Greetings Lords and Ladies of the Leaf!
It’s ‘//otan here – and I’m sorry to disappoint you, but there will be no review from me this week. Though, I did smoke several (read – about 5) cigars this week – I didn’t find anything that I wanted to review, and since it’s wintertime I didn’t want to sit out in what was supposed to be “Snowmaggedon” and the “Icepocalypse” to herf. Though, I’m thinking of investing in a fire pit so that I can bring it into the garage and herf away in front of a wood fire. I think that’d be cool. At any rate, after the mini-reviews there will be information about our first ever #smokeoneonus giveaway and contest.
Interesting plug time: Go check out Riverside Cigar Lounge and Bar located in downtown Jeffersonville, Indiana. Jeff Mouttet and his wife Sarah own what I termed “Cheers, but for adults.” It’s complete with it’s own Cliff Claven – I took my cousin-in-law (is that a good term) for his first visit, it was complete with a drinks, two cigars and some spades. I’m still working on my card playing abilities, but I’m getting better at it.
Let me tell you what I’ve been smoking the past few times that I’ve been there. These are like mini-reviews, but I figured I ought to get into the review section with a few cigar reviews rather than just the contest:
I need to plug the Viaje Cigar Company. What is Viaje you ask? Well – only the rarest of all of the boutique cigar companies. From their website: http://www.viajecigars.com “What is Viaje? I get asked this question alot. Viaje is a boutique cigar company specializing in the small batch approach to cigar making. Viaje represents the idea that quality is better than quantity. That small is better than big. That few are better than many. Why small batch? There are many reasons. Quality, consistency, and most importantly this is where I get my inspiration. If you enjoy mass produced cigars you are in the wrong place. We use tobacco sparingly to execute our vision of what a cigar should look and taste like. Viaje represents the boutique in every sense of the word. This is what I enjoy, this is what I provide, and this is my promise. Join us in the revolution against mediocrity. -Andre Farkas”
Viaje Late Harvest Robusto: Quoting Andre Farkas “What we did was take the last two primings of the leaf and put them into the filler. Added a little bit of viso, and it’s unlike any cigar I’ve ever produced. It has a buttery quality to it.” And here’s my minute review: It’s absolutely unlike anything that I’ve ever had the cigar tasted buttery and rich. It was complex and had a wonderful mouthfeel. The smoke had earthy undertones and hints of black pepper that hit on the throat. The ash was thick and dark gray. The smoke was really nice but not too thick, though it certainly did linger. According to my research Andre made 125 boxes of 35 cigars which made it’s debute at ICPR in 2011. This is one of the most limited cigar releases in the “boutique” cigar brands. The production of these cigars is located in Honduras, at the Racines Cubanas factory which is part of Casa Fernandez Cigar company. These are worth the $9.00 that I paid for them. I think this might even be my first box purchase. If I had reviewed this cigar it would have easily been a 27-28 cigar. What a smooth smoke – my first experience with Viaje and this is a brand that I will be watching for the next year just to see what comes out of their heads next.
Viaje Summerfest Churchill: Coming in at a whopping 7×50 with a round head and a brushed foot (Which by the way burns a little like you would expect a whisk broom to burn. But it’s pretty damn sweet if you ask me, and hey it’s my place so you are asking me.) Quoting Andre Farkas ““Last year the brushed foot on Summerfest was very difficult to smoke due to its length. This year the cigar has been designed to smoke. It gives you the ability to taste the filler alone before getting into the binder and wrapper. Again, unlike Holiday Blends unfinished foot representing the cold of Winter, the brush represents shedding clothing for Summer” It was a Nicaraguan99 Corojo wrapper, Nicaraguan filler and binder. What a sweet cigar! And again it was a limited release of 3,000 cigars per vitola. The beginning of the cigar tasted a little like white pepper, and had a mild hint of honey. It was light yet heady, and the great thing about it was this cigar was delicious and when the cigar hit the wrapper it translated into a heady blend that had notes of wood and more delicious spice notes. On a scale of 1-10 I give this cigar an 8.5. If I had a reviewed it, the cigar would have likely scored in the 25-28 range.
Viaje 50/50 Black No. 3: WOW! I asked Jeff to go into the Humidor and find me something that I hadn’t smoked before (Not hard considering his selection). And he returned with this firecracker. When he asked me “Is full flavored alright?” I knew that this was going to be a great smoke. Stuffed with Nicaraguan tobacco this 7×47 cigar took the better part of two and a half hours to smoke. The idea of this cigar was to take two different types of tobacco and blend them into one cigar. And it worked, but there was definitely a first half and a second half and each had it’s own distinct flavors. This puppy started with a sweet chocolate and cocoa taste with a hint of pepper on the finish. It was a great balance of bitter and sweet – one of the things I really look for in a cigar. The second half transitioned to a decidedly earthy and even more full bodied experience. EDITORIAL WARNING – DO NOT SMOKE THIS IF YOU ARE NEW TO CIGARS. This one almost knocked me flat on my rear-end.
And now, to the contest and giveaway section:
Kyle and I have been blessed that our blog has come in to its own. We’re pleased to have as many hits as we have had so we’re sponsoring a giveaway. We’re opening our humidor to you!
Here’re the rules.
1. Contest is open to legal US residents aged 21 and older.
2. You must live in the CONTINENTAL United States. (Sorry international readers – we just don’t have a way to get your sticks to you in a timely manner. Plus, shipping is really expensive).
3. No Post Office Boxes will be accepted.
Here’s the deal. We want comments! We’re going to run the contest from February 20th to March 20th. Your task? Pick a cigar that you really like – and suggest it to us for review. We’re going to take your cigar, write it on a slip of paper, put it in a jar and shake the jar up. We’ll be selecting a cigar to review and if that’s your cigar – you win!
What do I win?
Simple. You win a selection of five premium cigars including a Pete Johnson Ambos Mundos cigar that was our “Top Pick of 2011”. The cigars will be shipped out a week after your review is posted.
So, lords and ladies of the leaves – post away! There is no limit to the cigar that you can suggest for us to review and there is no limit to how many times you can post. Simply reply to this posting and Kyle and I will check each day to keep an accurate tally. The winner will be contacted via e-mail for an address and a name that the cigars will be sent to. They will be sent via first class mail, in an armored tupperdor.
Enjoy your week.
Live Life, Love Leaf.