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About CanuckSARTech

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    El Loco
  • Birthday 03/31/1979

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  • Location
    Ontario, Canada

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  1. Hey all. Yup, been offline a fair bit lately. Didn’t get the chance to get down to Havana this past November either. I hope to go down this upcoming end-of-Feb / start-of-March. I know I gotta get caught up on here too. Anywho, been stuck in Kingston for the past 11 days on a “special” course, and now in Ottawa as of yesterday, and straight through until the 31st. let me know if anyone is up for a cigar or any hijinx!!!!
  2. SWEET!!!! Thanks Andy!!!! In. Just let me know what my bill is, Rob. And no matter what, if you're bunking me with Glen or Stan this time, just let them know that I'm still calling dibs on Big Spoon. Unless they talk dirty to me.
  3. Dude, I AM "big brother", in many senses of the saying, and even I get that this is a bunch of horseshit, nanny-state, we'll-tell-you-what's-best-for-you, PC and PR crap. Someone's "make work" project for a random underfunded-government department, something for somebody's promotion application into middle-management perhaps, to show how they're "for the little guy" or some crap like that. Just another excuse to pander to another special-interest group, to add yet another layer of bureaucracy, to line someone else's pockets, because "someone" was oh-so-righteously "offended" by cigar/cigarette/tobacco/"other" smoke somewhere along the line, etc., etc.
  4. So, when I finally get the chance to come down and visit, as long as my fat ass can run faster than at least one of you guys, I'll be good????
  5. LOL. All I think about is remembering the brown snake shed skin in Ken's garage from a review many years ago, and the fact that it was found in amongst stacks and stacks of wine bottles and cases being stashed in there, and all I can think about is how many people likely wonder the same of Ken and Rob, how they've survived this long, doing the myriad reviews at Ken's house, in amongst the oodles of dangerous and deadly creatures you have in Oz-world, which are ready and willing to kill you year-round. LOL. Cue the "Jurassic Park" clip..."...nature finds a way..." LOL.
  6. So, for us in Canada (and I'm presuming many other markets in the world, including in the U.K.), that means that smuggled / bootlegged / counterfeit cigarettes come from factories or vendors who then sell "on the sly", under the table, and/or through a duty-free avenue, to bring down the costs of the items by saving the purchaser the taxes. Not just "fake" smokes. But smokes from the actual factories, properly made and packaged, and just simply smuggled duty-free smokes. Which, from what I understand, is something in the nature of 60-80% of the market. the $%@$@# can a dog smell a carton of cigs and tell me or anyone else if it's been taxed properly and sold duty-paid, or if it's bootlegged duty-free?!!?!?! Absolutely friggin' ridiculous.
  7. Doing some travelling soon again. And because it's my job for "health and safety", uhhhh.... Condoms.
  8. Moaning about RA being used too much for this stuff is a bit like peeing into the wind. One day, you're gonna get a face-full of it. If it wasn't used as a brand for RE releases, then it'd potentially be in jeopardy of being lost in the shuffle. While I love and always have stock of the RASS, Gigantes, and Superiores especially, I agree that the vast majority of REs from this marca have been meh-at-best. But, if it weren't for that, many people wouldn't be introduced to the brand as a whole perhaps, and we'd run the risk of the line being discontinued completely, and/or chopped down to a single offering in the RASS, a la the PLPCs damn-near for example. As Rob mentioned, the "big five" main brands are no-go brands to use for the RE program, per H S.A.'s rules. And yes, while we can want more / better / more thoughtful / etc as cigar smokers and fans, it's a dollars and cents game - distributors foot the bill, and there's some very specific numbers at play as Rob and others brought up. If RA (or others, frankly, such as Bolivar, QdO, PL, etc.) weren't used, and frankly, flogged to death by the RE program and other special releases, then it's quite possible that the newer market trends (giant jawbreakers, super Gucci accessorized and decorated packaging, special jars, catering to Asian consumers' wants, catering to the "flaunt it if you got it" culture, etc., etc.) would relegate many of these other marcas to the scrap-heap. And then we'd all be begrudging things that much more. All that said, I do love the various ideas that are being brainstormed here. I remember a number of years ago, Rob and us used to do threads saying Rob had an upcoming meeting with Maique or such-and-such, and "hey guys, give me your best ideas to pass along", etc., etc. And things used to get brainstormed in open form, and 3 or 5 things would be whittled down into some very nicely refined ideas, and stated as being passed along. There's been mentions in the past too of H. S.A. and Tabacuba brass being aware of certain comments made by us here on FOH, and from other online communities as well. And it's not unreasonable - there is a vocal and passionate fanbase here. And it's a cheap and inexpensive way (read: smart-to-business-people) for them to look at what "the little people want", and get some informal public input. But, the dollar will always drive the final decisions, for better or worse, as no matter how passionate we or anyone at H. S.A. may be about it all, the market steers things, and they need to ensure maximum profit and proper sales to continue viability.
  9. When the Mrs and I took the kiddies down to Disney in Florida back in Feb/Mar of last year (2017), I saw some of it then / there. For reference, I'm a HC 7 whore. That's actually my go-to bottle for making strong Cubatas / Cuba libres at home. Three or 4 ounces / shots of the HC 7 into a tall glass with lots of ice, and half a can of Coke Classic. Hard to beat. Regularly go through bottles of HC7. That said, I'm a fan of Bacardi white for it's simplistic smoothness, and like it best for using with blended rum drinks (pina coladas, daiquiris, rum punch, etc.), which are also a regular in our household, especially during the back-yard weather in spring/summer/fall. My wife and I are both rum fans. I honestly didn't like the taste of it. Seemed too chemically-tinged, for me. Definitely not that HC is the smoothest / sipping rum out there to begin with (I like Ron Santiago for sipping more - and it's actually the original pre-revolution Bacardi as well, ironically enough). But this Bacardi HC version isn't as nice. Not that the flavor profile should really be a factor though. Also, ironically enough. Me myself, I'm torn. I understand what the original ownership family is stating, and the theft that the Castro revolution perpetuated on many Cubans in '59. But I agree that the best Havana Club rum is made in Cuba with Cuban sugar cane and water, etc. And I also agree that Bacardi is just a shill, trying to milk the potential for a U.S. gov't opening up - if they were that worried about the Arechabalas family, they would have fought tooth and nail for them back in the 90's when Havana Club was sold to Pernod and started it's renaissance, not waited until now with the market opening up, just so they can increase their own bottom line. Frankly, there's enough crap Puerto Rican rum on the market. For the price, Bacardi is definitely trying to milk things with this recent resurgence. I would love to see a "best steps forward" approach - Bacardi and Pernod both joining forces to get the market open in the U.S., they drop all their lawsuit B.S., they agree that the Cuban-produced HC from Pernod is the "one rum" to carry the namesake, they split open the U.S. market with an even and/or proportional split on the revenues / profits, and the Arechabalas family is given a royalty-percentage or one-time licensing-payment to agree to it all, with HC acknowledging their place in history.
  10. This. First month "off the bench" - delicious, sometimes "mongrel", wild experience, that is outside the "norm" of what people think of [boxed / regular production] Cuban cigars to be. After that first month, 6-9 months at a MINIMUM (depending on the blend / roller / cigar), with a year to 3 years being best for the tobaccos all melding together.
  11. The webpage link is right above, in Jay's post. Awesome stuff there.

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