Wine & Cigars

Everybody has a story to tell; sometimes they have an audience and sometimes they don’t – AND sometimes you create your own venue and let the audience come to you.  This is what Juan Carlos & Isabella Jiménez have done.  Six months ago they opened  “ta-ca-ron“.  They now have their piece of the American Pie and the audience for their story.

I was driving home from Beaufort the other day and in typical Red Wine Diva fashion, I spotted a sign for “Boutique Wines” and knew immediately, I would have to pay a visit to this store.

Juan Carlos, a marine biologist specializing in whales, left Cuba on April 19 (not sure what year) to find a better life.  Well he did more than that, he found a partner to share that life with.  When Carlos and Isabella got married, Carlos packed up and moved from Florida to Arizona, Isabella’s home.  After six years, he missed the ocean and the marine life he had studied and worked so closely with for years.  He convinced Isabella they should head back to the East Coast.  Their intent was to visit major cities along the coast and find the one that suited them best.  Driving south from Charleston, they decided to take a detour through Beaufort.  It was December 30 and most everything was closed.  The only thing they could find open for dinner was the Breakwater in Beaufort.  The place was packed with no seating room so they opted to sit at the bar.  You learn a lot about people and places sitting at a bar.  Three bottles of wine later, the couple had decided that the quaint, beautiful, historic Beaufort would be their new home.

Ta-ca-ron is still a work in progress.  Today they specialize in gourmet condiments and sauces, specialty beers from around the globe, Latin coffee, boutique wines and the most unique gift items.  But let’s not forget the cigars – they really specialize in cigars!  Carlos actually owns a factory in the Dominican Republic where Cuban seed cigars are manufactured.  Originally the cigars were only sold at wholesale but today ta-ca-ron has limited hours where they are open to the public and these cigars can be purchased.

The cigars are where the stories come in.  Each cigar is named after an event or a story in Carlos’ life.  Ta-ca-ron’s premier cigar is an anniversary cigar called 4/19.

Carlos' Anniversary date of leaving Cuba

4/19 – Carlos’ Anniversary date of leaving Cuba

The next cigar represents a Chevrolet Impala owned by Carlos’ father.  The Impala mysteriously went missing without any trace of what happened to it until they saw it being driven by Castro on TV.  A few weeks later it mysteriously reappeared (crashed) back home.

Castro Impala

Proud of his heritage, Carlos also sells items that represent his family.  This private label coffee shows his Mother and Father dancing.


Carlos and Isabella are very philanthropic and believe in giving back.  They have created their own Foundation, El Campesino Foundation.  Funds raised through this foundation provide shoes for less fortunate children in the Dominican Republic.


Juan Carlos visiting the children

Juan Carlos visiting the children

Ta-ca-ron is in the process of setting up a wine boutique to go with their cigars.  They already have a few wines on the shelf and have more coming in.  Once again, celebrating their heritage, the wines will come from Spain, South America – and beyond.

Sangria reminiscent of the Spanish Sangria Carlos' Father used to make.

Sangria reminiscent of the Spanish Sangria Carlos’ Father used to make.

Gazela Vinho Verde

Gazela Vinho Verde

Typical hours for ta-ca-ron are Thursday thru Saturday but I have it on good advice that if you see a little red convertible outside any day of the week that you are welcome to come in and browse or visit.  You’ll be glad you did!!!

Cheers to Juan Carlos & Isabella for living the American Dream!!!

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