Porcelain Jar Series From Partagas

Anyone experienced in the passion of Cuban Cigar smoking would surely agree that cigars aged in jars over a period of time result in a smoother, rounder edged flavor.  We now see the new Partagas Series P No. 1 available and, being a Partagas fanatic, I can’t wait to try one of these Petit Piramides.

The 25 cigars from Partagas come in a 5 inch length with a ring gauge of 50. The elegant black Porcelain jar is decorated with the red band near the top and then covered in gold lettering.  This is a size that is becoming more and more popular given today’s hectic schedules and I believe that, although a tad smaller than a regular piramides, you should be able to get at least 1 1/2 hours of smoking pleasure.

Partagas Series D No. 4

Of all of the Cuban cigars I smoke, I believe I’ve smoked more Partagas Series D No. 4 than any others.  It is a go to cigar that could be more consistent than most as far as taste, construction and draw are concerned.  I believe these are rolled at the Francisco Pérez Germán factory behind the “Capitolio” in Havana and they are becoming one of the most popular cigars that the factory produces.

Some of the Cohiba cigars are also rolled at the same factory and so that tells you about the quality of their workmanship.  Another nice thing about the No. 4 is the price.  These are a very fairly priced cigar and when you consider the care taken to roll them I believe you can’t get a better cigar for the price.

Another thing you’ll fall in love with is the taste.  Some consider these cigars to be strong but I think that, although they are beautifully balanced, there is nothing unpleasant about smoking them.  If aged properly for a few years, the end up being very smooth and mellow, with hints of herbs, coffee and spice.  Paired with your favorite Scotch, you will end up with a perfect cigar experience.

Cuban Cigars And The Birthday Party

Yesterday I went to a birthday party for a friend who turned 60.. Yikes, we’re getting older and it’s happening very quickly.. I brought a few cigars with me, a few Romeo y Julieta Churchills and a few from my new box of El Rey Del Mundo Choix Supremes.. There were a few cigar smokers there and I turned out to be popular with those guys.

This was a surprise party and the birthday boy was quite surprised when he walked outside and saw almost 50 of us standing on his front lawn.  His wife told us to stand there because he hates it when people go on to his front lawn!  Ha !!  There was great food, good friends, cigars and music !!

The highlight of the afternoon was when a few members of the band “Chilliwack” brought out their guitars and started pickin’ and singin’.  In the picture above is my friend Tom singing with them and smoking, although you can’t really see it in the pic, one of the “Choix Supremes” .  It had been the first time he had one of them and I think he’ll be buying and smoking more in the future!

Need More Humidors

So this morning I wake up and realize that I have too many cigars and not enough humidors..  I go to Craigslist and see that one is for sale in town and for $50 I’m thinking what the heck, maybe I should take a look at this offering.  There are a few things to consider before buying a humidor.

1….. Is it well built and will the top close snugly so no moist air escapes??

2…..Is the interior made of spanish cedar??

3…..Has it been used before me and should I be concerned about any unwanted visitors that may be laying dormant in any cracks??

4……Where was it built?? Sometimes there are humidors that come from street sales in Cuba and, to tell you the truth, they really aren’t built all that well….

I guess before I lay my money down I better make sure that all of my questions are answered…. I think that with all the love we have for our cigars, we have to make sure we’ll be storing them in the right environment. Good luck out there!

El Rey Del Mundo Day

Oh what a glorious day!!  I stopped off to see the guys at “The Vancouver Cigar Company” and the box of El Rey Del Mundo Choix Supremes were in that I wanted.. These are the good days, the days I’ll always remember and days like this can and will be seen on that fateful day when my life flashes before my eyes.

As you can see, they were rolled in December of ’08 which gives them enough time to be very smokable right now.. Of course they’ll always become smoother the longer I can keep them in the humidor… The one I’m smoking right now has about 50% left and it is exactly what I was looking for when I ordered this box.. No harshness at all and a nice, slightly oily wrapper… Describing how this one may taste would be a cigar smoker’s version of a pumpkin pie with a very nice toasted tobacco profile mixed with hints of nutmeg and cinnamon…. Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a real spice factory, it’s creamy and subtle but I HAD to try to give you an idea of what I was tasting just now!

What a beautiful cigar…… A MUST for anyone who wants to try something different from the norm, and what I mean by that is, this cigar has a real devoted cult following.. Once you try one, you’ll see why!!!

Cohiba Piramides 2006

From time to time you’ll smoke a cigar that will redefine perfection and, for me, I think that this LE from 2006 is the one.  I smoked one back in January and I have a few left in the humidor but, more than any other cigar, this Cohiba is haunting me and calling me over to the humidor on a daily basis.

My patience, which I only have a small amount of, is being pushed to the limit with this Piramides.  The best tobacco leaves, I’m guessing the best rollers and a few years of aging has turned a bunch of fermented leaves into a perfect symphony of balance, taste and an experience that simply doesn’t come around often enough in life.

My birthday is coming this summer in July and I’m hoping for perfect weather because that night I’l be reaching for my flame and toasting the end of the perfect cigar.

Partagas Lusitanias

One of the benchmarks in the quality of Cuban cigars coming out of the Partagas factory is the Lusitanias.  Great care is taken when rolling these fine fine cigars and usually the best rollers are chosen to partake in the construction of these prominentes.

The full flavors of the typical Partagas profile come through in these beauties upon smoking the first inch and then they build in strength, but NOT harshness, for the full 2 plus hours you’ll smoke them.  I’m not kidding, these cigars seem to take forever to finish and give the Partagas lover all that he bargained for.

I remember first smoking the Series D No. 4 from Partagas and, for a while, went through quite a few of them before I picked up a Lusitanias.  My first impression was that I could recognize all of the great grassy flavors from the Robusto in a larger format which made me think, “Bigger IS Better” !!!

2010 Limited Edition from Partagas

One of the best things about flipping the calendar page to a new year other than its time to do your taxes again is the fact that there will be new Limited Edition cigars to come out of Cuba.  There are a few very interesting new additions for all of our humidors this year but the one that I’m thrilled about is coming from Partagas, the “Series D Especial”.

This year we’ll be seeing a new Series D with a 50 ring gauge that is 5.6 inches long.  Yes!!!  This is from a family of some of the most full flavored cigars in the world and the fact that it will have a length this long tells me that we’ll have that much more time to enjoy it. I believe that the rolling of the limited edition cigars are usually very very closely watched at the factories and I’ve never had any kind of draw problems with these special releases.

I’m hoping that we’ll be seeing just a slightly bigger brother of the Series D No. 4 with the finest leaves set aside for this release!!  Can’t wait!!

Toothpicks and Cigars

As you see in the picture above I’ve laid one of my best friends down on a cigar box and laid a toothpick across the double band.  The H. Upmann Magnum 48 was my favorite Limited Edition in the last few years and I think that this is one of the best cigars to come out of Cuba in a while.  But this isn’t what I’m writing about today.

Cigars of different shapes will occasionally give you problems when it comes to draw because of a few reasons.  Sometimes it is as simple as user error.  What I mean by that is that sometimes your humidity level in your humidor may be a bit on the damp side and almost every time it’ll cause problems with tobacco leaves swelling up and reducing the draw the cigar will have.  There are other times when different shapes of cigars and how they are rolled will dictate whether or not you get a good draw.  I’ve run into problems with the smaller ring gauge cigars and the possibility of them having plugs, which are bunches of tobacco that feel quite hard inside the cigar.  Also problems with a cigar, in my experience, can sometimes be located around the band but the difficult draw can be “worked on” with one of my little wooden buddies in the picture.

I “carefully” will insert the toothpick into the cigar and try to poke a hole or two in the plug to ease the drawing problem.  Now when I cay carefully I mean that if you are over zealous and start stabbing away at the head of your cigar you can crack the wrapper.  This is one thing that has amazed me about this practice.  I’ve always thought that I could get away with running a toothpick down the middle of a cigar without any penalty but keep in mind that a cigar is a delicate and balanced hand-made item that doesn’t like to be poked and prodded with anything very thick in diameter.  You WILL get a cracked wrapper and, although your cigar will still be smokable, it’ll ruin the experience with you trying to keep your cigar from unravelling!  Good luck!

Romeo y Julieta Short Churchill

I had a great day today playing softball in the park not far from our house with a bunch of cigar smokers.  There is a group of us that keep in contact all year but we really see a lot more of each other when the sun starts shining in the spring.  We usually end up in one of Vancouver’s many public parks and softball, cigar smoking and drinking cold beer usually keeps us occupied.

Luckily there were no injuries today since everyone was playing cautiously and carefully.  It isn’t always that way because this is a pretty competitive group and it seems that the more drinking that we do, the greater the chances that one of us is going to get hurt.  I had a small carry humidor with a few H. Upmann No. 2’s that I was going to hand out but one of the lads showed up with a plethora of Romeo y Julieta Short Churchills that got passed around.

I’ve smoked a few of these before and found them to be a bit of a simple cigar. True, the Romeo profile is there in flying colors but I’ve found that at times I remember them being a bit one dimensional.  Today’s cigar took me by surprise in it’s smoothness and great taste.  Maybe it was the mood I was in, but I loved this Romeo more today than I remember previous experiences.  I was told that today’s cigars came from a box from ’07 and so the cigar had ample time to settle down and become nicely balanced.

My mind was changed about this little 50 ring gauge and I think that maybe ordering a box would be in my future.