Date





Today was another nice day here in Santiago; after yesterday's great impressions and a nice interview with Jochy and José Manuel Blanco, today I met people I actually only know "virtually".


Exciting, isn't it? Something like that is actually always a bit like a blind date.

I'm active on Facebook, more so on Instagram, but my heart still beats for everything that is printed, real and haptic.


Still, sometimes there are virtual encounters where you feel you're close to someone. That's what happened to me at a Sotl World Zoom meeting with Danays Leon de Sperlinga.

Her announcements were open, clear and direct, and very sympathetic.

Finally I could meet her here in Santiago - and the virtual impression did not deceive me - she is not only my Sister of the Leaf, but as it were a soul mate.


Danays and me ❤️❤️

We have chatted non stop four hours, about cigars of course but also about life itself.

Danays is a sommelier, Habanos Sommelier, Master Cigar Sommelier and Partner of the International Association of Cigar Sommeliers for Europe, Judge and of the Cigar Smoking World Competition.

Also she will organize the CSWC for the Dominican Republic.

She has also started to create great cigars with her husband, Dorin Potolinca di Sperlinga.

The two are actively supported by Danays charming daughter Ana.

They just recently opened their office in the Zona Franca Villa Gonzalez, it's still under construction (and very elegant) but already a busy meeting place for all the surrounding tobacco people - Eladio Diaz, for example, is a neighbor and shows up regularly.


At the moment there are two lines in the Sperlinga Cigars portfolio: the Volcanoes Line and The Life Journey Line

I advise you to keep an eye on this brand, my first smoke tasted great: it was from Sperlinga The Life Journey Line 2021 the vitola "The Dream" and what can I say...the cigar was a dream.

I hope we passionados can get these good sticks everywhere soon.



Although or maybe because we could meet only so briefly, I find it hard to say goodbye...but - the Cigar Family usually meets again somewhere, sometime - family just.







In the evening I spontaneously meet Eugenio Bronner, whom I met at a tobacco fair in Italy some years ago. He is the manufacturer of Cezar Bronner Cigars (produced by Jochys Tabacalera Palma, by the way!) and lives for 40 years in the Dominican Republic. Meanwhile, Eugenio also runs a cigar lounge in Punta Cana, which I unfortunately missed to visit; but on the next approach - for sure.


We have a wonderful evening above the rooftops of Santiago, fine wine (19 crimes), plan one or the other crime 😉 and let it go well with one of Eugenion's cigars.
















The other morning we went on to Sosúa, the paradise in the north of the island, where I have a short break in a wonderful apartment of very dear friends, before I have to say adios again to this cigar and island paradise.



The facade of the oldest supermarket in Sosúa - unfortunately closed nowadays...


But I'll be back in touch: in about 10 days from Turkey, I'm accompanied by a true cigar specialist, Turkey expert and we will visit, among other things, a humidor manufacturer there.






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