A Premium Cigar, a Texas Entrepreneur, and a Walkabout

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Three years ago while on walkabout in Honduras, Texas entrepreneur Michael Makens discovers the best cigar he had ever smoked. After many years of hard work and dedication he has founded Flor De Jardin. Now people throughout the world can experience that same beautiful, premium cigar.

walkabout, n., Australian term meaning a short period of wandering as an occasional interruption to regular work.

Texas entrepreneur Michael Makens became familiar with the term walkabout while attending University in Australia. With the ability to speak 4 languages, including Chinese and Spanish, he took the term to heart and has traveled or lived in over 30 different countries. Every three to six months he is off to a new place. When asked why he is constantly on walkabout he commented, “Sometimes you just need to stop your daily routine and see what else the world has to offer; you never know what you’re going to find.” This theory has never proven truer than during a trip to Honduras three years ago when Makens discovered one of life’s great pleasures: a hand rolled Honduran cigar. Makens says that in traveling to Honduras, “all I wanted to do was find some nice cigars to bring home for my friends as gifts.” As he smoked the finest cigar he had ever enjoyed, he realized that he had found much more. Now, after years of tireless work, he has founded Flor De Jardin and is fulfilling his dream of bringing premium quality cigars back home.

When Makens first arrived in Honduras, he was surprised to discover that here, in the heart of the cigar world, not only were the factories and cigar producers off limits to visitors, but that there were no cigars for sale anywhere in the town. Discouraged by his less than cordial reception, he was nearly ready to move on when a taxi driver said that he could take Makens to the best cigars around. The taxi driver drove him out of the town and stopped at an old, run-down factory from which an elderly Cuban man emerged. He introduced himself and after several hours of discussion he finally warmed to Makens and invited him inside. Eventually Makens was allowed to sample a cigar and immediately fell in love with it. “Everything about that first experience was amazing. It was and still is the best cigar I have ever smoked.”

Armed with two bundles of cigars and promises to keep in touch, Makens returned to Texas with a new future in mind. He was determined to make sure people back home could experience the same cigar that he fell in love with.

It has taken three years for Makens to found Flor De Jardin. “Many things went into starting this company,” he says, “including permits, production, and most importantly trust from my friends in Honduras.” Today he is striving to introduce his cigar to the world, with quality as his top priority. From the construction of the cigar to the construction of the boxes, Makens vows to maintain excellence. “I will only produce as many cigars as I can and still guarantee the quality. I don’t want to be a huge name producing 20 million sticks a year; I can’t maintain quality with those numbers.”    

To learn more about Flor De Jardin go to (http://www.flordejardin.com).

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Bill Makens