Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Memorial Day Weekend Cigars

By Gary Korb

With the exception of a few obnoxious thunderstorms on Sunday, for the most part, the weather in the Lehigh Valley and at down the New Jersey Shore was ideal over the Memorial Day Holiday weekend for smoking cigars.

I had the day off on Friday, which was a sunny, warm and lazy kind of day. After spending the better part of the kids-free afternoon with my wife, I decided it was time to get down to business and light-up.

I officially started the holiday weekend with a Cojones Robusto. If you know what that means in Spanish slang, you might presume the cigar was pretty "ballsy." Yes, it's a spicy cigar, especially those first few puffs, then it rounds out nicely to a well-balanced, full-flavored cigar. The one I had last Friday had been in my humidor for about six months and had mellowed beautifully. The blend consists of a Hybrid Broadleaf wrapper with a Dominican Olor Ligero binder and a diverse, all-Ligero longfiller blend of Dominican Olor, Piloto Cubano, Dominican Seco Cubano and Nicaraguan tobaccos. (Highly recommended if you like the spicy stuff.) Sold primarily in local retail cigar stores, you can find more information on Cojones cigars at Cigahs.com.

Friday evening after putting the kids to bed, I sat out on the deck and had an Arturo Fuente 8-5-8 Flor Fina Maduro. This current box has been one of the best I've had. The wrappers are especially sweet, and as I was approaching the halfway mark I had come to the realization that a cigar like this is the primary reason people smoke premium cigars in the first place. It was just perfect in every way.

Saturday morning we packed up and headed for my parents' place at the Jersey Shore. I brought with me the following cigars: An Avo XO Intermezzo, a Rocky Patel Vintage 1992 Toro, a CAO Sopranos Associate, a Famous Nicaraguan 3000 Grande Robusto, a Cusano Corojo 1997 Robusto, and another Fuente 8-5-8 Flor Fina Maduro.

I had the Cusano Corojo 1997 at the pool late Saturday morning. I've been on a Corojo wrapper kick lately, and this cigar has always proven to be very flavorful and consistent. That afternoon, my brother joined me for a smoke out on the terrace. I had the Avo XO Intermezzo (one of my desert island cigars) while he enjoyed the Fuente 8-5-8 Flor Fina Maduro.

I didn’t get to have another cigar until after lunch on Sunday, and with the ocean breeze picking up I wanted something that would stand up to the elements, so I fired-up the Famous N3K Grande Robusto. These cigars tend to be pretty heady, but it was just right for the afternoon and I had no burn problems despite the windy conditions.

As guests of a family friend, Sunday evening we attended a Bar-B-Q at Hollywood Country Club in Deal, NJ. Although I'm sure we could have walked out onto the course and smoked, I noticed that no one was lighting-up, even though all the food and tables were outside. I figured this might have been because so many children were present, so I made discretion the better part of valor and refrained.

We drove home Sunday night, and for Memorial Day I looked at what I had left over from the weekend and chose the Rocky Patel Vintage 1992 Toro. Now that was the perfect ending for a wonderful weekend. I hope you all had similarly wonderful cigar smoking experiences.

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