Tag Archives: Perdomo

A Perdomo 20th Anniversary and Macanudo Inspirados

Perdomo_20thAnnivMaduro_ChurchillFriday evening I was itchin for a great cigar, so I dug into a Perdomo 20th Anniversary Maduro line sampler I bought last year. I bought this for two reasons, first was so I could get a chance to win one of the great Perdomo humidors, which I did not, and second was because I love the Perdomo 20th Maduros and I knew I’d happily smoke every last one. I kind of avoid buying a box because it would be hard for me to smoke anything else. This sampler included six cigars, one in each size. It was Friday, so I went with the 7″ x 56 Churchill for my evening walk. I should have headed down to B&B Cigars in Chestnut Hill for their Black Label/Black Works event, but I didn’t have Friday traffic in me, and by the time I got there it would have been late. So I enjoyed the crap out of the Perdomo 20th Maduro, as I always do. It’s a little like smoking a Hershey’s Special Dark bar, it’s got loads of slightly bitter chocolate and espresso. It’s surely on my list of favorite cigars, and it’s not very pricey either. The Corona Grande is my favorite in the bunch, but this Churchill really was exceptional if you have the time.

 

MacanudoFlyersYesterday was a beautiful Autumn day, with sunshine and temps in the 70s. I got a fair amount of chores and errands done in time for a 1 o’clock Flyers game. As has been discussed previously, I’d much prefer watching on the small iPad screen on the porch with a cigar than inside on the big Macanudo_InspiradoWhite_Robustoscreen.  I selected the new Macanudo Inspirado White Robusto to start the day. This is an interesting Macanudo.  It has a six-year-old Ecuador Connecticut wrapper that is beautiful, an Indonesian binder and fillers from Condega and Jalapa in Nicaragua and San Andrés, Mexico. Fun fact: The regular old Macanudo Cafe line has always had a San Andrés binder.  Anyway, the Inspirado White isn’t a mild, flavorless cigar, quite the opposite. It had some sweet earth and spice along with the nutty grassiness of the wrapper. Nice cigar, and the ash and burn was picture perfect (I guess I should have taken a picture!). This was a very enjoyable shade wrapped cigar.

 

IPCPRGala1The folks at General Cigar Co. sponsored this past year’s IPCPR opening gala with an amazing party featuring the Macanudo Inspirado White and Black. Honestly, they could have brought in a clown making balloon animals and provided a better opening gala than the previous year, but they had amazing food, a DJ, a station making T-shirts on the spot, and IPCPRGala2stations for the Inspirado Black and White showing off the tobacco. It was nightclubby and quite a party. All of the General Cigar Co. people were there, including Benji Menendez. They set the bar very high, oh, and there was an open bar too. I should have taken more pictures but I had a cigar in one hand and a plate in the other most of the time!

 

Macanudo_InspiradoBlack_RobustoFor my evening walk last night I took the Macanudo Inspirado Black out. This robusto was 4 7/8” x 48, has a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper, Ecuador Sumatra binder and Nicaraguan fillers including a proprietary seed varietal grown in Esteli. General has an incredible library of seeds. This is a jet black cigar, the burn was perfect, but it didn’t have the nice, white, perfect ash it’s blond sibling had. Richness abounds, pepper, abounds, and dark, roasty flavors abound. While the White had some sophistication, this one has some raw, down and dirtiness to it that I loved. The Macanudos I started smoking 20+ years ago were noting like these two. Personally I put these up against  similar cigars in the boutique category in enjoyment and performance. I was quite impressed with both Inspirados. I have a couple of the orange banded Inspirados, one from Iceland (the  best-selling cigar in Iceland) and one Rick Rodriguez (CAO) gave me last year and told me to smoke it on a clean palate (maybe today to complete the trifecta?). So far I’m more impressed with the White and Black than I was with the orange banded Inspirado. One more interesting tidbit, there’s a competition world-wide, with the finals held in Europe, that has competitors seeing who can smoke a corona the longest without it going out. This competition uses the Inspirado, and the record is over three hours!  Crazy!

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Anyway, that’s all for today, until the next time,

 

CigarCraig

 

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Perdomo Event at Cigar Mojo, Perdomo Habano Maduro and Sungrown Cigars

Last night I paid a visit to Cigar Mojo in King of Prussia, PA where they were having a Perdomo event. When I pulled into the parking lot, which is reasonably large, I was lucky to find one vacant space, and lucky I have a small car!  The place was packed, I think the crowd was larger  for this event than any I’ve been to at this particular shop.  In attendance for the event were Nick Perdomo and his PerdomoHabanoMadurowife, Janine, Arthur Kemper and Joe Winder. This time of year in this part of Pennsylvania there are a lot of cigar people around due to this weekend’s Cigars International Cigarfest. I never had any interest in Cigarfest, 3000 people per day, lined up for a glimpse at their favorite cigar maker isn’t for me.  I’m sure it’s fun, just not my kind of fun.  I bought some Perdomo cigars upon arrival, I opted for some of the Habano series as opposed to the usual 20th Anniversary Maduros that I enjoy so much. I lit up a Perdomo Habano Maduro  Epicure (6″ x 54) and spent the next two hours hanging out, talking to the Perdomo folks and some of the attendees. The Habano series features wrappers that are aged in bourbon barrels, and the Maduro was a nice, medium bodied cigar with subtle flavors of cocoa and espresso, right up my alley. At one point, Nick told us some stories of event attendees going to great lengths to get his autograph or a picture with him, including sliding a magazine under a stall door.  Nick is very appreciative of his customers, and goes out of his way to greet everyone and thank them. It was quite an event, loads of great people and great cigars.

 

Perdomo_HabanoSungrown_RobustoTonight I selected a Perdomo Habano Sungrown Robusto (5″ x 54) that came in a sampler of the three versions (Maduro, Sungrown and Connecticut) from last year’s IPCPR show.  This was a really nice cigar, sharing the seco from  Condega,  viso from Jalapa and ligero from Esteli as the Maduro (and Connecticut), with a bit of a spice and an earthy flavor. It’s amazing the difference the wrapper makes. The Robusto burned perfectly, where the Maduro last night had a little bit of an uneven burn which required some touch-ups. I’m going to credit nine months in the humidor for the perfect burn and draw of the robusto, although another thing Nick mentioned last night was that they can draw test something like eighteen cigars per minute in the factory, and they draw test every cigar.  While the 20th Anniversary Maduro is on my “goto” list, these Habanos were very enjoyable, and the bands are really classy too (and they come off easily!). Nick showed me some pictures of the Pearl drums that are being made for him, and each shell features the Perdomo logo. They will be quite beautiful, right up there with my own 1966 Ludwig Holiday kit in Black Diamond Pearl :-).

 

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

 

Cigar Craig

 

 

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An Asylum and a La Gloria Cubana from Famous, Along With Some Other Cigars

The problem with taking Wednesdays off is that I have to decide which of the cigars I’ve smoked during the week to talk about on Sunday.  The reason I skipped my midweek post was that I had a Prime Living magazine article deadline, and I wanted to get that taken care of.  I have a calendar of the due dates for the rest f the year, let’s see if I can use that to plan ahead so I’m not waiting until the last minute every time!  I think it’s been about two years that I’ve been writing the Cigar Notes feature in Prime Living, it’s still crazy to me when I see my name in the byline.  I did smoke some really interesting cigar this week, I’m going to touch on these four briefly.

 

First off I smoked a Swag SoBe  Lavish, which is a robusto from Boutique Blends. This was part of the Cigar Authority Care Package and I smoked it while listening to the show in podcast form. This cigar really surprised me in that it had  distinctive flavor, I want to say it was like a green tea maybe, and I tasted it for hours after I was done. I’ll be looking for more of these. Yesterday I took a long walk with what I believe to 4 cigarshave been a Perdomo 20th Anniversary Sun Grown Churchill, I didn’t take any measurements, but I swear it was larger at the foot than the head. I know it wasn’t a torpedo because Perdomo torps are pretty distinctive in their pointyness. For you cigar walkers, this size is good for five miles. Very tasty, but I prefer the Maduro in this line.  The Cohiba Luxury Edition is a stupidly expensive cigar, I can’t imagine dropping $38 on one cigar, but it was an exceptional example of cigar making and blending, and it was very good. This was the subject of my Prime Living piece, so you’ll have to wait until the May/June issue drops to read more about this. Finally, and these were in no particular order  by the way, there was one day this week that I was in the mood for an Epic Maduro, so I grabbed a Double Corona, which is really a gordo, for my evening walk. This line is rising to the top of my go-to list, and it takes quite a bit of will power not to just grab one the few of these I have on hand every day.  These are frickin delicious and Dean Parsons is a really cool dude. There were others, but these were the ones I had some thoughts on off the top of my head.

 

Asylum_Lobotomy_ToroA couple of weeks back I received some cigars from Famous Smoke Shop, cigars that are made exclusively for them.  One of them was the Asylum Lobotomy in the toro size. Thank goodness they didn’t send the 770, that’s too darned large for winter smoking, shivering knocks the ash everywhere! These are a value priced take on the Asylum line, with a Maduro Nicaraguan Habano wrapper. This is a really nice cigar for under $5 if you like a strong, bold flavored cigar that has enough changes to keep things interesting. The burn on the samples I smoked was pretty good, I had to touch up a few times, but aging will certainly fix this. I imagine these will age well too, although they are good pretty much off the truck.  These come in the toro, 770 Double Toro (6×60) and a 4×44 “corona”, so there’s something for everyone.  I half expected this to be a lot stronger than it was given the name.

 

LaGloriaCubana_SerieRF_NoThe other new offering in Famous’ exclusives line is from La Gloria Cubana.  This is a take on the Serie R line, called the La Gloria Cubana Serie RF (I’m guessing the “F” is for Famous…ya think?). As much as I love just about all things La Gloria Cubana, I haven’t had the greatest experiences with the regular Serie R line. These were really one of the first large ring gauge cigars back in the early 2000s, and I really wanted to like them, but they always came up short for me. I love the Serie R Esteli, and to a lesser extent the  Serie R Black (I find the Brick and Mortar exclusive Esteli a bit richer than the catalog/internet exclusive Black). So I went into the Serie RF with a cautious optimism.  I smoked the No. 13, which is a 5½x54 robusto. The blend is a Ecuador Habano wrapper, Connecticut Havano binder and Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers.  I need to smoke some more of these, because I really enjoyed the crap put of the one I smoked. It was smooth, sweet and full of flavor. These are a priced in the mid $8 range, but worth it, in my opinion.

 

That’s all I can manage this morning. It’s supposed to be a beautiful day, so I need to get something done around here,  including getting a nice, long cigar walk in.  Until the next time,

 

CigarCraig

 

 

 

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Señorial, Perdomo, Illusione at Goose’s and CAO Flathead Cigars

Senoreal_Maduro_Longsdale RefinadoIt’s almost half way through January already, we’ve had no snow, it’s going to be 60 today (but raining) and, once again, I did not win the Powerball! What are the odds I didn’t win the $900,000,000 jackpot? I think something like 292 million to one. it’s kind of a long shot, and the next couple days are going to be ridiculous at the places that sell lottery tickets as it’s over a billion dollars now since nobody won. I’m fortunate that I don’t have to rely on winning the lottery to smoke nice cigars right now and lat week was another good cigar week.  I started off with a Señorial Maduro in the Lognsdale Refinado size. This is a 6½” x 44 lonsdale size cigar, and I’ve found a discrepancy. The sticker on the cigar is spelled “Longsdale“, everywhere else it’s listed as “Lonsdale” (except for the Las Cumbres Tabaco website, which does not feature the six month or more old Maduro line at all…C’mon José! You’re supposed to be hip to this whole internet jive!). Call it whatever you want, it’s a great cigar. I picked up a few of these at an event with José at the Wooden Indian a couple of months ago and I’m happy I did. Loads of flavor from the San Andrés wrapper, perfect construction and a wonderful smoking experience.  Great cigar from a great guy. I see a Freyja in my future, it’s been a while since I smoked one of those.

 

PerdomoNoirA couple of evenings this week were pretty darned cold, not that I should be surprised, it is, January anyway, but I wanted something shorter, with lots of flavor (cold and subtlety don’t mix!) so I reached for a Perdomo Champagne Noir Robusto. I didn’t care for the regular Champagne AT ALL. I would be hard pressed to try another one based upon the experience I had with the first, but the Noir is another story. It’s a Nicaraguan puro, it’s got the cocoa/coffee flavors I like and is a very nice cigar.  I will eventually revisit the Connecticut wrapped 10th Anniversary Champagne, but I have an aversion to spending my cigar time with something I didn’t like the first time.  If I don’t know I don’t like a cigar it’s one thing.  Anyway, the Noir may be my second favorite Perdomo next to the 20th Maduro, but there are a lot of enjoyable cigars in the line. I actually wouldn’t mind taking the  Perdomo factory tour one of these days.

 

Illusione_HLYesterday I wanted to get some of those Powerball tickets everyone is talking about, and I know that the seller of the winning ticket gets a nice little bonus for selling the winner, so I headed over to Goose’s in Limerick, PA and bought my lottery tickets and a handful of cigars, and settled into the lounge with an Illusione HL to watch the Flyers game. I haven’t smoked a great many Illusione cigars, and I need to change this. I’ve met Dion a bunch of times, I think he knows who I am, yet, my experience with his line is sorely lacking. The HL is the 7½” x 40 lancero in the “Original Documents” series which has to be about 10 years old, right?  I didn’t really do my due diligence on this one, so I’m going to guess that this was the Habano wrapped version as it certainly wasn’t candela (on my wish list) and it didn’t strike me as San Andrés Maduro. As I was watching the hockey game in Goose’s lounge, a couple of flavors stood out to me, leather with some sweetness. I enjoyed the heck out of this perfectly constructed lancero, it was perfect for two periods of hockey, at which time I ran home to catch the end of the game.

 

CAO_Flathead_660CarbFor my Saturday evening walk I selected Cigar Aficionado’s number 3 pick on their top 25 list, the CAO Flathead 660 Carb. I’ve heard some sentiments expressed to the negative about this choice for CA, but I, who have been a fan of the line from the start, think it was a solid selection.  I was out of these, so I picked some up at Goose’s (I was actually surprised they were in stock). Obviously, the 660 Carb is 6″ x 60, but it’s severely box pressed, so it really doesn’t feel like a 60 ring cigar. I punched this one, as is nearly mandatory with the flat cap, and got a great burn and draw. I find punching is the easiest way with these (and the RoMaCraft Neanderthal), but I’m going to try some other methods in the future just to see how they work. I guess I just like the neatness of the punch in this case. A large bore punch is best, my Screwpop 2.0 punch is 9mm (the 1.0 was 7m, not that you asked). I love the Broadleaf wrapper on these, and I love the fact that the different sizes present a different smoking experience. The 660 is smooth, but loaded with the great espresso, dark chocolate and tobacco flavors I love. This marque is on my shortlist of box buys right now I just don’t know which size I like best!

 

I would like to ask that anyone who was a winner in the 12 Spectacular Days of Cigar Giveaways who did NOT receive your winnings please let me know. No need to publicly heap praise upon me, although the sponsors wouldn’t mind, just want to make sure everyone is happy. That’s it for now, off to enclose the back porch for the winter to make it more comfortable for cold weather cigar smoking!

 

Until the next time,

CigarCraig

 

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Nica Rustica Belly Release Party in Louisville, KY

JShepherdWhen we heard about the Nica Rustica Belly Release Party put on by Cox’s Smokers Outlet in Lousiville, Kentucky, my wife realized it fell the night before she was planning a silent retreat at the nearby Abbey of Gethsemani. She suggested I take a couple days off work and drive there with her, then fly back the next day.  We set out Thursday around 4:30 in the morning and made the ten-plus hour drive.  Once we checked in to our hotel, took a power nap, and refreshed from the drive, we headed over to J. Shepherd Cigars for a little pregame.  They were having a bit of an event, with specials on Drew Estate, Viaje and Leccia cigars, so I bought a few Viaje’s since I really haven’t jumped into the Viaje pool yet, just dipped a toe in here and there.  I got a couple Oro Reserva and a couple Summerfests and we hung out on the front porch.  I lit up one of the Summerfests and couldn’t complain about it. It was a nice, medium bodies cigar, which was good, because we hadn’t really eaten a whole lot all day, choosing to snack in the car as opposed to wasting time stopping for food.  It’s fortunate that it was a beautiful day, as there is no indoor smoking allowed in Louisville! The J Shepherd show was nice enough, although it looked like either they recent;y moved in, of summmerfestjust got a shipment, as there were boxes on the one side of the store. The walk in humidor was large and had a nice selection of boutique cigars, and some items were priced higher than I’m used to (I’m spoiled in PA, no cigar tax), but some items were inexplicable close to what I see here.  We met a couple people on the front porch while I enjoyed that Viaje Summerfest, a couple guys we saw later at the event, and Mike, a very friendly and hospitable local who we really had a nice conversation with.  He even set us up with a rootbeer and cream soda, as we abstain from the generously offered Bourbon.  I’m told that J. Shepherd is the best shop in the area, and, at the risk of offending the owner, who wasn’t there at the time, it really could be a lot less cluttered and better organized, as I was a little glad that we had to go outside to smoke, and the gentlemen we met were very friendly.

 

From there we went to Louisville Water Tower Park, an 1860 era water works along the Ohio River.  What a beautiful venue, and the weather couldn’t have been better.  Jonathan Drew was there well before the 7:00 PM start time, and the line was already growing. The unfortunate part of this event was that the first two hours or more was just people standing in line to talk to JD. We got through the line early, and of course we got a chance to visit with  Gary (JD’s dad), Pedro Gomez, and Zev and Ben from the DE sales force.  With the $35 ticket price we each got a Nica Rustica Belly, and Undercrown Toro and a Kentucky Fire Cured Hamhock, as well as an Undercrown Manifesto, along with a dinner of Nicaraguan fare, short ribs, pork, rice, beans, etc.  The food was delicious, and we got to chat with some of the locals, including Tom Person from Commonwealth Cedar Spills. They also had a wide variety of Drew Estate cigars available for sale, including bundles of the new Belly, which I took advantage of the opportunity and purchased. Every purchase received a raffle ticket, and the evening concluded, like at many events, with a raffle. Many of the prizes were shirts, hats and cutters, with some ashtrays (my name was drawn for one of those big, pewter MUWAT ashtrays, which will class up the patio smoking lounge. The big prizes were a box of Pappy VanWinkle cigars and one of two existing boxes of the Nasty Fritas, the Papas Fritas mixed fill blend in their little cone shaped Nasty size.  JD added one last prize at the end, which was a shirt, a cutter and the winners choice of any box in the DE line (I wonder if the winner of that knew about the 100 count Liga Privada No.9 Parejo boxes?) Cox’s Smokers Outlet did a great job of putting this event together. Despite costing me a bunch of cash (CAD: Cigar Acquisition Disorder. I need to find a treatment program…), it was an excellent event, I’m quite glad we made the trip.

 

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Yesterday I swung by The Wooden Indian in Havertown, PA, where they were celebrating their 10th Anniversary. Nick Perdomo Jr., his son Nick III, and Joe Winder from Perdomo Cigars were on hand, as well as Rich from Xikar, Kosta from SMoKE Manayunk, Alex perdomoMayer from House of Emilio, and Alan Price from Cigar Rights of America. It was quite the turnout for one of the best shops in the Philadelphia area. Dave and his staff do a great job. I smoked one of the Perdomo Double Aged 12 Year Vintage Maduro since I hadn’t tried that before. This cigar is another barrel aged cigar, which is one of the trendy catch phrases in the cigar industry today. It was a very good smoke, rich, sweet and chocolaty/coffee flavors that I enjoy, and perfectly made. Since there was a Buy 4, get 1 promotion, I had to pick up some of the Perdomo 20th Anniversary Maduros in the Corona Grande size that I like so much (and enjoyed on my evening walk later).  Once again, CAD rears it’s ugly head. Congrats to Dave and the Wooden Indian family on their first decade, and I hope I can be at the 20th anniversary celebration.

 

cigarsThat’s it for today, it’s been a long week of travel and herfing.  Time to get some work done around the house and get ready to start smoking samples from the IPCPR show and posting about them.  On that note, I did smoke a few show samples this week that deserve mention. The CAO Flathead Steel Horse: The Flathead blend in the round, in a 5½” 58, is a wonderful addition to a tasty line. Thesample I smoked was ready to go, burned great, tasted great.  Like the rest of the line, a large bore punch is the way to go as the cap is flat and doesn’t play well with other cutter styles. Freyja from La Cumbres Tobacco: This toro from Emma Viktorsson is sneaky, it starts mild and before I knew it I was feeling the effects.  Great flavor and performance. A must-try.  Finally, the Undercrown Shade: This is a terrific Connecticut shade wrapped cigar. There are a bunch of full flavored shade wrapped cigars out there and this is another one.  Great cigar, but I didn’t really find it to be much different than some other great cigars in that category. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great cigar, it’s just hard to find much unique about it. I’d buy it over many in that genre.

 

Until the next time,

 

CigarCraig

 

 

 

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