It’s Contest Time! An Alec Bradley, An OSA Sol, A Macanudo and a Lighter Review

I realized that my last post had “and Some News” in the title, and I failed to include said news.  Bad form on my part!  While I go back and edit the title, I’ll say here that the news I was going to mention, while no longer breaking news, is that José  Blanco joined Joya de Nicaragua this week in the capacity of Senior Vice President.  I met José at the IPCPR show, as well as Dr. Cuenca, his new boss, both are fine gentlemen.  I had the pleasure of visiting the Joya de Nicaragua factory last March and, while I loved their cigars before, I developed a special fondness for them that comes from having a personal connection.  If I can blend what I think is an excellent cigar at that factory, José will be able to do amazing things there.  Best wishes to José and Joya de Nicaragua from everyone here at!

I had purchased an Alec Bradley American Classic Blend for myself for Father’s Day, and I came across another one  in my IPCPR samples, and I was in the mood for a big cigar, so I grabbed this 6×60 Gordo and took it for a walk to the store.  It’s got a beautiful band, and a really nice looking wrapper, made me really look forward to smoking this one.  This is made at the Plasencia Factory in Esteli, and had a Honduran Connecticut wrapper and Nicaraguan binder and fillers.  I really enjoyed the flavor, although I wish it had produced copious mouthfuls of smoke so that I could get more of the flavor.  It took a little bit to get a good mouthful of smoke, which was a little frustrating considering the huge girth on this cigar.  I’ll happily try this cigar again, and will try to get some different sizes in the future.


Friday brought the beginning of the Labor Day weekend, so I grabbed a CAO OSA Sol Lot 54 and enjoyed it on the front porch.  This 6x 54 version didn’t impress me quite as much as it’s 5x 50 little brother, but it was a darned fine cigar.  I don’t know exactly what made the 2 cigars different to me, maybe the Robusto seemed a little cleaner to me if that makes any sense. I suppose there are a dozen variables to consider, what I had to drink and eat, the weather, my mood, so my opinion really doesn’t matter in the end! Perfect burn and draw and a pleasing flavor.  Lasted a good hour and a half on a beautiful late summer evening.   I look forward to the CAO website having some information on it about this new cigar! 😉

For my Saturday evening walk to the store, I selected a Macanudo Crü  Royale Robusto that I received at the IPCPR show.  I had gotten one of these at the show last year and thought it was a really nice cigar, and this one was no different.  It’s not a mild cigar and, along with the 1968, is a really good, flavorful cigar.  It goes without saying that the quality of the construction is excellent.  I’ve smoked Macanudos that I could barely taste, but they’ve ALWAYS been perfectly rolled.  I like these a lot and they are priced well and they will be releasing a couple new sizes (if they haven’t already) in a tinned 4 3/16″ x 36 and a Poco Gordo at 4 x 60, to satisfy that 60 ring gauge demand.  Nice cigars for sure, something that any cigar smoker is sure to enjoy.  While I’m thinking of it, head on over to the  Macanudo Millionaire site and enter their contest to win a trip to Vegas and a chance to win a Million bucks.



Sticking with the Macanudo theme, General Cigars provided me with some of their Macanudo Millionaire  4 packs featuring 6 x 60 versions of the Cafe, Maduro, 1968 and Crü Royale cigars.  I’m going to select 2 winners on or around Wednesday, September 14, so leave a comment on THIS post saying something a little more substantive than say “comment” or “hello” to enter!  This time, as an added twist, I’ll count tweets which include @cigarcraig and the link to this article, doubling your chances to win!  Usual rules apply, Lloyd is ineligible this time around!  🙂


All of my cigars this week were ignited by a lighter that was provided to my for evaluation by Aaron at  The lighter is the Ergonomic 4.5″ Cigar & Pipe Butane Torch Lighter, which is a nice looking lighter.  It’s hefty, which makes it a little heavy in the trouser pocket, but has a nice feel in the hand.  My initial complaint is that on the lowest flame setting it doesn’t light for me, and on the highest setting the flame is just adequate. I let Aaron know this and he is looking into it with the manufacturer, which is a good sign that he’s a internet retailer with integrity.  This particular model wouldn’t be my personal first choice, but my wife thinks it’s cool looking, which it is.  Check out the site,,   he seems to be concentrating on the “good lighters at a reasonable price” market segment, which fits my lighter philosophy just right.  I’ve owned a couple of fairly expensive lighters in the past and they’ve all crapped out after a while, and the cheaper lighters seem to last forever.  I’ll keep using this lighter exclusively and see how it holds up, and see if I can adjust the flame setting a little better.  I like to see a good 2″ blue flame on my single torch lighters.  Thanks again to Aaron for thinking of me.

That’s it for now, enter the contest, visit my sponsors and enjoy your Labor Day Weekend!







Filed under Accessories, Contest, IPCPR, News, Review

15 Responses to It’s Contest Time! An Alec Bradley, An OSA Sol, A Macanudo and a Lighter Review

  1. TriMarkC

    I’ve had the Cru Royal – great cigar! – but REALLY wasn’t to try the new CAO OSA SOL!! Pleeeeeze!

  2. TriMarkC

    BTW @TriumphCIO

  3. Looks like a nice contest 🙂 I’ll do a tweet in a few minutes.

  4. I would like to enter this contest for 2 reasons. The first, new cigars to me, and 2, it wiill be give cigars to review on my site, thanks

  5. Rod Warczak

    Substance! You want substance? The Cru is an awesome cigar and so are you Craig! The cigar lighter is pretty nice looking but I suspect that is probably part of the low flame issue.
    Thanks as always for blogging and giving us opportunities to win!

  6. jimbobber

    I find it interesting that you mentioned liking the CAO Osa Robusto better than the larger Lot 54. While I prefer a corona-sized stick or even a torpedo, I often think a Robusto beats out the other sizes of the same blend (in terms of flavor). I’ve never tried a 60rg, so maybe winning this contest could give me a different perspective.

  7. foozer69

    hello thanks for the contest, i look forward to trying these different sticks!!!

  8. Steve C

    I have tried the Cru Royal, they’re mighty tasty! Thanks for the contest!!

  9. Alau

    Just discovered your blog. I love it. You are bookmarked my friend.

    Hello from Montreal; wish me good luck for the arbitrary contest pick! 😉

  10. Swede214

    Hi Craig, thanks for doing the contest, I’m only doing the ”comment”, I don’t do ”tweets”, so I’ll only get one entry, that’s OK, I’ll kept my finger’s crossed that I might still be a winner!

  11. Paul

    Also like the Cru Royal as seems everyone else does. With having the good fortune of winning the last contest (Cru Royal was included in) I will not be participating in this one. Good Luck to everyone!

  12. Spidey55

    I’ve been a Macanudo fan for decades but have not yet tried the Cru Royale. I’d love to get the chance! Thanks – @Spidey55 Twitter

  13. MoBarbq

    Thanks, Craig, I appreciate the contests. Thanks too to Macanudo!
    Will retweet the contest, same ID.

    Best wishes. Fall smoking is here, great WX in MO this evening.

  14. Awesome contest Craig. I sent it over to Twitter and Facebook. I appreciate the hard work you put into this site. Top Notch!

  15. Thanks for the head’s up on the San Lotano Oval. I grabbed one yesterday and smoked it today. Wow, another homerun by AJ! I’m a big fan of the Emilio AF2, and the AF1 is good too.

    By the way, I added a tweet about this contest as well:!/greenbacker/status/112249175076388864

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