Cigars In Review Magazine

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CIGARS IN REVIEW 1 I n Review CIGARS A C IGAR L IFESTYLE M AGAZINE FOR M EN V OLUME 2 · N UMBER 1 M. Misti Cigar Co. Crown Jewel Cigars Marching on! Cigar Politics James Acord: A Story of One Man’s Passion Joe Sweigart: The Cigartainer Team La Gloria Cigar Reviews

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A cigar lifestyle magazine for men

Transcript of Cigars In Review Magazine

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in review Cigars

A C i g A r L i f e s t y L e M Ag A z i n e f o r M e n

V o Lu M e 2 · n u M b e r 1

M. Misti Cigar Co.Crown Jewel Cigars Marching on!

Cigar Politics

James Acord: A Story of One Man’s Passion

Joe Sweigart: The Cigartainer

Team La Gloria

Cigar Reviews

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ADHAvana house

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in review Cigars

A C i g A r L i f e s t y L e M Ag A z i n e f o r M e nV o Lu M e 2 · n u M b e r 1

Publisher: Joseph A. Baker | Senior Editor: Skip Press | Associate Editor: Jessica Baker | Contributing Editors: Bill Marsano, Skip Press, Tony Katz | Contributors: Frank Seltzer, Jerry Ison, Martin A. Berrios, Luke Steele, Andy Josker, Francis Liztinger, Tony Bellatto, Glynn Loop, Joe Lordi, Bryan Infante | Marketing: Mike Baker | Photogra-pher: Doug Chandler | Graphic Design: | All Rights Reserved © 2011 Cigars in Review

For subscription information please visit us at:

To inquire about article submissions email: [email protected]

Advertising inquires can be directed to: [email protected]

You’ll notice, no doubt, several changes in this

issue of CIR. The magazine started out only a year ago with a one-person staff driven by a dream. Now, thanks to a growing, loyal

advertising base and people like you, the magazine gets better with every issue. We hope you enjoy the new design and layout, and that CIR continues to provide you with an even greater appreciation for the luxuries we all appreciate.

As we continue to expand, we remain com-mitted to keeping you graciously informed on the cigar lifestyle. Whether it’s a cigar review, cigar accessory, or the latest car, we will provide you with the best information available on the subject for free! This is only made possible by our growing list of adver-tisers and a loyal readership base.

And so, dear readers, Thank You!

I also want to touch briefly on the subject of our cigar smoking freedoms. As you know, it is more crucial than ever to support your local tobacconist and the groups that stand

up and fight for cigar smokers. That’s why, starting in this issue, we’ve partnered with Cigar Rights of America. In each issue, the organization will be bringing us the latest news from the legislative realm of the cigar world. I encourage you to get involved with groups like CRA and help educate the public about cigars and what the potential loss of freedom to smoke them is really all about.

And toward that end, in an effort to further promote the enjoyment of fine cigars, we are proud to announce that CIR will be sponsoring two cigar events. The Cuban American Cigar Festival April 2, 2011 in West Palm Beach FL and the Colorado Cigar & Brew Festival in Copper Colorado. They both are designed to further the enjoy-ment and promote the cigar lifestyle as well as help educate on the subject of cigars. Both events will be weekends to remember and we hope that you will join us. Ticket and exhibitor information can be found at

I welcome your comments and feedback at [email protected]. Cir

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Cigars In ReviewH U M I D O R · T A L K

e very New Year, many people work on res-olutions made at near the stroke of mid-

night. At the tick of the clock that made 2010 part of the historical record and provided the promise of 2011, people were thinking about losing weight, making money, or making oth-

er potentially life-altering de-cisions - all because a calen-dar changed its numbers.

I did none of that. Noth-ing I have ever accomplished in my life came from a reso-lution made on New Year’s

Eve or Day. It has never come from talking about doing something. Rather, the great things in my life have only come from doing something.

Before 2011 started, I was doing one in particular - trying as many new sticks as I could. And not only sticks…new places, as well. Not just in my town, but all across the nation. I named it the Tony Smokes America Tour.

Certainly, part of my doing was just for the fun of it. New places, new cigars, new conver-sations, new people, new insights. Fun is the reason why I encourage everyone to do the same thing.

The enjoyment of a stick, as I have dis-cussed previously, is about the people you are surrounded with. And yes, though I will be trying many more cigars throughout 2011, you would be hard pressed to find me with a Panatela in my hand, because a 34 ring gauge just doesn’t get me going. I have found spe-cific cigars, and specific places, that make me feel comfortable, and that’s more fun. I know the owner, I know the guys, I know where my favorite cigar is in the humidor. I even know the code for the free wi-fi.

When I started Tony Smokes America, I had the experience of being in another town,

where I met a friend who lived in another state. The chairs were different, the humidor was different, the cigars were different (the first time I ever ran into a San Lotano Maduro or a Liga Privada). The guys in the shop were different, and there were a fair amount of women coming in and buying cigars, as well.

Yet I sat down feeling as much at ease as I would in one of my normal spots, and I spoke with my friend as if no distance existed be-tween us. Soon we were engaged in a conver-sation with the five guys sitting around us. We talked business, and politics. I enjoyed my San Lotano Maduro, and some guy sat down and started telling off-color jokes he was reading off his Blackberry. And a bunch of guys who never met before were laughing like guys who had known each other their entire lives.

This is happening in cigar lounges and shops all around the country. It’s happening right now as you read this. It’s happening where you smoke. I want in on those conver-sations. I want in on that laughter. I want in on what someone else is thinking, and is there something I can learn from it. And, yes, I want in on all of those cigars that I haven’t smoked, and know nothing about. For example, early in my tour I was surprised to learn that my Liga Privada T52 was made by Drew Estate. My surprise turned to triumph when I lit up, and realized I had made a great choice.

I’m not saying that your resolution to lose weight in 2011 wasn’t admirable. (But how have you done with it so far?) If you did well with it, I hope you enjoyed buying that new suit. For me, I started off 2011 learning what else was out there, who else was out there, and how I could enjoy all of it even more….one herf at a time.

Hope to see you soon. Cir

Tony Katz Smokes America

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i t is appropriate for our first piece for Cigars in Re-

view to address the upcom-ing legislative season. Now is the perfect time to discuss the significant docket of known anti-cigar measures

(as well as some positive legislation) that will be addressed by Cigar Rights of America and other industry allies in 2011.

On the issue of smoking bans, the op-position continues to be creative in its at-tacks on limiting the places one can enjoy a cigar. They always state “We’re not trying to prohibit use, just not there.” Well, the there is getting harder to find. We have signs of hope, however, so let’s begin with some of the posi-tive ones.

With new governors in Kansas and Wis-consin that each came out publicly during their campaigns for changes in state smoking laws, there could be legislation to modify the existing statutes. There is a growing grass-roots movement to support such actions, and this momentum, because of one election, needs to be furthered along. Michigan, too, is prime for changes to their young smoking ban, with existent legislative support in each of these three states for change to smoking regulations.

Also on the positive news front, there has been legislation introduced in Illinois that would loosen the smoking regulations for ca-sinos. There are two measures that have been advanced going into the 2011 legislative cycle

2011 Will be a Full Year for Cigar PoliticsBy J. Glynn Loope, Executive DirectorCigar Rights of America

that could address the fact that the state has lost over a half-billion in gaming revenue, due to its prohibitive smoking ban.

Though the 2011 docket is full for those seeking additional smoking regulation, the following are ‘front and center’ in the na-tional fight for protecting the simple ability to enjoy a cigar:

Indiana – Once again, Representative Charlie Brown has introduced a statewide smoking ban bill. Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels said he would sign such legisla-tion. CRA will be supporting the efforts of the gaming ( and licensed beverage ( organizations in this battle. Strangely enough (though not unlike the Galves-ton, TX smoking ban issue), the Indiana Chamber of Commerce is supporting the ban. Whatever happened to Chambers of Commerce being pro-business and anti-regulation?

Texas – Again, a statewide smoking ban will be introduced in Texas. CRA will be supporting the work of the Texas Cigar Merchant’s Association ( in this annual fight.

Additionally, there will be legislation in 2011 to offer greater (smoking) control at the local government level, as granted by the state in Oklahoma and Wyoming. CRA will oppose both.

continued on page 13

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LUMA tec ad

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CRA remains engaged and concerned about the pending tobacco control policy in Buffalo, New York. This proposal would impose sweeping new fees, advertising and marketing restrictions, zoning restric-tions (on where tobacco can be sold) and related enforcement steps that set a horrid national precedent for local tobacco policy. It does not discriminate between cigarettes, smokeless, and cigars, and would add a level of burden to local shops that comes on the heels of new state taxes that further threaten the livelihood of the local retail tobacconist. The proposal must be defeated, or seriously changed.

At the national level, cigar enthusiasts have to remain engaged on the issue of FDA regulation of tobacco, and cigars specifi-cally. On a weekly basis, CRA and associated national trade groups monitor the actions of the U.S. Food and Drug Administra-tion – Center for Tobacco Products. Since the agency posted on April 26, 2010 (and again in December) that cigars were in their regulatory crosshairs, we all must remain vigilant in this effort. The wisdom of having a consumer-based movement for cigars will surely come to light when the call for public comment is made for any such regulatory measures for cigars.

As you can see, the legislative agenda is packed, and all of the items that need to be addressed for Cigar Nation have yet to come to light. As 2011 unfolds, additional tax, regulatory and associated nanny-state poli-cies will have to be fought, and defeated.

This, however, is a process and fortu-nately politics goes in cycles. Over the last twenty-four months, smoking bans have been reversed and tax measures have been defeated. The problem is not universal, merely indicative of what can happen across this nation. Let’s work together in 2011 for a brighter day, for the passion that we share, of a great cigar. Cir

Cigar Politics continued

* Cigar Clubs* In-store events* Corporate clients* Golf outings

Looking for a unique speaker for your next event?

Invite Joe ‘the Cigartainer’ Sweigart Invite Joe ‘the Cigartainer’ Sweigart

Joe is very entertaining and knowledgeableabout a wide variety of subjects - especiallyluxury tobacco.

Joe is an Ambassador with Cigar Rightsof America and knows the currentpolitical climate.

Joe is a Certified Sales Tobacconist withTobacconist University so he knowspremium cigars.

Joe is friends with top cigar industryleaders like Hendrick Kelner, BenjaminMenendez, Carlito Fuente, GuillermoLeón, and many others so he knowswhat is happening in the industry.

Book Today by calling Joeat 404-441-4438

or email [email protected]

BTW - Joe will bring signed copies ofhis book and great cigars so thateveryone can enjoy, Long Ashes, Baby!

Author of the popular bookLong Ashes, Baby

size = 3” x 9.25” with 1/8” bleed on the top & bottom & right hand side. also, copy to be inside 1/4” from edge of final ad

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w hen the harsh winds of winter calm and the hazardously icy

roads thaw, my favorite season ap-proaches. I step outside and see the long-awaited sunshine, take my first breath of warm fresh air, and I know it is time to light a celebratory cigar. Life is too short to enjoy such glorious pleasures as the dawn of spring without a great smoke. I feel the same way about interacting with those I love while wearing a cheap, mass-produced watch unworthy of my wrist. My approach is to value time, and honor its passing. Spring is reliable, fresh, clean, beautiful in its simplicity, and there are plenty of watches that are possessed of similar qualities. So, like my cigars, I want the best.

Watches such as the F. P. Journe Chro-nometre Bleu, with a rare 39mm Tanta-lum case, striking midnight blue dial, and matching supple leather strap, will draw envious glares at your favorite jazz club, and perfectly embody the spirit of your favorite Blue Note album. A more under-stated timepiece, such as the Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde, provides tasteful contrast with its juxtaposed furnace-blued lancine hands, black Roman numerals, and brilliant white Grand Feu enamel dial. Such a watch foregoes a busy dial filled with unnecessary complications. It offers a relatively blank canvas waiting to reflect the adventures of your daily conquests. The Chopard L.U.C. Extra Plate is similarly minimalist. Its slim profile and luxurious caviar black dial looks perfectly elegant peeking out from beneath the sleeve of your dinner jacket as you pour another glass of champagne for a beautiful (and, by now, very impressed) girl. These


are timepieces well suited for a season of arguably

more indoor pursuits, but still

look and feel great while you slip out

of your opera seat during intermission

to light up a petit corona on a balcony.

If you are seeking wearable luxury that is a bit more affordable,

look no further than the Georg Jensen Henning Koppel chronograph (available with quartz or automatic move-ment) The legible dial, round stainless steel case, and subtly avant garde features are reminiscent of legendary Bauhaus styling. The chronograph is rather useful when you take your classic car out of the garage for a few time trials, and equally impressive to your covetous friends. In contrast, for those to whom luxury is an afterthought, who prefer to seize the day by taking a few Camachos onto the hiking trail, or sit by the fire with a few buddies and a robust Padron, the rugged Hamilton Khaki Automatic is reliable and honestly unostentatious.

To select an appropriate watch is as much a statement of personal taste as pick-ing the right cigar. Watches that are thin, classic, or austere, resonate tasteful confi-dence. They reinforce the notion that one doesn’t need a diamond encrusted phallic enhancement on the wrist to be a chival-rous gentleman of great pride. Cir

Spring 2011By Joe Lordi

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The Crown Jewel Boutique Cigar Story

Mark Mistie Jr.

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by Ann Cevis

Defying the Odds… In the summer of 2010, the Southeastern region of the

United States got a powerful introduction to a new cigar series. With the

Florida release of their Crown Jewel Boutique Cigar, M. Misti Cigar Company

defied expectations by earning great reviews from well-respected critics.

Humble Beginnings… In the contemporary marketplace, most large new businesses start as a result of years of market re-search, planning and strategic investments. Venture capital and big money consultants get together with ideas that are based on experience and expertise aimed at maxi-mizing profits. Mark Mistie Jr.’s model was similar, but not as elaborate. The goal of his company was to restore the “Old World” quality and cigar manufacturing tradition, with a focus on creating the greatest cigars ever made. The company was also ready to support its new product line with hands-on customer service support and promotions. Started from scratch with nothing but a vi-sion and a dream, Mistie knew he needed a new business methodology, no matter how passionately he went about creating unique brands with a focus driven by quality.

Most critics of the cigar industry felt it had passed its time due to multiple legal tax issues, and that opportunities were passé. Any new company would face large companies with longer history, established ties to the industry, and huge advertising and inventory budgets. On the surface, it appeared as though Mistie’s company had a disadvantage in the marketplace, not just on the surface, but in reality. “Most industry research demonstrated a positive and stable side to the industry,” he says, commenting on what he faced. “But let’s not forget the ‘forbidden’ business terms such as passion, celebration, and fun.”

As he considered the challenges, Mistie reflected on some advice from his father: “Be careful of naysayers, of all the can’t do-ers, of everyone that tries to hold you back. Focus on achieving your goals, believe them, and see for yourself. Maintain the persis-tence, discipline, commitment and, most importantly, the belief to take action to get the results.”

Unstoppable Desire… Mistie borrowed monies from family and friends to get the process started. Within a year of payless ef-forts, declined savings and accruing debt, he finally convinced a private investor to take on the Crown Jewel development project. Despite many sleepless night and exten-sive travel, he was determined to succeed, working out of sheer self-motivation. He secured marginal results, but always kept his head up and a smile on his face. He woke up every morning more motivated than the day before to achieve his goals. He stayed mo-tivated by a quote from one of his favorite movies: “It ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit, how much you can take and keep moving forward.”

He discovered that identifying the prod-uct and positioning it for success wasn’t the hard part. Trying to identify the litmus for a great cigar product was the risk.

Passion For excellence.... In the search for cigar perfection, M. Misti Cigar Company extended enormous resources in creating

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Q. When you started, did you feel that the lack of brand / name recognition was a deterrent?

a. No, it was a definite opportunity. Think about it. In 1938, Seabiscuit, the little horse that nobody wanted, beat the likely winner War Admiral and became a sym-bol and inspiration for everyone. Crown Jewel is capable of doing the same. The Crown Jewel has a unique opportunity to create its own legacy - one that will be focused on maintaining a tradition of quality cigars.

Q. What is your mission; what will en-sure your company’s future success?

a. The focus of our company builds on three basic beliefs and principles:

1. Product quality over quantity - production levels will never supersede our quality standards. We will use only the most rare and best-quality aged tobacco leaves, selectively grown for our respective lines.2. Superior Customer Service - we will consistently present our valued customers with the very best in cigar blend product innovations, customer rewards and sup-port programs, and will always respond to customer feedback, recognizing that little details can go a long way3. Employee / Staff Recognition - We recognize that our employees are the foundation and backbone of our planned success. We will pay competitive wages and provide advancement, ongoing train-ing, and income incentives. These are the guiding principles for our company.

Q. Today’s market place is flooded with boutique brands, many of whom a few industry snobs classify as “gringos” with limited vision. What makes the Crown Jewel different?

a. The cigar industry really has two classes, the big name companies with time-honored brands and the smaller boutique style companies. First of all, hasn’t each and every one of the major brands at one time or point in their company history been considered a boutique brand? For example, the La Gloria Cubana brand story would certainly support my point. More importantly, there should be nothing wrong with creating a cigar that is of high quality, driven by the tradition and craft of hand-rolled cigar construction, thus maintaining uniqueness in the market-place. In terms of company vision, our basic principles will never change. We will continue to expand our markets by consis-tently creating the best cigar available in today’s cigar marketplace and supporting it through unparallel customer and prod-uct support programs.

Q. Tell us a little about your brand iden-tity? How was it designed?

a. From a design standpoint, we believe we have been solid from day one. Bringing in an outside graphic design firm to work with our internal team allowed us to extend and modernize our brand design without moving away from the prestige and timeless design history of the cigar industry and heritage. We take pride in each and every cigar we produce, from the wrapping and dressing of the individual cigar sticks to the promotional graphic support we provide. We are proud to have our name on the logo.

Question and Answer session with Mark Mistie Jr.

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what they think may be the worlds’ great-est cigar; the Crown Jewel. Its evaluation and research period included over a year of product development and sourcing that in-cluded interviewing over 40 manufacturers, and testing countless blends. Finally, Mark Mistie Jr. selected the true “gem” of the cigar manufacturing industry, the Beovides fam-ily. With a history that dates back over 100 years and two generations of tobacco grow-ers and manufacturers, the family expressed a true passion for creating only the finest “Old World” Cuban style cigars. Utilizing their secrets and experience, this group of skilled Cuban estate tobacco growers, manufacturers, marketers, and distributing experts focused their expertise and passion into making the Crown Jewel the number one cigar in the world. “Old World” quality starts with beliefs and concepts. Cigars used to be all hand-rolled, quality-crafted prod-ucts, until technology took over in most cigar companies. The Beovides manufactur-ing facility, founded and managed by Cuban cigar aficionados with ancestors that date back three generations, hand-rolls the Misti cigars. This is no small statement; with a decline of quality master cigar rollers, cigar rolling is becoming a lost craft.

“At Crown Jewel Boutique Cigar we are determined to bring hand-rolling back and

Q. Why should someone buy a Crown Jewel cigar when there are so many others in the market place?

a. Cigar smokers are fortunate. There are many great cigars in today’s marketplace; it’s just a question of selection. This industry is driven, for the most part, by larger companies that spend tens of mil-lions of dollars on advertising to create their image and increase their production levels. The simple answer? A Rolls Royce is made by hand one piece at a time with select parts. In the same tradition, our Crown Jewel premium cigar line is con-sistently constructed in an “Old World” style by skilled mastered cigar rollers, blended using only the rarest and best of tobacco products, and then properly stored and packaged with pride. The more enjoyable answer? Here’s one of our Torpedo Habanos, please smoke it. We’re proud of our manufacturing team. Like any classic, this cigar – and the Crown Jewel – will stand the test of time on a foundation of over a century of Cuban cigar manufacturing history.

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will never jeopardize product quality to meet production levels,” Mistie states, insist-ing on the importance of understanding the process.

Making a hand-rolled cigar is complicat-ed and slow. Select tobacco is grown on the plantation and harvested by skilled hands before being sent to the factory for baling. Aging the baled tobacco can take anywhere from eighteen months to nearly two years before a master blender selects tobacco in the correct portions for blending and roll-ing. Each quality is considered carefully, based on the master’s years of experience in producing the desired results. After bunch-ing, pressing, and wrapping, the cigars are individually inspected and placed in storage.

going the Distance… As Mark Mistie Jr’s business grew, he recognized the talent he had come to know and respect when he created the M. Mist`i Cigar Co. Board of Directors. The Board is composed of seasoned business professionals from the tobacco, marketing, resort development, and financial industries. All board members are active shareholders that share the pas-sion and experience needed to create a true “Old World” premium cigar. They oversee product development, quality control, and expansion of the Crown Jewel Line, work-ing with and through its creative team. The Board of Directors and executive manage-ment team share a passion, commitment and promise that their company will only produce the highest quality cigars. The Crown Jewel premium cigar line has been created to assure that all generations can ex-perience the pleasure of a truly great cigar.

Nevertheless, product movement was initially slow, given the company’s old-fashioned “door to door, store to store” ap-proach to selling products. Their niche was what most critics defined as the company’s weakness – specifically, its size. This became the essence of its strength, however, because of the ability to support the product it sold,

assist its retailers and distributor partners in turning their inventory, using and expens-ing funds for launch parties, promotional giveaways, themed events and sweepstakes promotions. All company efforts were de-voted to increasing the bottom line without sacrificing quality for volume.

“Our company has constantly delivered value and demonstrated it without appear-ing too aggressive,” Mistie says. “Retailers will buy a new premium cigar line if it produces income, and is serviced and supported better than the bigger and larger leading cigar man-ufacturers. In this business, small is huge.”

The initial market entry for the Crown

Jewel Boutique Cigar line was June, 2010. The product was introduced on a test basis in one of the most competitive cigar states in the nation: Florida. Now the company enjoys the retail participation of well over 100 retail tobacco shops and higher-end country clubs through out the state of Florida, with re-orders exceeding all projections.

The Future… In 2011, the company will con-tinue to carve its way through the states of Louisiana, Texas, Nevada, and Pennsylvania while increasing their product profile to in-clude an exciting and unique premium Costa Rican and Panamanian cigar line, all focused on the greatest cigar construction, blend, and smoothness of flavor. Mark Mistie’s focus remains much the same as when he first formed the company, and he has not forgot-ten his beginnings. “We humbly thank our loyal customers for their loyalty and sup-port,” he says. “We won’t let you down.”

Crown Jewel Cigars has proudly been rated 91 by Cigars in Review Magazine. Cir

For more information on Crown Jewel Boutique Cigars you can call toll-free at 877.336.3159 or visit them on the web at

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crown jewel ad

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There is something to be said about sitting

next to your loved ones around a fire,

even better when you’re sharing a good

cold beer. Not long ago,

I traveled to a cozy town

in Western Pennsylvania

called Slippery Rock to

enjoy some good brews at

the local North Country

Brewing Company. If you live on the East

Coast of the U.S., you’ve probably heard of

Rolling Rock pale lager out of Latrobe, but

North County’s own fine brews are highly

recommended. I began learning about them

in a 19th century house that once served as

a mortuary and furniture company, now

transformed into a Aspen-esque cabin

courtesy of local hardwoods and materials

you might never think were recycled. As

explained on the menu:

“One can sit down at a booth handcraft-

ed with black walnut and curly maple left

from the Ubers furniture store, slip a penny

in the crack of an original 1805 beam, or

rest a beer out back on the slate bar top

which was once used as a walkway to the

funeral home.”

Fireside Chat

Eating my farm-to-fork hamburger of

locally grown beef and elk coming from

North Country Brewing’s own farm, glazed

with homemade BBQ sauce, I took a sip of

homemade root beer and thought, I still

haven’t tried the beer yet! I soon found out

I was in for a treat - North Country’s Paleo

IPA and Cask versions were definitely the

stars. At 6.2%, the Paleo had a hoppy but

very balanced character, easily approach-

able. Its wonderful floral nose made this

beer a very easy one for people trying to

get into the craft beer scene, and perfect for

people already enjoying it. The cask-condi-

tioned beer was amazing, same characteris-

tics but the N02 lent an amazing creaminess

that I found unmatched in the craft beer

circuit. If your travels ever take you the way

of Appalachia, North Country Brewing

Company in Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania

should be a must stop for your choice of

frothy lust. And keep an open eye for the

Slippery Rock Beer and Wine Festival,

which happens every September. Cir

-Tony Bellatto

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Don’t miss this professionally managed multi-day event at the Copper Pavilion and surrounding decks & grounds for outdoor displays and smoking. The event will feature samples of cigars and local brews and will also showcase local merchants offering lifestyle products and services. The Festival will be marketed throughout the Rocky Mountain communities and into the front range cities reaching nearly 2.5 million people.

The Festival will be held in conjunction with Copper Mountains popular Guitar Town event which is a blues guitar event celebrating its 5th year. Guitar Town regularly draws thousands of people to the mountain for this weekend-long festival.

August 12 – 13, 2011 Copper Mountain Resort in Copper, Colorado

Here’s your opportunity to secure an exhibit or sponsorship at the Colorado Cigar & Brew Festival.

Exhibit and sponsorship opportunities are available on a limited basis. For information on exhibiting at or sponsoring the show, call Chris at 570-972-5173.

Information is also available at or by emailing [email protected].

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La Tradicion ad

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By Jerry Ison

W hether you’re a long time cigar aficionado or a neophyte puffer,

cigar enjoyment may be enhanced simply by knowing a little cigar specific facts and lore.

The word cigar is believed to be from the Mayan sik’ar which is a derivative of their word for tobacco, sik. Whatever the origin, the cigar definitely had it’s beginning in the lands and islands of the Caribbean.

It is believed the cigar dates as far back as 3000 to 5000 B.C.

Not only is Christopher Columbus credited with introducing the New World to Europe, but he also introduced Europe to the pleasures of New World tobacco and especially cigars.

Two sailors in the Columbus expedition reported watching Caribbean natives rolling dried and shredded tobacco leaves in palm leaves and smoking the primitive cigar. The sailors took up the practice, probably the first Europeans to enjoy tobacco. It wasn’t long until cigars were being enjoyed by the conquistadors, Spanish explorers and settlers in the New World. Cigars smoking quickly became part of the Spanish and Portuguese daily life. The French ambas-

A Cigar Primersador to Portugal, Jean Nicot, introduced smoking to the French and lent his name to the eponym, nicotine.

Smoking was rapidly taken up in Italy and neighboring counties like Holland and Belgium.

The British isles were introduced to tobacco after Sir Walter Raleigh’s many American voyages. Unlike the mainland of Europe, however, the British were more likely to smoke tobacco in a pipe.

The first cigars in the form we know them today were made in Spain early in the 18th century.

By the late 1700s cigar factories were built in France and Germany.

The Dutch began making cigars from the tobaccos grown in their colonies in the Far East.

Cigar smoking really took off in Europe after the solders returned to England and France after serving in Spain during the Peninsular wars of 1808 to 1814. These men had taken up the enjoyment of the best cigars available at the time and made cigar smoking as trendy and popular among men as afternoon tea.

Cigars have since been sought after and enjoyed by kings, statesmen, generals and common folk alike.

Cigar smoking may have peaked about the turn of the twentieth century. It has been estimated that four out of five men in America enjoyed cigars.

With the introduction of pre-rolled cigarettes, cigar smoking dropped steadily until the great resurgence of cigar enjoy-ment which began in the early 1990’s and has in many instances replaced cigarettes.

Handmade cigars especially have again taken on a significant and more promi-nent place among the connoisseurs of fine tobacco. Cir

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w e all know the joys of smoking cigars

- the rich aroma, the mix of bold and subtle flavors, and the inher-ent camaraderie that comes when smoking with friends. But have you ever considered the entertainment value of a good smoke? If not, you’ve never met or heard of Joe Sweigart, better known as Joe the Cigartainer.

Joe first exercised his entrepreneurial nature at the tender age of six after being taught the proper way to shine shoes by his father. Joe mastered the art quickly and began shining shoes for his father and his father’s friends.

As a ten-year old, Joe took on the seven day a week job of delivering the local paper door to door. Since then Joe has worked at a myriad of jobs. He was a short order cook at fifteen and held that position all through high school. He worked degreasing forty millimeter cannon barrels for the Army. He was a bill collector for the Chrysler Corpo-ration, and an iron worker at the infamous Three Mile Island Nuclear Power Station. He ran for political office, was a purchas-ing agent for the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, and many other jobs. In one year, he had more than a dozen W-2’s!

During these career changes, Joe made a few mistakes, but more often learned enough to frequently make the right deci-sions about his life. None was more right than when he married his high school

sweetheart, Elaine. That was more than forty some years ago and they became a team in every respect.

One thing Elaine did for Joe was to get him into the cigar business. In the late eighties, he and Elaine moved to Atlanta where Joe worked selling Yellow Page ads and Elaine worked at professional sales jobs. In 1991, she was hired as the Georgia and Tennessee territory representative for the General Cigar Company. In short order, she was promoted to the position of Premium Cigar Specialist handling the entire South-eastern United States. To build goodwill, she would sponsor cigars at high profile events hosted by local tobacco stores. These func-tions are where Joe developed an interest in enjoying the pleasures of cigar enjoyment with entertainment.

After a four-day Retail Tobacco Dealers of America show held in Orlando Florida in 1995, Joe came up with the concept for a new venture - private label cigars.

He returned to Atlanta determined to once again flex his entrepreneurial muscles. Joe found a cigar label maker who would produce short runs for him and ordered

Guillermo Leon Visits Our Exhibit

Joe Sweigart: the Cigartainer

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his first batch of custom labels. These labels were red with the gold imprint “Your Logo Here”.

He drove down to Ybor City, Florida and took delivery of cigars he had ordered from Bob Saitta, the owner of El Sol Cigars.

Joe put together his cigars and the “Your Logo Here” bands in the parking garage of the Orlando Convention Center where the PGA merchandise show was under way.

He may not have known it when he entered, but this event was going to supply him with the validation of his plan. One

of the exhibitors was Specialty Cigars, the world’s largest purveyor of cigars for the golf industry. Their business needs meshed and Private Label Cigars was born. They do busi-ness to this day.

The next couple of years Joe spent trying

to make the perfect cigar match with his clients. There were ups and downs, with more downs, until he convinced world famous quality cigar maker La Aurora in the Dominican Republic to craft a cigar that met Joe’s requirements. The new Millennium Ci-gar proved to be exactly what he had desired, a great smoke from a reputable and reli-able source. In the next year, due to market changes and many other factors, Joe began a relationship with the Davidoff cigar maker Tabadom. This, along with the cigars he was getting from La Aurora, finally satisfied his

long sought goal of consistency. This would soon prove, however, not enough to assure a successful business venture. Joe had a great product and a loyal following, but the market was getting crowded and dealers were reluctant to make room for more boutique brands.

After narrowly escaping bank-ruptcy thanks to an unexpected loan from Tony Fratelli, Joe’s very first private label client and an old friend who owned an Atlanta restaurant. This loan provided the necessary funds to keep the Private Label Cigar Company viable and allowed Joe the time needed to regroup. During the transition, Joe’s son Mike learned to use computer

programs to design logo bands. Joe decided to leave the importing of

all the cigars to one of his associates who was a cigar distributor in his own right. This change in direction was brought about because, as Joe describes it in his book, Long Ashes, Baby, “the strong winds of events were blowing.”

Henke Kelner Explains How He Makes Our Cigars


… he and his partner and expert torcedor, Jorge have dreams of

owning a public cigar factory with its very own luxurious lounge. Joe

also has a new idea for another venture, but for now insists it must

remain a secret.

continued next page

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The company turned over all the importing, distribution and warehousing of the Millennium cigar to Joe’s associate. In 2001, they did almost two events every month in places like New Orleans, St Louis, Hilton Head and Las Vegas. The Cigartainer theme drastically altered the approach to these events. Instead of focusing on the cigars, he focused on the end users and used talented cigar rollers at the events. Joe and Elaine brought along Millennium cigars to hand out along with those created by the torcedors, the rollers. Their marketing and presentations began to appeal to more and more corporations and organizations that appreciated Joe’s memorable approach of intriguing and entertaining people with presentations and showmanship.

Some of those clients read like a who’s who of American business: IBM, Pitney Bowes, Chrysler, Equity, and Conde Nast met Joe, as did celebrities like Kevin Costner, Dr. J, Cuba Gooding Jr., and many others. Joe’s ability to connect with those to whom he is presenting and his natural “people person” personality coupled with a serious dedication to his craft has made him a very in-demand personality. In 2010, Joe became a Certified Sales Tobacconist by Tobacconist University and an Ambassador with Cigar Rights of America.

When asked what lay ahead, Joe said that he has several speaking engagements scheduled at cigar clubs and golf clubs. Also, he and his partner and expert torcedor, Jorge have dreams of owning a public cigar factory with its very own luxurious lounge. Joe also has a new idea for another venture, but for now insists it must remain a secret. “Check with me down the road and maybe I’ll let Cigars in Review Magazine in on it!” he chuckled, then closed with his special blessing, “Long Ashes, Baby!” Cir

Check out Joe’s websites at:

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If you have enjoyed reading Smoke magazine, Pearlman’s Cigarcyclopedia

and a lot of cigar blogs out there, you surely have heard of La Tradicion Cubana Cigars. This brand has many different lines under its wing, including (but not limited to):

La Tradicion Cubana – Rated exceptional

Sabor Cubano: Rated excellent

Under Contract Brands:

Casa Gomez Natural: Rated exceptional

Casa Gomez Maduro: Rated exceptional

La Caridad del Cobre natural: Rated excellent

La Caridad del Cobre Maduro: Rated exceptional

Jameson Declaration: Rated excellent

Jameson Black Label: Rated excellent

Jameson Red Label: Rated exceptional

The proprietor, Luis Sanchez, has spearheaded La Tradicion Cubana Cigars since they started in 1995. Even though 1995 marked his official entry into the cigar business, the Sanchez family roots reach all the way back to 1928 and the Pinar del Rio region in Cuba. This heritage and knowledge are attributing factors to the

success Sanchez’s company has enjoyed, as evidenced by the high ratings his brand has achieved throughout both the blogosphere and traditional media.

In this company, there is something for everyone. Whether it’s a good mild cigar or a strong maduro, La Tradicion Cubana of-fers it in their portfolio. Whether you seek a robusto or Churchill-sized cigar or one with a ring gauge over 60, you’ll find it. If you desire superbly uniqueness, consider “The Great Pyramid” which is an 8½ inch cigar with a 96 ring gauge (yes, 96)!

Since Sanchez has his own factory in the Dominican Republic (Tabacalera LTC, SA), he has the ability to ensure the manufactur-ing process sticks to traditional cigar-mak-ing methods and that no corners are cut or expenses spared that might adversely impact a pleasurable smoking experience. No mat-ter what your taste, desire, or which brand his factory produces, you can be assured each La Tradicion Cubana cigar is a quality product that was made to impress…which it definitely does. Cir

La Tradicion Cubana Cigars— Traditional Excellence

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w hat do blood, sweat, passion, tradition, and leather have to do with cigars? Well,

a lot if James Acord has anything to do with it. Acord is the proprietor of Turtle

Moon Studios , a master leather worker who has been

creating beautiful and functional art in that time-

less media for the past 35 years. He specializes in

fly fishing and cigar cases made entirely by hand

at each and every step of the entire painstak-

ing process. The cigar cases he creates are so

detailed and pleasing to the eye that you

could very well keep one on your mantle

for decoration when not using it to protect

your precious puros.

One of the most impressive and

amazing aspects of James’s work

concerns the fact that he utilizes no

machines to create his masterpieces,

relying instead on antique tools,

hand stitching, and hand carving to

complete his work. When you look

at his finished products, the atten-

A Story of One Man’s Passion

Turned into a Utilitarian Work

of Art

by Andy Josker

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Cigars in review 33

The hallmarks of his work are meticulously

drawn, tooled, and then hand painted.

Elegant hand stitching, a rich antique look

and feel are given to all the surfaces. The

processes are done by Jimmy alone, not in

cottage industry or assembly line style, but

carefully, and lovingly. Each piece is hand

signed, dated, and numbered.

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tion to detail makes it hard to imagine it

was completed in such a traditional manner.

The overall effect gives you an appreciation

of work that is unparalleled by the machine-

made accessories on the market today.

James Acord’s craftsmanship has not

gone unnoticed by people that know qual-

ity. In the fall of 2009, James was asked to

make some exquisite leather three-finger

cigar cases for OK Cigars of New York in

SoHo. Needless to say, they turned out bet-

ter than most high-end cases produced by

very large and reputable manufacturers and,

since everything was done by hand, each

case was a unique work of functional art

unto itself.

In today’s society that is sometimes

overshadowed by technology, it is a re-

lief that there are still expert artisans out

there like James Acord. Sometimes people

do enjoy getting a product that is quickly

manufactured and readily available, but like

a great cigar that only gets better with age,

a longer wait for work of arts like the wares

made at Turtle Moon Studios results in a

masterpiece you can use with delight, then

pass down for generations to come. Cir

James and his wife, Susan Acord created Tur-

tle Moon Studios ( in

1990. Susan is a nationally recognized painter

and fiber artist who has always enjoyed as-

sisting her husband with his work. On top

of being an expert leather worker and artist,

James also teaches mixed media workshops all

around the country with Susan and enjoys his

time away from the shop fly fishing.

James Acord’s craftsmanship has not gone unnoticed by people that know quality. In the fall of 2009, James was asked

to make some exquisite leather three-finger cigar cases for OK Cigars of New York in SoHo.

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la gloria story

It was 1992 when Ernesto Perez-

Carrillo’s La Gloria Cubana

began to take off. El Credito,

the little Miami cigar company

founded by his father in 1968

with only one roller, would soon

become a powerhouse.

La Gloria Cubana grew throughout the cigar boom of the ‘90s and at the end of that decade, Perez-Carrillo sold his com-pany to Swedish Match (General Cigar). At the time of the sale, Perez-Carrillo brought

La Gloria’s Teamwork

in Michael Gianinni, a national sales manager with 18 years of cigar business experience, to help continue La Gloria’s growth. Gianinni joined El Credito in January of 2000, and he and Ernesto spent the next nine years growing the business, adding to the base La Gloria with lines like the Serie R and the Arte-sano de Miami.

In March of 2009, Ernesto left El Credito to form a new company with his children – E.P Carrillo. Gianinni, who had moved into the marketing role for General Cigar, with Ernesto�s departure became the face of La Gloria. Gianinni partnered there with Rick Rodriguez – an apprentice to legendary cigar maker Benji Menendez and of-ficially titled a cigar master in training � to find ways to showcase the cigar lifestyle to consumers. In November of

by Frank Seltzer

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38 Cigars in review

2009, while at the Big Smoke in Vegas, Mi-chael and Rick joined Yuri Guillén – who had been running the El Credito factory in Santiago since 2003 – and the three decided to form Team La Gloria as a means of pushing the brand forward. At one point during the Vegas trip, while sitting around a slot machine, the trio formulated the idea of what would become the La Gloria Serie N using Nicaraguan tobaccos. The Serie N was one of three new lines added last year, with the Serie R Peque-ño more of an extension. The Artesanos de Tabaqueros the followed, which combines Connecticut and Ecuadoran Sumatra wrap-pers, was Rick Rodriguez’s idea. To make the double wrappers work, Rick turned to Benji Menendez, who made it become a reality. The Artesanos de Obelisco blend came from Michael and Yuri but again, it was Benji who suggested the size to intensify the flavors.

Making the Serie N was not easy. Michael had the idea to bling out the cigar with a little Connecticut Shade “N.” How hard could it be? Turns out, it was very dif-ficult. After the debut of the cigar at IPCPR in the summer of 2010, Team La Gloria was down in the factory. Michael explains: “Yuri

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said we should stay away from the rollers because they are very angry with us. We went into the factory anyway and saw there were three ladies cutting the N’s out. The N’s were all over the rolling table, in their hair, and even on their faces. Ricky looked at me like, we gotta get out of here. The first day, three ladies did a thousand cigars. The second day we went back in and there were 10 ladies, the third day15 ladies. We had over 250 thousand cigars already rolled and they said you know this shipment is going to be late. We finally got them out, but it was not easy.”

Yuri feels the factory is becoming more exciting. “I feel proud of what we are doing. We are changing the mindset of the people in the factory. All the way around, it is a

thousand people working and thinking. We have supervisors innovating every day; they have given me many many new ideas. I get so many sometimes, it is overwhelming.” In fact, some of the new Team La Gloria prod-ucts due out later this year have not come solely from Yuri, Michael and Rick but from ideas shared by others in the factory.

The Team is also pushing new media. The Team La Gloria website ( has a blog and behind the scenes videos. According to Rick, “We are not pushing sales, it is just a place where people can find out about us.” Michael reveals they have about 5,000 people following them on either the Web or Twitter. “It’s a kick in the ass for us!” Cir

At one point during the Vegas trip, while sitting around a slot

machine, the trio formulated the idea of what would become the La

Gloria Serie N using Nicaraguan tobaccos.

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40 Cigars in review

palimino ad

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Cigars in review 41

A new breed of talented and dedicated winemakers is emerging in the Pacific Northwest to remind the French,

once again, that the U.S. will always be a dynamic force in the global wine market.

Rhone Rangers


For decades, Washington and Oregon have been synonymous with fruit growers. Recently I sat down with my friend David Forsythe, winemaker and general manager of Mercer Vineyards, to experience some of his trendsetting wines. He is making Cabernet and Sauvignon Blanc blends that match the fruit and acid balance of New World wines with the earthy leather of the Old World. It’s also worth noting that David also produces coveted Fuji apples at Mercer. Perhaps his knowledge of fruit growing in general is a reason why the neo-Bordeaux

style of Mercer wines may bridge the gap between the traditions and successes of the Old World and the contemporary culture of 21st century American viticulture. In any event, as of late, these northwest U.S. “Rhone Rangers” have been producing world class Bordeaux, Burgundy, and Rhone Varietals.

The Yakima Valley in Washington State is nestled just south of Seattle and the Columbia Valley on the west side of the Cascade Mountains. Here, vintners Owen Roe and Mercer crank out some serious


to: w






by Tony Bellatto

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42 Cigars in review

vino. As we know, soil content and weather are crucial to pro-ducing good fruit for wine, and the vineyards that Owen Roe and Mercer use all have favor-able growing seasons. The days are long and cool, allowing the fruit to ripen fully with low acid-ity. The diversity of soils in this region allow for immense differ-ences in varietals from vineyard to vineyard, giving each wine its own sense of place or “terroir”. In Yakima, Bordeaux varietals flourish, but there is also a hodge-podge of Rhone Varietals like Syrah, Mouvedre, Cinsault, and Viogner Talking about this AVA always makes me want to drink wine, so I usually choose a 2008 Owen Roe, Red Willow Vineyard, or Chapel Block Syrah. They are all tantalizing.

I love cult wine producers. They have an unprecedented ability to choose the most unique sites from which to make wine, and their personal involve-

ment includes insistence on knowing what each and every bottle will taste like. The color on the Red Willow Syrah is a stunning brilliant ruby with definitive clear edges, showing how the glorious youthfulness of this wine. After admiring the beautiful col-ors typical of this varietal I stick my schnoz right into the glass to smell the spicy cedar that reminds me of my humidor, and the luscious hints of cherry and anise take me to my grandma’s house on Sunday afternoons.

Tasting this wine should be exciting, and it always is. My palate savors white pepper and a slight earthiness. There is inky blueberry, strawberry, and rhubarb, with hints of vanilla and balanced acidity on the finish. In all, it reminds me of a “fruits of the forest” pie. This wine has a nice long finish and may be drunk alone, with food, or with your favorite Maduro. I’ve enjoyed the wine so much I inquired about its richness, and learned that the Red Willow vineyard is situated at about 1200 feet above the Lake Mis-soula flood plane and does not have the classic Yakima soil, which is often overwhelmed by nutrients and rich sediments. The “starved” soil at Red Willow thus gives lower yields but it also densely concentrates the fruits, producing a wine that has nu-ances of Old World winemak-ing with a touch of New World finesse.

There are few wines that can match the approachability and complexity of The Yakima Valley. I love the fruit forward wines in the mountain districts of California, but sometimes I crave the earthy and spicy tones of Bordeaux and Rhone. Try them; you’ll see. Cir

Tasting this wine should be exciting, and it always is.

My palate savors white pepper and a slight earthiness.

There is inky blueberry, strawberry, and rhubarb,

with hints of vanilla and balanced acidity on the finish.

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Cigars in review 43

These cigars are nestled with-in a pound of Grade A Domini-can coffee beans that naturally aromatically ferment them in the box, where they are aged for an additional six months.

There are NO artificial flavors or additives. The shaggy foot on each cigar helps to absorb the flavor directly from the beans, and each cigar has an authentic cuban style pigtail cap.

Wake Up Smokin’

Retailers – Order Today! toll-free 866-744-4997 or

local 401-622-4505

Each box contains a full pound of premium, Grade A Dominican coffee

or espresso beans. Grind up and drink this Grade A coffee when smoking the cigar for a full, complex smok-

ing experience. It is suggested to use 4 ounces of course ground coffee to

every pot.

Cigars review



Breakfast Blend 6x50 12 count

Espresso Blend 6x50 12 count

Cigars review



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44 Cigars in review

“Brothers,” the LP that garnered four

Grammy Nominations for the Black Keys, is certainly one of the buzzworthy albums of the year. While it is trendy among twenty-something indie circles, it is certain to grab the attention of blues and classic rock enthusiasts in general. The album, though typical in structure, is truly captivating because of mood and style. Written by only two individu-als, Dan Auerbach (vocals, guitar) and Patrick Carney (drums, production), “Brothers” sounds like a Pink Floyd-inspired blues rock album that was produced in the vein of the Beatles’ “Abbey Road.”

The 6th studio album by these garage rockers is barely flashy and mostly raw. Tracks such as “Black Mud,” “Sinister Kid,” and “I’m Not The One” are the most blues-oriented, each possessing the har-monic sensibility of a pop song while being inundated with hard grooves from Carney and inspired vocals from Auerbach. More-over, even the more commercial tracks on “Brothers” succeed due to the fact that the lyrics convey a sense of modern and authen-tic hardship, an ethos yet to be captured by other blues bands of the same variety.


The best song on the album, “Unknown Brother,” which was written about Auer-bach’s late brother-in-law whom he never met, draws from 50s-era love ballads to per-fectly capture the agony felt by the clearly afflicted vocalist. “We’ll smile like pictures of you as a boy before you retire to heavenly joy,” Auerbach sings, creating a perfect vi-sion of his sentiment of emptiness.

“Brothers” is recommended for any individual who is interested in modern rock or simply wants to hear some authentic blues tales. Two different bonus tracks are available for the album, one (called “Ohio) through and one (called “Howlin’ For You” [feat. Prins Thomas Dis-komik]) via iTunes. Cir

The Black Keys- “Brothers” [Nonesuch Records]

By Bryan Infante

. . .sounds like a Pink Floyd-inspired blues rock album that was produced in the vein of the Beatles’ “Abbey Road.”

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Cigars in review 45

2007 Caldwell Rocket Science Proprietary Red

Elegant bright fruit with hints of anise. Classic Bordeaux varietals, earthy and dusty

but overlaid by classic California fruit. 94pts $50.00

2007 Solnia, Rioja SpainDeveloping Amarone (rasin and candied fruit) characteristics and a little brownness in olor. Great Value. Scrumptious red fruits combined with old world tastes of Spain. Drink now

90 pts $12.00

2004 Marti Fabria Selecion Vineys Velles , Emporda SpainAnother great one from Spain, this is the great Masa Carreras’ little brother. 70% Grenache, 10% Carignan, 10% Tempranillo, 5% Syrah, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon give this wine a balanced and age-worthy appeal. On the nose there is some Bubble gum with bright red fruits on the palate.

92 pts $20.00

2009 Sineann Red Table Wine, Oregon, United StatesNever Disappointing, Sineann remains one of my favorite producers. An interesting blend of Pinot Noir, Cabernet, Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc and Merlot seems a little off kilter unless you taste this $20 gem. If you can find this proprietary red at your local shop pick it up. This wine with its soft fruit, white pepper and tobacco suits well for all your parties where you have guests that enjoy wine in general. This is the quintes-sential definition of a table wine with the finesse of the big cult classics

98 pts $20.00

2009 Sineann Resonance Vineyard Reserve Pinot Noir, OregonAlready a rare wine, the producers at Sine-ann selected a FEW barrels of the oldest, and most sought after grapes in Oregon. Floral, fragrant nose luscious cherry and red fruit character on the palate with plenty of depth and complexity. A long, lusty finish provide one of the best Pinot’s I’ve ever tasted not to mention one of the best wines Ive ever had. $70.00 99pts TB

2009 Jaffurs Syrah, Santa Barbra California This wine has a beautiful ruby color with a spicy and dark fruit nose reminiscent of the Rhone Valley but with less earth. Tannin is nice and approachable but firm with medi-um acid. Loads of black fruit balanced with slight earthy spices a nice tapering finish with fleshy plum notes. $35.00 94pts TB

2008 Owen Roe Chapel Block Syrah, Red Willow Vineyard, Yakima Valley Washington.At only 335 cases this wine is a true cult favorite. Brillant Ruby color and a nose of cherry and spicy anise. White pepper and a slight but not overbearing earthiness makes this Rhone Ranger ready to drink now or in 5-10 years. Imagine this wine with a nice a hearty meal or stew. $60.00 96pts TB

2006 Nostoros Malbec, Mendoza Argentina Susanna Balbo and her husband Pedro Marchevski (Ben Marco) produce less than 200 6 packs of this limited high-end cult malbec. The color on this wine is a mid-night ruby and the nose is full of smokiness, candied fruit and mocha. Firm acid with medium acid gives lots of red and black fruit pie with some black licorice and hints of pencil shavings. $100.00 95pts TB

Wine Ratings

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Top Cigar picks forSpring 2011

Porto Rico | Falto Cigars • Privilegio Mi Viejo Liga #8 Wrapper: Corojo Ecuador Binder: Dominican Republic Filler: Dom./Brazil/Nicaragua Ring Gauge: 48, Length 6 3/8 Price: $7.00

Smooth spotless wrapper. Pleasant earthy characteristics Vanilla bean, nutty and leather un-dertones. Has a smooth creaminess that becomes toasty with evident caramel tones. Classic medium body cigar

94USA | Arganese Cigars • Espresso Blend Wrapper: Maduro Habano Binder: Cuban Corojo Filler: Dom./Nicaraguan/ Brazilian Ring Gauge: 50, Length: 6 Price: $8.00

Wrapper has some small veining with a shaggy foot. Rich flavors of espresso, coffee beans, spice and hazelnut can all be found. A rich and at times creamy tasting cigar. Perfect for anytime. Grind up the pound of express beans that the cigars are wrapped in for a great start to any ones day.

94USA | Illuminati Cigars • Shield: Wrapper: Habano EcuadorBinder: NicaraguanFiller: Nicaraguan Ring Gauge 50, Length 5 Price: $9.00

Honey and cardboard greet you from the very first puff. Subtle hints of citrus and damp earth are also found. The cigar takes on a pretzel like character as your progress but retains a nice subtle sweetness. Even burn and a great draw.


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USA | Torano • Single Region JalapaWrapper: NicaraguaBinder: Nicaragua Filler: Nicaraguan Ring Gauge 50, Length 7 Price: $6.95 Starts off with a heavy earthy leathery flavor, with hints of espresso. Overall it is slightly rough, but it warms up to a smoother sweeter texture, with notes of spice akin to jalapeño.


USA | Illuminati Cigars • Mondo Nuovo Wrapper: Connecticut Ecuador Binder: Nicaraguan Filler: Nicaraguan Ring Gauge 50 Length 5 Price: $8.25

Clean looking cigar. Filled with a nutty spice flavor. Hazel can also be found. A strong spicy finish. Has a nice draw and even burn. Very consistent flavoring through the entire cigar. A high quality cigar.

93USA | Palomino Cigars • Monica L. Wrapper: Connecticut Binder: Dominican Filler: Dominican Ring Gauge: 44, Length: 6 Price: $6.50

Beautiful brown wrapper, near flawless. A dry grassy start with the occasional hint of spice. Its toasty flavors combine with a somewhat creamy undertone. A great mild body cigar.

92USA | Casa Gomez Cigars • CG Wrapper: EcuadorBinder: Honduran Filler: Nicaraguan/Dominican Ring Gauge: 52, Length: 6 1/2 Price: $7.00

A well made cigar that is attractive and firm to the touch. Perfect burn combines with flavors of nuts, dry spices, molasses and a leathery undertone. Firm draw and beautiful white plums of smoke. A mild to medium body cigar.


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USA | La Tradicion Cubana • LTC Wrapper: Ecuador Binder: Honduran Filler: Dominican Ring Gauge: 54, Length: 6 1/2 Price: $6.00

Wrapper has small tiny veins. Spice flavors await you as you light this beauty up. Toasty notes combine for a nice smooth and creamy cigar. Even consistent burn. And great draw.

91USA | Arganese Cigars • Breakfast Blend Wrapper: Connecticut Binder: Olor Dominican Filler: Dominican/Nicaraguan Ring Gauge: 50, Length: 6 Price: $8.00

Rustic Connecticut shade wrapper. Shaggy foot with mild smooth flavors ranging from coffee beans to light spices. Light airy draw with a perfect burn. Produces light plums of aromatic smoke.

91USA | Crown Jewel Cigars • Wrapper: Ecuador Binder: Ecuador Filler: Dominican Ring Gauge: 50, Length: 7 Price: $9.25

Beautiful Colorado shade wrapper. A pleasant spice and peppery mixture greet you as you begin to explore this cigar. Hints of white chocolate and toasty mellow flavors are also found. Nice even burn. A well made cigar with consistent flavor.

91USA | Di Fazio Cigars • Connecticut Wrapper: Ecuador Binder: Indonesia Filler: Honduras/Nicaragua Ring Gauge:60. Length: 5 Price: $8.00

The wrapper is very well constructed. nice draw; Light and Airy at the beginning, this smoke developed into creamy, butter nut flavors with a firm toasty backbone. This cigar, despite its intimidating size, is very approachable and great to get into with a glass of creamy California Chardonnay at a sizzling summer BBQ.


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USA | Palomino Cigars • Santa Ana Barber Pole Wrapper: Dominican Binder: Dominican Filler: Dominican Ring Gauge: 52, Length: 6 Price: $9.00

Attractive looking barber pole wrapper. Great draw and a nice even burn. Starts off with a peppery overtone that quickly includes hints of hazel nuts. Undertones of sweet molasses emerge throughout the smoking experience. Flavors of spice and several toasty notes round out this well made cigar.

90USA | Di Fazio Cigars • Name: MaduroWrapper: Nicaraguan Binder: Honduras Filler: Honduras/Nicaragua Ring Gauge: 60, Length: 5 Price: $8.00

The wrapper on this cigar is very pretty. The color is great, and the draw is also very nice. Baking chocolate on the palate, with a nice balance of bitter and toast. Slightly uneven burn, very approachable yet refined cigar that would go great with a vintage port or cognac.

90USA | Casa Gomez Cigars • Havana Sunrise Wrapper: Ecuador Binder: Honduran Filler: Nicaraguan/Honduran Ring Gauge: 48, Length: 7 Price: $ 4.60

Gorgeous golden brown wrapper. Some veining but otherwise a attractive cigar. Dry grass at initial light. Quickly spice flavors emerge with creamy smooth wood undertones


USA | La Tradicion Cubana Cigars • Sabor Cubana Wrapper: Brazilian Binder: Ecuador Filler: Dominican Ring Gauge: 52, Length: 6 Price: $7.00

A impressive cigar . Beautiful maduro wrapper. Tiny veining. Hints of black licorice, pepper, spices and leather all are found. Creamy plumes of smoke billow out of this beauty.


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Cigars in review 51

Nicaragua | Nub • 464t Wrapper: Nicaragua Binder: Nicaragua Filler: NicaraguaRing Gauge: 64, Length 4Price: $5.50

If you like a medium to full body cigar this is a great one. Well made beautiful looking wrap-per. Full of spicey notes and a hint of cedar. Perfect draw and burn.


Porto Rico | La Garita Cigar Co • Delirio Cabinet Select Wrapper: Dominican Corojo, Binder: Dominican Corojo, Filler: Dominican / NicaraguaRing Gauge: 42, Length 6 1/2 Price: $5.50

Nice looking cigar with some slight veining. Subtle flavors of spice and pepper. Underlining tones of roasted almonds and cocoa powder. Has a earthy finish.


Columbia | Camino Real Cigars • Cabinet Selection Wrapper: Columbian Binder: Columbian Filler: Columbian Ring Gauge: 50 Length: 6 Price: $4.99

A nice cigar. Spicy flavors combine with earthy notes. Hints of bark and under tones of sweet licorice. Perfect burn. A good quality cigar from Columbia.

89Columbia | Don Jose Correa • Doble Capa Wrapper: Ecuadorian/ ColombianBinder: ColombianFiller: ColombianRing Gauge: 47, Length 7 Price: $6.99 The cigar is mild with a subtle fresh sweet woodiness throughout with a slight firmness to the draw. The overall taste is one of damp autumnal leaves and hints of dried coffee bean.


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52 Cigars in review

T CubanAmerican

Cigar Festival

at the-Cuban American Club886 Pike RoadWest Palm Beach, Florida 33411

Join us 0n April 2, 2011 for a great day of cigar smoking bliss.

Sponsored by Cigars In Review Magazine & Palomino Cigars

For tickets or to inquire about being a exhibitor contact us at 330-612-9505 or 561-308-7230 More information can be found at

• Free Cigars

• Free Food

• Door Prizes

• Live Cigar Rolling

• Bar

• Cigar Accessories

• Live Entertainment

Come meet some of the finest

boutique cigar manufactures in

the world. Each attendee will

receive 40 Premium cigars and

a complimentary cigar bag to

carry your cigars.

Win a variety of

prizes. Come meet

Joe Sweigart from

Cigartainment and

enjoy his live cigar

rolling demonstra-

tions. Free food and

2 free drink tickets

with your $50 gener-

al admission ticket.