Tag Archives: Pure Indulgence

Cigar review: Camacho Coyalar

I had this last night in the short figurado size at Highland Cigar company. Off the top, the cigar has a robust appearance with both ends being pointed. Really interesting cold draw – almost bread and leather.

Upon lighting up I was hit instantly with soft notes of leather and spice, not quite a strong black pepper flavor, but something more refined.

Camacho Coayalar

The cigar lasted for about an hour, having both a good, solid draw that produced a decent amount of ash gray smoke, and an even burn line. Flavors were pretty consistent throughout the entire cigar, no real variance from one section to another. I’d look to see that in the larger sizes.

I’m still not a fan of the larger gaudy bands Camacho uses but this one does fit.

Overall, a solid new release from Camacho.

Cigar review – Rocky Patel Fifteenth Anniversary

I can’t believe I’ve been smoking these cigars off and on for years and never left a review.

The Rocky Patel Fifteenth Anniversary is a box press cigar with flavors of spice, earth, cocoa and a slight sweet baking spice core. The strength is a solid medium out of Nicaragua and hailed as one of Rocky’s best blends – though I’m more a fan of the San Andreas that came out last year.

The flavors develop nicely over the length of the cigar, changing slightly while the baking spice remains present.

Cigar review – Rocky Patel Fifteenth Anniversary

I can’t believe I’ve been smoking these cigars off and on for years and never left a review.

The Rocky Patel Fifteenth Anniversary is a box press cigar with flavors of spice, earth, cocoa and a slight sweet baking spice core. The strength is a solid medium out of Nicaragua and hailed as one of Rocky’s best blends – though I’m more a fan of the San Andreas that came out last year.

The flavors develop nicely over the length of the cigar, changing slightly while the baking spice remains present.

Cigar Review: Camacho Criollo

This was a re-branded cigar from Camacho, owned by Davidoff now and I have to say, the cigar is good but I hate these ugly bands. Big, bold, yes but horrible LOL! The first few notes from the foot of this medium brown torpedo include plum, raisin, tobacco and chocolate.

Cold draw confirmed those findings only adding an orange zest sweetness. That was rather different for my palate even though I’ve been smoking cigars as long as I have.

Taking the first few puffs gave a good draw, with a lot of gray, semi sweet smelling smoke along with robust pepper and hints of leather. As it developed, the taste of wood slides over the palate to continue through most of the cigar. The burn line was good, clean. Well constructed.

Cigar review – Perdomo 20th anniversary barrel aged.

I picked this up at Got Cigars? in downtown Decatur a few weeks back and got to try it. The pre-light has heavy raisin and mulled wine tastes. Dark wrapper has no noticeable flaws. Speckled slightly, giving hope of spice.

6×60 and felt so right in my fingers!

The Cigar starts off easily with hints of red pepper and spice along with slight oak flavors.

Perdomo’s greatness continues at Got Cigars? in Decatur, GA.

Then it picks up as the smoke burns evenly, with hints of cocoa and bourbon barrel flavors.

The burn line corrected after a few minutes and the flavors became more like baking spices.

Coffee notes develop along with chocolate sweetness and light earth.  With a medium to full bodied finish that lingers, this is a definite keeper in the humidor.

Wine Review: Le Douleur Exquise 2016

This wine from the region of Bergerac, France was pretty stellar I have to say. Taking it on the back of another, full bodied red from Australia showed that it had power behind it, without being overwhelming.

Oh, this was a selection sent from FirstLeaf.

The wine was almost a combination between straw and gold, with a beautiful bouquet of rich limestone, slight hints of grapefruit and of course, the typical heat from wine.

Very strong mineral notes. Upon taking the first sip, limestone and grapefruit hit my tongue along with those mineral notes I’d mentioned. Very tasty.  This wine is fairly supple and feels good in the mouth with enough weight that it could be a summer sipper or pair well with fish in the fall.

The breakdown:

60% Sauvignon Blanc
30% Semillon (surprised I didn’t get any herbaceous notes)
10% Muscadelle

A fantastic wine overall.

 

Cigar Review – Nestor Miranda Danno One Life Edition

Nestor Miranda Danno – a Nicaraguan blend with a broadleaf wrapper and pig tail cap.   The cold draw produces flavors of light dark fruit with something mellow, maybe spice?  The wrapper looks a little rough, few IMG_3578veins.  Very dark chocolate color. 
The first few puffs start off with wood flavors-the dark fruit is definitely present along with muted spice. Not that power heavy stuff one gets from cigars from My Father factory.   In fact, I tasted plum on the initial few puffs.
Hints of leather appear along with a stronger sense of black pepper. This is just the first third. It actually paired well with the Laughing Skull beer (IPA) I had that night with it.
Starting the second third, the flavors give way to wood and the spice takes a back seat. The burn was slightly uneven.
The wood notes grow slightly in intensity. The smoke is cool. I was surprised at the construction.  If you’ve seen my rants on FB or twitter, you’ve seen that a number of cigars close to this size I’ve smoked have been duds, a disappointment considering they’re coming from some of my favorite makers.  Regular sizes (Toro, proper Churchill, etc) smoke just fine.
IMG_3579The final third is a mellow version of all the previous spices, chocolate and balanced bitters bonus the deep wood from earlier.  The burn line self corrected. Overall, a well made, tasty release with plenty of complexity from Nestor Miranda.

Scotch Whiskey Tasting – Notes from Highland Cigar Company

While in Atlanta, I’ve been checking out Highland Cigar Company, usually going on Sundays.  Last week, the 28th of June, the folks there hosted Simon Brooking, from Beam/Suntori and we tasted some nice Scotch Whiskies.

Simon’s a knowledgeable guy about both Whiskey and the history of many different brands, plus the wet past of Scotland.  His tales were amusing, his toasts, heartwarming and jokes, well any good Scotsman would be proud. Plus, for once, I wasn’at the only one wearing a kilt at Highland 😉

IMG_3347
From Left to Right – Auchentoshan 3Wood, Bowmore 12 year, Laphroaig Select

Now, onto the juice.

Three different scotches paired well with the Antonius Robusto – a mild to medium bodied Dominican cigar that had been rolled and “forgotten

Antonius Robusto
Antonius Robusto

about” for about 8 years.  The blend had more power than expected, but was mild enough that a novice smoker could enjoy it, along with it not balancing well with the whiskies.  To be honest, I was shocked that the cigar paired so well with an Islay whiskey, but that’ll come up in my notes shortly.

The first whiskey was Auchentoshan 3 Wood.  Matured in Bourbon, Oloroso Sherry and PX Sherry casks, this scotch had really refined flavors and a lovely finish with a pleasant finish.  I found it balanced and it blended well with the Antonius, complimenting the wood notes of the cigar.  This was a favorite at Highland, due to the lovely, sweet finish.

Next was the Bowmore 12 year.  Listed as an Islay, I found this to be rather pleasant compared to what most folks think of when someone says Islay  Scotch.  The mild citrus notes came upon me at the end of the drink, along with mild peat and sea.

Last was the Laphroaig Select – a masterful blend of various scotches hand picked by a “select group” of tasters.  This is honestly the lowest peated scotch they make.  Peat has been a bone of contention for me for years, due to the effects it has on my stomach (I suppose I could drink less but where’s the fun in that?  LOL!) But this whiskey shows reserve on the smokiness, adding more balance and less of that gasoline taste that tends to put drinkers of whiskey off.  The finish of the IMG_3350Antonius went very well with just enough backbone and intensity to compliment the Laphroaig and not be overpowered.

Overall, the Antonius was a solid choice for this whiskey pairing.  Balanced with wood notes, hints of spice and vanilla appeared on the palate.  Firm in the fingers, the draw was delightful.  A cold draw brought in flavors of cinnamon and baking spice.  Construction was also solid, though I forgot to get pictures for the blog.

There were two other whiskies we’d tasted but sadly, my notes are not legible – typical of being a published romance novelist.  They were both Laphroaig, however, and wonderful in their own right.  I’d lit up a second cigar at this point.

Currently, Highland Cigar Company is doing tastings on Tuesdays throughout the summer.

For a different experience in Scotch Whiskey, see my notes about the Balvenie Masterclass held back in San Francisco a few years back.

Wine review: Inspiration Vineyards 2012 Dry Creek Zinfandel

Located in the heart of the Russian River Valley, operated by John and Barbara Philips.  Grapes come from an eastern facing Hillside Vineyard just outside Healdsburg, CA.

My retarded ass got audio, but I didn’t get any video or photos, so you’re going to have to resort to stock photos for now.  The pairing for this meal was actually buffalo steak with Cajun spice.

My preferences in Zins tend toward big, fruity powerhouse styles with meat laced pizza (no cheese!)

But right from the start, the nose is nice spice and pepper.  Berry notes, along with an unidentifiable green substance, not sure what that is.  But it’s present in the old world wines I tend to enjoy.

Taste – a really relaxed Zinfandel.  Sweet cherry on the palate followed by a medium dry finish coating the mouth deliciously.  Hints of terroir, with more balance than expected out of California wines as of late.

This was a stellar wine pick that I grabbed at Underground Cellar.  You should check them out.  I don’t get paid to endorse them, though hopefully that’s going to be a thing some day.  Oh, I can dream…