As the evenings get colder, my desire to smoke fuller bodied cigars increases. Normally I’ll smoke just about any strength cigar, but I lose milder cigars in the cold air. I have a beautiful Connecticut Shade wrapped cigar that the folks at Custom Tobacco sent me, complete with a personalized band, that I’ve been putting off smoking for this reason. I really want to be able to give this cigar my complete attention and smoke it in daylight and relative warmth! Hopefully I can get that done soon, because I like what those folks do and I’m anxious to see how the cigars smoke!
So Thursday evening I picked out a Man O’ War Dark Aged Maduro Robusto. This was a sample from the Meier and Dutch booth at the IPCPR show. I noted when I took a sniff of the cigar that it reminded me of some jalapeño dark chocolate I once had, and once I lit it up I got that nice spice right off the bat. The spice continued either until it mellowed out of my palate got used to it, I’m not sure which. That brings up an interesting point. Do the flavors in a cigar actually change, or do our taste perceptions change during the time we are smoking a cigar? I’ve seen cigars made, I understand how tobaccos can be placed in a bunch in various ways to effect the burn and flavor, but it’s hard for me to imagine someone sitting at a bench eight hours a day, five days a week placing the exact leaves in the exact place every time to make a specific flavor transition. It’s certainly plausible, but the cynical side of me just wonders if it’s more of a physiological change in our mouths than a physical change in the tobaccos. The comment section is open for your thoughts on this, the more expert opinions the better! I digress. The Man O’ War was a fantastic cigar, right in my wheelhouse, up my alley and was just about perfect for the time and situation. If you don’t see these listed on Cigars International’s website, it’s because it’s a brick and mortar exclusive. I’ll look for these the next time I stop in one of the Cigars International stores, or look in local B&Ms.
Friday I’m known to smoke a sure thing, something I know, or strongly suspect, will be a great, satisfying smoke. I had a Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970 Consul floating around the humidor that suffered a little head damage. I think it got pinched in a travel humidor somewhere along the line, resulting in a perfect split in the middle of the cap and a tapered on two sides, not unlike a La Flor Dominicana Chisel. Of course, because I’m borderline CDO (OCD in alphabetical order, as it should be!), and the taper was up and down instead of side to side, I had to remove the band. I was going to just turn the band the right way, but I figured it had to come off eventually anyway. Apart from the damage, it smoked perfectly, and the tapered head actually made it a little more interesting so smoke. Fortunately I was alone and in the dark, my vanity wouldn’t allow me to smoke this in public. (Those who know me know I’m joking about this….not he CDO part, but the vanity part!). Great, full flavor, full strength cigar that’s been a favorite of mine since they came out. I have a soft spot for just about any cigar that was made in a factory I’ve visited, having some personal connection seems to make a difference in a lot of cases.
Saturday evening I chose a new cigar from Nomad Cigars to accompany me on my evening walk. This S-307 box pressed toro is made for Fred Rewey by A.J.Fernandez. Here’s a blurb from the press release:
Nomad’s first full production cigar in Nicaragua, the S-307 is a box pressed Sumatra wrapped cigar blended and rolled at the AJ Fernandez factory in Estelí, Nicaragua.
Name: Nomad S-307
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
Binder: Ecuadorian Habano
Factory: AJ Fernandez
Notable: 21 count, Box Pressed
Sizes / Pricing
Toro (6×50) – $7.95 MSRP
Robusto (5×50) – $7.75 MSRP
Torpedo (6.5×52) – $7.95 MSRP
In keeping with his trend, Rewey gave meaning to the name of his new cigar as well. The “S” stands for Sumatra. The “307” pays homage to the approximate square miles of the Estelì area.
I’ve not met many cigars made by A.J. Fernandez that I didn’t like, including the above mentioned Man O’ War. This cigar was no different. It was full of flavor and left me quite satisfied and wishing it were a little bit longer. The construction was perfect and it was quite enjoyable. So far, Fred’s Nicaraguan offerings have hit the spot for me more than his Dominican cigars, but both are excellent and they deserve to be tried if you are presented with the opportunity.
I’ve started the ball rolling on the upcoming 12 Days of Spectacular Giveaways! So far I’m one third of the way there, with 4 companies on board, and I just sent the e-mail out yesterday! I expect to hear from more tomorrow when people get back to work and have my 12 sponsors lined up by the end of the week. Then it’s the arduous task of finding humidor room, taking pictures and writing up posts. Tune in on December 12 when we start the madness for 2013!
Once again, I didn’t smoke any crappy cigars this week! It’s time for my walk now, I wonder what I should grab? Something new that I may not care for, or a tried and true cigar that will cap off the weekend nicely. It’s getting hard to “take one for the team” when the humidor is filled with such great smokes! I’m feeling like a lancero (I don’t look like one!). Until the next time,