Out of the Humidor
From the Print Edition:
Cuba, May/June 2007
(continued from page 3)
The search term "cigar" is more often than not included in my Internet research prior to visiting a city, and I was going to Dublin this time. I found one result that sounded interesting, "The Decent Cigar Emporium." Usually I'm just curious about the cigar vibe in a city, but this time I actually needed a good cigar store because my wife and I were to celebrate New Year's Eve in Dublin.
We arrived at a gray and rainy Dublin on the 30th of December. After checking in to our hotel, we met up with our London-based friends and defied the grim weather as gale winds howled through the street. We walked passed St. Stephen's Green onto Grafton Street, and after only a few steps I saw the sign for The Decent Cigar Emporium. The shoppers and the smokers picked sides, so I was by myself. The eventual compromise was that I would join them for that day on their shopping spree, and check out the cigar shop the next day. The following morning, I was at the store as soon as it opened. I walked up a narrow stairway that was decorated with cigar memorabilia until I reached the second floor and continued through a hall into what looked like a normal room converted to a cigar shop. The shopkeeper welcomed me and I told him that I wanted to browse and possibly buy some cigars for the New Year's festivity. For starters, I got a corona-sized OpusX. Then he pointed out a display on the counter filled with Partagas Presidentes. He took one out and I smelled it. The cigar had a beautiful bouquet with complex spices, yet it was fresh and the diadema shape was amazing. Only Grade 7 rollers can make these and there are rather few of them, but I wanted to smoke something special for the new year. Due to a silly law, however, it's not possible to smoke in the shop anymore, nor in a bar or restaurant. That posed a problem for my Partagas, so he pointed me towards the Morgan Bar, which has an outside smoking area.
The shopkeeper and I chatted for a while, but then I remembered that once upon a time I wrote a letter to you, Marvin, that you actually printed, and that particular issue of Cigar Aficionado was on the bookshelf. I pointed out the letter and, after hearing some wholesome Irish laughter, was asked to sign the magazine. Embarrassed in a pleasant way, I did so quickly because I only got 15 minutes of fame!