Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Rudyard Kipling piece from "The Betrothed" about cigars

Open the old cigar-box, get me a Cuba stout, 
For things are running crossways, and Maggie and I are out. 

We quarrelled about Havanas -- we fought o'er a good cheroot, 
And I knew she is exacting, and she says I am a brute. 

Open the old cigar-box -- let me consider a space; 
In the soft blue veil of the vapour musing on Maggie's face. 

Maggie is pretty to look at -- Maggie's a loving lass, 
But the prettiest cheeks must wrinkle, the truest of loves must pass. 

There's peace in a Larranaga, there's calm in a Henry Clay; 
But the best cigar in an hour is finished and thrown away -- 

Thrown away for another as perfect and ripe and brown -- 
But I could not throw away Maggie for fear o' the talk o' the town! 

Maggie, my wife at fifty -- grey and dour and old -- 
With never another Maggie to purchase for love or gold! 

And the light of Days that have Been the dark of the Days that Are, 
And Love's torch stinking and stale, like the butt of a dead cigar -- 

The butt of a dead cigar you are bound to keep in your pocket -- 
With never a new one to light tho' it's charred and black to the socket! 

Open the old cigar-box -- let me consider a while. 
Here is a mild Manila -- there is a wifely smile. 

Which is the better portion -- bondage bought with a ring, 
Or a harem of dusky beauties, fifty tied in a string? 

Counsellors cunning and silent -- comforters true and tried, 
And never a one of the fifty to sneer at a rival bride? 

Thought in the early morning, solace in time of woes, 
Peace in the hush of the twilight, balm ere my eyelids close, 

This will the fifty give me, asking nought in return, 
With only a Suttee's passion -- to do their duty and burn. 

This will the fifty give me. When they are spent and dead, 
Five times other fifties shall be my servants instead. 

The furrows of far-off Java, the isles of the Spanish Main, 
When they hear my harem is empty will send me my brides again. 

I will take no heed to their raiment, nor food for their mouths withal, 
So long as the gulls are nesting, so long as the showers fall. 

I will scent 'em with best vanilla, with tea will I temper their hides, 
And the Moor and the Mormon shall envy who read of the tale of my brides. 

For Maggie has written a letter to give me my choice between 
The wee little whimpering Love and the great god Nick o' Teen. 

And I have been servant of Love for barely a twelvemonth clear, 
But I have been Priest of Cabanas a matter of seven year; 

And the gloom of my bachelor days is flecked with the cheery light 
Of stums that I burned to Friendship and Pleasure and Work and Fight. 

And I turn my eyes to the future that Maggie and I must prove, 
But the only light on the marshes is the Will-o'-the-Wisp of Love. 

Will it see me safe through my journey or leave me bogged in the mire? 
Since a puff of tobacco can cloud it, shall I follow the fitful fire? 

Open the old cigar-box -- let me consider anew -- 
Old friends, and who is Maggie that I should abandon you? 

A million surplus Maggies are willing to bear the yoke; 
And a woman is only a woman, but a good Cigar is a Smoke. 

Light me another Cuba -- I hold to my first-sworn vows. 
If Maggie will have no rival, I'll have no Maggie for Spouse!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Blooming Plume!

" The plume boss, the Plume!" Or something to that effect. ( Fantasy Island ) In my opinion if you ain't got plume, then you may be smoking a less than perfect cigar.
   If you go into a walk in humidor and notice a slight whitish fuzzy dusting on some of the uncovered cigars, usually Maduros, that is called Plume. Mold on the other hand is blueish  green or other colors. The plume that you see is telling you that the humidor is doing its job. The oils in the wrapper on the surface slightly crystallize after being stored for some time. Mold is not good, and can contaminate other cigars in your humidor.
    I tried to take a picture of this but I have an older iPhone and have not upgraded the super stud phone 3.0. The cigar in question, a Super Toro in Maduro was hand rolled in house from Up-In-Smoke  cigars in Cromwell, Ct.


Friday, September 11, 2015

Meet Mike Rosales of RoMa Craft Cigars

Don't miss this Special Sunday event! Mike Rosales from RoMa Craft Tobac will be here Sunday, September 12th from noon to 3pm for a special release of rare RoMa Craft cigars. Meet the maker and get deals on all RoMa Craft cigars. At Riverside Cigar Shop and Lounge.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Kentucky Derby Cigars

COX's Smokers Outlet will be selling cigars at Churchill Down's as usual.  However, If you are looking for a nice cigar store, I personally like Jason's.  Here is some info on his specials this week.

Join us Monday April 27th thru Saturday May 2nd, for the biggest week of cigars Louisville has ever seen. I know what you are thinking, "but Jason, you already have an amazing selection of cigars and for less than everyone else!"  Yes, that's true, but during Derby Cigar Week, we take it a step further. 

We start with great brands and we make you offers you can't refuse. Along with great bonuses and free swag, we also have daily bourbon and beer tastings to pair with your favorite cigars. In addition, all merchandise from cases, cutters, lighters, pipes, flasks, humidors, etc. will be on sale. When others raise their prices and try to take advantage of the Derby, we do just the opposite and save you money, so you'll have more to spend at the track.

Check out our Daily Featured Brands:

Monday         - Unique Boutiques
Tuesday        -
Oliva & Padilla
Wednesday   - Rocky Patel
Thursday       -
Alec Bradley & ???
Friday            - Davidoff & Camacho
Saturday        - 
Arturo Fuente & LFD

Derby Cigar Week Hours:
Monday thru Thursday 11am to 8pm
Friday and Saturday 10am to 9pm

Daily bourbon tastings 4pm to 8pm.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Memorex II

"Hey, some friends of mine were on a cruise, and picked up some Cubans. You want a couple?" said my coworker.
Sure I said. So he brought them in to work the next morning, and behold, cigars that say Cohiba on them. Wow, how great is that. Well when you look at the attached pictures, one is glaringly OFF, the other is close but the leaf has lots of veining. More Cohibas are copied than Louis Vuitton bags. So I emailed My brother Steve to be sure, but it was kinda obvious. Oh well, I guess I will destroy them by fire, and blog about the results in a short while.

Peter Medved

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

H.Upmann Cigar Story

Nice article in Adweek about H.Upmann.  You can also read the reader comments on merits of Cuban versus Dominican cigars.  Yes, that debate that has been going on for quite some time.

Monday, December 01, 2014

A cigar and a Brandy at the end, Ben Guggenheim on the Titanic

"The billionaire Benjamin Guggenheim after having helped the rescue of women and children got dressed, a rose at his buttonhole, to die."  The two were seen heading into the Grand Staircase closing the door behind them. He was heard to remark, "We've dressed up in our best and are prepared to go down like gentlemen." He also gave a survivor a message saying, "Tell my wife, if it should happen that my secretary and I both go down, tell her I played the game out straight to the end. No woman shall be left aboard this ship because Ben Guggenheim was a coward." Guggenheim and his valet were last seen seated in deck chairs in the foyer of the Grand Staircase sipping brandy and smoking cigars. Both men went down with the ship. Their bodies, if recovered, were never identified. Guggenheim's chauffeur, RenĂ© Pernot, was also lost in the disaster.
From Wikipedia

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Never beat up your little brother

When you get older they sometimes send you surprise packages in the mail.  Thanks Pete.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Cigar Driving

      Have you ever been frustrated when smoking a cigar while driving? Is the main reason because the smoke is more distracting than the actual driving? Correctly opening the driver window with the right amount of gap near the top of the door frame is crucial to smoke evacuation while driving.

      Depending on what type of car and whether the window is long as in a two door, or short, ..four door,,,has all to do with the airflow coming off the windshield and over the door frame. Also, using the A/C, or just the blower fan in the vehicle to bring in positive pressure air, especially setting it to blow from the floor area, because blowing from the middle dash vents will push the smoke into your eyes, this will help carry the cigar smoke up to the window top and the negative pressure zone outside the window at the top usually gets the smoke out smoothly without too much issue.

          I  purchased a vent visor specifically for this reason to increase the negative pressure zone, and to keep rain out during , what else, Rain. And another tip is when I have to stop at a store quickly, I leave my cigar on the outside of the car wedged between the windshield wiper arm and blade facing ash up, so as not to burn a hole in my seats or carpets in case it falls over. Because most new cars do not come with ashtrays today, that is actually an option for most cars. But please be responsible and not throw the finished cigar out the window, that's just bad karma. I use an old steel travel mug with lid and dispose of at home. 

Peter Medved

Monday, August 12, 2013

Riverside Cigar Shop and Lounge, Jeffersonville, IN

 I finally made the trip across the river to this cigar shop. Ever since Louisville banned smoking in bars/lounges, there has not been a 'legal' place to buy and enjoy a good cigar. Not only is this a cigar shop, but they have added the Match Cigar Bar to buy a great meal and drinks to enjoy along with your cigar. The cigar shop had a reasonable assortment of the main cigar brands and a few I had not heard of.(Reviews coming on some of them). They had generic wooden matches for those without their own lighters. I was disappointed they did not have some nice custom cedar matches, but ehh, if you did not bring your lighter to a cigar bar, whose fault is that. Pic of the walk in humidor is below. The Match bar and grill had plenty of seating. I thought it could have used more air flow and the vent fan they had did not seem to pull smoke out even though I was sitting right next to it. They feature a changing menu and a lot of different bourbons. The burger I had was excellent. See that picture below. There is another dance bar next door, so if you are looking for a night out with some friends then this is a great stopping point.
Just minutes from Downtown Louisville at 201 Spring Street in Jeffersonville, Indiana. Phone number is (812) 284-6198. Hours: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday-Thursday 11 a.m. to 12 a.m Friday-Saturday.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Is it real, or is it Memorex?

We have an intern at work that wants to enjoy the finer things in life.  He is from Ecuador, very young and impressionable.  He likes good Scotch, bourbon and food, but he thinks wine in a box is a technical marvel and loves it.  He is going to throw a party for his friends and wants to add cigars into the mix, so he has been asking a lot of questions on what a bunch of newbies should smoke.

In comes his brother with a box of Cuban Cohiba Esplendidos.  I offered to store them in my humidor since they have been sitting in an office for "a while".  We opened the box when he brought them into the office, and they looked really good, for a while.  I wanted to be sure of what he had, so I took them down to my buddy Steve's cube.  He noticed right off the label on the outside was not positioned where it should be.  Steve pulled up websites where we could compare and what we found was the inside label had white showing, not a good sign.  And the little piece of paper was missing the tobacco leaf.  And to put another nail in the coffin the bottom had no stamp for manufacture date.

My Ecuadorian friend wanted me to smoke one to see what I thought.  Hey, I am here to help.  All signs are that it is Memorex (fake), but it was a very nice smoke none the less. The ash was a decent grey, the smoke was relatively think, but I did have to touch it up a couple time where it wanted to burn uneven and it smoked a bit fast for a Churchill (1 hr 15 mins).  Then the final nail, the band was a little thin and virtually no embossing.

After revealing my findings, my good buddy Steve brought in one of his, pictured in this blog as being given to him by a Cuban friend.  He wanted to know if his were real, so he offered it to me to smoke so I could compare.  Hey, still in a helping mode, so I took another one for the team.

Yet another very fine smoke, but with some differences.  Even being in a humidor for just 3 weeks after 5 years of sitting in a box dying, this cigar smoked for more than an hour and a half and burned even, no touch-ups necessary.  The smoke was thicker, heavier and the ash was a little darker grey.  And this one was stronger and grew as it went along where the first one was very mild throughout.

Very interesting experiment and I was more than happy to assist.  One is counterfeit and one is real and you can tell the difference.  However; not sure it would have been so noticeable if there was a couple weeks between them.  As it was, I had 3 Cuban cigars in 4 days and one turned out to be Memorex, but I think my friend and all his buddies will still enjoy it and probably better for a first smoke.

Thank you Luis and Steve and do not hesitate to call on me again. :-)

Oh yeah....The band on Steve's Cohiba was wider, better quality, slightly heavier paper and it was embossed.

Here is the bands for you to compare, they are actually starting to get better than they used to be.
Which one is fake and which is real?  Scroll over the letters hidden below with your mouse to see.
The one on left is real, notice the comma after Habana and the squares are more consistent.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Winston Churchill and sacred rite to smoke

Found this story, thought I would share. 

While visiting King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia, Winston was informed he could neither smoke nor drink, Whereas Roosevelt had respected the king's
wishes and refrained from smoking in his presence,
Churchill did the opposite. As he wrote in his memoirs,

"If it was the religion of His Majesty to deprive
himself of smoking and alcohol I must point out that
my rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite
smoking cigars and also drinking alcohol before, after,
and if need be during all meals and in the intervals
between them." He puffed cigar smoke in the
king's face.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Friends in Island places

So one of my friends who is from Cuba says "I have some old cigars that I have had in a box for 5 years, would you like them?"   I will have to keep these in the humidor for long while to rehydrate, but should be good.

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Aging Room M356 review

Yesterday was a nice, crisp 55 degrees in Louisville and seemed to be a good time to enjoy a cigar and a glass of wine on the deck.  I pulled the M356 from my humidor and headed outside with the dogs to enjoy the pleasant evening.  This cigar drew exceptionally well and was spicy from the start.  It was not mild, but not too strong either.  Not long into it there was a change, the flavor dropped the spice and could notice the strength a little more, definitely more full, but still not too strong and maybe a little smoother even.  And it reamined a nice smoke till the end, burning evenly and slowly throughout and the ash was fairly firm, although I knocked it off when I bumped into the deck railing.  I hate when that happens.  It was not the best pairing with the sweeter wine I was drinking, but was not bad either.  Probably would have been better with a nice Pinot Noir or a nice smooth bourbon with a little bite.

I liked this little cigar, which was about 40-45 minutes to get 2/3rds or a little more smoked.  Thanks to my buddy +Steve Medved for throwing it my way to try.  I would smoke it again and I always need cigars of this size to have around.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Rookie Rantings -- San Lotano Oval

Wow!  That about sums-up my experience with this cigar.  I'm glad I've had several other prior to smoking this bad boy because if I'd had this first, nothing would compare.  I read this was the #2 rated cigar last year and then found it in a sampler pack.  I had to get it.  This was a wonderful cigar experience! 

Right out of the wrapper it had a wonderful smell.  My initial draw (which was very easy) was light and flavorful.  The smoke had a wonderful aroma.  From the first draw to the end, it was very balanced and did not get bitter.  The ash was very compact and probably would stay intact for a long time, but I'm a bit paranoid about the thing dropping in my lap.  I sat outside in freezing weather to finish this cigar.  I didn't want to put it down.  This is, officially my #1 favorite cigar and I would smoke it anytime.

  • Made By:AJ Fernandez Cigars
  • Wrapper:Habano 2000 Wrapper
  • Binder:Nicaragua
  • Filler:Nicaragua / Honduras/ AJ Fernandez Secret Filler
  • Monday, March 25, 2013

    Rookie Rantings -- Padilla Miami Robusto

    I originally began enjoying cigars because on a couple occasions my buddy Kevin shared with me his Padilla cigars.  This was one he had given me.  I think the first third of the Miami Robusto is a very flavorful cigar.  After that it does get stronger and I could only get about half way through it before I'd had enough.  Since I'm still a rookie I can't 'man up' like my buddy. It burns well, and has a very nice ash.  Now that I've experienced a few different cigars, I'd say it draws a little harder than others.

    I'd have this again, but I'm looking forward to trying the Oscuro Kevy's been raving about.

    Size: 5 x 54
    Filler: Nicaraguan
    Strength: Medium to Full
    Body: Full
    Flavor: Full


    Friday, March 22, 2013

    Rookie Rantings - Obsidian Robusto

    I'm not sure my buddy Steve knew what he was doing when he gave me the reins to his log, but since I have them...let's ride this thing!  :-)  I'm new to cigar smoking so many of you may completely disagree with my opinions.  That's the great thing about opinions, they're ours and we're right (until convinced otherwise).

    Last night I smoked an Obsidian Robusto (5.5" x 54).  It was part of a sampler I purchased (that's about all I'm purchasing right now).  The Obsidian had a nice aroma. It burned well and had a very nice draw.  The ash was kind of funky.  Many of the other cigars I've had the ash stayed together.  This cigar kind of "splintered" and I could see the leaf "veins."  I don't know what that means, but it was interesting.  I consider this a medium bodied cigar with a decent flavor.  I don't know Steve's rating scale well enough to rate this cigar, so for now I'd say I'd consider having this again (unless something better is available).

    Wednesday, February 13, 2013


    Made my way to Cromwell to visit Up In Smoke cigar shop across from lowes. " Honey, I have to run and get a few things at Lowes, I will be back in two hours".  I will post some pictures on my next visit. Bought a Montecristo Epic Premium Selection 07, in maduro. Medium to full bodied, wonderful draw and excellent grey ash. Just as the three feet of snow started to wear on me, I can stop here on the way to work to smoke and relax before another non stressful day of teaching the youth of America a interesting trade.

    Sunday, January 06, 2013

    Monday, November 12, 2012

    Size does matter

    I sent truguru some Nub cigars to try out. He said he never tried them because " why pay for half a cigar" . I find that as the weather gets colder I need to find places to smoke. I like to smoke when I drive, so I have found that the size of my cigar, ring x length, is an important aspect to decide what and where to smoke.

    My drive is twenty two minutes if I drive straight to work, but I stop for my Starbucks, then I park down by the river to read a newspaper, then off to work. My job is second shift by the way, I don't like to smoke until I have eaten lunch.

    So remember that if you are buying some cigars,  maybe grab several sizes and brands and you can pick the  one that matches the situation when and where you can light up.

    Monday, November 05, 2012

    NUB cigars

    OK Have been hesitant to try the nubs but got this little gift from my brother so will be blogging about them shortly

    Saturday, September 15, 2012

    Friday, August 31, 2012

    Quesada Oktoberfest 92.6725

    Jason at J Shepherd Cigars , had a great cigar tasting last night, see information below.  If you want to keep up with information go to his facebook page and 'like' it.
    This new cigar was milder than I expected to go with Octoberfest beers , however, it seems that these beers are not so much 'hoppy' as they are a little sweeter.  We did have 3 different beers to sample from to test this cigar.  Everyone that attended rated the cigar as very good and many boxes were sold, including the one I bought, not that the free lighter, cutter, hat, and 3 free cigars to go with it was an encouragement. :-)  
    Anyway this cigar did indeed get better as you smoked it and was a well made cigar.  Will have to see how it goes with bourbons and ale-8-one also.

    We would like to invite you to a very special evening with 5th generation cigar maker Terence Reilly of the legendery Quesada cigar family. Join us Thursday August 30th, 5pm to 8pm as we host The entire family of SAG Imports cigars; Fonseca, Cubano Limitado, Cubano Viso Fuerte, Quesada Tributo, Casa Magna, Domus Magnus, and featuring the world renowned Oktoberfest.
    Although this cigar is great on its own, it was specifically blended to be paired with the flavorful Marzen-Style beer produced for Oktoberfest. As luck would have it, we will also be offering a complimentary tasting of three different types of Oktoberfest style beers.

    Best wishes and keep living the good life,


    ACIGARSMOKER.COM had a great review of this cigar also: Appearance and Construction: The Quesada Oktoberfest features a dark looking wrapper that Matasa calls, “Cibao”. To the naked eye, the cigar looks like a dark oily maduro. There is one medium-sized vein that stands out, but otherwise this is a gorgeous leaf. There is some tooth present, and in the hand the stick has a nice weight and is very firm to the touch. The band features the Quesada Q and the colors of Germany. Overall, one very attractive smoke.

    Flavor & Notes: The foot of the cigar of the Quesada Oktoberst fest is smoky to the nose, with some subtle spices. The cold draw serves up some notes of earth, and smoked wood. For the purpose of the review I paired a sample with Samuel Adams Oktoberfest. I will add that I smoked a couple without the beer, and while good the OKT beer really brings the nuances of the cigar out. Once the cigar is lit a subtle bitterness that fades with the first sip of beer. What remains is a nice dark chocolate note and some wood that boarders on oak. As we enter the second third of the cigar there are some leather notes that join a mix of dark chocolate, and nuts. Each sip of beer really bring the notes out. The last third of the cigar becomes the smoothest and richest part of the smoke. The dark notes of chocolate become slightly sweeter and the notes of nuts extend into the nice finish of the cigar.

    Smoking Characteristics: This slow burning cigar burns like a dream, with a nice medium to dark color ash that holds fairly well. The draw was perfects with a nice toasty aroma to the nose. The cigar burns

    Conclusion: I figured the name Oktoberfest was just a marketing ploy, but this cigar is no gimmick. As stated in the review one can enjoy it without the beer, but to truly experience the cigar it should be paired with a hearty beer, preferably, an Oktoberfest style one.

    Thursday, August 30, 2012

    Foundry new STEAMPUNK Cigars

    OK you have to check out this youtube video from ICPR on the new Foundry cigars made for the steampunk genre.  It comes with a gear on the label that you save and next year they are going to have
    a suprise use for them.  Love the idea and steampunk is cool anyway.  Check out the link here:

    Will be buying and rating when they are released in late October.

    Tuesday, July 10, 2012

    Savenelli ELR Maduro 93.925

    Picked up this Maduro cigar at J.Pauls Smoke Shoppe in Oxmoor in Louisville a couple of weeks ago.  Was hugely surprised at its great flavor of this robusto.  It kept its flavor all the way thru and was more mild than I expected.  It had the Conneticut wrapper and Dominican binder and filler.  Will have to stock up on more of these for aging in the humidor.
    Some info from web is below:

    In 1994, Savenelli released a cigar that was made by the master blenders at Tabacalera Arturo Fuente, entitled the Savinelli ELR (Extremely Limited Reserve). Available in both Natural and Maduro, the Savinelli ELR was received well by the cigar community, getting a 91 in Cigar Aficionado and a 9.6 Superior Rating in Smoke Magazine. Using Cuban-seed tobacco grown in the Dominican Republic, the Savinelli ELR is the culmination of four years of testing to make sure the cigar was exactly what Savinelli and Fuente wanted. In fact, in Cigar Aficionado, the Savinelli ELR received the same rating as the Opus X Fuente Fuente of the same size, at half the price. Both these cigars are made in the same factory, too! Using either a delicious Connecticut Shade Grown Wrapper on the Natural cigar, or the Connecticut Sun Grown Wrapper on the Maduro cigar, the Savinelli ELR is a steal at its price!

    Monday, May 14, 2012

    Bad To the Bone - Cigar Outlaw 88.09

    This is the 3rd brand custom cigar from outlaw cigar in Olathe, KS.
    Not 'bad to the bone' but more like 'mild to the end'.  For a mild cigar, this is not a bad smoke actually.  Nothing to write home about, but was not dissapointed.   The ash ended up holding out well after what I would have expected, so was a pleasant suprise.
    From their website at
    Rolled right here in the Outlaw humidor, the Bad to the Bone cigars are made with the mild cigar smoker in mind. Great, creamy flavor, right to the finish. With the addition of the Corojo wrapper, the blend takes on a slightly spicy flavor.