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08
Nov

Davidoff Rooster

This week’s news on the regulatory front is mostly depressing, but thankfully we have some exciting new cigar releases to report to make up for it. Read on to find out what’s been going on in the cigar world.

New and Upcoming Releases:

  • Cuba’s 2016 Edicion Limitadas Trinidad Topes and Romeo y Julieta Capuletos are now being distributed to Casa del Habano stores around the globe. The third Edicion Limitada, the Montecristo Dantes, still has not made its way to stores, but one Casa del Habano owner in Germany has indicated that he should be able to start selling them to customers on the 1st of December.
  • To honor the Year of the Rooster, Davidoff of Geneva is introducing a limited-edition cigar to celebrate the Chinese New Year. These cigars are immediately eye-catching thanks to their unusual diadema figurado shape. The cigar measures 6 ¾ x 50, and will come in boxes of 10 at a cost of $40 per cigar. Along with this limited edition line of cigars, a line of Year of the Rooster accessories is also being produced. This includes a double-guillotine cutter which you can purchase in either steel or rose gold as well as a carrying case in red leather. 8,000 Year of the Rooster boxes are being produced.
  • Rocky Patel is now formally distributing the Dark Dominican. While the manufacturer has provided no information about the wrapper, binder or filler, retailers are stating that the cigar is a Dominican puro. Four sizes are available: Churchill, Robusto, Corona and Supremo.

Industry News:

  • Tabacalera USA has just acquired a Houston-based chain of retail stores called Serious Cigars. While Serious Cigars was originally founded as an online store in 1996, it now operates four of the largest cigar retail stores in the state of Texas. Through this acquisition, both Serious Cigars and Tabacalera should be able to grow and continue to expand their distribution.

Legal News:

  • You may remember a recent report that the FDA had banned cigar donations to U.S. soldiers. This seems so absurd that many in the cigar community held out hope that the ban was some kind of a mistake. But the Wall Street Journal has reported that the ban was not made in error; it was a deliberate action by the FDA. That’s right—U.S. soldiers can get themselves killed or injured in action, but they cannot accept your gift of stogies.
  • In one few positive regulatory developments this past week, Lane County, Oregon (home to the city of Eugene), has become the latest to reject a smoking ban in parks. Two factors helped to decide the commission against the ban; the first is the fact that it would’ve resulted in smoking bans in 240 campgrounds, which would have made enforcement quite thorny. The second is the concern that the new decree might have been used as an excuse for law enforcement officers to harass the homeless.
  • Last week, the Council of the District of Columbia voted to make age 21 the new minimum for tobacco purchases in Washington D.C. Anyone who violates the new decree will be fined $25. On the upside, this fine was going to be $50, but thankfully there was an amendment which lowered it to a more reasonable amount. The new minimum purchase age will go into effect in 30 days after being signed by Mayor Muriel Bowser.

Thanks for checking in for this week’s updates! Be sure to check back with us soon for more!

You might be interested in these articles too:

Regulators Tighten Restrictions, New Releases from R. Patel

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30
Sep

My Father The Judge

It has been a pretty good week all-around in the cigar world. There are a number of exciting new releases to share, and there is also some good news on the regulatory front. Let’s check it out.

New and Upcoming Releases:

  • As you may recall from literature class, Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet took place in Verona, Italy. Now Verona serves as the stage for launching the new Romeo y Julieta Capuletos, which measure 6 inches with a 53-ring gauge. This launch is part of a new program by Habanos to launch special release cigars in individual cities before pressing on to global distribution. There is no word yet as to when Romeo y Julieta Capuletos will be available worldwide.
  • If you were at IPCPR this year, you may have seen the new My Father release “The Judge.” But you may also know that the packaging was not yet finalized at the show. Well, now it is. These cigars feature a chestnut-brown band with the name “The Judge.” The color closely mimics that of the wrapper leaf on the cigar. There is also a Victorian-style logo. The overall effect is very stylish.
  • Alec Bradley will be releasing a new cigar with sun grown wrappers soon. We do not have a lot of details on this yet, because this is one of many products recently distributed in small quantities to limited retailers to get in under the FDA pre-approval deadline. The new product was spied at STOGIES World Class Cigars, and is billed as the Alec Bradley Havana Sun Grown. Four sizes will be available: Churchill, toro, torpedo and robusto, and the line will sell in the $7-$9 range.
  • As you may know, the Joya De Nicaragua Rosalones Reserva debuted recently in Spain. Now the company has announced that it will be shipping out the cigars to the rest of the European markets. Joya De Nicaragua Rosalones Reserva comes in four sizes and is priced in the $2.80-$5.00 range.

Legal News:

  • Over the past year, smokers in Worcester, Massachusetts have not been faring too well. The minimum age to buy tobacco jumped from 18 to 21, and smoking has been banned in a number of establishments. Tobacco retailers have also faced new restrictions. There is finally some good news on this front, however; the Worcester Board of Health has decided not to ban smoking in the patio areas of restaurants and bars, and has also opted not to ban flavored tobacco products from being sold. These motions are now off the table until further notice.
  • Finally, in one more item of encouraging regulatory news, Governor Jerry Brown vetoed legislation which would have banned smoking on public university campuses throughout the state of California. Public universities will remain free to set their own rules.

Thanks for checking in with us for this week’s cigar updates. Be sure to check back soon for more cigar news!

You might be interested in these articles too:

Releases from Romeo y Julieta, My Father & Alec Bradley

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31
Aug

Romeo y Julieta Reserve Rare 11 Years Old

Source: CigarAficionado.com

What’s been going on in the cigar industry? Here’s a quick overview of the top stories in the cigar world over the past couple weeks!

New Releases:

  • Altadis USA has just released a limited edition Romeo y Julieta aged for 11 years, predictably named the Romeo y Julieta Reserve Rare 11 Years Old. You can buy them in an 11-count box for a price of (you guessed it) … $11. Note that the “aged 11 years” here does not refer to the tobacco, but rather to the finished cigars, which have been on a shelf in a warehouse somewhere waiting that long to be sold and smoked.
  • J.C. Newman’s brand Perla del Mar was originally launched with a natural wrapper in 2012. Now a new line featuring maduro wrappers is being added. The Nicaraguan binder and filler will remain the same.

Cool Stuff:

Elie Bleu J-11 Lighters

  • If you enjoy collecting cigar accessories as much as you enjoy collecting cigars, you may own a few products designed by French manufacturer Elie Bleu. If so, you will be stoked to learn that the company is celebrating its 40th anniversary with the introduction of the J-11 collection. These lighters feature a slick design available with six different durable lacquer finishes.

Industry News:

  • There is a good chance you already know this, but earlier this month, Carlos Fuente Sr. passed away from cancer. He was 81 years old. He was of course a legend in the cigar world, and stayed actively involved in his business up until the day he died, serving as chairman of Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia. He will be sorely missed by all cigar fans.

Legal News:

  • For once, we have a victory to report on the legal front. As you know, US tobacco companies have been struggling under harsh new restrictions on product packaging—including on cigars. On Tuesday, August 16th, U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta sided with Altria Group Inc., Lorillard Inc., Reynolds American Inc. and their subsidiaries, who argued that their First Amendment rights were being violated by the FDA’s new rules. Hopefully this lays the groundwork for a productive conversation benefiting the cigar industry in America.

Thanks for checking in with us! Be sure to check back next week for more exciting cigar news!

You might be interested in these articles too:

New releases from Altadis USA and J.C. Newman

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23
Dec

From Seeds to Cigars by William Miller

Recently I was sent a free copy of a new picture book called From Seeds to Cigars by William R. Miller. If you’re interested in learning how tobacco is grown and processed and manufactured into cigars, this is a great pictorial step-by-step which goes into cigar manufacturing in-depth.

Who is William R. Miller? He’s a cigar enthusiast who has been smoking since the 70s. In 2006, he began working at Famous Smoke Shop as a graphic designer. This gave him a lot of inside insights into the industry, and of course plenty of time to smoke cigars. During his time at Famous, he had the chance to take a trip to Estili, Nicaragua, and Danli, Honduras, where cigars are made. While he was on his trip, William realized he wanted to write a book, and started snapping pictures and researching.

What’s the book like? Available from Amazon at $12.99, it’s short (only around 25 pages), which may be a detractor at the price point, but it still makes for a nice coffee table book with the bright, colorful pictures and simple explanations (it’d also be a great choice for a table at a cigar lounge). From Seeds to Cigars does a wonderful job illustrating the manufacturing process so that you can easily understand how certain processes (like curing or fermenting) affect the final product. It’d make a great gift, especially for a cigar newbie who wants to glean a better understanding of how cigars are made. The design of the book is very nice, and reflects an appreciation for craftsmanship.

Courtesy of William, we’re giving away three copies of From Seeds to Cigars to our readers! To enter into the drawing, just post a comment below.

Contest open internationally. We’ll announce the winners in one week.

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Book Review and Giveaway: From Seeds to Cigars

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12
Sep

How to get rid of unwanted smells in a humidor?

Recently we received the following question from one of our readers:

“I’ve been storing some cinnamon-flavored cigars in my humidor and, even one month after I removed them, the humidor still smells of cinnamon, which is affecting my other cigars. How can I get this smell out?”

There are a lot of cases where something like that may happen. Maybe you have a situation similar to our reader’s, and some stogies you stored with a particularly strong aroma are starting to affect the other cigars. Or maybe you just bought a brand new humidor and the cedar smell of the wood is particularly strong, and that is impacting the flavor and aroma of your cigars. Or perhaps you were using your humidor for some other storage application, and whatever you had in there previously left an odor behind it.

Whatever the situation, there is a solution! Or several solutions, as it turns out.

  • Let it air out. Sometimes, this is all it takes! Just leave the humidor open for a few days and let the smell die down. This works very well with new humidors that have an overly strong wood smell and can work great in other situations too. Placing the humidor outdoors during this process can work very well so long as you do not need to worry about precipitation.
  • Wipe down the inside of the humidor with isopropyl alcohol or denatured alcohol. You do not need to use a lot. Wait for the box to dry (leave it open so that it can air out thoroughly). After about a day, the aroma will hopefully be gone.
  • Baking soda may also do the trick. You may already use this to keep odors out of your fridge. Keep it in a container so that it doesn’t spill, and take out your cigars before you place the baking soda inside. Remove the baking soda as soon as the odor is gone and put your cigars back. This process could take up to a week, but it works great for a lot of odors.
  • Try a glass of whisky or brandy. If airing out the humidor doesn’t get rid of the smell, this non-conventional tactic may work to clear out the old smell. The “drawback” is that the new smell will linger for a long time even after you take the glass out again. The reason I say “drawback” is because some people actually like the impact this has on their cigars, and deliberately put a few drops of whisky in their humidors whether they need to get rid of an odor or not. Close the humidor when you try this technique.
  • I’ve also heard people say that placing thinly sliced potatoes inside a closed humidor for a few days can also help you get rid of unwanted smells. Disclaimer: I haven’t tried this technique.

As you can see, there are a number of different options you can try, so there is no need to give up on your old humidor. Just be sure to take care of your cigars during the process. In the future, it would be wise to store flavored cigars elsewhere (this part you have probably figured out on your own!).

What tricks have you used to successfully clear out unwanted odors from your humidor? Please share in the comments below!

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How to Remove an Unwanted Smell from Your Humidor

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09
Sep

5-pack sampler giveaway from CigarsFor.Me

Contest time again! Today we are partnering with CigarsFor.Me, a new online cigar shop that is built around a personalized cigar suggestion engine : you just need to answer a few questions about your preferences and the site will show you cigars you are most likely to enjoy. The selection is rotating and deliberately narrow as each offer is hand-picked. Grayson Ervin, the founder of CigarsFor.Me, has five 5-pack samplers (see an example above) to give away to CigarInspector.com readers. The best part is that those 5-packs will be personalized according to your flavor profile. In order to enter, use the widget below (if you’re reading this via e-mail, you will need to click through to the blog post). There are several ways to enter, as usual, and make sure you share the contest with your friends to get some extra entries!

CigarsFor.Me Giveaway

The contest is open to 19+ y.o. United States residents. We will announce the winners in one week.

CigarStash.com – the ultimate cigars shopping tool!

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Giveaway: Five 5-Pack Samplers from CigarsFor.Me

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08
Jul

La Flor Dominicana PR department sent me some beautiful pictures of cigars the company is going to release at the IPCPR 2013 in Las Vegas, and I thought I’d share them with you (click to enlarge).

Factory Press Limitado

La Flor Dominicana Factory Press Limitado

We’ve aged and set aside the darkest Sumatra wrappers we could find for the 2nd installment of this special release. Combined with a Nicaraguan binder and our estate grown Dominican fillers, this cigar provides a rich and powerful flavor worthy of its prestigious name.

Chapter 1

La Flor Dominicana Chapter 1

The brainchild of Antonio Gomez, this box pressed Chisel is the first of its kind. In the words of Litto Gomez: “He made it fatter, and he flattened it.” It is adorned with a high priming Brazilian Oscuro wrapper and combined with a Connecticut Broadleaf binder and our estate grown Dominican fillers resulting in the fullest bodied Chisel to date!

Double Ligero “A” Collector’s Edition

La Flor Dominicana Double Ligero A

First released in 2007, the Double Ligero “A” has become a subject of lore only to be found in the humidors of determined cigar collectors around the world. This will be the first time that the “A” size has been rolled in LFD’s factory since 2008. This 47×9 Special Edition combines a Ligero Sumatra wrapper with fillers and binder from their farm in the Dominican Republic. The box is a tribute to the completed factory expansion and is artistically adorned with its image.

Double Ligero DL-854

La Flor Dominicana Double Ligero DL-854

This is an addition to the Double Ligero line. This full bodied beast weighs in at 8×54.

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New Cigars from La Flor Dominicana

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04
Jan

The Definitive Cigar Wrapper Guide from A to Z

There is a lot of information online about cigar wrappers, mostly listing different shades and providing short characteristics of each type. We’ve decided to go a bit further and attempted to create a sort of library about cigar wrappers. This page will list all articles about cigar wrappers ever published on CigarInspector.com.

We hope that this information will help you select and understand cigars. Our research has found that cigar makers tend to generalize their wrapper descriptions or have different names for the same type of wrapper. So hopefully we’ll help you explain some of the inconsistencies. We also included examples of existing cigars with a particular wrapper whenever possible.

Do not forget though that the wrapper is not responsible for the flavor of the cigar alone, and how much does the wrapper contribute to a cigar’s flavor is another discussion in its own. Oh, and before you start, have a look at our Cigar Wrappers F.A.Q. and learn about common tobacco strains.

Wrappers by Origin

Wrappers by Type

Wrappers by Color

  • Candela – green eggs and ham, please.
  • Colorado – the red-headed stepchild of cigars.
  • Maduro – includes Brazilian, Costa Rican, Nicaraguan and Mexican maduros as well as Connecticut Broadleaf, Aripiraca and Mata Fina wrapper types.

“Extinct” Wrapper Types

These are wrappers rarely seen anymore or are from plants no longer grown or used for wrapper leaaves.

  • El Corojo : the forefather to the modern day Corojo plant.

 

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The Definitive Cigar Wrapper Guide from A to Z

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11
Dec

Today, we’re featuring another giveaway from our friends at BuyHookah.com, who just redesigned their site and moved it to Hookah.org. It is a resource site for everything hookah, including a blog and forums.

Win a hookah from Hookah.org

The prize is a hookah with everything one needs to use it (tobacco, coal…). If there are less than 10 entries, it will be the hookah pictured on the left, and we get more than 10, the one on the right will be given away. In order to enter, just leave a comment below and let us know what you think of the Hookah.org website. That’s it, good luck!

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Win a hookah from Hookah.org

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08
Dec

It’s really hard to age Cuban cigars for several reasons, limited storage space and lack of willpower being the main ones. Some retailers understand this and offer a selection of already aged cigars to their customers. These “vintage” boxes sometimes have 10 or more years on them (this kind of ageing is rarely necessary in my opinion though, I usually get great results with 3-5 years). I just got word that our friends at LCDH Knokke opened their own Aged Corner where you can buy boxes of vintage and/or hard to find cigars knowing the box code in advance.

Here is what they say about it:

Connoisseurs have been aging their cigars for quite some time. Indeed, cigars do change with years just like wine does. Even though there are several approaches to the phenomenon, we think that in essence there are three stages.

In the collection there are some true gems : the much praised Partagas D5 EL 2008, the always elegant Romeo y Julieta Exhibicion No. 3, flavour bomb Bolivar Petit Belicoso EL 2009, style-icon H. Upmann Lonsdale and the surprising Vegueros Especiales No. 1 en No. 2.

The price list is below (click to enlarge):

LCDH Knokke aged cigars

Orders will be taken at this stage by email (frederic [at] lacasadelhabano-knokke [dot] be) and shipping is foreseen in the second week of December to make sure your order arrives before Christmas! First come first serve. Montecristo Sublimes & Diplomaticos No. 2 are sold out.

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Aged Cuban cigars from LCDH Knokke

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