It’s been a while since my last normal post. The two weeks of contests was great, I hope everyone enjoyed winning and having the chance to win a lot of great cigars. Thanks again to all the sponsors! One of the great things about these contests is when someone reasonably local wins. I had two such opportunities this year, the first on Day 1. This saved me postage and allowed me to meet a reader and visit a new store. Adam won the Gurkha goodies, and I met him at To’Makao Fine Cigars in Bethlehem, PA. This is a nice shop filled with great boutique brands, as well as the owners own line, rolled right there in the shop. Franklin, the owner, worked for Fuente in the Dominican Republic for many years rolling Fuente Fuente Opus X PerfecXion #2. I don’t know how he ended up in the metropolis of Bethlehem, but he has a very nice shop and lounge. I bought a few of his cigars, along with some Arandoza Red toros (a recurring theme…), and lit up his Habano wrapped cigar, which was unbanded and I think it was a toro, but it was a week ago, so I can’t remember! The cigar burned perfectly, and had a nice, mellow sweet flavor. I spent an hour or so enjoying the cigar and getting to know Adam a bit while enjoying the lounge, which was all but empty. I guess the Sunday before Christmas isn’t a big cigar lounge day. The lounge is comfortable, the cigars very good, and the hospitality was awesome. Franklin is a terrific guy, and you should visit him if you are ever in the area. Last night I smoked his maduro, shich I belive is in his “Big Papi by Franklin” line, and, again, it was quite nice. Smooth, rich maduro flavors, quite the unexpected surprise from cigars rolled right here in Pennsylvania. Of course, PA has a rich tobacco history, but the last cigars I smoked that were made here were quite the opposite of good! Van Slyke and Horton cigars were pretty terrible, and I admit that I haven’t had a John Hay in some time (I treasure my cigar time…but I’ll take one for the team with a John Hay maduro that’s been in the humidor one of these days!). Great shop, great company.
- See more at: www.cigarcraig.com