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.)
Posted: Feb 15, 2008 3:55pm ET
Last week, I escaped the Northeast winter. The trip lasted only for four days, coinciding with my wife’s journey to a seven-day stay at a West Coast spa, but I managed to squeeze in 90 holes of golf. Do the math. Two travel days took away two half days of golf, so we only managed 18 holes on Thursday and Sunday. And, after 36 holes on Friday, we showed our incredible maturity and wisdom gleaned from our more than 50 years on the planet, and canceled the second 18 on Saturday.
Posted: Feb 1, 2008 10:57am ET
Someone on the forums recently asked about the home humidors of the Cigar Aficionado
editors. I decided to ignore my inner censor that kept shouting, “don’t let them into your home,” and give you a little peek at how I keep my cigars at home.
Posted: Jan 22, 2008 10:28am ET
I had a great phone call last week. I was sitting at my desk, finishing up one of my mystery tasting panel cigars (it wasn’t very good), and I answered the phone to find Marcos Padrón, from Padrón Cigars in Miami. He asked if I had a moment, because he had some guy in the shop who said he knew me from my high school days in Gainesville, Florida. “He says you were on the basketball team,” Marcos said, “and he’d like to talk to you.” I said sure, put him on, because he had enough of the facts right to be someone who really did know me.
Posted: Jan 9, 2008 4:59pm ET
I’ve been holding back, for almost an entire month. But I didn’t want to spoil the car section of the Good Life Guide in the Jan/Feb issue of Cigar Aficionado
. The magazine is out. Many of you have gotten it already, or you can find it, so I can tell you about my Christmas present. That’s what I’m calling it anyway because it’s hard to otherwise justify my new car solely as a means of everyday transportation.
Posted: Jan 4, 2008 11:22am ET
I dined at an old favorite restaurant last night with my wife and daughter, on the occasion of our 27th wedding anniversary. The place? Chanterelle. The beautiful Tribeca eatery has been a fixture of the New York dining scene since 1979, and today, still carries a three-star award from The New York Times.
Karen and David Waltuck run the restaurant, she in the dining room, and he over the stoves.
Posted: Jan 2, 2008 11:04am ET
I spent New Year’s Eve with some of the same people that I celebrated with 30 years ago. Yeah, they are really great old friends, including my then-girlfriend, now my wife. The mother of my daughter’s best friend joined the party, too. My daughter and her friend were there for the food, and then departed to meet with friends at their own parties.
Posted: Dec 19, 2007 4:46pm ET
I told you so.
It is always a little dangerous for a journalist to openly pronounce, “I told you so.” But I had one of those moments today when I opened the front section of the New York Times
. On page 2, there was an article headlined: “Report Finds U.S. Agencies Distracted by Focus on Cuba.”
Posted: Dec 18, 2007 11:22am ET
I’d been waiting for this moment since last year, when the Padrón family gave the world a tantalizing glimpse of its new cigar, the Padrón Serie 1926 80 Years, at the Las Vegas Big Smoke. We just call it the 80th Anniversary for short, but that shouldn’t be confused with the company’s 1964 Anniversary Series. The cigar has been made to commemorate the 80th birthday of the company’s founder, José Orlando Padrón, one of the real giants in the hand-rolled cigar industry.