Monday, June 15, 2015

Ideas For Empty Cigar Boxes: Cigar Tissue Box Dispenser

I never throw away empty cigar boxes because I always thought that one day I might need them for something... That goes for a lot of stuff I still keep laying around the house! So if you are like me? then congratulations! We, whether you like it or not, are Hoarders! But not the compulsive type...I think... hope not... yet!

Some of the empty boxes I still use to store in some loose cigars that I have purchased and others I use for decorative purposes. So today I would like to share with you something simple and useful to do with your empty cigar boxes that can be a nice decorative item for your "man-cave" or a conversation piece... So lets start...

P.S. By all means I am not a carpenter and I'm just using tools that I have. You might have better tools to make this project... I'm just keeping it simple

What you need:

  • Empty cigar box - I'm using H.Upmann Half Corona 25c
  • Ruler or measuring tape
  • Wood Filing tools
  • Pen/Pencil
  • Montecristo Petit No.2 (optional)

Light up your Monty Petit No.2 and lets start...

Open the lid of the box and make your measurements...

Mark the center and with a screw driver make an indent to help secure the filing point...

Using a fine filing tool to pierce through the lid gently without breaking the wood...

Close the lid and use a  rougher filing tool to widen the pierced hole...

Start filing with an angle to reach the desired length from both sides...

Using the fine filing tool to smooth the edges...

Dust off the shaving and clean the box from the inside...

Take the desired amount of tissue papers from your regular tissue box...

Place the tissue papers gently without disturbing the folds inside the cigar box...

Take the first fold of the tissue paper and insert it through the opening you made in the lid...

Close the lid and secure the nail (original nail that came with the box) back in place...

And there you go folks... your very own Cigar Tissue Box... Now that wasn't hard was it?


Friday, April 17, 2015

LA FLOR DE CANO Siboney Exclusivo Canada (Regional Edition Canada 2014) Tasting and Review

Length: 11cm
Ring Gauge: 42
Factory Name: Minutos
Vitola: Minutos
Type: Petit Corona
Presentation: Box of 25 (Serial Numbered only 2,000 boxes made)
Release Date: February 2015

The Construction - Very firm Semi-glossy brown colorado claro wrapper with almost no visible veins. A fair cap construction and a tightly rolled petite corona measuring 11cm in length which is a similar vitola as a Ramon Allones Small Club Coronas.

The Draw - Using a small gauge punch for the Siboney reveals a well packed rolled tobacco with just the right amount of resistance. The Siboney has a very faint pre-light aroma but you can pick up some hints of sweetness from the draw.

The First Burn - After taking the first draw in and out of the nose, you pick up on some of that sweetness of burnt caramel which is overshadowed by the rough taste of ammonia in the cigar. A bit spicy compared to most LFDC I have had but certainly common since this smoke might still be young and hopefully it changes later on while smoking.

The Middle Burn - The spicy zing continues into the middle part not leaving much character of the Siboney to savor. There are a few hints of freshness coming through and a slight sweet spicy notes. The burn in perfect and smoke carries well while the ash is still intact and solid. No interesting profile to showcase as the rough ammonia taste still overwhelms the hidden characters.

The Final Burn - Showed little improvement with the development of character. The taste of ammonia still lingers around and bitterness in the smoke starting to be present. Hints of black pepper burnt wood are what comes through during this part. The sweetness in the beginning are faint yet you can still pick them in the aftertaste.

Surprisingly nearing the end the sweet caramel and woody notes come through noticeably and leaving just a slight zing in the back of the through and a bitter taste on the tongue and that tingling pepper sensation in the nose. To be honest the last part of this smoke was the most enjoyable!

Overall the Siboney is a fairly young cigar and should be left to rest for a while, I think some character will shine through after a year of resting. I was hesitant to review the La Flor De Cano Siboney... but I thought of documenting this now and see how it develops in time. So definitely will revisit this cigar after a year.


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

H UPMANN No.2 Reserva Cosecha 2010 Tasting and Review (2014)

Length: 15.6 cm
Ring Gauge: 52
Factory Name: No. 2 Reserva Cosecha 2010
Vitola:  Piramides
Type: Piramides
Presentation: Box of 20s, Only 5,000 boxes (numbered)
Release Date:  N/A

Well this cigar should be on the shelves real soon, that is why I kept this review off until now. I remember first tasting the H Upmann No.2 Reserva which was during the Gala Dinner at the 16th Habanos Festival last February 2014. It was unfair to review it and savor the note back then, simply because of several factors that might influence the cigar let alone the fact that my palette was completely off from the numerous amounts of cigars that I've been smoking during the festival! (Good times)

 Gala Dinner Reception and main event

 Tom John blessing the stage and sampling the new Upmann No.2 Reserva

As you are aware, the 16th Habanos Festival Gala Dinner paid tribute to one the oldest continuing brand the H Upmann and finally releasing its ever-so-deserving first Reserva of the popular vitola the No. 2. A Cosecha 2010 which means the tobacco was harvested in 2010 and aged for a minimum of three years before rolling the cigar.

For this review I had revisited the regular production Upmann No.2  a few times to really pin point the vitola profile. I have tasted an early 2000s and a 2011 No.2 and quiet frankly they both show different notes yet bound by common denominator which stands out in most Upmann vitolas. As for the Reserva review I am smoking one of the 2 cigars that came in lacquered box made exclusively for the festival, which have been resting for almost a year, so lets take a closer look...

The Construction - A semi-matte dark colorado-claro wrapper with a couple of visible and protruding veins. Firm body which a soft resistance indicative of well rolled tobacco. The construction of the cap is a little bit sloppy for a Reserva but overall a very solid stick. The Reserva band as you can see has the silver embossed logo in the front and on the back overlay of the band you see small logos similar to that of the Gran Reservas.

The Draw - Snipping a couple of millimeters from the cap shows how tightly packed the head was. the draw was a bit tight but not completely block which I sensed it will be an issue later on during the smoke. The pre-light draw offers so many wonderful and inviting earthy scent with sweet chocolate and oak wood notes. From this you can easily tell that this cigar is maturing well.

The First Burn - After evenly toasting the foot with a soft flame torch and taking the first puff of smoke out of the nose, you will be surprised of its smooth and soft smoke with no harshness or ammonia similar to regular first burns. You can pick up on a lot of sweet and oaky notes, very very faint white pepper-like spiciness but almost unnoticeable and very light nuttiness.

The burn is uneven yet it even itself out a few puffs later and the ash starts to show some cracks. the smoke is light from the tight draw yet very flavorsome.

The Middle Burn - Here is where the true Upmann charachter is showcased. The classic profile of cool spice and leather with a touch of sweetness is dominant during the second part. Of course you can still pick up a few notes of moist wood as well which can take you for a very enjoyable journey.

Half way through, the draw becomes tough from the moistness of the tobacco and the tightness of the head while flavors starts to intensify. To avoid tasting bitterness from the tobacco I had to loosen the pathway for the draw by inserting an inch of a cigar pick just to avoid snipping the head a few millimeters with a cutter.

Perfect draw with just enough resistance after a little detour to avoid any inconvenience for more Upmann character to savor and perfect balance of smoke. Some light peppery notes starts to come through nearing the end of the middle part.

While the cigar keeps burning uneven, it eventually even its self out after a while and the ash flakes around the edge but its holding on super strong. Smoke it more abundant than the beggining since the airway to clearer but not very think.

The Final Burn - The character intensity is exepcted in most piramides vitolas since the buildup of tar and wetness on the head will bring in bolder flavors. Leather and more leathery classic Upmann No.2 character with a little bit of white pepper and just the right amount of sweet tobacco.

If you like full body characteristics then the third part of this smoke will be worth it. I try not to wet the head of the cigar with my mouth much to enjoy the beautiful sweetness that comes through with light spicy zing without the bitterness.

A beautiful cigar and a well deserved Reserva for the Upmann brand. The aging process of the tobacco played a quiet interesting refinement of the character profile known in the No.2 vitola. Was 2010 a good harvest? The answer is up for grabs! I have smoked a few Upmann No.2 from different years, some are exquisite and give multidimensional characters yet some are just straight forward. This Reserva on the other hand, will offer more than what you expect down the road. Awesome!

The Pairing - Since I have not had anything to drink with this cigar expect water, I can easily suggest the Nespresso Volluto as a good pair. With intensity level 4, it offers little acidity with some sweet notes that will complement the Upmann No.2 Reserva Cosecha 2010 character.