Our first Pennsylvania Barnsmoker was a huge hit! With very few expectations that we have gathered from previous events and farms, the thoughts behind, “What does Pennsylvania have that others don’t?” were wild. Would we party with the Amish? Would we feel like we’re in the Children of the Corn? Would the VIP party be as explosive as it was in Florida 2 months previous?
While we didn’t exactly party with the Amish, at least one did! And yes, the Barnsmoker was a wild hit. Superseding any exceptions we were able to put together, it was a blast. But enough about the party, lets get into one of the best aspects of the Barnsmoker, the education on the tobacco at the Welk Family Farm.
Nestled between corn fields and houses without electricity, the Welk Family farm is full of beautiful tobacco fields that, in comparison to Clermont’s crop, were about half the height, but leaf sizes that could make an elephant blush. Large, open green leaves that stretched out and seemed like you could roll a whole cigar off of one stem.
But we’re not here to discuss the plants in the ground, but rather the plants that have been pulled up, hung on trailers and then transferred to a curing barn to start the process of making the premium smokes we are so fond of when it comes to Drew Estate Cigars.
The Curing Barn:
Barns on rolling hills and open grass that look like they were taken from novels of old and paintings hung in the Louvre are our back drop for curing. Standing 50 feet tall and just as wide and deep, we got to walk inside and watch as the Welk family demonstrated the process of taking tobacco off of a trailer which were aligned on stakes, which JD called “primitive”, and handed to teams of men in rafters stretching to the sky it seemed to strategically place them in “zones” where the tobacco will cure most effectively. As you’ll see in the video below, the barn and rafters are aligned in just enough space to allow in the air for maximum flow while also allowing for the escape of moisture to help with the curing process.
Watch the video below to get an actual view of what it was like to partake in the Pennsylvania Barnsmoker instead of just taking my written word for it. And make sure that next year, when tickets are on sale, you hop on the Pennsylvania Express Line to see the event for yourself. It’s truly a bucket list item in the cigar event world for me. I’m surprised to say that it’s been one of my most favorite Barnsmoker events to date.