“I want to put Jamaica back on the map for premium tobacco.”
Master blender and world tobacco traveler, Nicholas Melillo, has released the next cigar in Foundation’s lineup: THE UPSETTERS, a blend of Jamaican and Nicaraguan fillers which is a travel story itself, documenting Melillo’s endless trips to tobacco fields and curing barns.
Foundation’s debut cigar, the award-winning El Güegüense, The Wise Man, is a traditional Nicaraguan puro, a celebration of native Nicaraguan culture and history. THE UPSETTERS is something else entirely.
“Most people don’t know this,” said Melillo, “but Jamaica has a long history of growing tobacco that rivals Cuba.”
Jamaica also has an interesting history of hailing the underdog—the anti-hero who battles against the odds. Upsetters stir things up. They’re the rude boys who, in the 1960s, watched old spaghetti westerns and identified with gunslingers like Django and films like “A Fistful of Dollars.” Upsetters created reggae music, fought tyranny, battled Goliath— and smoked old-style Jamaican cigars.
Melillo is a longtime admirer of Jamaican tobacco and the island’s culture in general. “I first smoked a Macanudo Hyde Park in 1996 made in Kingston Jamaica,” he said. “Apart from the old Broadleaf brands from Connecticut, it’s what got me into cigars. Since then, the industry has faded away due to many issues. But that is all changing with THE UPSETTERS. I want to put Jamaica back on the map for premium tobacco.”