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The 14th Habano Festival’s Blindfolded Tasting –the preliminary round unfolded Tuesday morning- usually has two stages: the preliminary round that gathered nearly two dozen participants, including 16 professional tasters from the four cigar factories in Havana (one apiece from Partagas, El Laguito, H. Upmann and La Corona), three habanosommeliers and members of the Atabey Habano-Loving Women’s Club, as well as the Epicur Club and the Club Passion Habanos, the two latter ones from Spain.

The preliminary round spun off five winners who will now vie in the grand finale slated for Thursday at the Intl. Conference Center, the venue of the 14th Habano Festival.

Plenty of resourcefulness, knowledge and intuition are required for the Blindfolded Tasting of Habanos, a contest in which competitors should identify certain vitolas with their eyes closed, just resorting to their senses of touch, smell and taste to tell the cigars apart.

No wonder this singular event has generated so much anticipation in the public. Viewers can follow the job done by these skillful blindfolded tasters, a moment that becomes a genuine show of the passion for Habano.

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