Archive for March, 2010

The Travel Herf-a-Dor by Humi-Care is a great product. It is completely waterproof, crush-proof and compact, allowing you to transport 5 Churchill-length cigars with ease.

I like this humidor, but there is one HUGE problem – it stinks! The humidor has a stench of plastic that permeates the foam. I tried leaving it in the sun for a day, I filled it with baking soda, I placed activated carbon in it; all to no avail.

Finally, out of desperation I filled it with 5 CAO Moontrance cigars and left it on the rear shelf of the Jaguar for a week. That certainly did the trick – there is no longer a plastic odor, just a very pleasant tobacco scent with hints of vanilla – most pleasant indeed.

I now take this humidor everywhere with me and always keep it stocked with a few of my favorite vitolas.

The hype – “Welcome to the Golden Era of 5 Vegas (pronounced “cinco vegas”). Made with a hearty blend of premium tobacco leaves from Honduras that have been aged a full 5 years and a satiny Grade A Connecticut Shade wrapper leaf, the 5 Vegas Gold is your answer for a full-flavored cigar that’s mild in strength. Light one up and experience a joyride of smooth flavors. It opens with some zest, a combination of toasted nuts and subtle spice, then develops a soothing creaminess that coats the palate, making the initial spice an afterthought. Not a harsh note can be found as the cigar burns, and each puff releases a velvety cloud of blueish-white smoke. The Honduran-made 5 Vegas Gold is just right. Mild enough for everyone to enjoy, and enough character to please palates of all levels. Overall, this welcome addition to the steadfast 5 Vegas name is a wonderful cigar that just may become a part of your every day rotation.

The review – I went to visit my sister in California this week. She and her family live on a golf course in Malibu and are typical SoCal yuppies. She thinks tobacco is evil and despises the odor. It is a constant point of contention between us. She wouldn’t even let me bring my cigars into her house! I had to leave them in my Jag inside the travel herf-a-dor which performed flawlessly.

I finally tired of the domestic menagerie and went for a walk along the golf course. I took a 5 Vegas gold robusto with me to keep me company.

The 5 Vegas gold robusto is a well-built cigar. The connecticut shade wrapper is smooth and flawless, adding a touch of class to this Honduran beauty. Prelight aroma is alfalfa and clover, with a hint of cut grass. I toasted the foot and drew gently on it to entice the first flavors.

The initial draw was bitter with a slight pepper tingle. I drew a few more and let it rest for a minute. The process continued over 10 minutes before I felt any improvement in flavor, which is rather disappointing.  Once I passed the initial roughness, the flavor mellowed and was quite enjoyable. While described a full-flavored, I found the flavor to be rather mild and creamy. I really enjoyed the aroma of the smoke, it smells like a higher end cigar. I smoked this one to the nub and had a nice nicotine buzz. So the 5 Vegas robusto is a mild flavored cigar with a full-bodied kick – not too shabby and good value for the money.

The hype“Bagatelle is a wonderful example of the art of the Dominican hand roller. They start with a super delicious blend of double-aged San Vicente Olor fillers and binders. When a manufacturer is serious about the taste of his smoke, he gives the binder serious consideration. This combination of long fillers and mild-tasting binders is topped off with a magnificent Sumatra wrapper. Under different labels, Bagatelle is the exact same cigar that brings $3 to $4 in stores. You’ll likely find Bagatelle virtually indiscernible from cigars for which you’re accustomed to paying much more.”

The ReviewI try to always let my palate guide me when reviewing a cigar. I don’t care if it was free, or cost me $100/stick; all I care about is flavor. This Bagatelle was free to me, but I still treated it well and allowed it to rest in my humidor for over a year to help it mature. The cigar feels good in hand and has a comfortable weight to it. Firm with a little give it looks and feels like a well-made smoke. Prelight aroma is pleasant with a hint of barnyard and clover. I punched the cigar, toasted it and then lit it. The cigar produced a voluminous cloud of very pleasant gray smoke and I took my first puff…First draw was rough and bitter. After a few puffs, the flavor mellowed and reminded me a little of a CAO gold. Draw was a little tight, but not unreasonable. Ash was loose gray and slightly uneven, The first third was enjoyable, but after that the stick took a dramatic turn for the worse. Bitter aftertaste, acrid smoke and strange odors permeated. I blew through it, let it rest for a minute and tried again…Still horrible. I gave up on this one and tossed it. Very disappointing experience, but I guess I can’t complain for the price.

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