First New Cigarette Brand In 15 Years Might Spell The End Of Big Tobacco 

REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

Scoops Delacroix Freelance Writer
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I have a confession to make.

Having long consumed Phillip Morris products since the ripe salad days of my youth, from dirty ol’ Cowboy Killers to 3mg wintergreen Zynachinos, it would take an extremely special product to pry my poor lungs and gums away from the clutches of Big Tobacco. But as it turns out, I might’ve smoked my last Marlboro cig last Friday at the local muni after a sizzling 30-foot birdie putt, and just today while writing this column, I might’ve polished off my final puck of Zyn.

There are so many fond memories of ripping Reds on the tee box, or popping upper decky lip pillows right before first dates, to achieve the perfect buzz while chatting up beautiful sheilas. And how about all the drunk Parliaments I’ve blasted with my boys outside the Exiles bar at 2 a.m.? How could I ever give that up?

Phillip Morris, my captain, my king, mea culpa: The Hestia Tobacco company, founded in 2010 by David Sley, also known as “The Millenial Marlboro Man,” might’ve made the first tobacco product (and the last) that will forever change the way I inhale the great weed. (RELATED: For The First Time In A Long Time, Congress Does Something Useful)

On the Hestia Website, Sley describes their process beautifully, and dare I say, I’m totally sold.

“We stripped the tobacco down to its perfect, environmentally respectful ideal: pure naked tobacco plants left to grow wild and unadulterated. To care for these plants you have to do it the hard way. The meaningful way. And the knowledge to plant it, prune it, harvest it, and cure it remains an art form passed down by word of mouth, and guarded like a family secret. Our tobacco families are the center of our operation. This is their ritual. Their craft and rite of passage. Because the beginning of Hestia’s art is to consume and partake in their story. To become a page, not a footnote,” he writes.

He also describes how blasting cigs is an integral morning routine, his “meditation and prayer”:

This is my rite of passage, too. My morning meditation and prayer. On my porch. With a perfectly designed and constructed cigarette or two and a brimming, frothy ceramic French press. I drink the steaming beans ripened on a Costa Rican hill, roasted by some folks down the street. Whilst breathing deep the burning leaves of my farmers’ fields. I commune in their craft. In their ritual. And make it part of my own, collecting myself for the day. It’s certainly a myth that tobacco is good for you. And maybe there’s still some kernel of Truth in that after all, too.

It’s pretty clear Sley’s passion for quality tobacco comes through in Hestia’s two main products, the Hesper Form and Stone Form cigarettes, shipped to Scoops in a delightful box with several stickers, matches, a #HaveAHestia lighter, a neat little button, a guitar pick and a handwritten note from the founder.

Hestia’s orange filter cigarette, the Hesper, was particularly smooth, a perfect nicotine delivery system for casuals who are looking to enjoy tobacco every once in a while, and longtime smokers like myself who want to give up Big Tobacco once and for all. (RELATED: How To Sneak Away From Thanksgiving Dinner To Blast A Cig With Your Edgy Cousin)

Hestia also offers a second blend with a white, ventilated filter, Stone Form, which makes the cigarette lighter. However, several people tell Scoops that, despite having no perforated filter, the orange blend feels smoother than the white. This is not to say the white ones aren’t smooth: they certainly are, so it’s ultimately a matter of taste.

And, of course, don’t just take Scoops’ word for it. In his one drag review, my colleague, Daily Caller editor John Loftus, described his first Hestia dart as “buttery,” much like John Daly‘s easy-going swing. Even Daily Caller media reporter Nicole Silverio, not much of a smoker herself, was left pretty much speechless, her first Hestia was that impeccable. (RELATED: The Fairway Cigarette And Its Enemies)

“As our Big Tobacco brethren run headlong toward every possible Frankensteinian laboratory-created nicotine-infused product, Hestia will keep doing but one single thing: growing the tastiest tobaccos and rolling those leaves into the finest cigarettes on Earth,” Sley told Scoops.

“It’s an honor to know that whatever links Scoops traverses, a merry smoke signal of naked and wild tobacco accompanies him.”