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#76 lokarda

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 12:30

evo baš danas slušam da je Walter Wolf na suđenju...bili bili


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#77 Doorn

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Posted 25 October 2017 - 11:36

 

How To Ash A Cigar?

There's no need to repeatedly tap or flick a cigar's ash like that of a cigarette. Handmade cigars are crafted from long-filler tobacco, which holds a far longer and sturdier ash than a cigarette, whose ash flakes and end up in your lap if left to any length. Fiddling with the ash with too much force can break off the ember, or "cherry," of the cigar, which will leave you having to relight.
 
The best thing is to first have patience. Wait until the ash is about an inch long, or until you see a crack develop, before disposing of it in your ashtray. If you wait a very long time, the ash will no doubt drop on your shirt or pants or on the floor.
 
When it is time to ash, rest the cigar against the side of the ashtray and gently tap the end of the cigar. If done right, and at the correct time, the weight of the cigar should allow the ash to naturally fall off. If the ash is not breaking off, rest it on the side of the ashtray for a second, then repeat the process.
 
You can also gently press the edge of the cigar against side of the ashtray, turning or rotating the cigar at the same time. Take care not to press too hard. This will allow the ash to break off evenly, and you'll avoid any of the pitfalls mentioned above.
 
Overashing can lead to an uneven burn. Oxygen feeds fire. The thicker the ash, the less oxygen reaches the burning portion of the cigar, and the slower it burns. While too much ash can cause a cigar to go out more quickly, too little ash can cause it to burn too quickly and, often, unevenly.
 
And with no ash to protect it, you may inadvertently knock off the entire burning portion, a.k.a. the "cherry," forcing you to re-light.
 
Ideally, try to keep the end of your cigar covered with a thin band of ash. It will protect the cherry and regulate the burn.

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#78 Doorn

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Posted 06 November 2017 - 11:17

 

Che's Habanos

 

For Ernesto "Che" Guevara, cigar smoking was not a luxury, but very much a part of the business of revolution, a spiritual complement to lessen the hardships of a life filled with difficulties and dangers.
 
In his writings, he advised guerrilla fighters to include among the few and precious items to carry in their backpack: a hammock for resting, a plastic cover as shelter from the rain, a blanket to protect against the cold mountain nights, salt to conserve essential foods, lubricant for the weapons, a canteen with fresh water, basic medicines and tobacco, "because a smoke in times of rest is a great companion to the solitary soldier."
 
This he discovered in the odyssey that culminated with his landing on Cuban shores in 1956. Besieged by violent attacks of asthma, he made the voyage from Mexico with Fidel Castro. His comrades remember him withdrawn in a corner of the small boat crammed with men, stoically enduring shortness of breath, thirst, hunger and the fear of capsizing in the bad weather.
 
Under these conditions he set ashore in a mangrove swamp. "I came here to fight, not to be nursed," he blasted to one who tried to help him. Wounded in the first ambush, Dr. Guevara gave himself a prognosis of death and, recalling a story by Jack London in which the protagonist prepares to die, he leaned against a tree thinking that all would end too soon. Fortunately, he erred in his medical assessment and would later be able to continue until reunited with the survivors of the scattered troop.
 
His asthma continued unabated and forced him to march in the rear. Despite his pride, a fellow soldier would carry his backpack, and at times even his spent body, over his shoulders. Ultimately there was no choice but to leave him behind, hidden in the woods, with little aid, in the hope that he would recover and serve as guide to a group of fresh recruits that was expected to join the troops.
 
A peasant suggested he smoke "campana" flowers, which, according to country wisdom, relieves shortness of breadth. That didn't work, but it did induce him to try his first cigar, which he smoked in a moment of joy upon rejoining the main guerrilla force. The month was December 1956. Che Guevara was 28 years old.
 
Times were rough, and Che thought up excuses to justify the utility of his discovery. He said then that cigar smoke was effective in repelling some "very aggressive mosquitoes." He went so far as to claim that smoking helped soothe his asthma attacks, but Oscar Fernandez Mell, a guerrilla doctor who accompanied him on many of his adventures, says that these were only excuses, since Che, who had conducted advanced medical research on allergies, knew that to be untrue.
 
In fact, he was captivated by, in his words, "the fragrance of the Cuban leaf." He became entrapped in that peculiar relationship that serious smokers establish with their softly glowing habano, in which their minds drift from memories to dreams. Cigar smoking became a habit that the Argentine-born revolutionary enjoyed for the rest of his life, the first Cuban custom that he made his own, his first step toward embracing the culture of the country where he founded a family, where the legend of his name began.
 
Toward the end of the campaign, he led an invasion force across the island aimed at capturing the provincial capital of Santa Clara. For some greenhorns Che was not only their guerrilla commander but also their smoking mentor. Leonardo Tamayo, his 16-year-old aide, recalls that Guevara taught him to smoke by passing him his cigar butts, "because Che did not wet the cigar when he smoked," Tamayo says.
 
After the Revolution, Guevara was named to important government posts. Nevertheless, for ordinary Cubans he was a model of austerity: he ate like the rest, his only attire was olive green drab, he supported his family on a modest salary. He was not inclined to luxuries nor did he accept privileges or gifts, except for books and cigars.
 
He preferred to smoke large sizes in assorted brands, including Montecristo, H. Upmann and Partagas, but when times were tight he was not demanding. Carlos Lugo, then a young rebel officer, remembers first bumping into Che at the entrance to the office of another legendary guerrilla commander, Camilo Cienfuegos. Guevara ignored him as he passed by, which did not prevent him from swiping a cigar that Lugo carried in his shirt pocket. Not long after this they met again. Lugo was getting ready to join the Nicaraguan guerrillas and Che was helping with the preparations. The officer reminded him of the incident, but the commandant made no attempt to repay his debt.
 
There are hundreds of photographs of Che smoking in the midst of the intense activity that characterized his ministry in the revolutionary government. His intimates profess that he barely had time to sleep, much less to enjoy a cigar at leisure. He would smoke a cigar until it nearly burned his lips, or else he would stuff the butt in a pipe and smoke it until it turned to ashes, but without inhaling the smoke, just as connoisseurs recommend today.
 
Because of pulmonary emphysema, he was forced to take medical leave for a time. When the doctors tried to prohibit him from smoking, Che negotiated permission to smoke a single cigar a day, and promptly arranged to have an extraordinarily long size rolled for him that he could smoke all day, without violating the agreement.
 
A few days before leaving on a revolutionary mission to Africa in 1965, Che held a final meeting with Raul Roa, then Cuba's foreign minister. It was, perhaps, an excuse to bid farewell to his friend without unveiling his plans to join the guerrilla forces in the Congo. Roa left written testimony that while they discussed world politics, particularly Che's recent appearance at the United Nations, the latter "sipped with sluggish delight the fragrant smoke of his cigar while rumpling his black beret." At the end, Che told Roa he was going to cut sugarcane for a month and with fine humor invited his friend along.
 
A photograph taken during preparation for Che's departure shows him without his characteristic long hair and beard, unrecognizably clean cut while savoring a long, thin cigar. Some claim that it was a special vitola (size), a gift from Fidel Castro, probably a prototype of the now famous Cohiba. If this is true, it would count Che Guevara among the earliest tasters of one of the world's finest cigars.
 
His passion for reading and smoking became the standard of his endurance. Evaluating with his customary severity his own attitude during the Congolese guerrilla experience, he said: "I think I have been sufficiently dedicated so that no one can impute anything about my physical or personal aspects, yet my main bents were satisfied in the Congo: tobacco, which I seldom lacked, and books, which were always abundant. The discomfort of having a pair of torn boots, a dirty suit of clothes or eating the same pittance and sharing the same living conditions as the troop did not signify a great sacrifice for me."
 
Congolese journalist Godefroid Dihur Tchamlesso, then liaison between Che and Laurent Kabila's troops, remembers that he distributed cigars as an incentive to the best fighters and punished the undisciplined by suspending their rations.
 
To resupply the troops with everything from ammunition to cigars, it was necessary to cross the immense Lake Tanganyika in fragile boats under a hail of enemy bullets from air and sea craft. Occasional shortages led Che to divide the cigars into pieces, and he even recommended--no one knows if he was serious or jesting--to save the smoke in bottles in order to inhale it later. In critical times Che and Emilio Aragones, the troop's most die-hard smokers, stuffed their pipes with African tobacco, a leaf so strong that it invariably made them dizzy.
 
One of his subordinates reports that Che once gave him a 40-centimeter cigar and recommended that he divide it into 40 equal pieces to be smoked in a pipe, so it would last for 40 days. After that time, Che told him, he was authorized to come back for another.
 
On those occasions when he remained in camp, Che had the custom of saving his habanos and smoking them during the night, as he wrote or read about the most diverse topics. This humble ritual included sipping unsweetened tea, an undrinkable beverage by Cuban standards. By day or on campaign, he regained the habit of smoking a pipe. The wooden bowl protected the tobacco from the jungle humidity, hid the glow of the combustion and allowed him to smoke the butt to the end.
 
Once his mission to the Congo ended, he began a journey that would eventually take him to Bolivia. Just as before, Fidel Castro continued to be Che's tobacconist of last resort, and he sent Che the last Cuban cigar that he would smoke in his life. According to Tamayo, one of the few survivors of the ill-fated Bolivian crusade, the event took place in the Andean mountains on March 22, 1967, when Guevara received a box of Churchills from the Cuban leader and consumed his share while dividing the rest among his troops.
 
The gift, sent via sophisticated clandestine channels, included three bottles of Havana Club, prompting Che, who was not prone to drinking hard liquor, to make a rare exception and accompany his luscious cigar with a sip of the choice Cuban rum.
 
Never again would he enjoy wrapped tobacco. From that moment he could obtain only the pressed leaves, which he smoked in his pipe, that the guerrilla fighters would buy in the poor country stores or from the peasants. He always followed the norm of dividing equally the tobacco and cigarettes, but he never smoked the latter, preferring to trade for leaves with those who preferred cigarettes.
 
In the hardest times the smokers spent months unable to obtain tobacco and would stuff their pipes with any dried leaves, at the risk of burning their tongues. But Che never complained of shortages of books or cigars, Tamayo claims. His only references to them were to mention the suffering of the others, although obviously he too endured these scarcities.
 
He bought tobacco for the last time in La Higuera, a hamlet lost in the Andes. It was here some days later that he was assassinated (Editor's note: He was executed by a Bolivian military officer) after being captured wounded. All of the witnesses agree that the 39-year-old Che faced death calmly and courageously. In the schoolhouse converted into a makeshift cell, one of his captors fulfilled his wish and handed him some tobacco. Smoking constituted the last pleasure of his life.

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#79 Doorn

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Posted 08 November 2017 - 10:20

 

A Gentleman of History

Prior to the First World War, warfare was viewed among English gentlemen as an exciting and gallant activity. As a rite of passage, ambitious military officers eagerly sought battle. But in the late nineteenth century, "a long spell of almost unbroken peace" meant that there was little opportunity for ambitious English officers to distinguish themselves. In that period of uncommon peace, Winston Churchill found himself stymied in his search for honor.

 
"Rarity in a desirable commodity is usually the cause of enhanced value," Churchill wrote, "and there has never been a time when war service was held in so much esteem by the military authorities or more ardently sought by officers of every rank." The young Winston understood such service was the road to distinction and fame. Lacking any field of battle on which he might distinguish himself, Churchill sought out a real live conflict. He wished it to be "a private rehearsal, a secluded trip, in order to make sure that the ordeal was not unsuited to my temperament."
 
This led him in 1895 to Cuba, which was then attempting to rebel from the Spanish empire. Cuba was a place, he later wrote, "where real things were going on. Here was a scene of vital action. Here was a place where anything might happen. Here was a place where something would certainly happen. Here I might leave my bones."
 
And it was in the Caribbean that Churchill's cigar smoking began in earnest. Having arrived in Havana in November 1895, along with a fellow officer named Reginald Barnes, and having been stood up at the docks by the Spanish commandant who was to have met the two men, Churchill and Barnes took a room at one of the best hotels in town and spent the next several days living off of little more than two of the local specialties, oranges and cigars. From that point on, Churchill favored Cuban cigars above all others.
 
As Larry Arnn, an assistant to Martin Gilbert, Churchill's official biographer, has said, "Thereafter, cigar and Cuban were synonymous for Churchill." Indeed, among Churchill's favorite brands were Romeo y Julieta and the now-defunct La Aroma de Cuba. He had a number of regular suppliers of Havanas who kept him well-stocked with cigars throughout his life, even during the prohibitive years of war. And at Chartwell Manor, his country home in Kent, Churchill stocked between 3,000 and 4,000 cigars, mainly Cuban, in a room adjacent to his study. The cigars were kept in boxes on shelves with labels reading "large" and "small," "wrapped" and "naked" to distinguish the cigars' sizes and whether or not they were wrapped in cellophane. Not surprisingly, Churchill spent a great deal of money on his cigars over the years. As one of his valets, Roy Howells, wrote in his book, Simply Churchill, "It took me a little while to get used to the fact that in two days his cigar consumption was the equivalent of my weekly salary."
 
Perhaps no political figure is more readily associated with the enthusiastic and regular enjoyment of cigars than Churchill. Few informal photographs show him without one. And when a London cartoonist depicted Churchill as a tommy gun-toting gangster, he dubbed him "Cigarface." So integral was the cigar to everyone's image of Churchill, that a jesting King George VI was once able to have some fun at the expense of a few English pottery manufacturers who made ceramic toby jug likenesses of Churchill smoking his trademark cigar. According to one of Churchill's private secretaries, Phyllis Moir, "When King George and Queen Elizabeth visited the pottery works, the King examined the toby jugs with critical interest. 'I do not think he smokes his cigars at such a low angle,' the King remarked earnestly, thereby sending the pottery firm's executives into a hurried conference on the slant of Winston Churchill's cigars."
 
Throughout most of Churchill's political career, he was inseparable from his cigars. And he went to great lengths to make certain that he would not have to abstain needlessly, even for short periods. On one occasion, while serving as prime minister during the Second World War, he was to take his first high-altitude airplane flight in an unpressurized cabin. According to biographer Gilbert, when Churchill went to the airfield on the evening before the flight to be fitted for a flight suit and an oxygen mask, he conferred with the flight expert who was to accompany him on the journey and requested that a special oxygen mask be devised so that he could smoke his cigars while airborne. The request was granted, and the next day Churchill was happily puffing away at 15,000 feet through a special hole in his oxygen mask.
 
On another occasion, in one of his later triumphs of the Second World War, Churchill encountered and audaciously overcame daunting royal opposition to two of his greatest loves. As prime minister, he hosted a luncheon in February 1945 in honor of King Ibn Sa'ud of Saudi Arabia. Churchill wrote about one aspect of this luncheon in his war memoirs: "A number of social problems arose. I had been told that neither smoking nor alcoholic beverages were allowed in the Royal Presence. As I was the host at the luncheon I raised the matter at once, and said to the interpreter that if it was the religion of His Majesty to deprive himself of smoking and alcohol I must point out that my rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite smoking cigars and also the drinking of alcohol before, after and if need be during all meals and in the intervals between them. The King graciously accepted the position."
 
Churchill typically smoked between eight and 10 cigars per day, although he did not constantly smoke his cigars but often allowed them to burn out so that he could chew on them instead. In this manner of consumption, the cigars often became mauled and frayed. To address this problem, Churchill devised what he called a "bellybando," which was a strip of brownish paper with a little glue on one end. To prevent the cigar from becoming excessively moist and to keep it from fraying, he would wrap the bellybando around the end.
 
The bellybandos also made it somewhat easier for Churchill to smoke so many cigars every day, because they limited direct contact with the tobacco and, therewith, Churchill's intake of nicotine. Churchill smoked his cigars down to about the last one or two inches, and, later in life, when he spent much of his time in the country at Chartwell, his staff would save all of the ends of his cigars in order to give them to one of the gardeners at Chartwell, a Mr. Kearnes, who liked to break them up and smoke them in his pipe.
 
Churchill had received cigar cutters over the years as gifts and kept one of them, a cigar piercer, attached to his watch chain. But he did not use any of the cutters he owned on his cigars. He preferred to moisten the end of the cigar and poke a hole through it with one of the extra-long wooden matches he had specially imported in large cartons from Canada. He would then blow through the cigar from the other end to make sure it would draw. Finally, he would light it, sometimes with the candle that he kept nearby in case the cigar went out.
 
Churchill also had a favorite ashtray; it was made of silver and shaped like a pagoda with a little trough at the top to hold his cigar. This ashtray, a gift from a friend, was always at Churchill's side and was even packed into a special little suitcase so he could take it along wherever he traveled. "There was always a certain ritual with the silver ashtray whenever he was away from home," writes Howells. "On the Riviera it was ceremoniously handed over to the head waiter of his private dining-room each day before lunch, and then returned with great decorum after dinner."
 
While he was apparently very careful about tending to the unlit end of his cigars with his bellybandos, Churchill was much less careful about tending to the lit end of his cigars. Moir writes, "Hostesses invariably complained that wherever he went he left behind him a trail of cigar ash on their valuable carpets." If he dropped cigar ash on his hostesses' carpets, he also frequently dropped ash on himself. Moir says that the two images of Churchill which remained most prominent in her mind after leaving his employment were of Churchill pacing a room while composing a speech and of Churchill "sunk deep in the depths of a huge armchair, a little mound of silver-gray cigar ash piled on his well rounded midriff."
 
He not only frequently dropped ash on his clothes, but he also had a tendency to burn his clothing. "Sir Winston's suits," writes Howells, "were constantly going in for repair because of holes caused by cigar burns. He used to burn his suits this way when he became too engrossed in reading; the cigar would droop slightly and catch the lapel." Indeed, the problem became sufficiently great, according to Edmund Murray, who was Churchill's bodyguard for a time, that Churchill's wife, Clementine, designed a kind of a bib for him to wear in bed to help prevent him from burning his silk pajamas.
 
Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill was born in 1874 to an American mother, Lady Randolph Churchill (nee Jennie Jerome), and an English father, Lord Randolph Churchill, a famous Victorian member of Parliament. Referring to the dual nationality of his parentage in a 1941 speech to a Joint Session of the United States Congress, Churchill quipped to his audience: "I cannot help reflecting that if my father had been American and my mother British, instead of the other way round, I might have got here on my own."
 
When Churchill was 13, he enrolled in the Harrow School, perhaps the most prestigious school in England after Eton. He was undistinguished as a student. Indeed, he was last in his class for much of his time at Harrow. This meant at least two things: He did not study Latin and Greek but instead mastered the use of the English language; and he did not go on to a university but instead went to the Royal Military College, Sandhurst--England's West Point--where he was trained as a cavalry officer.
 
His early school record notwithstanding, Churchill was a man of prodigious genius and accomplishment. He was one of history's greatest statesmen, and he may be the greatest orator of the twentieth century. He was a decorated soldier who saw action in four wars. He was a Nobel prize-winning writer of history, an acclaimed novelist and a skilled polo player. He was an accomplished painter as well as a licensed craftsman. He was an epicure, a connoisseur of the finest wines and cigars and a consummate gentleman.
 
And his accomplishments started early. By the time he turned 26, Churchill had seen action in three of England's imperial wars and had been decorated for valor in battle. He had been taken prisoner of war and had escaped from captivity. He had written no less than four highly praised histories of three of the wars he had experienced: The Malakand Field Force, The River War, London to Ladysmith via Pretoria and Ian Hamilton's March. He also had written a novel called Savrola about a fictitious statesman and master orator. In addition to these and other remarkable accomplishments, Churchill, at 25, was elected a member of Parliament.
 
After his "private rehearsal" in Cuba, Churchill was to perform most magnificently as a young soldier and reporter in three of England's colonial wars--first in India, next in the Sudan and finally in South Africa. Indeed, he performed perhaps too brilliantly at times. It was Churchill's ambition to manifest unconcern with the hazards of combat, and he was exceedingly daring on the battlefield. "I am more ambitious for a reputation for personal courage," he wrote to his mother from India, "than [for] anything else in the world." At times, Churchill positively seemed to enjoy the perils of war. "The game amuses me--dangerous though it is--and I shall stay as long as I can," he wrote in another letter. And, in The Malakand Field Force, he proclaimed, "Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to be shot at without result."
 
Concerned about sentiments such as these and about the tales she was receiving from him and others of his extraordinary exploits in battle, Churchill's mother wrote to him to express her anxiety. Churchill soon wrote back to allay any fears she might have had about his dying on the battlefield: "I am so conceited, I do not believe the Gods would create so potent a being as myself for so prosaic an ending."
 
In addition to the military exercises and an occasional battle, Churchill devoted himself during his years in India to the serious study of history, philosophy and economics. He called this period "my university years." The English historians Edward Gibbon and Thomas Babington Macaulay were easily his favorite writers and arguably those to whom Churchill's own rhetorical style is most indebted. In describing his 800-page epic, The River War, for example, Churchill wrote, "I affected a combination of the styles of Macaulay and Gibbon...and I stuck in a bit of my own from time to time."
 
In 1899, Churchill left the army to run, unsuccessfully, for Parliament and to write newspaper articles and a book. It was as a newspaper columnist that Churchill, in October of that year, traveled to South Africa to observe the Boer war of independence against the British Empire. In South Africa, Churchill was traveling with a soldier friend aboard a train carrying English troops that was ambushed and derailed by the Boers. While exhibiting great valor in coordinating the escape of many of the troops who were aboard the train, Churchill was captured by the Boers and taken as a prisoner of war.
 
Although treated well by his captors, he later wrote of his time as a POW, "I certainly hated every minute of my captivity more than I have ever hated any other period in my whole life." He hated captivity above all because it thwarted his ambition for heroic action: "The war was going on, great events are in progress, fine opportunities for action and adventure are slipping away." So, after unsuccessfully appealing his capture on the grounds that he was a noncombatant, Churchill escaped from prison. Before escaping, however, he left a letter of apology on his bed to Louis de Souza, the Boer secretary for war. The letter began: "I have the honour to inform you that as I do not consider that your Government have any right to detain me as a military prisoner, I have decided to escape from your custody." It ended: "Regretting that I am unable to bid you a more ceremonious or a personal farewell, I have the honour to be, Sir, your most obedient servant, Winston Churchill."
 
The colonial wars of India and Africa were the sort of conflict for which Churchill and his fellow officers had longed in the days shortly after they graduated from Sandhurst: "This kind of war was full of fascinating thrills. It was not like the Great War. Nobody expected to be killed."
 
Less than 15 years after the war in South Africa, however, came the first fully modern war, "The Great War," "Armageddon"--the First World War. "The age of Peace had ended," Churchill wrote in one of his memoirs, My Early Life. "There was to be no lack of war. There was to be enough for all. Aye, enough to spare." At the time of the outbreak of the First World War, Churchill was serving as first lord of the Admiralty. He had spent the previous three years successfully preparing the British navy for war. He continued to serve as head of the admiralty through most of 1915. He also advised the War Office on land strategy and tactics during this time.
 
Churchill's understanding of the true nature of the war on sea and land was complete. He saw events from a clearer perspective than most of his contemporaries. Churchill's insights on the war are recounted at considerable length in his five-volume The World Crisis, a work that ranks with the greatest books ever written on warfare. No less an authority than T.E. Lawrence, "Lawrence of Arabia," who as a scholar and translator of Latin and Greek was well acquainted with the greatest Western classics of military history, called The World Crisis "far and away the best war book I have yet read in any language."
 
Seeking to better understand the war on land, in October 1914 Churchill visited the front lines in France. While there, he was observed by an Italian journalist, Gino Calza Bedelo. Bedelo's account of Churchill, according to Gilbert, became somewhat famous around London shortly after it was given in a talk at the Lyceum Club: "I was in the battle line near Lierre, and in the midst of a group of officers stood a man. He was still young, and was enveloped in a cloak, and on his head wore a yachtsman's cap. He was tranquilly smoking a large cigar and looking at the progress of the battle under a rain of shrapnel, which I can only call fearful. It was Mr. Churchill, who had come to view the situation himself. It must be confessed that it is not easy to find in the whole of Europe a Minister who would be capable of smoking peacefully under that shellfire. He smiled, and looked quite satisfied."
 
In 1915, when Churchill returned to the front as a major, after resigning as head of the admiralty, he was to make quite a similar impression on his fellow officers and subordinate soldiers. And he was to have the same effect on his colleagues at Downing Street during the countless German air raids over London in the Second World War. At all times, his fearlessness seemed to know no limits, and nearly everyone who came into contact with Churchill under dire circumstances was most impressed by it.
 
Throughout the 1920s, Churchill served in a number of ministerial posts, and his political career was punctuated by a few political triumphs as well as an occasional setback. The most significant setback of this period was the Conservative Party's defeat in the 1929 general election. With that defeat, Churchill was put out of cabinet office. Thus began what Churchill called his "wilderness" years, the years spent out of responsible office and away from all vital decision making, a period that would last for over a decade. Churchill passed considerable time during these years at Chartwell, his beautiful country home in Kent, which he had purchased in 1922 with royalties from The World Crisis.
 
Life at Chartwell in the 1930s was a marked change from Churchill's earlier political and military adventures. He did keep busy, however. "I never had a dull or idle moment from morning till midnight," he later wrote, "and with my happy family around me dwelt at peace within my habitation." While still remaining politically active, he was able to spend a great deal of his time on what may be called noble leisure--reading, writing, painting and dining with friends and family.
 
Dining was always a major event at Chartwell. Churchill preferred simple but sumptuous meals. "Whatever the Good Earth offers, I am willing to take" he once told a chef at the Waldorf-Astoria. Churchill often dined with friends, dignitaries and celebrities from Europe and America. T.E. Lawrence was a regular luncheon guest until his untimely death in 1935. Albert Einstein visited Chartwell. And Charlie Chaplin dined there, as well. Churchill was notorious for dominating conversations in even the most illustrious of company. As Prime Minister Herbert Henry Asquith once said of Churchill, "His conversation...is apt to degenerate into a monologue."
 
Fortunately, Churchill's wit on such occasions was equally well known. At one Chartwell dinner, for example, he asked Charlie Chaplin what his next role would be. "Jesus Christ," Chaplin replied; to which Churchill responded, "Have you cleared the rights?"
 
And Churchill was always a most gracious host. "It is a marvel how much time he gives to his guests," remarked one visitor to Chartwell, "talking sometimes for an hour after lunch and much longer after dinner. He is an exceedingly kind and generous host, providing unlimited Champagne, cigars and brandy."
 
Churchill loved Champagne, and it always accompanied lunch and dinner at Chartwell. He also enjoyed Port, claret, Scotch and brandy. His favorite Champagne was Pol Roger, his favorite Scotch, Johnnie Walker Red Label, and his favorite brandy, Hine. Once a friend of Churchill's, South African Prime Minister Jan Christian Smuts, brought him a bottle of South African brandy. Churchill savored a sip of it and, looking appreciatively at his friend, said, "My dear Smuts, it is excellent." He paused, then added, "But it is not brandy."
 
Real brandy, as author William Manchester put it, was usually consumed after dinner along with, of course, a cigar. After a couple of snifters, Churchill would stay up late reading or writing, often until three or four in the morning, only to awaken a scant five hours later. Churchill sometimes started the morning with a glass of Scotch and soda in bed, and he drank continuously throughout the day. According to Manchester, "There is always some alcohol in his bloodstream, and it reaches its peak late in the evening after he has had two or three Scotches, several glasses of Champagne, at least two brandies, and a highball."
 
He was rarely drunk, however. "All I can say is that I have taken more out of alcohol than it has taken out of me," Churchill famously remarked. Even drunk, he was usually in top form. Indeed, Labour Party M.P. Bessie Braddock once had the misfortune of accusing Churchill of drunkenness in public. "You're drunk!" she scolded. "Yes," he retorted, "and you are ugly, but tomorrow I shall be sober."
 
Churchill might just as well have said that he has taken more out of tobacco than it has taken out of him. In an essay from his book, Thoughts and Adventures, titled, "A Second Choice," he wrote, "I remember my father in his most sparkling mood, his eye gleaming through the haze of a cigarette, saying, 'Why begin? If you want to have an eye that is true [and] a hand that does not quiver...don't smoke.' But consider! How can I tell that the soothing influence of tobacco upon my nervous system may not have enabled me to comport myself with calm and courtesy in some awkward personal encounter or negotiation, or carried me serenely through some critical hours of anxious waiting? How can I tell that my temper would have been as sweet or my companionship as agreeable if I had abjured from my youth the goddess Nicotine?" Churchill was, of course, quite particular about how he got his nicotine. Cigars were the only way. He disliked cigarettes very much. Once when his valet declined Churchill's offer to join him for a cigar, telling Churchill that he smoked only cigarettes, Churchill chuckled and said, "Too many of those will kill you."
 
The years of leisure at Chartwell during the 1930s grew steadily more anxious for Churchill. He watched with great concern the unimpeded rise in Germany of what he would later call "the foulest and most soul destroying tyranny ever to blacken and stain the pages of history." In his six-volume The Second World War, Churchill wrote, "There can hardly ever have been a war more easy to prevent than this second Armageddon."
 
Unfortunately, Churchill's persistent warnings and vital political counsel went largely unheeded during the rise of Nazism. He was ridiculed as a "warmonger" and ostracized by all parties. Appeasement reigned. When war broke out, however, Churchill was the obvious choice in the minds of most people to lead Britain into battle. On May 10, 1940, he was appointed prime minister. Of this moment, Churchill wrote after the war, "As I went to sleep at about 3 a.m., I was conscious of a profound sense of relief. At last I had the authority to give directions over the whole scene. I felt as if I had been walking with destiny and that all my past life had been but a preparation for this hour and for this trial." He added, "I was sure I should not fail."
 
Late May 1940 was, in many ways, the decisive period of the Second World War. Pearl Harbor and Hitler's invasion of Russia were, of course, vital, but had Britain faltered in the early going and concluded a peace with Hitler, there would have been no place from which to launch an invasion of the Continent. America would not likely have become involved in the European war. And Hitler would have been able to use more of his army in subduing the Soviet Union. By the end of May, however, Belgium and France had been almost completely overwhelmed by the German blitzkrieg, and Britain narrowly averted defeat herself by evacuating, in great haste, some 200,000 British soldiers from the closing jaws of the German Wehrmacht at Dunkirk, on the coast of France. In the wake of this "colossal military disaster," rumors abounded that some of Churchill's ministers were willing to negotiate with Hitler.
 
Churchill recognized that such a course would mean the enslavement of Britain along with the rest of Europe. It simply could not be permitted to happen. So, on May 28, in a brilliant political coup de grace, Churchill forced the issue with his ministers and in one rhetorical flourish put to rest all cowardly defeatism. Martin Gilbert recounts this historic meeting in his unrivaled one-volume biography, Churchill: A Life. After admitting to his cabinet that he had weighed "whether it was part of my duty to consider entering into negotiations with That Man," Churchill next listed everything that would befall Britain in consequence. He then spoke with fire in his eyes: "I am convinced that every man of you would rise up and tear me down from my place if I were for one moment to contemplate parley or surrender. If this long island story of ours is to end at last, let it end only when each one of us lies choking in his own blood upon the ground." The ministers were instantly united. "I am sure," Churchill later wrote, "that every Minister was ready to be killed quite soon, and have all his family and possessions destroyed, rather than give in."
 
Following the meeting of May 28, three events stand out as pivotal in the defeat of Germany in the Second World War: the air battle over Britain in the summer of 1940, the entry of America into the war and Hitler's invasion of Russia in 1941. Churchill understood the profound significance of each of these events as they arose. In preparation for the Battle of Britain, Churchill said, "Hitler knows he must break us on this island or lose the war." Churchill also well understood that the air Battle of Britain was the prelude to a cross-channel invasion by the German army. He hoped to defeat the German Luftwaffe over Britain and thereby prevent a land invasion, but, he told the public, "should the invader come to Britain...we shall defend every village, every town, and every city. The vast mass of London itself, fought street by street, could easily devour an entire hostile army. And we would rather see London laid in ruins and ashes than that it should be tamely and abjectly enslaved." In the event, such sacrifice was not necessary. The Royal Air Force successfully defended Britain.
 
The successful defense of Britain, however, was not sufficient to win the war. The eventual intervention of the United States was necessary. And equally important was Hitler's unprovoked invasion of Russia. On June 22, 1941, the first day of the invasion, many of Churchill's colleagues believed that the Russians would be defeated quickly. Churchill saw matters differently. Gilbert writes, "Churchill listened to their [his colleagues'] arguments, then closed the discussion with the words, 'I will bet you a Monkey to a Mousetrap that the Russians are still fighting and fighting victoriously, two years from now.'" "Monkey" and "Mousetrap" were gambling terms. In plain terms, Churchill was offering odds of 500 to 1 that the Russians would be fighting victoriously two years after Hitler's invasion.
 
The Russians did indeed hold out, and the following spring, Churchill mocked Hitler in one of his radio broadcasts for the troubles the Germans were having in Russia: "Thus he drove the youth and manhood of the German nation forward into Russia. Then Hitler made his second grand blunder. He forgot about the winter. There is a winter, you know, in Russia. For a good many months the temperature is apt to fall very low. There is snow, there is frost and all that. Hitler forgot about this Russian winter. He must have been very loosely educated. We all heard about it at school. But he forgot it. I have never made such a bad mistake as that."
 
All of the necessary elements combined in due course, under the careful command of Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin, to produce final victory in Europe on May 8, 1945. Two weeks after VE Day, the Labour Party in England refused to participate in the wartime coalition government and Churchill was, consequently, obliged to call for a general election. Two months later, Churchill was voted out of office as prime minister. As he wrote in his memoirs, "All our enemies having surrendered unconditionally or being about to do so, I was immediately dismissed by the British electorate from all further conduct of their affairs." This monumental act of ingratitude was met by Churchill with the utmost graciousness. On the day of his defeat, Churchill expressed his gratitude to the public: "I thank the British people for many kindnesses shown towards their servant."
 
The years after the war were relatively quiet for Churchill. He did return as prime minister to serve from 1951 to 1955. And he devoted his energies to seeking a "summit" (he coined the term) and an understanding with the Soviets. But his time after the Second World War was mainly spent in the more leisurely manner that he spent in the years prior to the war. He was often at Chartwell and spent much of his time writing and painting. Painting was a tremendous consolation to Churchill in the twilight of his life. As he wrote in Thoughts and Adventures, "Happy are the painters, for they shall not be lonely. Light, color, peace and hope, will keep them company to the end, or almost the end, of the day."
 
Churchill was also as active as ever as a writer in the postwar years. He wrote his massive six-volume history of the Second World War, and was awarded the Nobel prize for literature in 1953 for his collected works and speeches. He also completed his four-volume A History of the English-Speaking Peoples. Churchill continued to enjoy life, as well. He had plenty of friends and companions. His cigar smoking did not abate considerably with the onset of old age. Nor did his drinking. And on this steady diet of Champagne, tobacco and good friends, Churchill lived to the very ripe old age of 90. He died on January 10, 1965.
 
Winston Churchill was the rarest of men. He was courageous, commanding and wise. He was a man of great self-command and self-discipline. But he was also a man of unapologetic epicurean tastes. He combined boundless energy and concentration with a wonderful zest for life to an extent that is rarely, if ever, seen today. As one biographer, Robert Lewis Taylor, wrote in 1955 of Churchill's face, "It is the strong well-nourished face of a man who long ago decided to drink what he pleased, gorge at will, suit himself in any way it seemed convenient, and in general to follow lines of self-centered behavior popularly supposed to stamp the countenance with a look of weakness. It is a free enterprise face, somewhat gothic in feeling." And even today, Churchill's "heroic visage stands out in healthy contrast among the cautious, remorseful drinkers"--and smokers--among us.
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Edited by Doorn, 08 November 2017 - 10:21.

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#80 Doorn

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Posted 17 November 2017 - 14:57

Opustanje na pauzi....

 

The Vegueros Mananitas is a medium bodied Habano of Petit Piramide format, with 46 ring gauge, 3’9” (100mm) long. The Mananitas is a nice and short figurado, with a rather big ring gauge, a size that modern Cuban cigar aficionados are looking for. Delivering classic Cuban woody, earthy and spicy flavors in about 40 minutes smoke.

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Edited by Doorn, 17 November 2017 - 16:17.

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#81 Doorn

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Posted 18 December 2017 - 11:16

10 Things Every Cigar Smoker Should Know

 

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The comforting world of premium cigars can sometimes seem bogged down by endless choices, confusing messages and opinions posing as fact. It can be a complicated, confusing hobby, even for a longtime smoker. To help navigate the maze, we’ve assembled a list of facts and information that aim to give insight and perspective to every level of cigar aficionado, whether novice or inveterate. 
 
This list is by no means a Ten Commandments of cigar smoking. It’s more of a basic treatise that addresses pertinent issues and highlights some of the aspects that make the premium cigar industry unique. We’ve also included a few useful tips that will serve to enhance the smoking experience and elevate the enjoyment of this beloved pastime.
 
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A field of sun-grown tobacco flourishes in a valley in the Dominican Republic. The crops grow from natural fertilizer.
 
1. Cigars Are a Natural and Artisanal Product 
 
Buzzwords like “natural” and “artisanal” are overused and abused in today’s parlance, but premium, handmade cigars have truly earned the right to flaunt these credentials. They are made of one thing and one thing only—tobacco. Pure, unadulterated tobacco. Not a single leaf is chemically treated or artificially altered for taste. Everything from flavor to color is achieved through natural means—and that’s part of the cigar’s inherent beauty. 
 
In fact, few consumable products are so natural. Perceptible flavors, whether sweet or spicy, are naturally occurring. The various alluring shades of brown are achieved through an organic process free of dyes or ripening accelerants. There are no preservatives to increase shelf life and no sweeteners, artificial or natural. Such additives and chemicals are the domain of cigarettes and machine-made cigars, which are mass-produced in the billions. 
 
On the craft side, rolling the perfect handmade cigar is an artisanal skill, and one that takes many years to fully master. Blending tobacco is as much art as it is science, and because tobacco is subject to the whims of nature, the blender must be able to work effectively with an ingredient that can change from year to year due to crop variations. 
 
Like wine, some vintages are better than others, but cigarmakers will do everything in their power to ensure that their product is consistent, even though crop quality is highly dependent on the weather. Consistency, however, isn’t the same thing as cloning, and there will always be minute variations from cigar to cigar. As with any handmade product, no two premium cigars will be exactly alike. The finest, most sincere cigars are natural expressions of both the cigarmaker and the soil from which the tobacco was grown. 
 
2. Two Hundred Pairs of Hands
 
It’s often said that 200 pairs of hands touch your cigar before it makes it to your humidor. Some claim the number is even higher. Suffice to say, every time you light up a cigar, many, many people with many different skills all contributed to bring you the ultimate handmade product. 
 
It starts with seed selection and greenhouse cultivation. Cigar tobacco starts as a tiny seed, most often planted in a tray and grown in a greenhouse. Once the seedlings are a few inches high, they’re transplanted to the fields where they can flourish. At full height and maturity, the leaves are removed by hand, harvested and hung in a curing barn to dry and turn brown. That’s a few dozen hands before the tobacco has even left the farm.
 
The cured tobacco is then taken to a facility, unpacked and piled up for fermentation. When fermentation is complete, the tobacco pile is separated and laid on drying racks to air out. Then, it’s all repacked and stowed for aging. After a few years, the aged tobacco is unpacked again, rehydrated in a special misting room and categorized for color. That’s a few more dozen hands.
 
The outer wrapper leaves will also undergo destemming or despalillo, a process where the thick, central vein is removed from the leaf. Sometimes that step is done completely by hand, other times the tobacco is fed through a stripping machine. For filler, a worker will remove part of the stem by hand, leaving the rest intact. More hands.
 
Don’t forget the rolling process, which requires appointed factory workers to dole out the proper proportions of aged tobacco to the rollers each day. The torcedor takes his pile of leaves back to his rolling table and recreates the cigar according to the cigarmaker’s blend, bunching and rolling each cigar by hand. The blend is formulated of exacting proportions of very specific tobaccos to impart a very particular smoking experience—a formulation that puts more hands on your cigars. 
 
Finished cigars are sorted for color consistency, then sent to the aging room. Finally, they’re banded up, boxed and sent out. This is the basic chronology of how a cigar is made. There are, of course, plenty of other quality-control steps that vary from operation to operation, and nearly all are completed entirely by hand, but the point is this: a single hand-rolled cigar is a massive human effort that requires hands-on expertise on every level.
 
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Tobacco arranged in enormous piles (pilónes) for fermentation. The combination of pressure, water and naturally occurring heat will rid the tobacco of undesirable properties like bitterness.

 

3. Tobacco Undergoes Fermentation
 
Fermentation is common to producers of wine and spirits, defined as a process that converts sugars in organic material to alcohol, often with the use of yeast. In the tobacco industry, it’s more of a microbial fermentation—one that breaks down the leaf organically through the use of water, pressure and oxygen. No alcohol is produced in tobacco fermentation, but the process releases heat as it changes the chemical composition and physical traits of the leaf through humidity and oxidization. 
 
Tobacco undergoes fermentation for one simple reason: it makes the tobacco taste better. The process affects the flavor and smell of tobacco, making it less astringent and reducing bitterness while bringing out its more floral, nutty and sweeter aspects. 
 
Fermentation is fairly simple. Once tobacco has been cured in a barn, the leaves are arranged in large piles known as pilónes. The only thing added is water. The weight of the piles produce pressure while the enzymatic and microbial breakdown produces the heat. The piles are checked daily and the temperature is monitored. When the internal temperature of these pilónes reaches a certain point, the tobacco pile is taken apart, rotated by hand and painstakingly reassembled.
 
Ideally, tobacco is piled and fermented according to size and type. Different-sized leaves and different tobacco varietals will ferment at different rates, so the pile must be as homogenous as possible. The idea is to naturally alter the taste of the tobacco and transform it from its raw, bitter state to something smokeable and pleasant. Underfermented tobacco will often have a harsh aftertaste and smell like ammonia. It’s not a process that can be skipped or rushed and is critical in the world of premium cigars. 
 
4. Aging is Important
 
Aging tobacco plays a vital role, both before and after the cigar is made. Not only is the fresh leaf aged before it’s rolled into a cigar, but a newly completed cigar in most cases is then sent to an aging room where the tobaccos marry and the humidity levels of the cigar can stabilize. 
 
Tobacco leaves are aged after fermentation. During aging, the leaves are packed up into tight parcels called bales where they undergo a slow, steady breakdown of carotenoids, which helps to bring out the desirable properties in the tobacco. The aging also lends a bit of polish and maturity, helping to rid the tobacco of vegetal or “green” notes. Ever smoke tobacco that tastes like freshly cut grass or raw green beans? That tobacco has not been fully aged. If the cigar smoke is more redolent of almond, raisin and orange blossom, it has been aged properly.
 
But there’s a tertiary aging, and that’s done by the consumer. Once the cigar is boxed up and sent to the shops, a consumer may wish to age the cigars even longer. Similar to aging wine, this process helps to further dissipate any acidity in the tobacco and allows its mellower more nuanced personality to come through. 
 
Perfect aging is achieved when you bring a cigar to its absolute peak of flavor. At peak, flavors are not only at their most balanced and cohesive, but all undesirable qualities such as bitterness or harshness are completely absent. A great cigar can age for decades so long as the temperature and humidity are stable throughout. 
 
There are some caveats. Don’t over-age the cigar. Over-aging can result in loss of flavor and body, making the cigar taste flat and dusty. Another thing to know: aging a bad, sour cigar won’t make it any better. It will just make it bitter and old. 

 

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The anatomy of a cigar is made up of its wrapper, binder and filler.

 

5. Understand Cigar Anatomy
 
A cigar is made up of three major parts: wrapper, binder and filler. The three form a smoking system and the single system forms a singular organism called the cigar. 
 
The wrapper is the visible outer cover leaf. It’s also the most expensive component per pound, as these tobacco leaves need to be pristine in appearance, as well as flavorful. If the leaf is too veiny, rough in texture or has any blemishes, it’s no longer categorized as wrapper.
 
The binder can be considered a wrapper leaf that didn’t make the cut. It’s often the same tobacco as the wrapper, only not as smooth in appearance, and it doesn’t have to be—you don’t see it. Binder is the leaf of tobacco directly underneath the wrapper and holds the filler tobacco in place, hence the name. Combustion of the binder is critical, as a good-burning binder will often help the filler to burn more evenly, especially if the filler contains more oily tobaccos that do not burn easily. 
 
The filler is where the cigarmaker can be most creative, as he can use several different types of tobacco from various countries and several different primings of tobacco for desired flavor, strength and complexity. As with the wrapper and binder, these are long-filler tobaccos that are put into place to burn slowly yet offer a fine gustatory and aromatic experience. 
 
The foot is the end of the cigar where filler is usually visible. The head is the top, or tip and is finished with a cap, which helps to hold the wrapper in place. The neater, more symmetrical the head and cap, the greater the skill of the roller. 
 
Good construction is key and should never be marginalized. A cigar that isn’t made properly will not draw or burn properly, drastically affecting the taste and the level of enjoyment, no matter how good the raw materials. 
 
6. Cut and Light Like a Pro
 
Handmade cigars don’t come ready to smoke. You must cut the head, then light. While types of lighters and cutters are open to preference, some basic rules are universal. For example, cutting too much off the top of your cigar is a no-no. What’s too much? If the wrapper of your cigar unravels after you lopped off the top, you’ve cut down too far. Normally, there’s a slight taper at the head of the cigar, referred to as the shoulder. We do not recommend cutting below the shoulder line. 
 
In the case of torpedoes and piramides, which taper drastically to a point, you shouldn’t cut off so much of the head that you actually lose the taper. It’s there for both functional and aesthetic reasons—to fit more comfortably in your mouth and to look nice. They are harder to make and require the work of a highly skilled roller. Also, they take longer to create, which is why they are generally more expensive. Cutting off too much defeats the entire purpose, both practically and artistically. Conversely, not cutting off enough can result in a firm draw and a build-up of tar in the head that will ooze into your mouth, something any sane smoker wishes to avoid. But it’s better to cut too little than too much—you can always cut more. 
 
Lighting should be done delicately, similar to the way you might toast a marshmallow—with minimal direct contact. Too much direct contact of flame to tobacco and your cigar might end up tasting like pure char. It’s always better to light in low-wind conditions. On top of the obvious reasons, the breeze might also cause you to compensate by using too much flame just to get a burn going. Again, this will result in an unpleasantly charry aftertaste.
 
The risk is even greater with powerful torch lighters, which burn at a much higher temperature than soft, natural flames. While we certainly appreciate the wind resistance and surgical control of a torch flame, you’re goal is lighting a cigar, not welding pipes. 
 
7. Smoke Cool & Slow
 
Some cigar smokers puff too often. This is a mistake for a few reasons. Philosophically, a cigar is about enjoyment and savoring the moment. Smoking fast runs counterintuitive to this sentiment. Take your time and slow down.  
 
But there’s a more concrete reason as well. Hyper-frequent puffing will inevitably overheat your cigar and cause it to become bitter. Often, that bitterness is irreversible. 
 
A perfectly constructed cigar is made to burn slow and cool in order to impart flavor in a steady progression. While there are no set laws as to how long a cigar should last, we believe that a five-inch cigar should last you at least 45 minutes. If you’re sucking down a five-inch robusto in 10 minutes, you’re treating the cigar like a cigarette, and that’s a big mistake. Puffing every 30 seconds to a minute should be an appropriate interval. 
 
Keep in mind that smoking too slowly could have a negative consequence as well. Puff too infrequently,  and your cigar will go out, meaning you’ll have to relight it over and over again. Constantly lighting an extinguished cigar could introduce unpleasant flavors of char, carbon, sulfuric fumes and bitterness. But don’t sweat a relight now and then.
 
Leave the ash on for as long as you can. The ash serves as a temperature regulator and minimizes contact between the air and the lit tobacco, thus keeping it cooler. Great cigars are made of whole leaves, not chopped up tobacco. Those leaves have structure, and will hold an ash of a size that’s surprising to a novice.
 
cigarbox-vegas-3-1600.jpgThe cigar choices in a well-stocked retail humidor can be overwhelming. A little bit of knowledge about the blend and strength can go a long way.
 
8. Choose Your Cigar Wisely
 
It’s important to know something about the blend before choosing a cigar. This helps to ensure you don’t choose a smoke that’s too strong or too mild. You don’t have to know every last tobacco component of the cigar to make an informed choice, but you should always have a basic idea of the cigar’s strength level before you buy it.
 
Most smokers know if they want a strong, medium or mild cigar. Strength and body refer to the cigar’s inherent intensity. One could smoke a cigar that is full of flavor, yet not particularly strong or full-bodied, meaning there’s still plenty of finessed flavor that won’t impact the palate too heavily. 
 
Sometimes, smokers want full, intense palate stimulation along with heavy flavors, much the way a coffee drinker wants a strong shot of espresso or a wine drinker wants a high-alcohol cabernet. That requires powerful tobaccos. Typically, a full-bodied, powerful cigar will contain ligero tobacco. These are the  darkest, thickest leaves of the tobacco plant as well as the most oily and rich on account of their direct exposure to the sun. 
 
Leaves tend to get less powerful as they grow lower down the stalk of the plant. Categorized as visos and secos, these lower-priming tobaccos are more nuanced in flavor and have better combustion. A full-bodied blend will contain more ligeros, a medium-bodied blend, more secos and visos. 
 
You can’t always tell, however just by looking at the cigar. Dark, oily wrappers often indicate a strong smoke the way light wrappers often indicate a mild or medium-bodied smoke, however looks can sometimes be deceiving. Our ratings will point you in the right direction. 
 
Also, beware the “sangria effect.” That happens when the cigar’s strength sneaks up on you. You think it’s a mild or medium-bodied cigar based on the easygoing flavors, but then when you try to stand up, you realize you can’t. 
 
9. Cubans Aren’t Always the Best
 
As long as people smoke premium cigars, there will always be the proud debate as to which cigars are the best, and the argument usually boils down to Cuban cigars vs. non-Cuban cigars. 
 
Lifelong Habanophiles will always preach “inimitable Cuban taste” while more universal cigar fans retort “Cubans are overrated.” It is this magazine’s opinion that Cuban cigars are great, but they are not alone in their greatness. The best Nicaraguan, Dominican and Honduran cigars can compete on the quality level with the finest Cubans. 
 
The top-tier smokes of the major cigar-producing nations are all outstanding in their own way. They are true agricultural and artisanal expressions of their respective countries. This is evident in our tasting sections and in our Top 25 Cigar of the Year awards. Sometimes a Cuban cigar wins, sometimes it doesn’t, as in our most recent Top 25, which was won by a Dominican cigar. 
 
10. Price v. Quality
 
Price isn’t always an indicator of quality. A cigar that costs $30 won’t always be more enjoyable than a cigar that costs $10. Inexpensive cigars sometimes score better than pricey ones in our blind tastings. At the same time, it’s important to understand that the best materials, finest construction and most acute quality control will cost money. As is true with all raw materials, not all tobacco is of equal quality. Some crops are better than others. 
 
You might have heard (or read) a few rather ignorant maxims like “tobacco’s tobacco” or “all tobacco is basically the same.” Statements like that are uninformed, and they presuppose that different levels of quality do not exist. Nothing could be further from the truth. 
 
Standards of quality are determined by appearance, combustion, aroma and flavor. A highly aromatic, flavorful tobacco that is pristine in appearance and elastic to the touch is going to be more expensive than a coarse leaf that doesn’t have much smell or taste. 
 
Some tobaccos also take longer time to age and ferment for maximum performance. That process will also end up raising the cost of your cigar—the longer the cycles, the longer the tobacco has to be stored in a warehouse, and that costs money. 
 
The tobacco could be a low-yielding varietal, meaning that the crop was not large in the field, yet the small amounts produced were outstanding. This could also make your puros a little pricier. Sometimes it’s merely a question of supply and demand.
 
Occasionally, a cigar is expensive for arbitrary or gimmicky reasons that have nothing to do with quality or availability. Those unfortunate exceptions are not normal in the premium cigar industry. If a cigar is expensive, the cost is usually justified. 
 
That being said, there’s no guarantee you’re going to love the expensive cigar. The flavor profile and strength level (either high or low) of a high-end smoke might not be to your taste. The best way to know is to try it. If you spend the extra money and find that the experience doesn’t justify the cost, then stay within your comfortable price range. If you find extraordinary levels of flavor, refinement and complexity, you’ll know the cigar was worth the splurge. 

 


Edited by Doorn, 18 December 2017 - 11:18.

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#82 Doorn

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 10:53

How To Avoid Getting Sick Or Dizzy From A Strong Cigar

 

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Sugar is the cure. When you get a buzz like that from a strong cigar (or two, or three…), sugar will make you feel much better. The best way is to take a packet or two of sugar, put it on the back of your tongue, and drink a glass of water. It helps quite a bit. Smoking on a full stomach can be helpful as well.
 
Also, think mild. Cigars with a mild strength profile appeal to many beginners. So what cigars are mild? Some brands that come to mind are Macanudo Café and some Davidoffs. Try searching our online ratings database, too, to find milder cigars. These are all high-quality cigars made with an easygoing blend.
 
It's easy to make general suggestions, but the only person who can truly judge your taste is you. Try a few different brands, and make note of what you like. If you enjoy the cigars with a mild flavor—cigars that are described as mild in the tasting notes in Cigar Aficionado magazine, for example—then that type of cigar is probably for you. If you don't enjoy that type of cigar, try something in the medium-bodied category.
 
For starters, you'd probably be wise to avoid anything described as full-flavored, powerful or strong. But enjoy the search—one of the best things about smoking cigars is the process of discovery.

 

 


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#83 Kinik

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 11:29

...

 

Nista bez ovog cudovista!

Jedna, ali vredna!

 

Attached File  partagas.jpg   131.82KB   3 downloads

 

(ovo je moja stara kutija, pakovanje sa staklenim 'tubosima')

 

:+1:

 

...


Edited by Kinik, 22 December 2017 - 11:45.

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#84 Doorn

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 16:19

cigaraficionado.com TOP 25 CIGARS OF 2017


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#85 Doorn

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Posted 23 December 2017 - 23:12

Malo relax pred film


http://www.jcortes.com/en/brands



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Edited by Doorn, 23 December 2017 - 23:12.

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#86 Doorn

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Posted 26 December 2017 - 18:59

Uh...treba ovo jos da se upari sa viskijem...

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Verstuurd vanaf mijn SM-G930F met Tapatalk

Edited by Doorn, 26 December 2017 - 19:02.

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#87 Doorn

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 16:12

O ovim gore cigarama:

 

 

 H Upmann Connoisseur No.1

 

Oliva G Series 


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#88 mrd

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 22:12

Idi trne u peršun. Lepo sam rekao da neću ovo da čitam. Prekjuče sam probao montecristo-a, a danas sam se navukao, coronas major i partagas. Ako propušim, ponovo udavicu vas s'dimom7e77d11373b68784d7415df1b5348581.jpg05cd4e0573d0a21b609b00df8bf07695.jpg7f1af1532ebc3b805a53a7296fb3e9f4.jpg Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

Edited by mrd, 28 December 2017 - 22:14.

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#89 Kinik

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 22:38

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Purosi nisu vulgarno 'pusenje' - to je cisto uzivanje!

 

Za razliku od lule koja svima mirise, a u ustima nakiseli ukus, purosi svima 'smrde', a u ustima neopisivo zadovoljstvo!

 

Attached File  indian-tobacco03.jpg   37.5KB   5 downloads

 

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Edited by Kinik, 28 December 2017 - 22:39.

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#90 Kinik

Kinik
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Posted 28 December 2017 - 22:50

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Attached File  1890-lone-trail1.jpg   79.79KB   6 downloads Attached File  cigar store.jpg   99.69KB   7 downloads

 

http://www.freetobac...-cigarette-tax/

 

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