My Favorite Smokes
Posted: Sep 2, 2008 4:53pm ET
I was reminded again this Labor Day weekend what makes a cigar special. When you smoke for a living, as we do here at Cigar Aficionado, it’s safe to say that sometimes you smoke because you are required to meet a deadline. Because we never know which cigars we are smoking, there’s never any real choice. Right now, there is a stack of cigars with numbered bands in my humidor on my desk. The extent of the decision process about which one I’m going to smoke consists of deciding what time of day I’ll be tasting, and then I reach in the humidor and pull one out…sometimes without even looking at it before I begin the task of examining the variables that we use to rate a cigar.
So, when my wife and I headed off to a friend’s house on Sunday for dinner with he and his wife, I relished the moment when I was finally showered and dressed, and I stopped in front of my humidor. I opened the doors, and the lovely aroma of aging cigars filled the small alcove where it is located. I pulled out the top drawer, where I keep most of my “special” cigars, and spent a good five minutes thinking about the evening, about the bottle of 1986 Dow’s Port that I was bringing with me, and which cigar would go best with it. I knew it wouldn’t be a super late night because I had a golf match in the morning so I didn’t want an overly big cigar. I settled on a Fuente Fuente OpusX PerfecXion X cigar, dampened the hydration slip in my Elie Bleu two-cigar humidified case, and put the cigars in it. With one last look at the tray, I closed up the humidor and walked out the door.
The cigar was sublime. The port matched the light sweetness of a nearly 10-year old Opus perfectly and my friend and I sat on his porch looking out over the dark shadows of the Hudson River and the Big Dipper up in the sky. It was a perfect late summer evening, made all the more special by a cigar that I wanted smoke. I savored every puff.
I went through the same process the following night as we headed off to another friend’s house for a casual supper. This time, I choose two Padrón 1964 Aniversarios, because I know this friend loves those cigars. In the end, it got late, and we didn’t light up, but I left both cigars with him. He showed off his cabinet humidor, which was filled with several trays of outstanding cigars. I know we’ll share some of them in the future.
All in all, it was a great holiday weekend. And, being able to choose the perfect cigar to end each evening made it all the more special.
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