Scheepskistje View larger


Dit houten kistje bevat 10 sigaren uit de collectie van De Olifant, geproduceerd in Nederland. Het binnengoed van deze sigaren bestaat uit een melange van tabak van Brazilië, Java, Sumatra en Cuba. Het omblad komt uit Java en de sigaar is opgedekt met Sumatra zandblad. Het kistje heeft een inhoud van 2 sigaren van de Knak XO, VOC XO, Corona, Corona Panatella en de Matelieff.


The Netherlands have always been very involved in the tobacco industry.

Knowledge about tobacco is acquired during the colonial period in Indonesia. Especially Sumatra and Java have built a rich history with the knowledge and skills of the Dutch and deliver excellent tobacco. Also in production Netherlands is a major global player.

A production of cigars started in the city of Kampen in 1826. Because of the success, several more cities in the Netherlands were involved in the cigar production and the cigar production flourished to great heights.

Because of new technological developments, the production was mechanized and refined. Some small manufacturers kept producing cigars in more traditional ways, by hand or with semi-automatic machines.

The structure of a Traditional Dutch Quality Cigar.
A traditional Dutch quality cigar consists of three main components.
1. Wrapper leaf
2. Binder leaf
3. Threshed shortfiller

Shortfiller description:

The typical Dutch cigar (shortfiller) distinguishes itself from other cigars as the filler is made of a blend of tobaccos from Indonesia, Brazil and Cuba.

The traditional shortfiller cigar consists of a blend of threshed tobacco leafs, surrounded by a binder leaf where eventually a wrapper leaf is applied. A typical blend consists of up to 20 types of tobacco. Each different type of tobacco contributes to the delicate flavour which can range from sweet to strong.
Cigar factory "De Olifant"
Tobacco Manufacturer Henk van der Sluis dreamt of a cigar production with a small quantity, but great quality. Due to its large experience in the industry he had his own ideas about quality. He was able to purchase several buildings on De Voorstraat in Kampen to realize his dream. He bought the tobacco cutting company from H. Meulenkamp. After that he installed old but functioning machines and began the cigar production called "De Olifant". De Olifant is committed to maintain the charming, cultural and historical heritage. This results in 10,000 visitors per year, who come to see the unique characteristic factory. The municipalities of Zwolle and Kampen worshipped De Olifant with the "Heritage Prize" in 2010. Sigarenfabriek De Olifant was proclaimed "Entrepreneur of the Year on May 21, 2012. To this day on the company keeps on developing itself. In 2003, a complete new type of products were introduced: De Eenhoorn coffee and tea.
Sumatra wrapper
The first plantation on the island of Sumatra, around the city of Medan, started in 1850 and produces the famous Deli Sumatra sandleaf. This tobacco is used as wrapper and is so popular because of the mild spicy flavor, aroma and bright color. 
De Olifant uses very costly Sumatra sandleaf. De Olifant is one of the few manufactures who still use it. 

This rare type of tobacco is grown on a small scale. Due to the rarity it is also called "white burning’’ gold. This name is not accidental: a kilo of this tobacco is more expensive than a kilo of silver.
The name “sandleaf” is given for a reason: the wrapper leaves are the lower leaves of the tobacco plant. They grow directly above the nutritious and volcanic soil. The wind pollinates the leaves with fine sand leaving light sparkles behind on the leaf.  Because the sandleaf grows in the shade, the leaf gets a soft, silky texture and a mild flavor. Today, this "treasure" becomes an absolute rarity.

Production process
The small tobacco plants grow on plantations, which are state-owned. 
Once every 4 years tobacco is planted. First, the tobacco seeds are sown in seedbeds with a roof above it to protect the plants from the sun. The growing plants are transplanted to get more space. After a certain period the plants are transplanted to the plantation. Pests, such as caterpillars, are regularly removed from the leaves. When the plants start flowering, the flowers are removed so all the food goes into the plant.  After 6 to 8 weeks the tobacco plant measures 2 to 3 meters and the lower leaves start to 
These are the precious "sand leaves”, which are picked one by one in the early morning. The Sumatra sandleaf is very popular amongst cigar manufacturers because it has such a special spicy flavor. It gets its special taste, because it is growing just above the soil which during rain gently covers the leaf. This gives the sandleaf its special character and color.
After picking the leaves go to the drying shed where they are strung on a rope and hanged. Fires are made to heat the leaves in order to accelerate the drying process. After drying the leaves are placed on fermentation piles with a thermometer in the middle.
Fermentation is a scalding process, which is caused by moisture and pressure. Through this process, proteins and nicotines are broken down. If the thermometer has risen to ± 55 ° C, the pile is reversed; the inner leaves to the outside, the outside to the inside, and the lower ones upward. This may happen up to six times, depending when the tobacco is "being fermented."  Fermentation is very important for tobacco; good fermentation creates a nice color and good taste.

There are now two plantations in Sumatra. The tobacco of this plantations has its own characteristics. 
has to do with soil type, rainfall and processing. 

Purchasing process
De Olifant visits the
tobacco fair in Bremen to see the different wrapper leaves. The tobacco is carefully tested on taste, aroma, texture and elasticity, because we want a high qualitu of tobacco. The outcome should provide a clear, spicy, sweet and round taste. The quality of the harvest can change every year. If there is a bad harvest come, De Olifant has a reserve of at least 5 years, so the company can always continue to produce good cigars.

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