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@Jake Fratelli2 Not in the bushes.
1 day, 22 hours ago on Viaje Moving Some Production to PDR Cigars
@Charlie86 There's a lot more than anyone would imagine, and Pete gave us a whole bunch last year: http://halfwheel.com/tatuaje-lancero-sampler-coming-month
Interestingly enough, not many factories seem to even have this mold.
2 days, 15 hours ago on Matilde Renacer Lancero
@kas As the original Musubi, but the wedding version had a different wrapper.
4 days, 14 hours ago on Tatuaje Musubi Lands in Hawaii
I had to remove a comment. Let's try to keep body parts out of any comments. Criticism—even insults and mockery are fine—but no body parts.
2 weeks, 2 days ago on Viaje Cooks Up Señor Andre’s Chicharrones & Jalapeño
@DavidHolmes1 Also intentional—or at least, not a mistake. We reviewed a disproportionate amount of Viajes, a disproportionate amount of them we thought needed time.
We are trying to do the whole one Cuban per week thing and cutting back on Viajes.
2 weeks, 3 days ago on AVO 88
@Alf33 You are correct. Updated above.
2 weeks, 3 days ago on Tatuaje TAA 2011 Makes a Comeback for 2015 Release
@DavidHolmes1 That's kind of an intentional nugget.
@Charlie86 It would change, just like it would with any other cigar. The flavors I get from the cigar are changed by the whiskies. But I don't have any concept of scoring pairings, just cigars.
3 weeks ago on Dram Cask No. 2
@cigarwes Thanks. It's been changed above.
3 weeks, 2 days ago on Crowned Heads To Release Texas Exclusive Yellow Rose
@Redingo Thank you. Looks like someone else changed it before I got to it.
3 weeks, 3 days ago on Flor de las Antillas Maduro Debuting at Federal Cigar’s 94th Anniversary
@aaronloomis @Charlie Minato It's not an issue of it being published before the edits were done—or it being missing—the review hasn't been touched since it was published. I think it might be a caching issue with that part of the site though. Looking into it.
3 weeks, 3 days ago on La Palina Goldie Laguito No. 5
@aaronloomis Hmm. Showing up for me.
@Redingo I guess. More on that here: http://halfwheel.com/could-cuba-meet-demand-of-u-s-market/80258
1 month ago on Festival del Habano XVII: Day 1
@Charlie86 I'll agree with that. This was probably my least favorite of the LFDC ERs I've smoked, haven't had the Canada one yet.
1 month ago on La Flor de Cano Gran Cano (ER UK 2013)
@DavidHolmes1 They didn't go over anything particularly unique. They use Liebermann machines for bunching to get a more consistent roll in terms of tightness throughout the roll, but almost every factory in the DR uses a Libermann.
1 month ago on ProCigar 2015: Day 4
Beginning to show up now.
1 month, 2 weeks ago on Crowned Heads To Release Jericho Hill Shots In February
@Stew Gotz Some of our beloved trolls. One of whom we caught creating additional usernames under the same IP to agree with his original comments. As for the comment, I am sure if anyone contacts Antoine Bathie, he will very that Patrick did in fact have a conversation about this, as the story indicates above.
1 month, 2 weeks ago on Habanos S.A. Cuts Quai D’Orsay to One Vitola
@cigarshopper Cigars have only been out since December, so not a lot of "age."
1 month, 3 weeks ago on La Flor Dominicana El Carajón
@Charlie86 Short Churchill is an actual (Cuban) size, this is "Small Churchill."
1 month, 3 weeks ago on Espinosa The Alibi
@dancrago I imagine time in the humidor will help.
@Charlie86 With you on the 50 RG+ comments, except for the Culebra of course.
1 month, 3 weeks ago on Oliva Serie V Corona Gorda
@Charlie86 There was actually an issue that I just realized. The new version of the score sheet I sent out had the construction portions blacked out in an area, the score has been updated to reflect that, still not where you thought, but not the 83 originally published. My apologies.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on La Flor Dominicana TCFKA “M” Collector’s 2014
@jbill29 There's no real set time, but these were at the office for over a month before I started smoking them.
We generally try to avoid smoking things ROTT, but there's not some 30-day rule or anything.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Ramón Allones Perfectos (ER Suiza 2014)
@Drew I haven't weighed it, but it's not substantially heavier than a typical humidor. There are some humidor manufacturers that actually use stone bases, this would not appear to be one of them.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Adorini Black Slate Deluxe L
Okay. Not sure what happened between this year and last year (it's the same way we displayed this and the consensus, but clearly something went awry.) Simplified version up.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on 2014 Awards: halfwheel 25
@Srbbones We named a Cuban as our top cigar in 2013, but I think until we change our qualifications it's going to be hard for any non-Reserva Cuban to win.
Each time we review an ER or an EL relatively fresh, we hear the responses that we should wait and it will get better—a statement that I think is true in most cases. The problem is, for this list, the cigars must be new. So Cuba is in a bit of a catch-22. I think the Añejados series makes things interesting and the Reservas would be contenders on paper—if of course HSA put one out in 2014.
We made a bit better effort to get Cubans reviewed—there will be another ER reviewed tomorrow—and it's going to continue. The move to review regular production cigars will make things easier, we are planning on covering the festival, etc. It's a process. I think the biggest issue with Cuba and reviews right now is that they generally concentrate them, particularly the limited ones, that sort of screwed things up.
If there was another Cuban that debuted fresh as well as the La Escepción, I think you'd see it in here. I surely didn't smoke all the ERs from last year, but what I smoked amongst the ERs and ELs wouldn't suggest any was that good fresh.
@Charlie86 Hmm. Definitely want to find a better solution.
@Patrick Lagreid @Charlie86 That is what I was told.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Ilja VIII
@Charlie86 @Full Puff Neither of those are scheduled. Not sure we would really considered the Liga Privada No. 9 Corona/Black Rat a unicorn per se, particularly compared to what Ligas we've reviewed as part of this week.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Davidoff Diademas 100
@maxx Competition always brings out the best. XIKAR may or may not want a bit more of a challenge, but for consumers and retailers—it would be much better.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Ten Questions for 2015
@Truth Only 83 stories about smoking bans.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Another (Holy Grail Week)
Congrats Morgan. Thanks all for entering.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Room101 Uncle Lee
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Montgomery, Ala. Starts Process of Enacting Smoking Ban (Update)
@Full Puff @Patrick Lagreid To be clear, they could be. Davidoff lets each of the retailers pick any of the blends, even if another has selected the same one.
3 months ago on Davidoff BLEND Bar Cigar Inaugural Anniversary
Congrats to our winner @MattyBlayze. Donation was already made.
3 months ago on Viva Republica / C4W V-Day Limited Edition Charitable Release
@MattyBlayze And congrats. You are the winner. Details on what to do next are here: http://halfwheel.com/contest-rules
@Marty f I hear both of you and in some way, I agree with you two a lot. I wish I had a good solution to reviewing Cuban cigars, here's my best shot at explaining why we do things the way we do, always open for a better solution.
1. If we don't review any new Cubans, no Cubans make our Top 25.
2. There are a few Cubans—albeit mainly Colleción Habanos, ELs, Gran Reservas and Reservas—that have smoked quite well fresh. I definitely wouldn't say all ERs are just going to have to wait two years because they say ERs.
3. Plenty of people smoke these fresh, just like plenty of people smoke FFOX fresh. Sure, I'll grant you that most people smoking ERs in the U.S. are probably taking a different approach, but people that are buying the cigars in foreign shops are not just buying them with the intent on waiting.
4. While there have been a rash of newer Cubans reviewed lately, if you look at the rest of the year, it was mostly older Cubans with a fair bit of rest.
Much like when Andre Farkas said Viajes oftentimes need six months, I do firmly believe that once a manufacturer releases a cigar, it can be reviewed. There are people that will not wait and as Brooks once pointed in out in a very similar argument with me a few years ago—in many cases, people aren't going to have the opportunity to wait a few weeks to make a buying decision (not saying that is happening here) before the cigar is sold out.
Finally, we try to treat things fairly. Our goal is not to smoke these cigars when we think they are going to be at their peak, but rather, smoke them when the review can be most relevant. Habanos has shown over the years that it can make a great cigar, even a great cigar off the truck, it's not our job to sit around and wait for that to happen, and if it doesn't, that's why we do redux reviews.
Thanks for reading/commenting guys. Once again, open to suggestions. (Not putting cigars in the microwave prior to review though.)
3 months, 1 week ago on Por Larrañaga Sobresalientes (ER Great Britain 2014)
@Charlie86 The first comment won once. IIRC.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Viva Republica / C4W V-Day Limited Edition Charitable Release
@Barry2Guys That's what the slash is for. Dash would have meant they were one.
4 months ago on Oliva & Padilla Ending Distribution Relationship
@DavidHolmes1 Lines are so blurry. How do you separate CI, Corona, Atlantic, Holt's, Smoke Inn, Famous, JR, Serious. All have physical stores, some are family businesses, some are owned by big corporations—all are trying to do the same thing.
The smaller manufacturers are going to take orders from who they get them from and who they think will best represent the product. I find it interesting that the companies that continue to produce "brick and mortar only" products are consistently Altadis/General.
4 months, 1 week ago on Warped Slates Don Reynaldo for December (Update)
@DavidHolmes1 Supposed to be out this month as of the summer. Dion told me on numerous occasions that he was going to try to coordinate the release with the magazine.
4 months, 1 week ago on Illusione Pactum Becomes Latest Smoke Inn Microblend Series
@MilanKalinovic Thanks. Fixed.
4 months, 2 weeks ago on Bolívar Super Coronas (EL 2014)
@TNZ Good catch. GCC price sheet says 14.
4 months, 3 weeks ago on CAO Celebrating Holidays With Nasty Nutcracker & Rabid Reindeer
Winner announced. Congrats Jay.
4 months, 4 weeks ago on Tatuaje The Jekyll
Winner announced. Congrats Ian.
4 months, 4 weeks ago on Camacho Double Shock Toro
@Skip Martin Probably had nothing to do with your iPhone 6, we had a setting screwed up. Should work now.
4 months, 4 weeks ago on Prairie Bomb!
@Charlie86 No, no. Cigar reviews have been a bit slow this week because I've been out of town. Should have our normal weekday review later this evening.
5 months ago on Announcing Tenemu
@SydneyUyLiquete They did a humidor, not a cigar to my knowledge.
5 months ago on Davidoff Limited Edition 2014 Year of the Horse