After a busy few weeks of chronicling my trip to General Cigar Dominicana, it’s time to try to get back into a normal routine. I haven’t smoked too many cigars since my return. When I got back I had a terrible cold, so I didn’t waste too many cigars, and the ones that I optimistically tried tasted pretty bad. I kept it to cigars that I knew pretty well to gauge my taste buds. After a week or so, I was pretty well back to being able to enjoy a cigar.
One of the first cigars I had was a sample from the IPCPR show. I ended up with a bunch of cigars from Brun Del Re, a cigar maker from Costa Rica. This was a cigar from their Don Corazza line, which is a cigar made from Dominican and Nicaraguan tobaccos. The size was a 4″ x 60 which isn’t listed on their website. The cigar started with a nice, unique flavor, which turned a bit sour in the second half. I have a robusto in this line yet, as well as robustos in three or four of the other lines. Unfortunately, I have some pre-conceived notions about show samples from companies like this. It’s not fair, I know, but there have been so many cigars I’ve smoked in the past that have just been “same old, same old”, and failed to impress. These are nice looking sticks and I’ll certainly smoke them with an open mind. I may not get to the rest of the samples until spring, as I smoke fewer cigars in the colder weather, and tend to stronger ones.
I enjoyed a Monte Pascoal Robusto as well last week, courtesy of Wes Gensel, of Monte Pascoal cigars. This is a Brazilian puro, was awarded the best Brazilian cigar by Cigar Journal Magazine at their awards ceremony last July in Vegas, and is a very nice smoke. Perfectly constructed and a pretty cigar with a nice flavor. This is the first larger vitola I’ve smoked and I actually liked it better than the petite corona. On the full side of medium, this is a cigar you should try if you get a chance.
Last weekend we had an unusual October snowstorm, which dumped about 4 inches of wet snow on our area. We were fortunate to not lose power as many in the area did, nor did we have any limbs down on our property. I took my usual Saturday walk with a Cuban Crafters Powerhouse. I chose this because it was a cold and nasty day and I wanted something that would cut through the crappy weather. I mentioned somewhere that if I’m going to have my cigar get wet while I’m smoking it, I prefer it’s on a 90 degree day in a pool. As rotten as the weather was, this strong cigar was quite enjoyable. Any cigar that can hold up to wet snow and still provide a satisfying experience must be OK. This is a 6″ x 54 pigtailed toro that has a Nicaraguan Ligero binder, which strikes me as unusual. This is probably the first Cuban Crafters branded cigar I’ve really liked, but certainly not the first from Tabacalera Estili and Don Kiki Berger.
Halloween is always a traditional stogie night for me, and this year I opted for one of the coronas that I blended at Cigar Safari. The first one of these I smoked was at the 3 month mark, and it was spectacular. This one, while really good, was not as good as the first. I suppose as these age they will certainly change, I’m hoping that they will get better rather than worse. I shared one of these with my son yesterday and he enjoyed it. Seven left.
My mid-week walk got off to a late start so I stuck with a shorter smoke. A Gran Habano Habano #3 that was sent to my by one of my readers, Lloyd Ladrillono. I’ve been seeing these in catalogs, and they had a really interesting booth at the trade show which I never managed to visit, and the cigars look great and seem to be priced well. Lloyd was kind enough to share these with me and I appreciate it. I really enjoyed this robusto, it had a sweetness that I like a lot. This cigar hit me just right, it worked the way it should and tasted great.
I finished off the work week with a Murcielago Toro Grande which I bought at the Delaware Cigar Festival from Eddie Ortega. I like Eddie a lot, and I like the Murcielago more. The San Andreas maduro wrapper is beautiful and delicious. This one went a little sour at the band, but I think some humidor time will solve that problem. If I can keep my hands off the couple I have left, I’ll see if that’s the case, but this is a perfect cold weather cigar for me.
Saturday I took a drive to Pottstown, Pa. and paid a visit to Cole’s Tobacco. My wife had seen a picture of the store on one of the local radio station’s websites and did some research which led us to the visit. They have been there for a century and it’s the first I’d heard of it. In addition to a reasonable sized walk in humidor, they sell roll-your-own tobacco, candy, all kinds of stuff like an old fashioned news stand. They had the largest selection of Lars Tetens cigars I’ve seen in 15 years, we picked up a bottle of Lars’ Steak Sauce for the heck of it, I certainly wasn’t going to smoke any of his cigars! Anyway I walked out with a couple of Kristoffs that I hadn’t seen before, and had a nice chat with the proprietor, a young guy named Courtney. No lounge that I saw, but not a bad place to get some cigars if you find yourself in downtown Pottstown, PA.
To wrap the week up I smoked a Oja Anniversary perfecto on my Saturday walk. This is a semi-box pressed cigar with a Brazilian Samba wrapper that is rustic and oily. It has a very dark, rich flavor and burned well, despite it’s rough appearance. This was a sample sent to me by Luis Garcia, the brand owner. This is one of the cigars made by Kiki Berger in Nicaragua that I alluded to earlier that I really like, the whole line is good, but this anniversary edition is really nice. It commemorates the brand’s first anniversary, which is a little odd, but the cigar works, so who cares?
I haven’t had a contest in a while, so I have a Drew Estate cap and a Liga Privada cutter to give away this time. I might as well throw in a Stogieboys.com Cigar Journal along with it as well as a C-Gars Ltd. ring gauge card. I can’t be trusted NOT to include a cigar or two in a prize package. Leave a comment for a chance to win, and a Tweet with a link to this page (mentioning @cigarcraig so I see it) will get you an extra entry. I’ll draw a name at random next Sunday, November 13, 2011. Good luck!
That’s it for now, until the next time,