Archive for February, 2010

A Double Standard for Women?

Sunday, February 28th, 2010
I was rooting for the American women's hockey team on Thursday as it faced Canada, but I have to admit I was very impressed with the way the Canadian women celebrated their victory. About an hour after having gold medals placed around their necks, the team spilled back out onto the ice, smoking cigars, drinking cold beers and popping open Champagne.

Feb. 2010 – Cigar Site Of The Month

Sunday, February 28th, 2010

I ran across this months site of the month about a year ago. Initially Nice Tight Ash offered written reviews that were fairly short, honest, and to the point. They then expanded their content to include video cigar reviews. Like their written reviews, the video reviews are honest and to the point. These guys simply set up a camera in their smoking area (the garage) and press record. Nothing fancy, just the facts.


What keeps me coming back is the simple fact that these are regular guys offering their knowledge of cigars. During your travels to the many cigar review sites out there, make sure you pay a visit to Nice Tight Ash!

The Mysteries of Cuban Cigars

Friday, February 26th, 2010
I unraveled more of the mystery of the great new Cohiba Behikes that will be launched tonight at the gala dinner in Havana during the 12th Festival Habano. The attendees of the dinner will receive all three cigars. I can't wait to try one of the smaller ones.

The Renaissance of the Blockbuster Cuban Cigar

Thursday, February 25th, 2010
I finally got my lips around a Behike. And it almost blew my head off. A couple of bad-boy-chocolately BHK 56 cigars (6 1/2 inches by 56 ring gauge) came my way, and I tried one following a heavy lunch at one of my favorite restaurants in La Havana, the awesome chicken shop 1.

Cubao Maduro

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

I am a big fan of the original Cubao. When I heard that a maduro wrapped version was out, I had to try it. I found these in Tampa and naturally picked a few up for review. The quick story on this cigar is… Don Pepin Garcia blended and makes this cigar for United Tobacco. Chances are, if Pepin has his hands in it, I’ll like it. Let’s see if this holds true for the Cubao Maduro.


Wrapper: Ecuador

Binder: Nicaragua

Filler: Nicaragua

Size: Robusto Extra 6 1/8 x 50

Price: Around $7.00


Pre-Smoke & Construction:

The dark brown maduro wrapper looked great, with only a few small to medium veins and no major flaws. The wrapper had almost no odor at all. I could only detect a slight sweet smell. The foot had more of a sweet spicy smell to it. Overall the cigar was evenly packed and had a good draw. The pre-smoke draw was a dark sweet flavor, similar to dark chocolate bitterness.



The first few puffs of the first third were smooth earthiness. It didn’t take long for a nice sweet peppery spice to kick in. The earthiness took a back seat, and allowed the sweetness to stand out. As I progressed further along, a coffee or espresso type of flavor joined in. The sweetness took on more of a cocoa tinge.  Meanwhile, the smoke feel became thick and creamy.


As I dug into the second third, the pepper calmed down a bit but kept a lot of bite. The smoke feel remained thick and somewhat creamy. The cocoa sweetness dominated the flavor profile. Coffee was next, along with a slight woodiness.


The last third increased in strength. The spicy pepper remained smooth but kept that familiar zing. At times the coffee was stronger then the cocoa, and at other times it was the opposite. Woody notes were still in the distant background. The smoke was dense, but lost a lot of it’s creaminess.



This was a damn good full bodied cigar. There really isn’t anything more I can say. I will be smoking more of these. Give the Cubao Maduro a try!

The Cuban Cigar Scene

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010
Most of the participants of the 12th Festival Habano went to the Pinar del Río to see tobacco plantations yesterday, but I stayed in Havana to write a blog and check out the cigar scene. Plenty of good boxes in shops. And loads of people were hanging out and smoking.

Good Start in La Habana

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010
Piano jazz legend Chucho Valdés blew me away at the opening night of the 12th Festival Habano at the Gran Teatro de la Habana. The only bad news was that we couldn't smoke anything. There are limits for smokers even in Havana! The big man from Havana is a maestro on the piano and is able to master anything from classic to fusion jazz.

Acid “Blue” Kuba Kuba

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

In January of 2009, I reviewed this cigar. Back then, I had a pretty bad experience, and the review reflected that. I received a few emails urging me to try an Acid again. So now, in February of 2010, I decided it was time to re-visit the cigar that I gave a bad review to. I figured it was possible that I didn’t give it a fair chance.

The first half was decent, with strange floral, perfumey flavors. Like my other review, the second half basically fell flat. It just became a bland and borderline harsh smoke.

Like other quick smoke with Tom reviews, this was filmed with my MacBook isight webcam at The Habana Cigar Shop. I used an external mic this time, so the audio is a bit better then the others. The video quality is what it is. See what my thoughts were in this quick 9 minute video review.

MP3 Audio only

Going to The Habanos Festival

Monday, February 22nd, 2010
I am arriving in La Habana this afternoon in time for the opening event of the 12th Festival Habano. Not only will I get my first glimpse of the new line-extension of Cohiba—the three Cohiba Behike cigars—but also the piano jazz legend Chucho Valdés will be providing the entertainment at the Gran Teatro de la Habana.

Cigar Culture

Monday, February 22nd, 2010
I sometimes forget about the origin of cigars. I know that might sound odd. But I'm not saying that I don't know where a cigar is made—that has become second nature. What I'm talking about is sometimes taking for granted the long arc of history and the incredible nuances of culture linked to premium hand-rolled cigars.

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