To’Makao Fine Cigars and Goose’s Tobacco Outlet and Cafe

It’s been a while since my last normal post.  The two weeks of contests was great, I hope everyone enjoyed winning and having the chance to win a lot of great cigars. Thanks again to all the sponsors!  One of the great things about these contests is when someone reasonably local wins.  I had two such opportunities this year, the first on Day 1.  This saved me postage and allowed me to meet a reader and visit a new store. Adam won the Gurkha goodies, and I met him at To’Makao Fine Cigars in Bethlehem, PA.  This is a nice shop filled with great boutique brands, as well as the owners own line, rolled right there in the shop.  Franklin, the owner, worked for Fuente in the Dominican Republic for many years rolling Fuente Fuente Opus X PerfecXion #2. I don’t know how he ended up in the metropolis of Bethlehem, but he has a very nice shop and lounge.  I bought a few of his cigars, along with some Arandoza Red toros (a recurring theme…), and lit up his Habano wrapped cigar, which was unbanded and I think it was a toro, but it was a week ago, so I can’t remember!  The cigar burned perfectly, and had a nice, mellow sweet flavor.  I spent an hour or so enjoying the cigar and getting to know Adam a bit while enjoying the lounge, which was all but empty. I guess the Sunday before Christmas isn’t a big cigar lounge day.  The lounge is comfortable, the cigars very good, and the hospitality was awesome.  Franklin is a terrific guy, and you should visit him if you are ever in the area. Last night I smoked his maduro, which I believe is in his “Big Papi by Franklin” line, and, again, it was quite nice. Smooth, rich maduro flavors,  quite the unexpected surprise from cigars rolled right here in Pennsylvania.  Of course, PA has a rich tobacco history, but the last cigars I smoked that were made here were quite the opposite of good! Van Slyke and Horton cigars were pretty terrible, and I admit that I haven’t had a John Hay in some time (I treasure my cigar time…but I’ll take one for the team with a John Hay maduro that’s been in the humidor one of these days!).  Great shop, great company. Pictures below.



cellar reserve limitada solaraToday I found myself, once again, in the position to hand deliver another prize. Joe K won the Day 14 prize of Nestor Miranda goodies from Miami Cigar and Co.  I met Joe last year at Goosefest and decided to meet him at Goose’s Tobacco Outlet and Cafe in Limerick, PA.  This was probably my fourth visit to Goose’s, and John Geise, the owner, greeted me warmly and pointed me toward the humidor, where I once again picked up some Arandoza Red Label Toros. Quick aside, if I were posting a top ten list this year, the Arandoza would be darned near the top. Great cigars from this company, The Blue and White labels are outstanding, the Red is a flavor bomb (and starts quite strong too!).  Anyway, as usual, Goose’s was well stocked with a lot of great cigars. I also got a couple of Foundry’s Compounds Elements and Musings that I hadn’t tried before, and a Gurkha Cellar Reserve Limitada Solara, which I enjoyed in the lounge.  Joe was waiting in the lounge, and I greeted my friend Bruce on my way to sit with him.  I get to Goose’s infrequently, but it seems I always know a couple guys there.  I had a great time smoking the cigar, chatting with Joe and John.


CAO_ColumbiaOf course, I smoked a bunch of cigars over the past couple weeks, but I tried my best to make it cigars that were featured in that day’s contest ff I had them.  One of the ones that was new to me that I smoked for the fist time was the CAO Columbia, which I really enjoyed. It was early in the day, and I found this to me a really nice, creamy smoke.  As I said before, I love giving away cigars, but it’s even better when they are cigars I personally love, and the vast majority were. I haven’t smoked the Kentucky Fire Cured in the Kyoto size yet, but I have had the KFC in other sizes and while it’s not my cup of tea, I see why people love them.  That’s enough about the contests for now, I hope everyone received your packages, please let me know if you didn’t.  Thanks again for playing along!


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









Filed under Review, Stores

9 Responses to To’Makao Fine Cigars and Goose’s Tobacco Outlet and Cafe

  1. Lloyd Ladrillono

    I’ve yet to crack open my box of ‘Blues’, but reading your glowing comments of the entire line has me looking forward to smoking them!

    Question: when storing full boxes of cigars, should I crack the box open to allow the cigars to breathe or is it ok to leave the box sealed? I have a few boxes that I’ve kept in their shrink wrap and not sure if they’re getting proper humidification.

    • I just had this question from Joe K yesterday! They will be fine in the sealed box as the cello is permeable. Think of it this way: the boxes are stored in the warehouse, or in the retailers shelves in the sealed boxes for extended periods of time and they are OK, right? As long as they are kept in a sealed, humidified environment (ie humidor, coolerdor, big ziplock, etc) they will be fine.

  2. Great read Craig and it is always neat to see other cigar lounges around the country. Sounds like you had a great time!

    On the CAO Columbia, I still need to try one of these. I received a couple of them over the Christmas break from General Cigar and I can’t wait to give it a shot. I have always liked most of the CAO family cigars.

    Thanks again for running your annual contest this year, you had some great prizes up for grabs!

    Long ashes to ya!

  3. JScott

    I’m going out today to find and smoke a CAO Columbia. It looks like it would be right in my wheelhouse. Have a great 2015!

  4. Jerry B

    Thanks Craig for another good year. What will be your new year celebration cigar? I’m thinking I will have a Shark or Padron 1926 Mad.


  5. Dan Colley

    It’s always good to hear about another good cigar business. I don’t know whether it’s true or not, but I heard that “cigar bars” have become a very popular investment venue for people looking for a small-business opportunity. I can’t say one way or another whether that information is true, but it’s what I “heard”.

    Thanks to you, again, for putting on such an amazing give-away !!! I doubt if I’m alone when I say that there is not much better than a free cigar and you laid it on pretty thick this year.

    Thanks also to your sponsors. Their generosity makes it possible, so support your local cigar shop and our sponsors.

    I hope that everyone out there had a good Christmas and my wishes for a great new year.

  6. Patrick

    The arandoza red is my cigar of the year and there were lots of good ones.

  7. Looks like a very pleasant lounge, and it’s really cool you got to meet up with one of your readers.

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