Sancho Panza, Chateau Reals and Minor League Hockey – Sunday March 21, 2010

It’s finally spring in SE Pennsylvania, so that means CigarCraig gets a wicked head cold.  I’ve been trying to keep it at bay, at least by trying to limit my cigar intake.  I did feel obligated Friday night after hearing about the passing of Frank Llaneza, who probably can take some of the credit for the post-embargo, non-cuban cigars that we enjoy today. When you smoke a Hoyo de Monterrey, Punch, El Rey del Mundo, or more recent releases such as the Siglo or Frank Llaneza 1961, you have this gentleman to thank for it.   I was surprised to find that the only cigar I could find in my humidor who’s pedigree could be traced to Mr. Llaneza was a lone Sancho Panza Extra Fuerte Cordoba.  I’ve really enjoyed the full body and flavor of these since buying a box several years ago,  a delicious cigar that will be missed in my humidor, much like Frank Llanaza will be missed in the cigar industry.

Here’s a write up in Cigar Aficionado about Mr. Llaneza’s passing <click here>.  Also , JR Cigars latest catalog includes a nice biography of him <click here>.

Saturday night I had the opportunity to attend a Reading Royals hockey game at the Sovereign Center in Reading PA. Minor league hockey is always a lot of fun to watch.  The stars didn’t line up for me to get the cigar store visit in that I had wanted to.  However, my old friend Jeff and I enjoyed some Chateau Real Magnum 46 Claros pre-game and some Chateau Real Gran Cru Perfecto Maduros post game.  Both cigars fall on the milder side of medium to me, with the claro having that nuttiness usually associated with the Connecticut shade wrapper, and the maduro with the cocoa notes that go along with the beautiful, dark Mexican wrapper.  The hockey game ended with a 4-0 win for the home team.  After a feisty first period, I thought that the animosity between the teams would build and there would be some exciting altercations, but after the Royals built the 4-0 lead it seemed like the opposing team, the Johnstown Chiefs, kind of lost their fire.  It was still an entertaining game, and we enjoyed some wonderful cigars.

After a few days of abusing myself (staying up late, smoking cigars when I really shouldn’t be, you know…) it’s time to focus on getting rid of this darned cold so I can fully enjoy cigars again (and sleep without coughing and getting up to blow my nose more importantly).  Lots of water and sun today, but I’m going to abstain from cigars until the funk in my sinuses subsides.  Cigars and sinus infections don’t go well together.

Next Saturday, March 27, I am going to make a pilgrimage to JR Cigars in Whippany, NJ to hang out for the afternoon and smoke a few cigars.  If anyone is in the area please stop by and introduce yourself!  I’ll be the guy smoking a cigar 🙂

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter (@cigarcraig).  I have it set to automatically tweet when I update the page.  I’m  working on e-mail subscriptions for those who like that ( I do, so I figure there may be others too).  Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Until the next cigar,



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