Monday Cigar Ramblings – January 8, 2010

I think I left my ashtray on the picnic table...

Two feet of snow here in southeastern PA kind of got me off of my schedule.  To add insult to injury, they are predicting another 12″ to 18″ on Wednesday!  I don’t know where we are going to put it.

Here’s my winter smoking strategy:  Since conditions aren’t right for enjoying a premium cigar, I like having some more pedestrian cigars on hand for taking my walks in the cold weather, or shoveling or even just standing around outside.  This week I dug out some old cigars that may not have been great when they were new, but age hasn’t hurt them.  I smoked a couple of unbanded cigars and a JR Alternative that was given to me in a mixed bag of cigars when my bother-in-law gave up cigars years ago.  I’m suspecting all of these were around 10 years old.  They all burned well and tasted well aged, smooth and mellow, but enough flavor to be satisfying even out in the cold.  I hate to smoke a really good cigar under these circumstances.  One exception to this was a Hatuey Double Wrap 5 x 50 that I enjoyed while hanging out outside watching a friend work on one of our cars.  I had the propane heater out there and it was before the snow.  This cigar was a barber-pole cigar with  Connecticut shade and Connecticut broad-leaf wrappers that was very nice.  I really couldn’t taste any difference in the two wrappers but the overall flavor was good.  I look forward to better circumstances to enjoy the second one I have in my humidor.  I haven’t smoked that many barber-pole cigars, and, apart from the visual appeal, I don’t really see the point.  Because it’s a spiral, the wrappers have to blend together.  If it was striped, you could probably discern a flavor difference.  Feel free to let me know your opinions on this style of cigar.

In the “new inmates in the humidor” department, I received an incredible package this week from my friend Jason.  Quite a few cigars that I haven’t had a chance to try.  A veritable cornucopia of cigar goodness!   I look forward to spring and summer when I can relax on the deck to enjoy these!  Thanks Jason!

Tickets went on sale for Cigarfest this morning, but I over-slept and by 8 am they were sold out.  I’m still on the fence as to whether this event is a good value for me.

It’s February contest time! Up for grabs this month is a really cool Drew Estates cigar cutter.  I’ve been using one for the past few months and really like it.  It’s closed on one side so you can’t over cut your cigars.  I am in the habit of placing my cutter on a flat surface and standing my cigar up to cut it. This cutter removes the need to find a flat surface.  Anyway, leave a comment here to enter and I’ll select a winner in the usual manner.  I’ll make the selection and post the winner on or after Sunday, Feb 14, 2010.

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Until the next cigar,




  1. Hmmm… how deep, then, does the cutter go? (I assume — exactly as deeply as needed — else you wouldn’t have been using it as long as you have). How thick is it in the pocket?

    1. Good questions. It’s about 3/8″ thick and will shave about an eighth of an inch of cap off your cigar. One downside is that while it’s great for parejos, it’s not as good for torpedos.

  2. You’re selecting a winner in “the usual manner?” Does that mean “via the biggest bribe?” 😉

    I like barber-pole smokes a lot, but you are right. The wrapper flavors sort of blend together, but they tend to create a flavor you just don’t get with one wrapper.

    The manufacturers love to mix maduro with Connecticut shade. I do have a couple of “exotic” barber poles, though. I have a LGC figurado which is half natural, half candela. I also have a few smokes, made by someone I forget at the moment, with Connecticut shade, candela AND maduro.

    My ‘dream’ barber pole: Cameroon and Oscuro (double maduro).

    Now, about that cutter…

  3. I’m sure if you put put that paper on my shoulder at 6:01AM I can get a cat to sit on it. Followed immediatey by a loud meow in my left ear.

  4. I haven’t smoked too many dual wrapper cigars so I really don’t have an opinion on the blend profile. I like Acey’s idea of a Cameroon with another, but my choice would be Brazilian. Like the CAO Brazilia. Spicy. mmmm.

    Sitting here in Cleveland with way too much snow. This has been a never ending winter. Way off on my cigar smoking.


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