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    Charm City

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  1. A couple of years ago I invited a friend from work who said that he had smoked cigars a little bit in the past. He was excited to try a Habano. I asked my son (who doesn't smoke) whether he thought we should have something gentle or something powerful. He smacked his fist into his palm. So I thought, ok, let's have a PSD4. I made sure that my friend had eaten, warned him not to inhale, and gave him a glass of ice water. We enjoyed ourselves tremendously and he said that he really liked the cigar. I had just finished and was looking down when I heard a sound like a bullfrog. I looked up one second later just in time to see an incredible stream of the entire contents of his stomach project several feet over my patio. Literally. It shot out so powerfully that he barely even got it on himself. He immediately felt fine. I got the hose and sprayed it all away. He still talks about it. So if you give a guy a powerhouse you may be giving him a lifelong memory.
  2. I'm a fan of #3. As khomeinist says I get an old fashioned vibe and they improve as they sit. I also like that they seem unusual at this point. I can't think of anything else that they resemble. A long time ago (turning 56 this weekend!) I thought #1 was one of the greats. During the bad period virtually every one I got wouldn't draw, like other lonsdale sizes. I gave up and haven't tried one since. Only partly apropos, I got a few R&J Churchills to try after not having one for many years. I had my first just tonight. The flavors were weak and generic. Not enjoyable or encouraging. I noticed absolutely no marca similarity to the Cedros 3 which are the only R&J I ever have anymore. I guess the Cedros line may be the next classic to get the axe but I'll be disappointed when it happens.
  3. They're not that expensive one at a time, but I have an entire cab of Gloria Cubana Medaille #2 that won't draw. They're '07s! There are eight or ten left and once in a while I try again. Lower the humidity, cut them down, work and work with the poker -- and I can't remember the last one that didn't die a premature death. Everyone's looking and wishing for these but mine are far better to look at than smoke. I should hang them on the wall.
  4. Maybe ancient history, but ... Ten years ago Hoyo Epicure #1 was my favorite. They were on the light side of medium, smooth, and had a fruit aroma. I got an '05 cab and was surprised and baffled that they were stronger, harsh, and the fruit was gone. I then managed to get some '01s which were definitely old style. My latest cab is GLA Sep 08 and I still don't like them. I have a regret list of women and one of cigars. Top of the cigar list is R&J Churchill. Old guys will agree. Second is Montecristo #2. Others may not agree here. I actually think habanos are better today across the board, but the greatness of these is long gone. Least consistent for me have been BBF. From awesome to trash. Most consistent have been Partagas Shorts and R&J Cedros #3 (don't laugh! I like 'em. Anyway they taste the same as ever)
  5. 1. Romeo shape. This is a really great classic vitola. Unfortunately, the only one readily available is a Cuaba! 2. I like Beamer's idea. Blend Hoyo des Dieux with Partagas 898. Wow. 3. Colorado maduro or however you would describe a normal dark 898.
  6. Hey -- I was driving a Honda Civic in NYC traffic just last week. It was kind of fun. But I haven't had a NC in years.
  7. 1. Sir Winston 2. Trinidad Robusto T 3. Partagas Short RE: Ramon Allones Belicosos Germany
  8. Partagas Shorts R&J Cedros #3 (substitute your favorite PC) Siglo IV Monte 2 (I figure you can find good ones -- I've given up but I can still fantasize) If that's too far toward the short end, delete the Shorts and substitute Lusis
  9. Cohiba Siglo IV Hoyo des Dieux Partagas SD4 R&J Cedros #3 Partagas Short
  10. My experience is that construction has definitely improved. Most boxes have few draw issues anymore and I have had about as much underfilling as over. However, I only voted ordinary since it is still possible to get an entire box of unsmokable cigars. That's outrageous. I have one right now -- LGC medaille 2 from 07. They have an impeccable provenance, since they were chosen by a certain ex-banker who lives in a flood-prone area (not to blame him, it's certainly not his fault). I've kept them at 65 for months, I use all sorts of prods and drills, I cut off enough to turn them into marevas -- nothing helps. My suspicion is that there are certain lines and even certain whole marcas which just don't get the same level of care. A few weeks ago Rob bemoaned the current state of Sancho Panza for example. The influence of smaller production may cut both ways.
  11. Two ideas: 1. A Romeo! Like Cuaba Distinguidos (but with no other similarities) 2. Sir Winston with some Siglo IV. 3. Colorado claro Or: 1. Churchill 2. A great Monte 2 with some PSD4. Both times I'm taking a classic and punching it up a little. Wonder if that might actually work out in real life or whether I'd just be wrecking fine stuff. 3. This one Colorado maduro
  12. Had the weird realization recently that these may be the best cigars I have. They're too small to actually be number one but they sure are great.
  13. Siglo IV TEB Abr 08 Epicure #1 probably early 08. The last from a few singles I got from Lisa to check on current production at the time. They were so great that I immediately got a PE box GLA Sep 08 which is totally different and not very good.
  14. Hey, what was the decision on Ken's church thread? I'm not sure that we should be having this discussion. For some of us pastrami is a religion. I love 2nd Avenue Deli the most. Katz may be great and it's amazing that it's been around since the 19th century (!) but 2nd Ave did something even more astonishing than live forever -- it rose from the dead. It finally closed in the original location, but a couple of years later reopened a little further uptown. Only the location changed. The pastrami is as awesome as ever.

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