fabes

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About fabes

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  • Birthday 04/07/1983

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  1. FOH: A Week In Pictures.

    In honor of “Go Skateboarding Day” I hit the skatepark this morning and got in a little wallride before work. Tomorrow starts my 3-day weekend with more skating and some cigars. Hopefully more pics to post as the weekend progresses. More concrete jungle fun: Tried to re-create my avatar, but man 6.5 years later it’s getting harder to launch in the air like that! Settled for a lipslide and carving the bowls. Then relaxing with an ‘07 Monarcas.
  2. Agree on all points. Shifting focus is a great way to put it. Slap a “fat free” sticker on the box and call it health food.
  3. Short answer: No Detailed answer: At the time I had good friends in the specialty coffee industry and I paid distributor prices for the Forte. I got a great deal and think the grinder is definitely worth what I paid which was like slightly more than half the retail price. I don’t do espresso, but I do every type of other brew method and lots of it. For me it was worth it, but that was also roughly 8 years into a specialty coffee fixation. My path was an Encore for 2 yrs, then a Virtuoso for 5 yrs, and now on the Forte for going on 3 yrs. Virtuoso was the best bang for the buck. It’s easily 2x the grinder the encore is. I like my Forte for the weight dosing, 3 programmable doses and it’s super heavy with large burrs (for a household grinder). Baratzas are built like tanks and offer every part if something breaks and it’s all user fixable. If you don’t mind going with a manual grinder, a Lido 2/3 would be a good option. Something like $200 and they use like 83mm burrs from larger industrial grade grinders costing $2000+ I’ve heard they grind fantastically for espresso.
  4. I second the vote for the virtuoso. Had one and loved it. Only got rid of it to upgrade to the Forte.
  5. KENSHOES (what we all scream when watching reviews)
  6. I agree with @Jeremy Festa on this. Packaging nearly aways has an influence whether preferential or abhorrent. @Lotusguy brings up a good point that at some point we can transcend packaging. Although I believe that requires knowledge of the product of which packaging once had influence over us. For me, packaging of skateboards and wheels, trucks, etc no longer matter. After 25 years on the board I’m only concerned with size, shape and quality. I don’t care what the packaging/branding is. Cigars, however I know the packaging plays some role even if minor. Example, I refuse to try a Monte Open based on packaging (among other reasons).
  7. We’re talking opinions & preferences here, so take with a grain of salt. I wait at least 5 days off roast. Anything fresher and there is too much off-gassing for what I like. I find 7-14 days the sweet spot for me, but I’ll enjoy coffees a month off roast or longer with no deterioration in quality. I’ve found some coffees with an inherent sweetness to get better further off roast. The opposite is true with punchier fruit forward coffees to lose that fruity intensity further off roast. Just depends what you’re after.
  8. Plain Packaging Options.

    Artistry aside (which we all love dearly) there is the subliminal aspect of the band and box that affect our perception of what we are smoking. We pull out a rosado RyJ and visually clue in and derive that it will have a cherry essence. (Or whatever you’ve come to expect of whatever marca.) Smoke that same cigar during a blind tasting and you’re way off. We see the evidence that most people can’t detect most cigars in a blind tasting scenario. So in a plain packaging world, what’s the point of different brands/marcas? On a positive note I think plain packaging might weed out “special releases” like petit robustos and montescos that sell for $20/cigar as there’s really nothing special anymore once you’re removed the secondary regional band. So perhaps there would be a higher importance on standard blends and construction quality if that’s the only remaining differentiator. On the scarier note I fear we may see selection reduced dramatically. It may end up going from 8 robusto/hermosos no4 down to just a single ‘cuban robusto’. From a business standpoint it makes more sense than keeping a plain packaged Sancho Panza afloat only to sit on retail shelves for years.
  9. I also concur that NCs just stink and linger. In the Cuban realm, I find Upmann to be the most odious and lingering... or so my lady reminds me. Perhaps odious is not the correct word, but she can without fail point out when I’ve smoked an Upmann.
  10. Cigar Books

    I’ve enjoyed this book on the history of Partagas. Great pictures and story in both Spanish and English. It’s very well put together.
  11. Yeah, it’s more of a detail oriented test. Can you spot the minutia in these pictures?
  12. Bon Voyage Greg

    Best of luck Greg! We appreciate everything you did for us!
  13. Great point above. I know several people that have gone to Iceland recently. And another buddy (non-cigar smoker) that was planning a Cuba trip, but switched destinations due to more attractive locale and pricing.

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