Thursday, December 12, 2013

The winter humidity battle

Winter is in full swing in most parts of the country and for cigar smokers it's a war in our humidor. The colder air cannot hold as much moisture as warm air creating a much dryer environment. To warm the air we run our furnace or hear pump to heat the inside of our home. This can create a humidity issue in even the most tightly sealed humidors as it further dries out the air. The dry air will begin to pull moisture from the wood in your home and even the wood used to build your humidor. I have fought this battle for the last few years with great frustration. I have re-seasoned my humidors, added extra humidification devices, and even tried putting a shot glass of distiller water inside my humidors. I think I may have finally figured out the best, or atleast easiest, way to fight the battle. This year I pulled out the large home humidifier but it hasn't seemed to stop the increasing dryness inside my home and my humidor. As I sat staring at the readout on my hygrometer I was reminded that the shot glass of distiller water or pg solution was probably my best idea. It had not worked well for me in the past but I needed to figure out why. After all, if a container of water doesn't bring the moisture level up then would possibly could right. This surface area of the liquid wasn't enough to allow good evaporation. I took that same distiller water and poured it onto a clean paper towel. I then placed that paper towel into a ziplock bag and placed it inside one of my humidors. I made sure to keep the bag upright and just barely cracked so as not to wet anything. With the secured wet paper towel nestled between a box of Sosa Classic maduros and a box of macanudo vintage, I went off to bed. I awoke the next morning thinking I would still be seeing a 60% or lower RH . I was pleasantly surprised to see the RH at 69% and holding. I didn't want to press my luck and introduce too much moisture into my stable environment so I removed the baggy and closed the front door on the humidor. It held for about two weeks, until the temperature took another downward plunge and the air became very dry again. I am getting ready to place a fresh paper towel into a baggy and insert it back into the humidor tonight. This may not be the appropriate way to handle the dry air issue but it worked well for me. If you have any experience or good advice for battling the low wintertime RH, please feel free to post it in the comments. Happy smoking!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Loose Cannon 1206 by C&C Cigars Toro (6x54)

It's hard to believe the year is almost over. I realize the lack of new content here has probably lost some readership but it has been one crazy year. I spent the first part of the year getting the house, specifically the nursery, ready for our baby girl. Along with welcoming our baby girl into the world, we had to say goodbye to a couple of grandparents who passed away. I promise to make more of an effort to get the reviews pumping again, I have so many sticks I have been forced to let sit and age (not exactly a bad thing I guess). So without further delay let's get to the good stuff, a great stick that was provided for review by the great team at

I have reviewed several of the offerings from C&C and have been very impressed with the outcome. They offer wallet friendly sticks that are oh so very tasty. The Loose Cannon 1206 has a Dominican filler and binder that is wrapped in a maduro sumatra wrapper. The wrapper has minimal veins and is a bit lighter than maduros I am used to seeing. This cigar is lightly boxed pressed and is firm to the squeeze with only a little rebound. The wrapper offered notes of light notes of cocoa and barnyard with a mild sweetness. The foot offered the same cocoa notes with more of a fruit-like sweetness. I decided to go with a punch cut on this one, for no other real reason than I wanted to. Testing the cold draw of the freshly punched cap, I found the draw to be perfect with notes of hay and sweet field grass. I used y handy single flame torch to get things going with minimal effort.

The initial third opens with warm notes of cedar and a long toasty finish. The finish has a mild sweetness that lingers on the lips and palate. There is a fair amount of spice to the retrohale, which helps to balance out the maduro sweetness. The spice lingers in the throat and on the back of the tongue. As I progressed through the first third, notes of earth and black pepper begin to develop as the cedar gains some depth.

The second third sees a slight increase to the sweetness but no real flavor changes. The flavors are complex in their presentation as each takes turns sharing center stage with each puff. The black pepper, earth, and cedar all gain depth in the second third as hints of coffee start to pop in and out. The cedar becomes the more dominant flavor around the mid-point of the cigar. The other flavors are not muted by the cedar but are complimenting it very nicely.

As I start the final third, the sweetness begins to fade out The smoke has taken on a very creamy texture. The black pepper is starting to fade out with the coffee, earth, and cedar still going strong. As the black pepper fades, toasted nut flavors take it's place. The finish become more crisp in the final third as I find myself wetting the palate a bit more frequently. It's not like a desert in your mouth but just enought to notice.

With the Loose Cannon 1206 nubbed, I find myself satisfied and ready for bed. This was just what I expected from C&C, a great cigar with a ton of flavor. The body remained, for me, medium thoughout most of the burn with a slight upkick to med-full just after the halfway point. At no time was there any harshness or hot burn. The Ash held to over an inch at a time and the burn required only one very minor correction due to wind and misty rain. If you are thinking about trying the Loose Cannon, I recommend it. It was a fine smoke and I will be hitting to place an order when I get some room in the humidor. You can grab these for 5.75 as a single, 25.95 for a 5 pack, or a box of 20 for 101.95 at StogieBoys. I think I may just have to go for the box, any less and I would just go through them too fast. Stay tuned for an upcoming review of the the Loose Cannon Trigger Happy from C&C.
Thanks to Sheryl and the crew at for providing the samples for this review, they were great.