Iwan Ries and Co. shares their history with their hometown of Chicago, Illinois. Chicago was founded in 1833, first as a town, and then became incorporated as a city in 1837 after it reached the population threshold. Twenty years after Chicago officially became a city, Edward Hoffman opened up a tobacco shop in the historic Sherman House hotel. This business has thrived since then, despite facing such hardships as the 1871 Chicago Fire.
Hoffman's popularity grew every day, and he was able to survive the fire to come back better than ever. However, by 1891, it was apparent that the business was too large for him to run alone, so he took his nephew, Iwan Ries, into the business. Ries, a German immigrant, was a hard worker and rapidly learned the tobacconist's trade from Hoffman. Ries was so good that Hoffman was able to retire in 1898, leaving the business in Ries' capable hands. The company would change its name from E. Hoffman & Co. to the Iwan Ries & Co. name we know today.
That name change would be the only thing that would alter, though. It remains a family business, with Reis' son-in-law Stanley Levi joining the company not long after 1929 and the Levi children coming into the fold after that.
The latest Levi, Kevin, joined the business in the early 1990s, becoming the fifth generation to work as a tobacconist, dating all the way back to 1957 and Edward Hoffman.
Of Reis' tobaccos, the Three Stare line's Blue Aromatic is likely the most famous. Developed in the pipe smoking golden age of the 1950s and 1960s, the Three Star Blue is a combination of Burley and Virginia tobaccos. Lesser amounts of Black Cavendish, Perique, and Latakia are added in, with a touch of vanilla and licorice flavoring added in to finish the blend off. This is a light and pleasantly aromatic, one you are sure to appreciate and enjoy.