You REALLY Wanna Talk Cigars?

CM.SmallSay fella… How does it feel to be an expert on $17,000 fountain pens? Hey, any poor slob can buy a BIC, right? (Or is it write?) How big is your collection of fine precision Swiss made watches? Have you ridden with Phil Mickelson on his private jet lately? Were the braised quail eggs for lunch on that private island off Key West to your liking? Is that now your third or fourth Italian sports car? How was your poker game with Phil Ivey in Monte Carlo? That private guide tour of the trout streams in Scotland was dandy, wasn’t it? I mean, how grand is a belt of LouisXlll, after dinner at the club? Just how many humidors do you have stacked with three decade aged Cuban cigars? And when is your tee time with Ernie Ells?

The good people over at Cigar Aficionado seemed to think that because you smoke cigars, then you must be one who dabbles with the upper crust of society. Racing boats… silk suits from the Orient… the vacation house in the Alps… yada, yada, yada.

138-lgCan Somebody please pass the god damned Grey Poupon…. anybody?

I happen to be a very longtime reader of CA – and yeah, I also happen to be a feature writer for Cigar Magazine. When the premium cigar market started to see the effects of higher taxes and blatant smoke Nazism, The good people at that other publication repositioned their magazine into a who’s who for the rich and famous. The font for the word “Cigar” on their cover got knocked down a about 500 point sizes, and stories about Marvin’s play dates with world renowned golfers graced every new issue.

Vincent.CoverNow I still say that “Aficionado” is a fine magazine – nice layout and top notch writing… really. But, while I’m tuning up my lunar space module and having my collection of wooden Russian eggs appraised at Sothebys, I’d like to read all about cigars if the title of my mag has the word “Cigar” in it. Capeesh? I want a Cigar Magazine that’s a dedicated Cigar Magazine and you KNOW that you do, too.

I started writing for CM in the Spring Issue of 2005 and that first article was entitled, The Cuban Mystique. The premise was: Are Cuban Cigars as great as the world populace claims, or is it the lore and years of mystique behind them that makes them so lauded. The article was well received and I was now a fancy shmancy scribe for a REAL honest to goodness Cigar Magazine. I’ve gotten to meet and interview some cool people and have traveled to destinations that I’ll never forget – including the now defunct Villazon factory in Cofradia, Honduras. (Plus I’ve had two cover articles: Frank Vincent in Winter 2006 and last months on Brown’s Cigar Store.) I get to work with a fantastic editor and art director (Nicole and Denise take a bow) and I get to hang around the office sometimes, where the boss man tosses me a bundle of something from Central America, and says, “Hey Zman, try these and write abut them!” I love writing for this mag and I couldn’t have imagined five years that I’d still be pounding away and talking to so many great peeps.

DVP0741035_PWow, now THIS is a major coincidence… I swear – but the brandiest newest edition of Cigar Magazine has just hit the stands! The timing is uncanny! The Summer 2010 masterpiece is looking sharp, and of course yours truly has an article on page 73 where I interviewed four different holy men (Priest, Reverends and a Pastor) about the spiritual nature behind smoking cigars and the benefits it actually brings to your life. The article is a very different concept than you’ll normally read, and none of the four holy smokers drive a Lamborghini or own a villa in a place they can’t pronounce. There are also terrific reads from my buddies Steve Nathan, Miranda Osborn (The Maduro Mistress) Frankie Seltzer and other cool stuff like the Art of the Cigar column, featuring old time cigar art of poker and gaming. And even a gaggle of premium smokes are reviewed by independent dudes (in fact, a bunch of you guys have had your reviews featured.) And I promise you from the bottom of my chinny chin chin that the cigar in our reviews will NEVER have hints of marzipan, Ethiopian roasted guava, balsa wood, or Brazilian parrot scats. It’s f@#king tobacco people.

Okay, some of you might accuse me of being a homer and and bashing the competition. Well, that’s a load of  Ethiopian roasted guava if I ever heard it. CA would have to be a 100% Cigar infused magazine in order to be our competition. All we write about is our love for the leaf and the people who make the industry so phenomenal – and that is it. Hey, like I said, I still read CA and when I finally own my very own Australian Rules football team and purchase that Beluga Whale farm, I’ll let you all know… I promise – but in the mean time, I invite you to join me and my pals at Cigar Magazine… the other white meat.

Rock on and enjoy the week,

Tommy Z.

JR CIGARS Blog with the Zman

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