Cigar Aficionado

A Smoke After A Smoky Meal

Normally, the news that my livery car is running 15 minutes late doesn’t make me happy, but last night was an exception.

Savona and I had just left dinner very pleased, having been the guests of Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue ( of Kansas City, Missouri, which was hosting at the James Beard House in lower Manhattan. It’s always a great place to eat (former home of the iconic American chef, home to the foundation of the same name), but this meal was particularly satisfying. My penchant for barbecue is well enough known that I don’t have to go over that. But think of this: Hors d’Oeuvres included Hickory-Smoked Salmon with Toast Points and Rémoulade, Berkshire Pork Medallions with Spicy Barbecue Sauce and Mini Hickory-Smoked Kobe Prime Rib Sandwiches with Horseradish Sauce. Kobe beef BBQ? Oh my God!

At dinner we dined on Kobe Beef Burnt Ends with Grilled Asparagus, sampling Rancho Zabaco Sonoma Heritage Vines Zinfandel 2003. Then we moved onto Denver-Cut Smoked Lamb Ribs with Villa Mt. Eden Grand Reserve Zinfandel 2003. The lamb blew our minds. The finishing entrée was Crown Prime Beef Short Ribs, but alas we had to leave before the Bread Pudding with Vanilla–Rum Sauce.

As we stood waiting for the car, a call came in: “15 minute delay.” Did we go back inside with our tails between our legs to wait it out. No! Thanks to Savona, we had the ultimate capper to such a meal: cigars. But not just any cigar, the Arturo Fuente Short Story. Just the right amount of smoke for our small window of opportunity and more than enough flavor to stand up to the bodacious meal we just had.

I woke up thinking cigars and food are a pairing combination that often is overlooked and given short shrift. What do you think?

"I think a good cigar after any meal turns that meal into great meal, espeicaly when you can enjoy both with good friends." —July 20, 2007 15:53 PM