The second thing you notice are the three gentlemen sitting behind those tables rolling cigars by hand. Each has a task and when done, the hand rolled Don Francisco cigars bear a special label, and a special place, in the heart of owner Lew Glogower.
Glogower has been in the cigar business for years as a buyer, seller, importer and connoisseur and for him, the cigars mean more than just a way to make living. They mean family, honesty and integrity.
“My wife is Dominican and her family had been in the tobacco business for seven generations,” he said. Eventually, Glogower opened his own tobacco shop and decided to pay tribute to his wife’s roots (she comes from a family of tobacco growers) by naming it after her father Don Francisco.
“When he passed away he had a note in his pocket that said that he owed the grocery store 10 cents,” said Glogower. “With that kind of honesty and integrity I wanted to name my store after him.”
Glogower was in the telecommunications industry for 40 years, while also spending time working in the industry. As time went on, he grew to like the world of cigars more and more until he opened his open cigar shop which specializes in fine, high quality cigars from around the world, as well as his own label of hand rolled cigars.
The shop carries name-brand cigars, cigarettes, pipes and accessories and will create custom cigars for a variety of occasions. In the back of the shop is a lounge for customers to light up, watch TV and kick back with friends.
“Cigar smokers are their own community,” said. “We try to disassociate ourselves from the rest of the tobacco community, but almost all cigar smokers get lumped in there.
“Plus, it’s like social networking, you can sit down with a cigar and discuss sports, current events or any other matter,” he continued.
Having been in the business for as long as he has, and having smoked cigars for as long as he had, Glogower has picked up more than a few ideas on what makes a good cigar. Surprising, other than making sure it’s tightly wrapped for a good burn, there really are no set rules and in fact, everyone likes something different.
“Nobody can control their palette,” he said. “No cigar is made for everybody but we can custom make a cigar to your palette…a cigar that meets your requirements are best, that’s why we carry so many.”