Saturday, April 02, 2011  

I'll break into your house and I'll smell your bed

Whilst I don’t altogether agree with the outcome of Kipling’s poem the betrothed, I can’t argue with his love for a good cigar. To be enveloped in the blue veil is an excellent way to relax. It’s very strange because I can’t abide cigarettes. To be fair I haven’t been smoking cigars that long. I had my first last year at my brother in law’s wedding. I had brought a few back from the Dominican Republic a few days before, and in the post wedding feast glow on a warm summer evening, I stood outside with my son and we smoked a particularly mild panatela, which is about 5 inches long and 34/64ths of an inch in diameter. It’s about a 40 minute smoke, which gives you ample time to drink a nice glass of brandy or a decent single malt. They both complement each other so well.

Between summer and Christmas I had about half a dozen more, including a Monte Cristo number 2 the night Movember finished. This cigar is widely considered to be one of the best in the world. I’m not sure I had enough experience to agree or disagree. A vile experience with a Hamlet didn’t put me off and I went to Cuba in December with a plan.

I brought back around 65 cigars, varying sizes and differing qualities of cigar, from Romeo Y Julietta handmade puritos to machine made Guantanamera. All of them excellent smokes. The number of cigars presented me with a problem; I had to make sure they didn’t dry out. I needed a humidor, so I trawled eBay for a couple of weeks and bought a really nice one from a German bloke.

So, after seasoning the Spanish Cedar, which is actually not Spanish and not Cedar, I charged the humidifier and put my collection in their new home. The best conditions for a cigar is around 20 to 25 degrees Celsius and around 70% humidity. The humidor is set up perfectly and my cigars are now ageing, and will be improving over the next 10 years or so. Not that they’ll get the chance to live in there for that long.

My only regret is that a cigar would completely ruin a Martini, only the strong spirits or a black Russian can stand up to the flavour. Maybe a Martini made with Kahlua, but it wouldn’t be the same as a really good Gin and Lillet blanc with a twist of lime.

All this talk has made me want a smoke.

| posted by Simon | 9:02 pm | 0 comments
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