I’m intrigued with culture. Whether it be lifestyle, religion or hobbies I like to dissect it. Being enveloped in the cigar media world, I have the opportunity to meet a lot of people and have had the pleasure to make a lot of friends and new family along the way.
Drew Estate Turrible
Will McPhaul is my “local” rep. He covers all of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia’s east coast and the north east of Florida. I’ve had the pleasure to attend numerous in-person events and virtual events when Covid-19 shut everything down. Ive also followed Will on Instagram and gotten to see the self proclaimed, “Cigar Plug,” work his magic with some of the greatest marketing and trolling videos out there. After all, he’s #NotARoleModel and chooses violence for breakfast every day.
But what about Will stood out for me to devote time to shoot, edit, write an article about him and prep for the idea around “Culture Check”? It’s simple:
No one does it like Will!
No one is more honest.
No one is more blunt.
No one willingly calls for his haters to call HR on him
And no one, NO ONE, carries themselves the way Will does
When you have that many first place accolades, you must be doing something right. His social media presence is popping off 24/7. I can’t imagine how many notifications he has come through his line every day. People look for his approval through tags, posts, comments and some of the funniest responses from trolls who really just want to be like him.
It’s a new facet of the cigar culture that I would willingly stake that Will is the pioneer of. He’s not a celebrity who likes cigars occasionally, he’s not a manufacturer and he’s not some chick who’s willing to conveniently photograph cigars that show a little more than cigars…
His personality is addicting just being himself.
So I got to sit down with him shortly and talk about culture.
I was lucky enough to grab Will away from the crowd over the Barn Smoker weekend in Clermont Florida and sit in the shade and talk about his involvement with cigars and the culture around it!
Here’s how it went.
- Q: What got you into cigars?
- A: I got into cigars in 2005. I was at a golf tournament with a company I worked for and a gentleman handed me a cigar. It was a Kuba Kuba. It was good for me, but I told him I realized I needed something a little stronger and he gave me an Undercrown.
- Q: What got you into the cigar business?
- A: I got into the business in 2012. I worked for Anstead’s Tobacco. I was always a customer, had a locker and they loved my energy and offered me a part time job. I worked for them for four years, part time, before I ended up with Drew Estate.
- Q: Best part about your job in the cigar industry?
- A: It’s the people. Social media has made it so convenient to make a new friend without having to actually meet them in person.
- Q: What do you think about today’s cigar culture?
- A: Cigar culture today is MUCH different that the cigar culture of yesteryear. Yesteryear it was the elite, right? People who had cigars were the wealthy. Now, cigars are available to a broader audience. The culture has never been so inclusive as it is now. Today’s culture is only getting better.
- Q: Where would you like to see yourself in the future?
- A: That’s a tough one. I love my job as how it is now. But i’d love to be in marketing, but my ultimate goal is to own my own shop. I was a consumer first, and then I was able to come into retail. I get to see behind that curtain, so yeah, I think I’d like to own my own shop.
A man of and for the people
Being a friend of Will and having spent a lot of time with him outside of events, it was nice to get to see this side of will. A side that I don’t think many people get to see since Will is always grinding and taking care of the Drew Estate name!
Below is the video of our interview. It goes into greater depth with the questions, so I highly recommend watching through.