A Fratello Cigars Event, a La Aurora, a L’Atelier and a Contest!

FrFriday evening we took a family trip over to the Wooden Indian cigar shop in Havertown, PA to have a visit with Omar de Frias and his amazing Fratello cigars. When I say family, my wife sometimes joins me on these trips, but this time my son Corey came along, and, at the invitation of the shop owner, Dave, Macha joined us too. Macha loves these outings as she gets a lot of attention and loves everybody. She was well-behaved, most of the time just laying down and relaxing, something I wish she’d do at home when we get back from a long walk and I just want to finish my cigar and she wants to play in the yard! Anyway, she had a great time, and I smoked one of my favorite cigars from last year, the Fratello Bianco Boxer. This is a box pressed torpedo wrapped in a beautiful San Andrés wrapper,  Dominican binder and fillers from Pennsylvania, Nicaragua and Peru. What distinguishes the Boxer from the regular Bianco line, and this holds true with the regular and Oro Boxers as well, is that they use a little extra ligero in the blend. Not only does the cigar smoke perfectly and taste amazing, it’s got a little extra kick! I picked up a few more for the humidor, along with some other goodies, and enjoyed a great evening at the Wooden Indian with my buddy Omar. It was the fist time I’ve seem Omar without his goatee, is that the breaking news here? Omar Shaves Goatee!…only at CigarCraig.com, Sorry Halfwheel and Cigar-Coop, I was first with this bombshell!


LaAurora DE ParkYesterday was a beautiful Saturday to go to the track, and my daughter decided to have our grand-daughters joint birthday party in the picnic grove at Delaware Park. We got there early to secure a spot, and while we were waiting for everyone I smoked a La Aurora Preferido Corona in the Diamond or Broadleaf wrapper. Since I smoked this the first time over two years ago the pungency and cloying flavor I got then has settled down and it’s more like what I would expect from an aged Connecticut Broadleaf. It was a little over the top the last time I smoked it, but it was slightly underwhelming to me yesterday. Honestly, I forgot that I didn’t really like this cigar the first time around, but was looking forward to a tasty Broadleaf cigar. I usually don’t choose my granddaughters events to enjoy a cigar, but when it’s reasonably appropriate, like at the track 45 minutes before they arrive, I go for it, and it’s usually something from La Aurora because Aurora is also my daughter’s name and how could she get mad at me, right? It works in my head. Anyway, I didn’t lose all my money, had a nice day playing the ponies and hanging with the family.


L'Atelier_LAT38SpecialLast night I rummaged through the Lancero tray and came up with a L’Atelier LAT 38 Special. This 7½” x 38 Lancero was a beauty, with a dark, Sancti Spíritus Ecuador wrapper, binder and filler from Nicaragua rolled at the My Father Factory in Nicaragua. I wanted to smoke something from the Johnson family of cigars, but I was only finding rubustos, and I craved more than that. I have a ton of rubustos in the humidor and should probably just go on a rubusto bender and work them down. There was a time when that was my vitola of choice, but I’ve either gotten more patient or have more time because I want a toro or larger more times than not. I digress, theLAT 38 was a beauty, and the flavor was outstanding. It had the savory and sweet flavor I’d expect more from the Broadleaf than the Sancti Spiritus that the L’Atelier line is known for. I can’t remember when I got this, it may have been at an event at a shop in Colorado I was at back in 2014, but it was good. I haven’t found many cigar in any of Pete Johnson’s portfolio that don’t satisfy my palate. My only complaint with this cigar was that it suffered from Nomex Wrapper Syndrome (Nomex is the stuff that electrical wiring is wrapped with so it doesn’t burn) it required a lot of attention with the lighter, and I was being careful not to overheat the cigar since Lanceros can easily be ruined by smoking too aggressively.  The humidor these are in stays in the mid to low  60s so it wasn’t wet.


June PrizeSince we got to the track early yesterday they were giving out hats, and since I’m not a huge hat wearing guy, I figured it might be a good time to have another giveaway. I’ve assembled some odds and ends that have been collecting for a while to go with the Delaware Park hat. There are a couple of bottle openers including one for your key chain from Nomad Cigars, a torch lighter from El Artista, a couple cutters, a highly collectible Matt Booth Room 101 punch cutter, a Ninety Degree magnetic cigar holder and a nice Balmoral flask. As always, a few cigars might fall into the box as I’m packing it up, it happens, I can’t help it! So the usual rules apply, must be of legal smoking age in your municipality, one entry by way of leaving a comment on this post, and have fun! I’ll pick a winner next Sunday, June 11, 2017. 


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






Filed under Contest, Events, Review, Stores

26 Responses to A Fratello Cigars Event, a La Aurora, a L’Atelier and a Contest!

  1. I finally found a Fratello retailer here in Mi. I was gifted a Blanco frm a friend and really enjoyed it. I’m looking forward to smoking the original for the first time.

  2. Glad Macha had a good time! Weird seeing Omar with no goatee man!!! Wondering what your thoughts are on the Fratello Oro… As always… thanks for the giveaway opportunity!!

  3. John B

    Basically echo what Bob said, and if you need help getting thru those robusto’s, I’m here for ya….😉. Again, thanks for all you do.

  4. Chase Abernathy

    I’m def with these guys on the Oro. Loved the original & Bianco myself.

  5. Nathan Zimmerman

    I appreciate your range of cigar smoking experiences Craig. I liken my tendencies to my music tendencies…I smoke my old favorites with a rare foray into one of the newer vitolas. I’m often smoking a Padron 3000 or a Hoyo Excalibur…just as I am listening to Steely Dan, Al Kooper, the Beatles (have you gotten to new box set of Sgt. Pepper?), but I enjoy hearing about the current stuff from your reports. Thanks.

  6. mike mccain

    Always a pleasure reading your blogs, and happy to get a contest too

  7. Duane Holmes

    Nice assortment of goodies. Thanks Craig.

  8. freakboy791

    Craig, I am happy to see you are getting a good education in Pete Johnson related cigars. So often, when I really love a cigar, I come to learn that it came from the Pepin factory. The last one that fits this story was the Crowned Heads La Imperiosa (on my second box!)

  9. Jared Berel

    I’ve never had a fratello cigar. Must find one

  10. David Fowler

    I want to try that lancero. I love the wrapper flavor

  11. Awesome prize just had my first fratello cigar at an event last night. Definitely a great cigar.

  12. Dave Wisniewski

    Craig, those odds and ends would make a choice Fathers day present. Thanks for the contest.

  13. Swede Lindstrom

    Thanks Craig,generosity is greatly apprenticed!

  14. Patrick

    I was a little envious when I saw your picture with matcha at the cigar shop with you on Facebook. Rene and I are going to a fratello event here in Miami this month, looking forward to it.
    Life is good

  15. paul1954

    I, too was jealous of you being able to take Macha out with you. Wisconsin is such a regulated state that there are very few places you can take your dog, other than the dog park.

  16. Smoke770

    Thanks Craig enjoy the blog as always

  17. Donald Santos

    Always love reading your reviews need to try a Fratello myself soon thanks for the contest

  18. Commish

    Christmas in June! Thanks Craig!

  19. Mark Pousard

    Sign me up!


    new to the blog! Thanks for all the info!

  21. Yay, contests! 🙂

    (I suppose I should read the rules and see if there’s a moratorium on previous winners.)

  22. Mike Perry

    That’s a neat little prize pack, Craig! Very generous! Wish I had some more Esperanzas to send your way…

  23. Kevin Shahan

    I have yet to try one of their Lancero’s!

  24. Patrick G.

    That’s a great prize pack. As always, I enjoyed the reviews too, and your pup looks super happy in the pic. 🙂

  25. jjo

    If Omar stood up, would he hit his head on that ceiling? I think I’ve only had one of the original Fratello blend. I’ll have to get my hands on some of the others.

    The LAT 38 Special is a great smoke, but I preferred the LAT 46 SS in that line.