I didn't mention it in my last (& also first) blog post, but I pair my cigars with a large variety of drinks. Not always planned, I usually decide on a drink and then grab a random cigar. So, props to Logan for masterminding the idea that my reviews focus on my experiences with these pairings. This will be my first such post, and I just happened to be on the golf course Sunday (5/19) when I made this pairing.
My boss and I golf on most weekends, I supply the stogies and he brings the beer. For some reason I knew I wanted to have this San Cristobal Papagayo XXL. I just had the hankering (yea, i said it) for a large ring gauge smoke and what better place than during 18 holes? Plenty of time to burn this monster down. I never know exactly what the beer will be until I get it, but this pairing went quite well.
A little side note. The wind this day was NUTS! Steady 20+mph with strong gusts. But this stogie never once went out! A bit wavy burn, but that was completely expected given the conditions.
So, on to the review...
This is a hefty 6x60 Nicaraguan puro. The foot smells of sweet tobacco and cedar. Very pleasant. Upon lighting it up I am hit with cedar, earth and a slight 'bite'. I can't really explain the bite. It wasn't spice or pepper, 'bite' is the best I can do. The smoke production was there, but never seemed too heavy, of course, see above weather conditions. lol
The Sierra Nevada Pale Ale was a great match! The hoppy bite of the Ale hit right in line with the XXL's flavor profile. Let's put it this way: Both of these items hit your tongue with a 'bite' and then fade to a smooth, clean feeling.
The second third lost most of the 'bite' and was mainly cedar. Still a pleasant smoke, and even with all the time left sitting for drives, it never went out.
The Pale Ale is still pairing well, but now it is 'biting' over the cigar a little. I don't feel it hurt the cigar any. It's just that I think it made the cedar notes a bit more neutral. That, or it was just the flavors mellowing.
This was one big stick, but it was thoroughly enjoyable. It always had a smooth, open draw, with nice, enjoyable flavors. And I haven't even mentioned it yet, but the band is a work of art! It catches the eye right away & works so well with the wrapper.
It wasn't until the last inch that this stogie started to turn on me, and I decided it was time to call it quits. Not bad though. It took me right at 2 hours finish, being that I was in no hurry.
Definitely something to try. I might even grab a couple to keep in the humidor. Definitely a worthwhile smoke if you have the time to enjoy it.