Thursday, October 15, 2020

Just My Opinion

 Cut, light, puff and enjoy. Simple words that open up a world of possibilities to the cigar smoker including our freedom to do so. Fine hand rolled cigars is a business for some, a hobby for others, but for all an item of sheer pleasure. We cigar smokers come in various shapes and sizes, languages, occupations and life styles, be they male or female. Nevertheless, no matter who the are or what their status is in life, the one thing each shares is a passion for fine hand rolled cigars.

What is a cigar after all but leaves that have been cured and rolled into a cylinder shape and consumed? However, they are so much more. Expert blenders, rollers, artists, etc. that work in unison to create a master piece of art work that delivers to the cigar lover a never ending combination of wrappers, binders and fillers to give blends that deliver the pleasure that each seeks. To sit and clip a cigar, letting the torch touch the foot of a prime blend causing the smoky essence trapped within to flow from its captivity, drawn through the cigar then engulfing the palate. The flavors of the cigar with its smoky transformation bringing to the receiver true relaxation and the joy the seek. A fascinating thing about cigar smokers, we can be strangers but when cigars are lit or talk of them commence, it is an instantaneous icebreaker making friendly conversations, laughter and even causing friendships to be created.
Its true cigar smokers, writers, companies and retailers are somewhat of a community, somewhat of a family. It’s odd how the outside world misunderstands our passion or enjoyment. Today we have politicians and certain groups who in there misguided thought patterns and not so hidden agendas, try to take away the things we enjoy. What they seem not able to understand is that unlike cigarettes, cigars are not a habit but our pleasure, not our addiction but our satisfaction. The problem is, and do not be fooled by their comments, they do understand they just do not care. They care not about what you want as long as their agenda gets fulfilled. What they actually seek is to regulate and take away the thing we enjoy. Different attempts are always made but our freedom to enjoy fine cigars still exists.
It’s wonderful to have an object that people from so many different walks can sit and enjoy together. It does not matter if you a seasoned smoker or someone new to the world of cigars, we are all equal when it comes to the pleasure. What a variety we have that we can choose from, all manner of blends and shapes, from those who like the very mild to those who tackle the heavy hitters of strength. It really does not matter how strong a cigar you smoke, mild or strong, all are equal. There are many of us who write about the thing that we so enjoy, we talk of a plethora of different flavors, tones and notes. Words written of the good and bad points of different cigar, some we like and some not. Should someone read cigar reviews? Yes of course, a cigar smoker should read anything they can. Should someone let a review make his or her decision on to buy or not to buy a cigar? Absolutely not. We all like different things, try it and make up your own mind.
The next time you walk into a B&M, one where you can smoke at, select a great stick, sit back and be glad that you are still free to do so.

 

Peace and Smoke,
Gator

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Cigar review: Liga Privada No.9

Times change and things go on. my old websiite, www.gcpuffs.com, was around for a long long time and even though I enjoyed it, the complexity of all it got involved in behind the scenes got to be a bit much. It was time for a break and for me the opportunity to get back to my roots of doing what I enjoy, writing stories about cigars. So thus came www.gatornations.com, back to the basics. Although appearance may be some what recognizable, what you cant see is where the change is. trust me, its much better. There is more to write about than just the latest cigars, frankly I love to write about any cigar I enjoy no matter how long its been around and besides reading about and writing about what you enjoy is all that matters. Which brings me to today's cigar, a Liga Privada No.9. 
It was going to be a long day of ending somethings and starting of others. Before starting the day I made what has become my favorite coffee, "Just Black Coffee" from Black Rifle Coffee Company, and clipped my No.9 for smoking. 
The cigar is top grade construction with few veins and a sweet looking semi oily sheen. This cigar should always be ranked with some of the best because in my never to be humble opinion it is.
The pre light draw gives hints of dry cocoa powder, rich soil and wood. Torching the cigar, rich flavors of dark chocolate, warm spice and wood show through, the smoke given is thick and creamy with touches of dried flowers in the aroma. Moving into the first third, a mild sweetness reminiscent of old fashioned sugar cookies begin to peak through.
As I draw deep on this delectable cigar I begin the process of cleaning out old files I have kept for years. Interviews and reviews who's pages have discolored somewhat over time are fed to the trash bin, articles written for different things before www.gcpuffs.com, some being fifteen years and longer ago, pulled from the cabinet and tossed like yesterdays salad. I had thought of keeping some things but old is old and new does not mix so away it all goes. 
Moving into the second third I happened across a bundle of old photos I haven't seen in much time. sitting down to peruse through them, the cigar is treating me to a plethora of abundance in delicious flavors. The dark chocolate has taken on a more dry cocoa affair with the warm spice turning a tad to pepper. The wood has backed off with touches of raw leather beginning to show, but in all this mix the switch up is very evident and pleasing. The mild sweetness I had mentioned has moved to the background and even though still noticeable, has moved to a reminder of carnival salt water taffy but very faint. The smoke is still thick and the dried flowers can still be picked up in the aroma.
The photos are of old cigar events, people in the industry and many fun filled times over the years. A few pictures of dinners that became very hilarious are there as well. I place the pictures in the cabinet, those are memories I shall keep.
With all things now cleaned out and a new system in place, I begin to look at things coming up in the future. Change is not always a bad thing, sometimes change brings avenues to expand what is inside.
Relaxing for a moment in thought, the cigar moves into the final third, the leather has increased with the cocoa disappearing being replaced by dark roasted coffee beans, more like coffee and chicory which is a good thing, with the pepper becoming more of a pepper mix. The mild sweetness has now vanished and the cigar more robust in flavor, with the final draw giving richer leather which works wonderfully with the coffee bean and a touch of dark loamish soil.
If you have not smoked one in a while pick a few up and revisit the delightful cigar and see what it reminds you of.


Peace and Smoke,
Gator

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Cigar Co.: Sosa Cigars


Sosa Cigars

All great cigar companies started small and Sosa is no exception and to be honest, starting small leads to great companies who care about their products.
Don Juan Sosa started as a small tobacco grower in Cuba in the Taquasco region around the turn of the century. Constantly growing, he became just one of the largest producers of tobacco in the early 20's. Family runs deep in the cigar industry and its the same with Sosa. Over the years the Sosa family has continued making cigars starting in Cuba, then Miami and the Dominican Republic as well. 
Tradition still continues today with operations in Miami, Florida Nelda, Juans wife, and their two sons Arby and Juan and others in the family. Sosa has a line up up fantastic cigars with superb flavor and quality. Check your local cigar shop and ask for Sosa and taste the tradition.
Just a few of the great cigars by Sosa:

Sosa Classic
Sosa Super Selection
Sosa Underground
60 by Sosa
Sosa Limitado Stout
Sosa Auric Perfectum
Sosa Family Selection

Try a few and see the flavor you receive from these excellent hand rolled cigars