Sunday, September 30, 2012

RobbyRasReviews Round Table

If you haven't already, you should check out the Roundtable on I had the joy of getting to participate in the very first episode of the roundtable along with 2 other BOTL. You can read our thoughts and see us on video discussing the My Uzi Weighs A Ton +11 and the Casa Fernandez Miami at If you are unfamiliar with Rob and the crew you should check out their site. They are a great group of BOTL and Cigar Chat is a ton of fun. Also give them a follow on twitter at to stay up to date on their news and info.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Punch "Tailgate Like A Champion" Giveaway

Punch Cigars is having an awesome giveaway over on their site. The Punch six pack that they are giving away contains 6 of their tasty cigars, a cutter, and a bottle opener. What more could you possibly need for a good tailgate? Well other than some tasty beverages to use the bottle opener on. Their Grand Prize contains 5, yes it says 5, boxes of punch cigars, a char-broil grill, a 200 dollar gift card to Chicago Steak Company, a  500 dollar stubhub giftcard, a tailgate lounger, tailgate game table, a premium lighter, and an ashtray. I don't know about you, but that sounds like one heck of a tailgate grand prize to me! be sure to check them out and get in on the giveaway at, You can enter daily for a chance to win, so be sure to visit them often and good luck to those who enter!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Cuban Legacy Toro by K. Hansotia (6.5x50)

I picked a few of these up in a sampler from Cigars International and left them to rest in the humidor for about 3 months before lighting them up. The Cuban Legacy is an offering from Gurkha Cigar Group's K. Hansotia. If you are unfamiliar with Gurkha Cigars, which I doubt you are, they boast being a super premium boutique cigar company. The are known for having a plethora of limited production cigars and some of the most attractive cigar boxes I have ever seen. I know you're not here to read my ramblings, you want to know if the cigar is worth toasting. The Mexican San Andreas Maduro wrapper is a dark brown color with only one fairly large vein and a fair amount of tooth. The binder is Nicaraguan and the filler is a blend of Nicaraguan tobaccos from Esteli and the Jalapa Valley. I didn't get much scent off of the wrapper other than a light note of hay. The foot smelled of sweet tobacco with a bit of what resembled honey. I clipped the cap with my Xikar MTX and found a near perfect draw with some sweet notes. I toasted and lit with my trusty single flame torch with no problems. The Initial third opened with notes of coffee with a mild, herb-like spice and a bit of maduro sweetness on the finish. The retrohale offered a fair amount of spice but was not overpowering. There were a few earthy notes that seemed to come and go in the first third and a bitter sensation that lingers on the tongue. In the second third the earthy notes move to the foreground as the spice and the sweetness both kick up a notch. The bitter sensation subsides and notes that resemble black licorice pop in on occasion along with notes of dark chocolate. In the final third the dark chocolate notes seem to steal the show but the earth and coffee notes are still present. The bitter sensation made a comeback in the final third but wasn't unpleasant and didn't detract from the enjoyment of the smoke. The ash was a bit flaky but managed to hold on for about 1.5 inches at a time with a ligh-medium gray color.This was a fairly complex cigar with a few burn issues, there were a total of 4 burn corrections and one issue that corrected itself but took an inch to do so. It seems to be a mixture of opinions when you ask other cigar smokers about gurkha cigars, it seems you either love them or hate them. I have only tried a handful of their vast amount of offerings and have experienced a few burn issues but good solid flavor profiles. This is one of their lower end offerings and the price point is 2.00-2.50 a stick from Cigars International if you order a box of 20. The few minor corrections on the burn were a aggravation but for this price and flavor profile it's hard to complain much. As for me, I will remain neutral on my opinion of the brand until I have had the chance to try a few more blends and see if the burn issues continue. I had a similar, but much worse experience with the Gurkha Blue Steel in a earlier review. I have a few more of their offerings in the humidor waiting for me to burn, when I do I will let you know how it goes. You can find more information on K. Hansotia and Gurkha Cigar Group at and on twitter at You can find the link to the Cuban Legacy at Cigars International HERE



Thursday, September 20, 2012

Xikar MTX Multi-Tool


I saw one of these on a fellow BOTL's Instagram feed for the first time several months back and thought it looked pretty sweet. I have been on the search for the perfect cigar scissor with very little luck. I have been using a pair of Visol scissors but they have some age on them and just don't make as good of a cut as they used to. It's not that the Visol scissors are getting dull because I have sharpened them, they are getting some play in the joint that I can't seem to eliminate. I marinated the idea of getting the MTX for awhile before actually ordering one. I couldn't decide on a color since they come in bead blast, chrome, black, and gold. I finally broke down and ordered the bead blast finish. I expected it to be a bit larger that it is but that's not a bad thing at all. The Xikar site says they can handle up to a 54 ring gauge cigar and I rarely go with anything larger than that unless it's a 60 by Sosa. I received them in the mail last week and have decapitated about half a dozen cigars with them so far with excellent results. It fold up for convenient pocket carry and upon registering it online (or by snail mail) Xikar will send you a leather pouch to store them in. I haven't received the pouch yet but I registered them last night so that it should ship out soon. They carry the Xikar lifetime warranty so you can have confidence that if it fails to function they will fix it. Of the cutters I own this was the sharpest out of the box and I don't see me needing to address sharpening for quite some time. They feature a small cigar poker, a cigar box opener, bottle opener, and a small screwdriver. I read on one review that the screwdriver didn't fit the adjustment screw on most torches, It has fit every torch I have with a little finesse. At .2 inches thick and weighing in at a mere ounce it is super convenient for pocket carry or to carry on a keychain with the provided keychain ring. My only regret about ordering the MTX was that I didn't do it sooner. If you are in the market for a cigar cutter and want a perfect cut in a super convenient size, don't delay in ordering one of these. This is probably the best cigar accessory purchase I've made this year. Now I want to get a double guillotine cutter and a torch to go with the MTX, so it's back to trying to decide on which ones. They have a rather impressive selection to choose from and all are backed by their lifetime warranty.



Padilla Maduro Robusto (5x50)

I like Padilla cigars, maduro wrappers, and discount email notifications. When I got an email from Cigars International telling me they had a bundle of Padilla Maduro cigars for 25.00 I had to jump on it. I have already smoked through over half the bundle so the time to get a review up has come. The Mexican San Andreas Maduro wrapper houses a Nicaraguan binder and fillers from Nicaragua, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic. The dark, oily wrapper has a rustic look with small to medium size veins but nothing that should alter burn. It is firm to the squeeze with just a little give and no soft spots that I could find. The body had a barnyard aroma and the foot offered the smell of sweet tobacco with a bit of cocoa. I clipped the cap with my scissors and found the cold draw to be near perfect with a sweet tobacco flavor. It was effortless to light after toasting with my single flame torch. The Initial third opened up with a rich tobacco core and notes of coffee and leather. There was some black pepper to the retrohale that complimented the mild sweetness of the maduro wrapper nicely. The finish is lingering and nutty. In the scond third the leather notes move the background as notes of dark chocolate join the rich tobacco and coffee. I noticed a few earthy notes that seemed to come and go in the second third. In the final third the coffee and dark chocolate notes are still in the foreground as most of the leather notes have faded away. The final third also brought light notes of mildly sweet cedar and cinnamon to the profile. This is a pretty straight forward cigar, offering some complexity to it's core flavors of leather and dark chocolate. It maintained a consistent medium body throughout the burn and produced ample amount of smoke. The burn was near perfect on every one of these I have smoked, requiring maybe 3 touch-ups over the course of 13 or 14 sticks. If you are looking for a medium body stick with some mild sweetness and spice, a decently complex flavor profile, and excellent construction you should give these a go. I have seen them on a few other sites for around bucks a stick, which is about right for this stick. If you keep an eye out on Cigars International they may get some more of these in and put them on discount. At 25 bucks for a bundle of 20 I really wish I had ordered more. You can find more information about Padilla Cigars at Be sure to check out there new lines that should be hitting shelves soon, if they haven't already. They are also on twitter at http:/



Monday, September 17, 2012

Sosa Exclusive Series Grand Cetro Maduro (6x50)

This is one of the sticks I picked up on my trip to Sosa Family Cigars in Orlando, FL. so it has been marinating in the humidor for a few months. After a long week and watching my little sister get married, it was time for a celebration. What better way to celebrate than with a Sosa Cigar right? My thoughts exactly! I managed to get my son in bed a little early and had enough time to smoke something larger than a robusto size. This one had a dark brown, velvety smooth wrapper with a couple of noticeable veins but shouldn't be anything that would hinder the burn. The wrapper is a Connecticut broadleaf maduro which houses binder and filler from the Dominican Republic. The Sosa website says these are a limited production cigar due to their use of only the finest tobaccos. The wrapper had a light cocoa aroma with a hint of sweetness and the smell at the foot was of cocoa and molasses. It was firm to the pinch with little give and no soft spots that I could find. I clipped the cap with my new Xikar MTX multi-tool and found a perfect cold draw with hints of molasses and cocoa. After a quick toasting of the foot, it lit easily with the handy single flame torch. The Initial third opened up with light notes of red pepper, coffee, and leather. There was a very light caramel note that snuck in about 1/2 and inch into the burn. The sweetness of the maduro wrapper was mild and pleasant with just enough spice on the retrohale to compliment it perfectly. Body in the first inch or so was a solid medium for me. In the second third body picks up a bit to a solid medium. A cedary wood note along with some cream come into play in the second third as the smoke takes on a more creamy texture. In the final third the coffee note, that was more in the background in the first two thirds, moves to the foreground as a slight nuttiness joins the profile. The spice kicks up a notch going into the final third but is still mild and pleasant. There is a barely noticeable note of dark chocolate that seemed to make itself known at about the half way point that picks up just a bit in the final third. The final third seemed to bring a slightly bitter sensation to the tongue but was not harsh or unpleasant at all as the body kicked up to medium-full. The construction on this stick is exactly what you would expect from a Sosa Cigar, it was well made with perfect burn. The burn did get a bit wavy but always corrected itself, requiring no help from me. The resting smoke had a slightly sweet woody aroma. The ash held to around 2 inches at a time and was light gray in color. It's sticks like this, Underground, and the Super Selection that keep Sosa Cigars in my top 3 favorite brands. A solid cigar with a nice complexity and great flavors, yep it's a Sosa! I paid 10.00 for this stick at their shop in Downtown Disney. I believe they can be found online for less than that but even at the 10.00 price point it's a great cigar for the money. Burn time was around 2 hours and required no re-touches or re-lights. You can find more information on Sosa Cigars at and you can find Arby Sosa on twitter at He is a super nice guy and always a joy to talk to, so stop by twitter and say hey. They are also on facebook at




Sunday, September 16, 2012

Cuban Crafters Revolucion 3 blade scissors

I recently placed an order online for a pair of Cuban Crafters cigar scissors. The particular vendor I ordered from on Amazon shipped the wrong item and I ended up with the Revolucion scissors instead. I figured why not give them a go. This is one wicked looking pair of scissors, with their 3 stainless steel blades. They do feature a wide handle design that is great for larger handed individuals like myself. What really catches they attention about these is the 3 blades and how they mesh together when making a cut. When you open the handles the blades move to the outside of the circle and upon squeezing the blades together all 3 blades move together at the same time. The blades are designed to be self-sharpening and require little maintenance and care. They come with a small brush to assist in the removal of any bits of tobacco left in the blades when clipping the cap. I found that these seem to work best on the smaller ring gauge cigars (below 50). It doesn't do it every cut but I would say probably 30 percent of the time there is a small protrusion of filler left bulging from the cut. It's almost as if there is a "dead spot" where the blades meet up to finish the cut. It is certainly one of the most unique looking cutters I have come across and does make a decent cut. You can never have enough cigar toys so I will hold on to this one for now. It lists for about 25 bucks on the Cuban Crafters website and does carry a lifetime warranty. If you want a very unique and eye catching cutter or just a conversation piece, this cutter is right up your alley. for more information on Cuban Crafters line of accessories and inventory of cigars.


E.P. Carillo New Wave Connecticut Stellas (5 1/8x42)


What is that you say? You don't care much for Connecticut wrapped cigars? They usually tend to be flavorless air-balls that are entirely too mild for you? In most cases I would agree that the Connecticut shade wrapper denotes a stick milder than I would care for. Well here is a Connecticut wrapped little gem that is not too mild, and far from flavorless. The New Wave Connecticut has an attractive Ecuadorean Connecticut wrapper that houses a Nicaraguan binder and filler from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. The wrapper had a few small veins but nothing that should hamper burn. the wrapper had a barnyard and manure aroma and the foot smelled of barnyard and earth. It was firm to the pinch with a bit of give in a few spots but nothing serious. I clipped the cap with my scissors and found the cold draw to be just a bit on the firm side of perfect with mild earthiness.  The Initial third opened up with notes of roasted nuts and caramel with a slightly sweet caramel-like finish. There was a just enough black pepper spice to compliment the sweetness, especially on the retrohale. The smoke has a creamy texture and the body is on the milder side of mild-medium. The second third offered up some nice coffee notes and a faint earthiness as the body stepped up to a solid mild-medium. The sweetness and the spice both faded just a bit in the second third as it became even more creamy. In the final third there were subtle notes of leather and cocoa that joined the party but were muted and demanded your attention to pick them out. Most of the spice disappeared in the final third leaving the creaminess of the flavors to shine in the spotlight. The burn was a tad wavy but required no corrections. The medium gray, salt and pepper ash was a bit flaky but held for about 2 inches at a time. This was a nice change of pace for me, I like to keep some variety going so as not to get stuck in a full bodied rut. The New Wave Connecticut has enough body, flavor, and complexity to keep even a veteran herfer happy. With that said, it's a great smoke for the cigar newbie or a seasoned smoker. This was the first of E.P. Carillo's offerings I have tried and I look forward to trying some of the others. This stick was a gift from @Cigar_G on twitter ( as part of one of his many cigar contests. If you are on twitter, you should look him up. He is a entertaining BOTL and always has some kind of contest or giveaway going on. I saw these at for 89.99 for a box of 20 (Stellas size), bringing per unit price to around 4.50 per stick if you buy a box ( Link HERE). Burn time was about an hour and fifteen minutes. More information about E.P. Carillo can be found at and you can find them in the twitterverse at

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Macanudo Vintage Maduro 1997 Toro (6x54)

The fact that this was a maduro, a Macanudo, and the really sweet looking metal band made this a "had to get" cigar for me. I picked up a few of these while placing an online order a few months back. I am now down to 2 so I figured it was time to post my review. There is just something about a sweet maduro wrapper that hits home with me like good comfort food. The elegant metal band is certainly eye catching and serves as a nice holding point to smoke this cigar.  The oily wrapper is a dark brown Dominican Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro with minimal veins and no soft spots that I could find. The binder is from Honduras and the filler hails from Brazil, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic. The wrapper had a lightly sweet cocoa smell and the foot smelled of cocoa, hay and a mild fruit-like sweetness. I clipped the cap with cigar scissors and removed the band at the foot. The pre-draw was near perfect with notes of slightly sweet cocoa and spice. I used one of my single flame torches to get it toasted and lit with ease. The initial third opened with notes of raisin, molasses, and a roasted nut note. The aroma of the resting smoke was mildly sweet and very pleasant. Very creamy on the palate with a bit of spice and maduro sweetness on the retrohale. The first third was more of a medium-full in  body and full flavor. The Second third brought notes of dark chocolate and a cocoa powder type note. The second third brought a bit more to the body bringing it to full and still full flavor. The final third was more of the first two thirds but different, if that makes sense. Although no new flavor notes joined the mix, each puff seamed to bring my attention to a different one of those flavors. The finish throughout the burn maintained a roasted nuttiness with a mild sweetness and a slightly bitter sensation. The ash held tight for about 2 inches at a time and was a medium gray color. Burn was a bit wavy but nothing to warrant a correction. This was an excellent smoke and is Macanudo's first maduro offering in their vintage series. It is a limited production cigar and should be grabbed up while they are available. It has been in my top 10 smokes since I had my first one, and is my favorite of the Macanudo offerings. At the time of this review the best price I have found is at The Toro can be had at 8.09 per stick and the box price for a box of 12 is an incredible 69.95 for this size. I may regret posting that price when I get ready to reorder and they are sold out at stogieboys. If you have not yet tried the Vintage Maduro 1997 and love that sweet maduro wrapper and a complex flavorful cigar, then this one is worth grabbing while you can. The link to the Macanudo Vintage Maduro 1997 at stogieboys is HERE (General Cigar)