Out of the Humidor
From the Print Edition:
Sylvester Stallone, July/August 2010
(continued from page 1)
For non-Cuban cigars, the cigar importer sells the cigars at a wholesale price to a cigar shop, typically half the suggested retail price, but there can be discounts or other pricing structures depending on the brand, the size of the order and various other factors. The retailer then puts it up for sale at or near the suggested retail price. All prices published in the ratings section of Cigar Aficionado for non-Cuban cigars are listed as manufacturer's suggested retail prices.
The final cost to the consumer varies tremendously from country to country or state to state, due in large part to taxes. In the Cuban cigar world, Canada has very high cigar taxes, which make its cigars more expensive than most other countries.
State cigar taxes vary widely in the United States. Large cigars can be taxed as high as 70 percent of the wholesale price (Alaska) or have no tax at all (Florida and Pennsylvania).
First of all I had not found another cigar that has the complexity of the Padrón Serie 1926. So when I started reading the blogs about the Padrón Family Reserve No. 45 Maduro, it piqued my interest. I went to my favorite cigar shop to see if I could find them. As it turned out, they had one box tucked away in the corner of the humidor. The price was a little off-putting. I usually don't spend that much on a single cigar. But having such a great experience with the 1926, I couldn't resist. I bought two and safely tucked them away for a special occasion.
I was telling a friend, a member of my Cigar Therapy Group, of my find. He got very excited and wanted to share the experience together. As I was driving to meet my wife for an after-work function, he started texting me: How many can we get? Jim wants in. Mike won't spend the money. Mike wants in!
I politely excused myself early from my wife's function and rushed home to meet the guys. Dave generously brought a case of Guinness.
It turned out to be a beautiful night to sit outside around a fire. I had already put my firepit and patio furniture in the basement. But this was an emergency meeting of the Cigar Therapy Group, so Dave and Mike insisted on pulling out my neatly stowed furniture. We sat around the fire anxiously awaiting Jim's arrival. We could not wait to light up the highly anticipated Padrón 45.
Jim arrived with the latest copy of Cigar Aficionado and his travel humidor. The moment had arrived. Jim was reading aloud about the Padrón 45 maduro as I brought out the box with the coveted cigars that the cigar shop had given me when I bought the last three. The box is beautiful. On the inside lid it bears the image and story of "The Little Hammer." We passed the box around the circle as part of the ritual, each of us smelling the box as we took a cigar. Initially we noticed the powerful spice that almost overwhelmed the palette. It didn't take long to notice the dark chocolate and cocoa undertones. As we smoked, the flavors become more and more balanced.
All of us smoked, until we could not hold the stub anymore. We all agreed that this is another great cigar from the Padróns! Definitely to be shared amoung friends, and highly recommended by the Cigar Therapy Group.
Glenville, New York
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