Archive for October, 2011

Tatuaje Wolfman – Cigar Review

Tatuaje Wolfman Band

Pete Johnson has returned with his version of the Monster Mash…. Each and every Halloween he returns to his lab to create a new monster, and hopefully a graveyard smash. The Wolfman is the 4th release in the series with the 1st being the Frank, 2nd Drac, and 3rd The Face. In the second year there was also an actor’s series release in the Boris. The cigars are released in 666 dress boxes (shaped like a coffin) and 1300 regular boxes of 10.

I recently drove to Philadelphia with some friends, and hung out with Pete at Holt’s on Walnut before heading to the Oyster Bar for dinner. Over the course of the day we discussed his music career, future releases, and IPCPR. When I arrived there were only 4 non-dress boxes left, and within 5 minutes those were gone.

General Cigar Dominicana Trip 2011 – Closing Thoughts

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When you mention General Cigars many people have a difference of opinion. Some smoke them exclusively, and some feel the tobacco is inferior. In the online community General doesn’t get much play and it is obvious that they are looking to change that. In touring the factory you notice the workers from the janitor to management, all have a great pride about them and the work they do. They all feel they are producing a product that is the best, regardless of what you and I may think.

Each day we were given cigars to smoke, and the most popular among the group was the Macanudo Cru Royale, Partagas Red, Partagas Black and the new La Gloria Cubana Retro Esepciale.

General Cigar Dominicana Trip 2011 – Day 4

She must me thinking, that crazy gringo!

Writing about the trip went as fast as the trip, and as we hit our last full day on the ground a sense of sadness came over me. While the trip was different then my trips of the past it was great to spend time with my fellow bloggers and build some new friendships within the community. The last day started like all others, breakfast, and the deck to enjoy a cigar. At 8:30 we all boarded the bus to head to the General Cigar factory where we would be put to work.

For this gringo, it would be like working in a sweatshop…

General Cigar Dominicana Trip 2011 – Day 3

Partagas, I forgot how much I enjoy this cigar...

With the night before ending at 4am for some people, the day got off to a bit of a sluggish start for some as the 8am meet time was earlier then the day before. This led to some confusion when it came time to leave, and to protect the parties involved we will leave it at that. We headed out to Licey al Medio which is like a suburb of Santiago. As we left the city and neared out destination you can tell we entered a province of poverty. The factory which we were visiting and the farm we would visit later was once owned by Copata before being acquired by General Cigars.

General Cigar Dominicana Trip 2011 – Day 2

Area Fumadores (Even the Dominican Republic has smoking laws)

As I sit back and write these little recaps I realize that there was a massive amount of information. The amount of work and the number of people that go into making a cigar is amazing. After one tour of the factory it is amazing that we don’t pay 5 times the amount for a cigar then we currently do. While I am not advocating a price hike, I am not sure how companies turn a profit even with the low wages some of these employees get in comparison to jobs here in the states even with the lower cost of living.

Day 2 began with …

General Cigar Dominicana Trip 2011 – Day 1

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A while back I was contacted by Victoria McKee who is the Director of Public Relations for General Cigar. She asked if I would be interested in taking part in a Blogger Trip to the Dominican Republic. When it came down to making a decisions I weighed the options and the thought of cigars, rum, blogger madness (I didn’t get married this time) and the amazing people of the Dominican Republic the choice was rather easy. When I accepted I discussed some flight options that had me originally leaving mid-afternoon. However, I wanted to get there early and plans were put in place.

Contest Time: Guess Who?

I have a lot of posting to do after a crazy week, but as an appreciation to my readers with a little help from a friend we are going to give away a 3 pack of cigars. I disclose a little bit more once we have a winner and a back story to this photograph.

We already have a winner, but Read More to read the back story.

Cigar Commentary: Where I Buy My Cigars

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A lot of my friends ask me where I buy cigars. I usually tell them that I buy my cigars at the local brick and mortar (my local cigar shop). But that’s only half the truth. I find myself buying a few cigars through online retailers too. Even though in both cases I may be buying cigars, I’m definitely paying for something totally different.

EP Carrillo Edicion Limitada 2011 – Cigar Review

EP Carrillo Edicion Limitada 2011 Band

Ive been a fan of EP Carrillo since their cigars first landed on the market. Even though the 2009 Limited Edition was met with mixed reviews on-line I was a fan and it only grew with each product I smoked. The Elenacos, Maduro, New Wave Connecticut, Short Run 2010 and Short Run 2011 as well as the Limited Edition 2010.

Each year EP Carrillo release a cigar in one size but in a different blend each year and this year is the fullest body of the 3 Limited Edition cigars released to date. This years release is limited to 2,000 boxes all of which were pre-sold at IPCPR. Ernesto Perez Carrillo was the original creator of La Gloria Cubana and now runs his own company based in Miami and are an advertiser on this site. The above reviews were written before that, and todays review is based on a couple of cigars I picked up at Cigar Inn in New York City.

La Gloria Cubana Artesanos Retro Especiale – Cigar Review

La Gloria Cubana Artesanos Retro Especiale Band

If you look at the teams that General Cigar has created they do not have what you would consider to be the traditional route of a cigar company. For example, Michael Giannini was born in Philadelphia, PA. Hardly the tobacco hotbed and yet he has grown into his position after spending 25 years in the business. Looking at Michael you wouldn’t expect him to be so involved in blending with his fashionable style he seems more suited to be involed over at GQ then with La Gloria Cubana.Looks can be deceiving.

The latest release from La Gloria Cubana, The Artesanos Retro Especiale. According to the press release,

TAA 2011 Exclusive by Tatuaje – Cigar Review

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The TAA stands for the Tobacconist Association of America is based out of Chicago, Illinois and was born in 1968 by visionary retail tobacconist. They meet yearly, with the next meeting in 2012 in Los Cabos (America group, meeting in Mexico, go figure!). To find out more about the TAA visit them on the web at http://fujipub.com/taa/. This is the first year Tatuaje has released a cigar that is available only through TAA members. Rather then list those stores here, visit Smoking Stogie for their review and a list of shops that will carry the cigar.

According to UpDown Cigar (one of the retailers selling this smoke)….

San Lotano Oval – Cigar Review

San Lotano Oval Band

Every March and every October like clockwork I get hit hard with allergies. Add to the fact that while at Little Puff I developed flu like symptoms on the way home and I began to rethink how much I smoke.

According to the AJ Fernandez website,

The prestigious San Lotano Oval from AJ Fernandez presents in a highly unique oval shape. The key to an enhanced smoking experience: ultra-premium aged tobacco. The new Oval affords a truly distinguished balance like no other.

The cigar is available in six sizes, Petite Robusto (4.5 x 54); Corona (4 x 44); Robusto (5.5 x 54); Toro (6 x 54); Gordo (6.5 x 60) and Pyramid (6.5 x 54).

Luxury Smokes, Across From the White House

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Looks like Washington DCi s becoming a huge destination for cigar smokers. Little Puff (one of the most well-attended cigar events of the year) is held there. Also, the DC metro area is home to some very exclusive cigar bars, like CXIII Rex, in Alexandria,Va.

Now that the DC Drapers shop moved to a location where their patrons can smoke, it seems that cigar smokers will have more options now than ever before.

Editorial: Cigar Shop Ettiquette

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I was sitting at Cigar Inn last night watching the end of the Yankees season when I was shocked to see 4 people come in and take up seating in the back to watch the game. Why was I shocked? 3 of the 4 people sat down to smoke cigarettes and the other was not smoking at all. Not one of them made a purchase. Now granted it was not my place to say anything and the place was more crowded then usual so they may of gone unnoticed by but it made me stop and think about cigar shop etiquette.

First and foremost if you are visiting a cigar shop and plan to sit in the lounge you should buy at least one cigar. I’ve heard people say…

Press Release: La Gloria Cubana Artesanos Retro Especiale

Continuing its tradition of innovation, Team La Gloria is proud to introduce La Gloria Cubana® Artesanos Retro Especiale, a collection that spent eight years in the making. Inspired by an antique humidor found at the El Credito® Cigar Factory, Michael Giannini and Team La Gloria toiled for nearly a decade to replicate the antique humidor. [...]

Event Recap: Little Puff

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I went down to Washington DC last week fresh off an asthma attack and suffering from allergies. While I came home on Saturday night, I had the full onslaught of chills, cough, fever, body aches and in full effect by Sunday morning. Needless to say the weekend I was off my game and in hindsight I should have sold my ticket. I did have a lot of fun though, especially at a dive bar after the event with some various twitter people, Matt Booth and Barry Blonder but we will leave that drunken debauchery for another time.. Here are some of the highlights…

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