IPCPR Thoughts and Highlights – Part 2

Sunday at the IPCPR started out with my wife and I going to the French Market to meet some new friends for coffee before heading to the show. John Taylor recently published the book “Wings Over New Orleans“, which contains John’s personal photos and counts of Paul McCartney’s stay in New Orleans while recording Wings’ Venus and Mars. You can read Jenn’s review of it on Beatles-Freak.com. He was a fascinating guy yo talk to, very humble and down to earth, and fortunate to have had the chance to hang out with Paul and Linda on a daily basis.  It was certainly a nice break from the show floor, and the coffee was great (no beignets, the line for Cafe du Monde was insane and it was 100 degrees and humid!).

 

It was probably 1 PM by the time we made our way back to the IPCPR show.  We wanted to catch some of the music going on at Rocky Patel‘s booth. I’ve mentioned the custom humidor they have that is the top of a cajon, which is a wooden hand drum, and Jerry Goldenson, the VP of Sales for Pearl Drums was present in IMG_1820the booth. Jerry is a cigar lover, and worked with Rocky on this, as well as some special items for the Burn cigar club in Florida. Jerry and I have a mutual friend who made the introduction remotely. The band was great, wonderful Cuban rhythms.  Fortunately, the Cigar Oasis booth was right next to Rocky’s booth, so I got the visit with Chaim Kohn and get the low down on the IMG_1830re-designed Magna (sure, right after I bought one!) and their new WiFi app upgrades, which I have yet to try out (oddly, I’ve been too busy to worry about checking the humidity in my humidor from my phone). I’m a fan of the Cigar Oasis units, I currently use the Magna in my cabinet (and I stopped in the Prestige Import Group booth, maker of the cabinet I have, and they endorse the Cigar Oasis line as well), and the Excel in the NewAir CC-100 Humidor.

 

IMG_1836We stopped in the Gurkha booth to see what was new there, and among other things, they were displaying the new Maharaja, at least the beautiful packaging was on display. Pardon my cynicism, and I like quite a few cigars from Gurkha, but I would like to see a $2000 cigar before I bought it. Bianca assured me that they were in there, but there’s absolutely no information about it other than it’s got a maduro wrapper and Dominican binder and filler. Very exclusive, apparently sold out in Europe, but a little steep for my budget (no samples being given out unfortunately). They did provide me with samples of the new Heritage, Cellar Reserve IMG_1840Platinum and the Cask Blend, all made in Nicaragua. More on those as the get smoked, and maybe a future contest, who knows :-).  I hit Colin Ganley up for a taste of his Twin Engine Coffee (iced with cream and sugar, the cigar blend is delicious this way!) and he introduced me to a newcomer to the US market, but an established IMG_1841brand in Nicaragua, Santiago de los Caballeros, who make some beautiful looking cigars that I’m quite anxious to smoke. After that I finally managed to introduce my self to George Rico, of Gran Habano, I’m not sure how it took me five or six IPCPR shows to meet him, I guess he’s been busy when I’ve stopped before. He was talking to Ernesto Padilla, whom I also just formally met at the show. On the way out I got one of the very few instances of being approached in the aisle by a gentleman from IMG_1847Lighthouse Cigars, who make a line of cigars targeted toward golfers. Again, more information on that one later.  One of the highlights of the day was visiting with the guys at King’s Cigars, who we met at the 2013 show when they debuted the brand.  They are still wild and crazy guys and were having a great time in their booth. I finally got the smoke the King of Kings Broadleaf, a PA Broadleaf wrapped 6″ x 64 box press that is pretty darned tasty.

 

After dinner I stopped at the hotel’s designated smoking area, where they had a cash bar open, but only a couple of people were there. I have a feeling that the IPCPR will find that these hospitality areas in each hotel were under-utilized. There were places in the area to sit in an air-conditioned and comfortable lounge and have a cigar, not outside in a tent with fans and way overpriced drinks.  We had a cigar there and moved on to Don IMG_1854Leoncio’s cigar bar on Canal Street, where I bought a couple of PDR 1878 in Capa Maduro and Capa Oscuro and settled into the comfy leather sofa. We met a couple of guys from Texas who are in the process of organizing Cigar Palooza  (September 26 at the Ball Park as  Grand Prairie), then later the guys from the Cigar City Club in Atlanta joined me.  Once again proof that a fine cigar is a catalyst for making friends and good conversation.  Another long day in the books.  Need to rest up for day three.

 

Monday was day three, and our final day, at the show.  I made a list of all the booths I wanted to get to that we had missed or were busy on the previous two days. Unfortunately it was a long list. We started out on the far end of the hall, with Perdomo Cigars, moved to Miami Cigar and Co. , finally met Mel and IMG_1865the folks at MBombay cigars and enjoyed a Mbombay Kesara, which was exceptional. there were some beautiful handcrafted ashtrays across from IMG_1866Mel’s booth that were quite unique, check out BramWarren.com, neat stuff. I had a noon appointment at Altadis to get acquainted with their new releases, and they, of course, have an expansive booth.  They are doing some interesting things with joint ventures recently. I mentioned Rafael Nodal/RoMEo collaboration in my last post, and they sold out of the Henry Clay/Pete Johnson Tattoo, which I look forward to trying when it gets to retailers shelves. Keep in mind whenever I say something sold out at the show that just means that retailers bought it all up, it will be available on those retailers shelves sometime in the future.  There are a bunch of special edition Montecristo’s coming out, line extensions to the Espada and White lines commemorating the 80th anniversary of the brand. We grabbed some lunch at the opposite end of the floor, then started on the list again.  We met with Dave Garofalo of Two Guys Smoke Shop who walked us through the Selected Tobacco booth where he was IMG_1867displaying the Atabey, Byron and Bandolero lines which he distributes. These are all exceptional quality cigars which carry a big price. I’ve smoked a Byron and Bandolero and can say that they are top notch, and, ironically, are made in the same factory in Costa Rica that makes the MBombay line. Roberto Duran Cigars IMG_1872was next with the Big Jack addition to the Neya line, a 7×70 named for Jack Toraño, who we had a chance to visit with along with his wife as well as Miguel Schoedel.  We visited with Jose Blanco of La Cumbres, Nick Mellilo’s new Foundation Cigar Co., Dion Giolito, Yadi Gonzales of Flor de Gonzales, Dean Parsons of Epic, the boys at Evil Genius, and many more. We saw most of the people we wanted to see, but time always seems to run out. RoMaCraft was busy the whole show, as was the House of Emilio booth, as several others.  I’d say we managed to cover a lot of ground in basically two and a half days. Like I said before, more info will com out as I smoke new stuff over the coming months.

 

IMG_1896Monday night was the big social event of the show, the Cigar Bash, sponsored by La Palina and featuring the classic band “America”. It was held at the Mardi Gras World facility, and there were buses to shuttle us back and forth, otherwise it would have been a very hot and sweaty walk! To get to the venue we walked though the warehouse where all the floats are stored, very neat. It was a rare treat to be able to sit inside, smoke cigars, and watch a band, all the while being able to actually talk to people without screaming.  The band was great, the La Palina Red Label I started IMG_1897out with was pretty good (although I look forward to revisiting it after some humidor time) and we, of course, found a bunch of friends to hang out with. Apparently there was another party going on which we failed to hear about, but the Cigar Bash was a good time (food, open bar, music, cigars, friends, what more could you ask for?) Well worth the extra $20 each.

 

So, a couple of observations about the show. As far as trends go, I think Ecuador Connecticut is coming back again, and I’m seeing more and more Pennsylvania leaf used in blends and as wrappers. Barrel aging in one form or another is a hot trend, and we noticed the use of the word “pilon” more than once. Also, maybe to go along with the use of spirits barrels is the trend toward cigars made to pair with specific libations.  For the first show, I felt like the media was accepted as a valuable member as opposed to being a nuisance, which was pretty refreshing. I did see quite a few media members there, and there were many there I didn’t meet, which is a shame. It was great back in 2011 when Drew Estate hosted a media party, but one can’t expect that kind of generosity all the time. Since they had all of the hookah and vape vendors pretty well isolated at one end of the hall, there wasn’t any hard sells while walking by like there has been in the past. As you might guess, my focus is on premium cigars, and I have little to no interest in other products, hoIMG_1764wever legitimate they might be.  And lastly, one of the very first “What The Heck” moments came while finally approaching the IPCPR area in the convention center were about 5 of these huge papier-mache sculptures. While nice, my thought, as well as others I talked to, was that the money it cost to make these could probably have been put to better use. No doubt these aren’t going to the Mardi Gras World warehouse, they have probably already been destroyed as I doubt the show will be in New Orleans again soon. They probably could have saved some money by not putting IPCPR banners on all the light poles down Convention Center Boulevard too, it’s not like this was an event open to the public that needs advertising, right? At least there weren’t guys on the street corner spinning signs. I have to trust that the new CEO, Mark Purcell, knows what he’s doing, and I don’t so these are just the random musings of a casual observer. Hopefully the FDA doesn’t screw everything up and there are trade shows and events to attend in the future!

 

Anyway, that is a brief overview of the trip. I did bring home some contestable goodies which will happen when I feel that the cigars have recovered from their travels and are ready to smoke, so stay tuned for a midweek contest announcement one of these weeks soon.  Of the handful of cigars I smoked during the event, all of them were pretty darned great, and it’s not like I had a cigar going every minute of the day, I definitely paced myself. it’s really no fun to burn out your palate on the first day. Thanks once again to my wife and partner in crime, Jenn, who I tried really hard not to drag around this time.

 

That’s all for now, until the next time,

 

CigarCraig

 

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IPCPR Thoughts and Highlights – Part One

We got back from the IPCPR show yesterday, and it was a whirlwind 3 days at the show. I didn’t do the video interviews like I’ve done in the past, I figure other people are doing them and I don’t do what everyone else does. The only one I did I posted Sunday, and I’ll try to fix the audio when I get a chance. I will have a video montage of the “secret question” which I did for fun. Two years ago I put together the montage (here), and when I get the video put together I’ll post it. It’s a bit of fun and something different. I encourage you to visit my colleagues sites who did run around interviewing everyone, I just didn’t have it in me this time around. Obviously when I got Dunbarton Tobacco and Trust‘s Steve Saka alone at the end of the first day, and was the first blogger type to have talked to him, I had to scoop the competition. I’m not proud of my competitiveness in that regard, but I am proud to have gotten the first interview with Steve out. I asked some questions I’m sure nobody else did.  I’ve known Steve for nearly 20 years, which might have given me a little advantage. I’ve gt samples, and you’ll hear more about them as I smoke them. They are taking a rest in the humidor, and I even shipped a box back that’s due tomorrow.  Anyway, here’s the quick day by day recap.

 

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Friday we drove two hours to Newark, NJ for a 5am flight which took us through Chicago then finally to New Orleans.  Once checked into our hotel, the Hilton Riverside, which is next to the convention center, more or less, we walked to get our badges. This convention center had to have been nearly a mile long, it’s one enormous building, and the IPCPR was on the far end. We went to our hotel and took about a three-hour nap before heading back to the convention center for the gala grand opening reception, which followed the Government Affairs Briefing. This has been poorly attended in the past, and it was quite important to those who make a living in the cigar industry, so it was a stroke of genius offering cocktails to the attendees. The gala offered food and a cash bar, which was exorbitantly expensive. We caught up with quite a few old friends here, spending some time with the Two Guys Smoke Shop crew, as well as many others.  I had run into Scott Weeks of Recluse Cigars, who handed me a Recluse Amadeus in Connecticut and the new Habano, and I smoked the Connecticut at the event, which is a great Connecticut shade cigar, lots of flavor. I can’t wait to try the Habano version, as I’ve been a Recluse fan since their release.  I also smoked something else, but I can’t recall what it was. The evening was sponsored by Fratello Cigars. It was a fun evening, but even after the nap we were running at a sleep deficit, and wanted to be awake for the opening of the show.

 

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Saturday morning we arose refreshed and went to the opening breakfast at the convention center. Smoking is allowed at the breakfast, but I was holding off until we got to the show. There is a business meeting that takes place, with recognition of the outgoing and incoming presidents and the introduction of the new IPCPR IMG_1761CEO, as well as some industry awards. All quite uninteresting to the consumer, but the officers and board of directors do this in their spare time on a volunteer basis, so there behind the scenes work deserves recognition. They always have a keynote speaker, and this year it was Larry Winget, a motivational speaker who was quite insightful and entertaining. I bought his book. He and I have a similar sense of humor, and many of his observations were quite funny. Breakfast was good, the coffee was great and it was a nice way to spend the morning. The show floor opened to the masses at 10:30 and we ran into quite a few old friends on what seemed like a half mile walk to the entrance of the show.  Upon entering, IMG_1780Drew Estate‘s elaborate and expansive booth is straight ahead, so it was mobbed. We had a couple of appointments in the afternoon, so we went to the far end of the show floor and wandered, saying hello to friends, meeting up with fellow bloggers and media types, and getting the lay of the land ( taking note of where the food court was, bathrooms, etc. The first appointment was with Victor Vitale of Tortuga and Legacy brands, where I was reintroduced to IMG_1779the new Tortuga Connecticut, which was my first cigar of the show.  This is a very smooth, creamy cigar with great flavor. I have smoked it before, and it’s a very enjoyable Connecticut, not to be missed. You may begin to notice a trend, I do’t smoke a great many milder cigars, but I’ve been to enough events and trade shows that I know how much it can suck if you blow out your palate early with strong cigars. I typically don’t go through a ton of cigars on the show floor as it’s awkward talking to one manufacturer about his cigar with another manufacturers cigar in your mouth (in the interview with Steve Saka I was smoking the new Leccia Luchadore, more on that later, but I couldn’t put it down and Steve didn’t have any samples of the Sobremesa). Victor was struggling with having his display cases broken and not having the right furniture, so it was a rough show for him, but he kept a smile on his face. This is another trend we saw: broken displays and what appeared to be poor service by whoever was in charge of moving things around with at least one booth never receiving a couch or chairs.  I attended a media briefing at Rafael Nodal’s Boutique Blends/Aging Room booth with was informative, with Rafael telling us about his current selections.  This factory continues to put out some great cigars, I just enjoyed the joint venture between Rafael and Altadis, the Romeo by Romeo y Julieta Aging Room Small Batch F25 in the Cantoar belicoso size and it was very nice. Not a show sample, by the way.  After visiting with Rafael and his boys we went to the General Cigar booth for our traditional 3:00 on the first day of the show tour.  General always rolls out the red carpet for us, and we saw some great looking new products including new branding on the Macanudo line, a Partagas Aniversario which looks really tasty, Bolivar and Ramon Allones reboots from the Foundry division as well as the Leccia Luchador El Gringo line extension (I mentioned before that I smoked it and really liked it, despite the example I smoked being a 70 ring). CAO has the Pilon, Margaritaville and added a round cigar to their Flathead line, the Steel Horse, paying homage to the motorcycles as opposed to the automobile reference in the previous five sizes. More about all of these as I smoke them after the samples have a chance to rest. Cohiba has a new very expensive Luxury Selection No. 2, which is beautiful, and Dunhill has the Heritage and Seleccion Suprema. Finishing off the tour was the Toraño line with the repackaged Brick bundle brand. I like a lot of cigars in the General Cigar portfolio, so I am looking forward to trying a bunch of the new cigars. Stay tuned for a giveaway here in the near future so you too can try some!

 

We free-ranged around the show floor some more until getting to sit down with Steve Saka after the show closed. I had to get the video interview out, which meant napping in between video processing, editing, and uploading over hotel WiFi so I could publish it for you first thing Sunday morning.  Needless to say, the first day was fun, exciting and tiring, and I’m going to Post about days three and four on Sunday.  Lots of great cigars and great people.

 

Until the next time,

CigarCraig`

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IPCPR 2015 – Dunbarton Tobacco and Trust Cigars with Steve Saka

I told you today’s post would be from the show, and we spent Saturday catching up with some old friends, meeting some new ones and only seeing about half of the show floor.  We will venture into the other end later today and tomorrow, but so far it’s been a lot of fun, but tiring. It’s going to be a challenge to see everyone I hoped to see, but I hope to leave here Tuesday with no regrets, and a lot to write about in the coming weeks.  It seemed like the day one turnout was light, but the vendors I talked to were writing orders and seemed pleased.  I only smoked two cigars on the show floor today, Victor Vitale’s Tortuga Connecticut, and Sam Leccia’s newest Luchador, the El Guapo, a short 70 ring box pressed cigar which was very nice.  I managed to get one special interview, I believe it’s the first you’ll see from the show.

 

DunbartonDay one of the IPCPR trade show in New Orleans was quite busy for one of the new exhibitors, Steve Saka, former president and CEO of Drew Estate. He debuted Dunbarton Tobacco and Trust, although his first release, Sobremesa, isn’t ready yet, he reportedly sold several times the number of boxes he anticipated and was busy all day.  I had the great pleasure of sitting down with him at his booth after he show closed and captured this 15 minute video of his very in depth description of the cigar and his company.  I’ve known Steve for many years, and he’s always fun to talk to, so please enjoy this video which pushes the limits of YouTube’s time limit!  Thanks to Steve and his wife Cindy and son Jon for their hospitality. I can’t wait to sample this new cigar in a few months!

 

 

Please note, the volume is low, my apologies for that. Please remember to turn down your volume when you are done!

 

That’s all for now, until the next time,

 

CigarCraig

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Packing for IPCPR, Some Emilio Cigars, a Regius, a Aging Room and a New World Connecticut

Grimalkin_TorpedoI’m frantically packing and readying for the trip to New Orleans tomorrow, but I figured while my new shed is being built in the back yard I’d recap some great cigars I smoked this week.  Who knows what I’ll smoke over the next four or five days, and I haven’t loaded the travel humidor up yet. I will probably take an assortment of favorites as I won’t be taking notes on many cigar I smoke while I’m there.  Anyway, Sunday I drove down to  the Wooden Indian in Havertown, PA to meet Alex, our local House of Emilio rep and the son of the owner there. The Wooden Indian apparently cornered the market on Emilio‘s Grimalkin line, which was replaced by La Musa a few years ago, supposedly just re-named. I picked up a few torpedos and smoked MiaDora Robustoone there. This cigar has aged well, it was made at the My Father factory, a well-known secret that I imagine it’s OK to spill since the Grimalkin brand is no more.  Smooth, tasty and well-balanced sum up this smoke.  When I got home I smoked another cigar from the Emilio line up, the Mia Dora.  This is a stronger smoke, rich flavors of tobacco and well made.  I’ll certainly see Alex and the House of Emilio brands at the show.

 

Regius_ExclusivoUSA_Fat PerfectoSince I’m on vacation, I had a three-day work week, which means cramming 5 days of work in, and Monday was a bit stressful.  A month or so ago Cigar-Coop send me some cigar in an unnecessary reciprocation for me sharing some Inca Secret Blends with him.  One of the cigars he sent was a Fat Perfecto from Regius‘ Exclusivo U.S.A. line. This cigar is a 60 ring by 5½” cigar in basically the same shape as the Feral Flying Pig, closed on both ends with a coiled “bun” type of pigtail cap.  I really enjoyed the refined flavors in this cigar. It wasn’t strong, but loaded with flavor and burned well.  It had a great balance, and even I could appreciate the nuances and delicate flavors. The is a classy stick, many thanks to Will for sharing this one with me.

 

AgingRoom_Havao_CanonNot wanting to stress out my palate for the upcoming trip, I decided to go Connecticut shade for a few days. I smoked an Aging Room Havao Tuesday, which I had picked up when I saw Rafael Nodal at Cigar Mojo last month.  This cigar is a fine example of a Connecticut (Ecuador, they almost all are now), cigar with a lot of flavor.  I’ve really enjoyed this cigar before, I guess that’s why I bought a handful at the event. They aren’t priced badly either. This is another terrific shade wrapped cigar, as well as the next one!

 

AJFernandez_NewWorldCT_ToroLast night I took my wife out for her birthday, and when we got home I took a walk with an AJ Fernandez New World Connecticut. Once again, we have an Ecuador Connecticut cigar that isn’t bland, mild and boring!  This one was actually a bit stronger than the afor-mentioned Havao.  Loads of smoke, plenty of flavor, and quite easy on the eyes!  This cigar, as well as the original New World, can easily become staples in the humidor, and aren’t badly priced either.  I am really looking forward to dropping by their booth this year, even though AJ doesn’t speak much English, he’s always gracious and he makes some damned fine cigars!  Many thanks again to Gabriel for sharing these, and I look forward to seeing him again at the show too!

 

I can only hope the cigars I smoke at the show are as enjoyable as these last  several were. It’s really getting harder and harder to find crappy cigars now days.  Even cigars I don’t particularly care for are quite good, it’s been a while since I’ve had a poorly made cigar, and they all seem to have some redeeming qualities.  Pray the FDA doesn’t come a long and goof everything up!

 

Until the next time, which really will be from the IPCPR show,

 

CigarCraig

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A Visit to SMoKE Manayunk and Various Lanceros and another Fratello Cigar

SMoKELast Sunday my wife and I went into Philly for Afternoon Tea at a downtown hotel.  While not a particularly manly pursuit, it was very nice, with good little sandwiches, scones and pastries to nibble on and a nice tea selection. Afterwards we stopped at SMoKE Manayunk, one of the newer lounges in the area which I’ve been hearing a lot about. It’s the place everyone goes after SMoKE2the other cigar stores close since they are open late. The building is located right next to the fire station, which is always a good idea, and has a rustic, industrial decor. SMoKE3The ceiling is open to the rafters with the galvanized spiral pipe ventilation system. There’s seating in the front of the store, a large bar (it’s BYO, but they have soft drinks) and the walk in humidor in the middle, and more lounge area in the back. It’s a spacious place, and we found it very comfortable.  Kosta is the owner, and is a very gracious host, who is a lancero fan, and has a SMoKE4nice selection. Of course, I had to pick up a couple of his store exclusive cigars, the Zeus, named after the mascot of the place, a large, simian/yeti sort of painting in the front of the space. Of course, I got the lancero, and was impressed with the way it smoked, and I ZeusLancerowould go so far as to say that if you find yourself in the Philadelphia area, put SMoKE on your list of destinations and try this cigar. It was my favorite kind of cigar, dark flavors, rich espresso and cocao, and it burned smooth and perfectly.  The cigar is 7″ x 38 with a nice pigtail cap, and I seem to remember Kosta saying it was made at Placencia, but he mentioned a Perdomo tour in the same conversation. I’m afraid I didn’t take very good notes on the blend either, I’ll try to update when I get the details, unless they show up in the comments.  It was the outcome of a blending seminar on a factory tour. Great smoke!

 

Fratello_Bianco_IIIBesides lanceros, I managed to fit another Fratello Bianco in early in the week, this time the  5″ x 56 Bianco III.  I can’t wait to have easy access to this cigar, it’s got a little of everything I like in a cigar, the San Andrés maduro wrapper and fillers from Peru and Pennsylvania. Still an early favorite for one of my favorite new cigars this year. Omar is one of many people I’m really looking forward to seeing at the IPCPR show next week, he’s got a personality that goes along with his physical stature. For what it’s worth, I would smoke the crap out of the Bianco blend in the lancero format…just a little food for thought for Omar!

 

AlecBradley_Nica Puro_H-townBack to the lanceros!  I had enjoyed the Fratello Lancero that is one of Stogies World Class Cigars H-Town series, and decided to explore some other or the lanceros in the line. I love the Alec Bradley Nica Puro line in general, so I was excited about the lancero.  Obviously, it’s a Nicaraguan puro, and the sweet and savory flavors I get have always satisfied my palate. It’s one of those go-to cigars you always keep around and default to when you can’t decide what to smoke. You can always count on them to deliver good flavor and a great over-all experience.  The H-Town is no different, although the flavor is a little more sharply focused due to the small ring gauge. Smooth, full of flavor, and certainly a compliment to the already great line.  I’ve been wanting to try the Diamond Rough-Cut in this line, but haven’t picked any up, is it much different from the regular line? I’ll have to keep an eye out for one.  The H-Town lancero is recommended if you enjoy this line.

 

Quesada_Espana_H-townThursday I went with another from the H-Town series, the Quesada España Lancero.  This is the first I’ve smoked of the España line, and it was a very tasty smoke. It used to be that lanceros were prone to having a plugged draw, or other construction problems, but I can’t recall when I’ve had a poorly made lancero in the past few years. It takes a pretty specific hand shape to bunch these, long, thin fingers seem to be key.  Anyway, this España was pretty terrific, loads of tasty smoke and perfect performance, I smoked this to a very small nub. It may be the only member of the H-town family with three bands.  So far the H-Town series of lanceros are all winners for me.  I smoked the Room 101 Namakubi Ecuador in the lancero format a few weeks ago and it was equally as enjoyable as it’s larger brethren, but with the little extra punch from the smaller ring. I’ll have to get to Houston one of these days to visit the store, it seems like quite the place!

 

RockyPatel_SuperLigero_LanceroFriday I sat down with a Rocky Patel Super Ligero in the Lancero size. I had picked this up when I visited SMoKE as I had been eager to try the lancero size in this blend. I’ve been enjoying the toro shape, and really like the lancero. Once again, it’s got a little more punch in the flavor department, sharper, more direct.  As with the others I smoked this week, the burn and draw were spot on, and I nubbed the sucker.  Great dark roast coffee flavors which are right in my wheelhouse. SO far I’ve smoked this blend in both the Toro and Lancero formats and really enjoyed the experience.  I’ll pick up a some more in the Robusto and Sixty sizes when I see them.  This isn’t a ridiculously strong cigar, the “Super” in Super Ligero is actually the name of the leaf, not a characterization of the power or even the priming, as I understand it. It’s generally a bit odd to have Ligero in a lancero as it doesn’t burn great and lanceros need to burn right. There’s a lot of Rocky Patel cigars (I could end the sentence right here) that I can take or leave, but this one is a winner for me.

 

Yesterday we rented a truck one last time and finished moving all the big stuff out of my wife’s parents house and into our garage. I was exhausted last night, so after a shower I sat down with a nice Inca Imperio and caught up on some podcast listening.  Great smoke to unwind after a long day of sweating and swearing (I don’t think I swore as much as other times…).  Now to start preparing for our trip to New Orleans this week for the IPCPR show, I’ve made some appointments, I have a list of folks I want to see and have been plotting my course on the floor plan. I’m sure once I get on the floor that will go out the window due to the overwhelming nature of the event! So, the next time you hear from me should be from the show, whether it’s short video updates or something else, we’ll see what happens.  Have a great week, until the next time,

 

CigarCraig

 

 

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