All posts by The Silver Wolf

Cigar and alcohol enthusiast, romance author, lifestyle blogger. I've been published in romance for the last 17 years, but only as o f late have been able to combine my passions for the grape, leaf and written word into a careeer that allows me to live passionately!

Wine Blog: Changes and Upgrades

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted my thoughts on wine and that’s been due sadly to drinking what I hoped were great buys but turned out to be less than mediocre. Many of the wines we’ve picked up have been deals at those prices but lacked flavor and that “thing” wines have that separate great wines from the rest. It’s not been for lack of trying.

I’d say we probably went through four or five cases of various wines purchased mostly from Grocery Outlet and they were good. But nothing had that “pop” that makes me want to include them for Pure Indulgence. Even the more current wines were less than stellar.

The challenge here is going to be finding those spectacular gems in a lot full of coal. It’s doable but it takes time. In the meantime, we’re going to feature more producers.

I’d LIKE to get an interview with Craig of Cornerstone Cellars out of Napa as we have reviewed his wines and even the lower end wines such as Stepping Stone line are examples of wines that have been crafted with care. The higher wines from this producer are good examples of why Napa Valley is a front runner in wine making and why Napa is on the map.

I’m aiming to bring more wine reviews to the site, along with podcasts for Pure Indulgence where we spend time sampling, talking about the wine making process and educating you, the reader/listener on the joys of the Pure Indulgence lifestyle.

News to many of you, I’ve decided to make Pure Indulgence a part of my career in hopes that the Lifestyle will become just that.

Until next time,

Cheers!

Wine Review: Genisis 2007 Chardonnay by Hogue Cellars

This is a smooth wine with lemony acidity complimented by light oak notes. Pale green in color, this wine starts off with zest and finishes smooth. A wine that grows slightly more complex as it opens up.

Picked up the bottle for $5.99 at Grocery Outlet, the retail is just over $14.00. It’s a good buy by the case if you can find it. Out of Washington’s Columbia Valley, this is definitely a good introduction to Pure Indulgence.

Cognac Tasting at Cafe Des Amis

Nothing touches complexity and perfection in a glass like cognac.A well aged and well made cognac is complex, deep and thought provoking. It evolves over time in the glass and produces maximum enjoyment to the drinker who ultimately shows off their good taste by simply sipping the beverage. Last night’s event at Cafe Des Amis proved this to be true.

10 different cognacs from three producers with appetizers Remy Martin, Pierre Ferrand and Courvoisier brought samples and talked up their products as guests mingled, my girlfriend took pictures and trays of appetizers and cocktails were passed around.

Now we’ll break down the tasting notes

From Remy: The Louis XIII – starts off with golden orange hues and a nose that begins with spice but under a refined character of cognac. Then the first sip is liquid honey, heating the tongue slightly. Floral notes are detected. A second sip reveals honeysuckle, peach-like flavors and vanilla from French oak.The third and final sip reveals more pronounced oak and caramel flavors with a nice, long finish.

1738 – A more medium bodied offering with significant oak and caramel on the palate.

1989 – A charming offering from Remy with more floral notes. Smooth and long finish, the heat blends into a nice bit of spice.

Remy XO – The Standard nightcap for many. Full flavored with just enough weight in the mouth to accompany the evening pipe or last cigar of the day, or finish out a nice meal. The balance of this cognac is astounding at the price point.

Next up: Peirre Ferrand offerings

Pierre Ferrand is 1er Cru Grand Champagne and are an exceptional offering. Four blends tried.

The 10 year – a well rounded offering with nuances of oak and floral notes that developed into spices over the course of the glass. Slight heat from the alcohol marries with refined smoothness for a unique taste.

The 20 year – A little more rustic as though the cognac blend needed something. Yet it was spicy, nutmeg or clove complimented the finish.

The 30 year – A more mature blend with heavier notes of vanilla and terroir. Particular impressions included limestone and chalk, to speak of the land in which the grapes were harvested. A smooth finish and medium to full mouthfeel end this blend well.

The 45 year – an exceptional offering with much more pronounced chalk and limestone though the French oak shines through with ease. Burnt Orange scents tickle the nose and palate. A pleasing, long lasting finish.

Lastly, we come to Courvoisier:

XO – not nearly as refined as the Remy XO but more rustic. Dirt and land come across form this blend.

12 year – A good bargain cognac with less refined heat and a sharp bite at the end.

21 year – Candied fruits stand out amongst the developing flavors of this blend. I’d buy a bottle and let it rest, honestly

Pictures to come soon! And a Radio Dentata interview or two to follow!

Cigar Blog – The New Challenge

It’s been a while since I’ve given anything more than a cigar or alcohol review for the blog so I thought I’d share new goals this year.

Remember in an earlier post I seemed stuck in a rut? Well this year I’d like to break out of that rut OR examine why I’m there. I’ve got a pretty good idea already as to why I smoke the way I do. It’s even carried over into my pipe habits as of late, (or that could be the fact that I’m breaking in a new pipe and dedicating it to English blends only.)

For starters, the following cigar makers represent a few things to me:

Don Cervantes Masterpiece Platinum
1. Consistency. Every time I want a cigar that tastes smooth, clean and is well constructed, I can pick up anything made by Pete Johnson, Max Myers, Eric Newman or Padron. If I’ve ever had one fall apart it was due to how I cut the cigar, lit the foot, etc. I can’t say the same for H. Upmans, which I used to love.

2. Lifestyle. Padron and Newman to me represent the old way of living, a comfortable way Having spoken to Eric Newman, I’ve discovered that his message is one we can all agree on. Prevail through the tough times but during our well deserved down time, slow down. To me, Max and Pete represent a newer trend that allows us to have the nicer things in life we’re working towards. The two compliment each other as far as I’m concerned. You won’t find too many of the wealthier people smoking the Warlock (a good stick) when they could smoke a Padron Anniversario or the Tatuaje SW Reserva.

3. Price. Yeah, I said it. I’m all about money and to me and my old way of thinking, money used to mean quality. The more you spent after doing your homework, the better the product should be. In short, like Zig Ziglar used to say, the Cost was worth the Price. The Brick House (to me) smokes like a $20 cigar every time even though it’s less than $6 in most cases while the Diamond Crown Maximus makes me kinda feel like a king.

4. Not least on my list but last because I’m writing the blog in advance and am on an author deadline: The people behind the cigar. I’ve met and hung out with Max, Pete and spoken to Eric at length on the phone. We did an interview for Radio Dentata with him and Max (separate interviews!) and will have Pete on eventually But all of the men I’m referring to have character that’s genuine, sincere and honest. I don’t know the people at Altadis or General Cigar. They’re probably pretty nice folks I’m guessing. But I don’t know.

So there it is. I’ve laid down why I’m a cigar snob, but only time will tell if I expand in THIS part of my journey towards the Good Life.

Cigar Reviews: Don Cervantes Masterpiece Blue

This is the mildest of the Don Cervantes line with yet another perfect construction. A light brown Ecuadorian Connecticut Claro wrapper and binder give the cigar a silky smooth taste that intro or occasional cigar smokers will certainly enjoy. A good draw brings out creamy light earth notes and a hint of espresso.

Rolled En Tubado just like the other cigars in this premium line, white ash holds for at least a good inch before falling off.

See more reviews of the Don Cervantes line here.

Whiskey Review: Gentleman Jack

Picked this whiskey up last week at BevMo and decided to give it a try. Light amber in color, it smells of typical bourbon. The aromas in the glass give hints of floral notes but the taste that comes through is overwhelmingly smooth when sipped. Some caramel and floral notes bounce off the palate with a medium finish.

Serve warm or with two ice cubes. This is definitely a sipping whiskey, with a minimum bite that disappears after the first taste.

It’s charcoal filtered twice for extra smoothness and that comes out in the taste profile. Subtle hints of oak help smooth out the finish.

Visit Jack Daniels Website

Definitely a whiskey I’ll be adding to my stock on a regular basis! Oh and for those interested, I’d pair this with a Don Cervantes Masterpiece Gold. The woodsy taste on the palate along with hints of pine marry well with the floral notes.

Cigar Review: Tatuaje Black Tubo (verocu)

The shag foot cigar rolled by master blender Don “Pepin” Garcia for Pete Johnson starts out with spicy earth flavors that continue down the length of this well constructed puro. Flavors blended into light earth with a good mix coffee that reminded me of drinking a cup, rather than smoking it. The only other cigars that have captivated my palate so well are the Padron 1964 Anniversario and the Don Cervantes Masterpiece Platinum.

The Tatuaje Black finished with an exquisite taste and easy draw that will leave you wanting more.

Cigar Review: Don Cervantes Tres Maduro


The Don Cervantes Tres Maduro is a true triple maduro cigar, is a complex cigar with rich notes of earth and cocoa. I sense a theme with Max’s sticks ūüėČ It starts off with a fresh, clean taste and plenty of smoke though the draw is a little tight. Chocolate brown maduro wrapper has been fermented properly to give the cigar more depth.

The second third melds those clean flavors with more pronounced earth and a very faint amount of spice. The final third ends with mellow notes. A tight white ash so well constructed the cigar could stand on it is impressive since rarely a cigar is out that’s so well made.

Look for them here in California soon!
Don Cervantes

Max Myers of ACC

Cigar Review: Don Cervantes Masterpiece Gold

Don Cervantes Masterpiece Gold

Wrapped in a true Connecticut shade wrapper with 5-6 year old aged Ecuadorian tobaccos, Masterpiece Gold by Don Cervantes is a splendid smoke to start off the day. Flavors of earth and pine become apparent immediately, melding nicely into the cocoa and coffee taste of the last 3rd. A slightly tight draw due to the en tubado rolling method, yet a clean, even burn compliment this cigar.

ACC Lifestyle

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