Cigar Aficionado

A Classic Cigar

I had a classic cigar last week. It’s so rare that one of the best encyclopedias of Cuban cigars, written by Min Ron Nee and Adriano Martinez, doesn’t even include it.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Our Jan/Feb issue will feature a pair of performers that you all know, and most of you probably love. You’ll have to buy the issue to learn who they are. But one of them came to the office for an interview, and lunch with Marvin. We sat around the lunch table sipping on a great Kistler Chardonnay, the perfect match for the fish on the plate. After lunch, Marvin asked if the actor wanted a cigar to puff on during the interview. There was a definite nod of the head yes, and then some back and forth about the choice of smoke.

The conversation continued in the humidor, and through an examination of several great boxes of pre-Castro cigars that finally led to the final choice: An H. Upmann Selección Suprema No. 22, otherwise affectionately known as “the Flying Pig.” It is a large ring gauge, stubbed end perfecto. I would guess the ring at about 54 to 56, and it isn’t that long, about five inches at most, giving it a very rounded, or should I say, rotund appearance.

Most cigars that are nearly 50 years old usually are just dominated by cedar flavors. Not the Flying Pig. It was a smooth, but deeply rich smoke, with lots of solid tobacco flavors. I won’t be scoring it blind for you, because that would give you a preview of Marvin’s contribution to the next Connoisseur’s Corner. Trust me when I say it was really good.

At the end of the one hour, 45 minute interview, both me and the interview subject were still working on the cigar, each in danger of burning off our knuckles from the fabulous smoke. And, each time it went out, we were lighting it up to get the last bit of pleasure from it.

It’s not every day you get to try a classic cigar, and sometimes, like a vintage wine, the experience can be a disappointment. Not this time.