Posted: Jun 12, 2008 9:15am ET
I’ve said many times that one of my favorite cigars is the Don Carlos line from the A. Fuente family, especially the No. 3, a beautiful, little corona. Every time I see Carlos Fuente Sr., I tell him how I am still savoring a few of the No. 3s that he gave me nearly 15 years ago. They occupy the same hallowed status in my humidor along with some 1986 Cuban Davidoff Especiale No. 2s and some Fuente Fuente OpusX As from 1995. Those cigars are simply beyond description, like a 1961 Bordeaux First Growth or a great 1969 red Burgundy.
Posted: May 27, 2008 9:31am ET
Every year, a friend of mine nominates the top ten days of the summer. The criteria are pretty loose, but basically it has to be warm, but not too warm, sunny but some clouds are allowed, and of course, no rain any time during the day. Last Sunday here in the Northeast wasn’t just a contender for a top ten day, it may have already won the title for the Best Day of the Summer: mid-70s, not a cloud in the sky and a light breeze to keep the bugs down and moderate whatever warmth there was from becoming too much.
Posted: May 19, 2008 12:57pm ET
There’s always a collective relief here when we finish up a tasting for one of our upcoming issues. I know most of you don’t understand this, but when you have to smoke for a living, it detracts from the great pleasure one normally gets from a cigar. I usually have a little ritual that I follow after I’ve finished up a tasting to offset some of the obligation we all feel here when we are involved in a tasting.
Posted: May 5, 2008 9:27am ET
The day finally arrived--opening day at my country club. It wasn’t the best of weather on Saturday; the day dawned cold, cloudy and with light rain during the early holes. The weather didn’t really matter, however. It was just nice to be out on our newly renovated golf course (see the Jan/Feb Cigar Aficionado
article Rebirth of a Classic
) with all the machinery gone, and all the grass grown in. The course actually opened for play in late March, but there’s an special aura to the “official” opening day.
Posted: Apr 17, 2008 12:25pm ET
Memorable. I should write it in capital letters because Cigar Aficionado’s
annual fundraiser for the Prostate Cancer Foundation was that, and a whole lot more. The black tie affair is my favorite cigar dinner every year, and last night just added to the event’s lore and history.
Posted: Apr 14, 2008 10:55am ET
Watching the Masters for a golfer is like taking in the Super Bowl for an NFL fan or the World Series for a baseball fanatic. I usually lounge in my den all afternoon on Masters Sunday, but this year, a buddy of mine had a better idea; we’d play 18 holes and then head to his house for a late lunch and a cigar. We were joined by another friend whose father had hosted each of us at Augusta National Golf Club on separate occasions.
Posted: Apr 8, 2008 4:15pm ET
Wine dinners. How many of you have been to them? I assume quite a few of you are passionate about wine. If you love the connoisseurship side of cigars, there’s plenty of good reason to feel the same way about wine. It’s a handcrafted product that comes out of the earth, and is brought to you by people with a passion for taste and flavor, and there is a foundation of knowledge that you need to acquire to fully enjoy it. But how many of these dinners have you attended in which the wine or the food or both are disappointments? Sometimes it is the execution of the evening, sometimes it is the selection of wines, sometimes it is the choice of food. Whatever the problem, the successful wine dinner is harder to pull off than you might imagine.
Posted: Mar 31, 2008 12:37pm ET
My friend Chuck, the proud owner of a new Audi R8, planted the thought a few weeks ago. “There’s this cigar lounge up the Hudson Valley. Let’s take the cars one Saturday, drive up and have a cigar.” I said sure. This past week, I realized I had a chunk of free time on Saturday. There won’t be many Saturdays left open with golf season kicking off in the Northeast, but this past weekend, it was still a bit too cold and blustery for an old guy like me. So I called Chuck on Friday morning, and said, “Let’s do it.” He was free.
Posted: Mar 19, 2008 3:55pm ET
The half moon disappeared and reappeared behind the low passing clouds, and the slow waving palm frond above me kept blocking my view of the pearly white orb. The pool at the Hotel Biltmore was softly lit, creating an almost luminescent aquamarine surface, and the arcade running down one side was filled with people talking and drinking. I was across the pool, laying back on a deck chair, a glass of 2005 red burgundy in one hand, and a cigar in the other.
Posted: Feb 26, 2008 9:22am ET
Just got back from the South Beach Food & Wine Festival in Miami. There was
some golf involved, but I won’t rub it in too much.
Here are few random observations.
I attended a cocktail reception before a dinner on Wednesday night for many of the Miami-based cigar manufacturers who were in town last week. You would think that in Florida, which has some of the most restrictive smoking laws in the United States, that we would have been relegated to the Hard Rock Café on the nearby Seminole reservation. But we were at Smith & Wollensky on South Beach, in a small outdoor terrace area. Beautiful. Smoking cigars with the dazzling Miami skyline in the background, and Fisher Island lit up across the channel into the cruise ship boat docks. (Later, we snuck out to watch the Miami Hurricanes defeat No. 5-ranked Duke 96-95 in a thrilling college basketball game.)