I am starting to dream about cigars, so I think I am deep into my newest obsession. This is usually the way things go for me with a new hobby. I try something, like it, and then go 150 miles per hour towards it. I get right down in it. I start to learn about it, read about it, really educate myself about it. Cigars and scotches have been no different. A quick flip through my Instagram last night and I would say I am about 65% following or being followed by cigar people. This could be shops, producers, smokers, or promoters. Not there is anything wrong with that, but it has fuelled this thing in me, that I think is common amongst the social media generation, that I want to post and post often the cigars and or pairings that I am doing.
I have tried to stick to my one cigar a week based on work outs thing for a while now, but I am noticing it has grown to most weeks at least two if not three cigars. Mostly during the summer, and a little bit now, although now the weather plays a pretty key factor in if there will be a cigarSaturday or cigarSunday.
Budget wise I am at my tipping point on what I want to spend on cigars in a given month. I also feel like ive turned myself into the "cigar guy" amongst my friends. I dont mind it, I like to share when I can but it always gets a little weird when its expected.
I wouldnt care so much if the prices in Canada were similar to the US, but paying close to 20$ on a stick here is almost the norm sadly, so dishing out a couple here and there is not so bad but when it jumps to groups of people, thats a hard no.
I am also starting to look at any trip anywhere as an opportunity to get more sticks. Aunt and Uncle going to Boston, where are you staying, here are three stores close to your hotel, a list and some cash - thanks. haha
Of all the business/conference trips I have to go on, I have top 3 shop lists, already contacted them, reviewed product lists and asked more questions then you could ever imagine - I have this lined up for at least the next year.
Online cigar of the month clubs, am already on my third ( cigarsaveur.com) will let you know how it goes after the first shipment next month.
Also in the research I am doing I am finding that I am WAAAAAAAY uneducated in comparison to other cigar bloggers, and critics. NOT that I have ever sold myself as such, I am a complete novice, but these people are talking about things that I have to look up the definition for. Not that that will stop me from my mission of pairing a cool beverage with a cigar, but put me in my place fo' sho'.
What I have also found though is that cigar people are generally very awesome people. There are def some that are a little judgey around feedback on what you are smoking but most are just BOTL or SOTL and happy to share a picture or a little knowledge about what they like or do not like. The CigarNoise app has been really great for that for me.
So yeah, join me as I continue to plunge into my obsession here is a list of what I have had over the last couple weeks:
Creemore Springs Oktoberfest and a Alec Bradley Mundail
I would give the beer a 4.5 outta 5 - really enjoyed the flavour and would pair well with any mild to medium cigar. Def going to try this again. The cigar though, it was absolutely brutal to light and keep it lit. The draw was not particularly good, and the flavor profile was fairly one note all the way through. Interesting hit of citrus I will give it that.
Uncle Leo's Smoked Porter and a Dominion Cigars, Black Lotus.
Loved, loved, loved the smoked porter. Will be getting this beer again. The smokiness and all the good porter flavors of coffee and chocolate were really well represented. 5 out of 5 on the beer. This has been my second kick at the can with the Black Lotus, and I really enjoy this cigar. The flavor profile is just shy of medium but the flavor jumps around to leather, and grass, and some vanilla notes. Very enjoyable with the beer. The burn time was up there also, i think close to 70 minutes, easy draw and no relighting. It did burn on an angle off the start, but I think that was more me then the cigar.
Dalmore 12yr single malt and a Grand Toro Undercrown from Drew Estates. This was my first go with Dalmore, it was a very smooth scotch. Right up my alley as I dont like a lot of smoke in my scotch, thats what i have a cigar for, so it was a great accompaniment to the cigar. It has a redish hue, which is the result of the types of cask it was aged it, and results in a sweet finish. Not overly sweet, but enough to get the tastebuds moving. The cigar. Man oh man I love this Undercrown. Some out there may have had bad experiences with it, but for me ( second one) it smokes really well, changes flavors a few times between coffee and dark chocolate, lights well, burns well and has an easy draw. I have smoked this one to the nucks a both times I have had one and I cant wait to have another.
Boxing Rock's Darkness Ale and a Punch Cigar. Okay so it was about 8am in the morning of homecoming when i tried these two in a pretty strong wind storm so the experience wasnt the best. But I will give this dark ale a strong 4 out of 5. It has all the dark beer notes I want but the finish is what really puts it over the top. It is a really good beer. The little punch cigar was great but not really something I would go to, to often. Again this might have more to do with the experience, but it burned really fast for the size, and the flavor profile was more tobacco then anything else. Great for a little hit of nico in the morning but not much else to say about that. Pairing, I would go for a solid medium flavor cigar next time so the beer has someone to play with.
CAO Italia - Didnt pair it with anything but was a fun short smoke to walk around campus with on a sunny day. Its my second one, it is a little lighter on the flavor then its Brazilia partner, but for the day it was decent. 3 out of 5.
Dalwhinnie 12 year old single malt with a CAO Flathead 660. Dalwhinnie, not much to say, one of my top 3 single malts, I only bring my bottle out for special occasions, crazy smooth, little smoke, all caramel. The CAO Flathead 660, I know it catches a lot of crap from other smokers, but I love it. Has always drawn well, smoked well, has enough profile changes to keep me interested and because of its size ensures that I am smoking if for a good hour or so. Given that is was our wedding anniversary and the sunset was starting on a really outstanding day, this was a 5 out of 5 pairing for me.
So stepping back from review reviews cause there are better places to go for that, going for more of a rating system meow.
Hope you are getting out and trying a couple of cigars, let me know if you try anything interesting for spirits or smoke, would love to feature them in a future review.
Sean "BigBoyRunning" Ryan