Thursday evening I had a craving for a favorite, so I picked out a Cain F Tubed Lancero form a box I picked up a few years ago, and have been rationing out sparingly. Ten count boxes are great, but they don’t last long, ya know? I have been a little concerned about these cigars. A few weeks ago I smoked a tubed Cain Habano that had been buried in the humidor for several years. I was deeply disappointed in the flavor of the Habano, it was heavily cedar flavored, obviously from sitting for so ling in the cedar lined tubo. Cedar is one of those flavors that I recognize in a cigar, but isn’t particularly a favorite of mine, you know by now that I’m a pushover for bittersweet chocolate and coffee. Anyway, I wanted to check on the Cain F Lanceros to see if I needed to un-tube them for further storage, as it would be a shame if these spectacular cigars changed flavor. I determined that I can leave these along for the foreseeable future. the Cain F Lancero is probably my hands down favorite lancero. The specifics on this cigar: 32% Esteli Ligero, 25% Condega Ligero and 25% Jalapa Ligero in a 7″ x 38 non-pigtailed format. Simple math tells us that there’s another 18% of something in there, I have to assume it’s a neutral seco leaf to keep all that ligero burning. It’s got a refined combination of sweetness, spice and some earthiness that really works for me. Sadly, these went out of production in 2014, but I think there are still some out there, at least in the non-tubo variety. They were very fairly priced in the $6 range.
Friday I went to the CigarCigars store two miles from my house for an Aging Room event with Mr. Rafael Nodal in attendance. This store is know for having events on Thursdays from noon to three, and I’m quite pleased that they’ve started having some evening events that I can actually make it to, which they have been doing recently. I went in hoping that they would have the new Oliveros All Stars which I really liked, but, sadly, they only had Aging Room and La Boheme offered. I picked up some Havaos, some La Bohemes and a couple of the Bin No. 1 G-Major, which I smoked while there. The Aging Room Bin No. 1 G-Major is a giant cigar, 6¼” x 63, I know, 63? I wanted to ask Rafael why 63 ring gauge, but he was busy talking politics with the regulars. The cigar features an Ecuador Habano wrapper and Dominican Habano fillers from 1999 and 2001. It has a huge band, but fortunately it has a smaller band underneath so I could remember what it was I was smoking. It was a nice, rich smoke with great refined flavor. It had lot going on with some spice a creaminess. It did require some touch ups as the burn wasn’t as perfect as I’d like in a cigar at this price-point, but we are talking about a natural product here, it didn’t retract too much from the experience. Rafael is one of the nicest guys in the industry, and very patriotic. I was happy to spend a few minutes with him in my neighborhood. Thanks to Steve and the CigarCigars folks for having events at times I can attend! It’s a little bit of a catch 22, you know. I need to go to work to have money to spend at the events, if I bag work to go to daytime events, I don’t have money to spend at them! Overly dramatic, of course, but you get the jist.
Yesterday afternoon was beautiful for late November in PA. How often can you be outside in a t-shirt this time of year? That changed dramatically in the evening, but the afternoon was perfect for sitting on the porch with a cigar and the Flyers hockey game. I chose one of the La Boheme Musico cigars I just picked up, it’s another big cigar, 6¼” x 60, and smoked well beyond the disappointing hockey game. This cigar has an Ecuador Habano wrapper and Dominican fillers much like the Bin No. 1, obviously with less age on the fillers. I thought it was a fine smoke, like the Bin No. 1 without the refinement that the aged fillers bring. I’d smoke this again in a heartbeat, preferably while watching a winning effort by the home team! For the most part, I’ve had good luck with the Boutique Blends stable of cigars, and most of what comes out of Jochi Blanco’s Tabacalera La Palma. Sure I’ve had a clunker here and there, and for some reason many of the Aging Room cigars I’ve had have been way stronger than I was prepared for. Good smokes though, I’m happy to have some in the humidor.
Here’s a little plug for my friends at Custom Tobacco, who I met with at the IPCPR show three years ago. I can’t believe it’s been that long, but I wrote about their Briarmont cigar in November of 2013, and liked it a lot, even if it hadn’t had a CigarCraig.com logo on the band! They do some really nice work if you are interested in custom banded quality cigars. Adam and Rachel are top-notch and will certainly take care of you. This is an unsolicited plug. There are other companies I’ve run across that do similar things, Bobalu and CigarCountry come to mind, all of them offer a little different twist. I can personally vouch for the quality of Custom Tobacco, and the people behind it.
At CustomTobacco.com, you can create and purchase the unique, memorable and fun gift we all struggle to find: fully customized premium cigars, including a private label cigar band that can include any messaging, logos, color scheme, etc. We also offer a free concierge service in which customers can call or email us and we can both design the cigar band and help select the cigars free of charge. 2016 has been a great year for Custom Tobacco, with media outlets including Sports Illustrated, The Daily Beast, American Way (American Airlines’ Magazine) and the Los Angeles Business Journal highlighting our unique offering. With your continued support, we hope to make this our best holiday season yet.
That’s about it for now. I have a bunch of new cigars that I’ll be getting to in the next couple weeks, and I’m working on a new idea for this years contests. The FDA has made things difficult as far as getting boxes of cigars to give away, but I’ve got some other ideas up my sleeve. It’s just a matter of getting it all worked out. Of course, if you guys don’t want the chance to win goodies…
Until the next time,