Archive for November, 2009

I was browsing my cigar news and I saw some cool news on cigarcyclopedia.com which is great for all of you Kelner fans out there:

Zino Embassy Selection:
[Dominican Republic: available in 1 size]
Announced on November 12, the fourth in the Dominican-made Zino series is offered only in a 6-inch by 53-ring perfecto formally known as the “Zino Embassy Selection Limited Edition Perfecto.”

It has an elegant black-and-gold double band, with a medium-to-full body and a slightly sweet aroma. Deeper in flavor than the energetic Zino Classic blend, the balance of caramel on the tongue and spice on the throat is gently maintained through most of the cigar, but with a preponderance of spice in the second half.

This consistency of balance is engaging and satisfying, and impressive in the perfecto format. Just as nice is the accessible pricing of $9.80 per cigar, not including local taxes. The Embassy Selection is offered only in boxes of 10.


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I got a cool invite from the folks at Partagas (General):

As a fellow cigar lover, we thought you’d like to hear about a bold, limited edition Partagas blend over 160 years in the making: The Benji Menendez Partagas Master Series Majestuoso. The industry is already buzzing with praise for this limited edition Partagas so we’re throwing a party.


We’ve created a small, 5,000 box run of this new cigar, and we’d like you to be among the first to experience it. Join us for a drink as we celebrate Benji Menendez, fine tobacco and a few of your lucky readers on a night that promises to be as provocative as the Majestuoso itself.

The Benji Menendez Social will take place for one night only in each of five cities. You and 50 of your readers can RSVP for each event by entering one of your city-specific passwords at BenjiMenendezSocial.com.

In the spirit of rolling out the red carpet, they will be greeted by a personalized ZenCigar landing page.

City Time Password

Dallas, TX Nov. 17, 2009, from 6-8 pm 660CE44

Los Angeles, CA Dec. 1, 2009, from 6-8 pm 5EEAC15

Las Vegas, NV Dec. 3, 2009, from 6-8 pm CC90420

Chicago, IL Dec. 8, 2009, from 6-8:30 pm 80B28DD

New York, NY Dec. 15, 2009, from 6-8 pm 7C390AB

Photo and video footage will be collected throughout the night, all of which will be available for later use. Our online coverage of the Social is sure to create conversation.

A Partagas event of this caliber is almost as rare as the Majestuoso itself. These passwords ensure that the exclusivity of the event is preserved; share wisely. The secret location will be revealed exactly 36 hours before the event.

Unfortunately I will be unable to attend these events, but I would love if some of you readers did!

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Rakesh “Rocky” Patel has been in the business for a short time, but has worked hard to produce one of the most popular cigars on the market, The Edge, and a list of other popular lines.rocky-patel

He initially made his mark in the cigar biz with his Indian Tabac line.  It proved to be a difficult road to travel, and with disinterest from the consumer and the royalties required from Indian Motorcycles, Rocky was in trouble.  Then he discovered the world or online retail.  Rocky began to sell his Indian Tabac lines through big internet giants like Cigars International, and they started to sell.

By this time Rocky was ready to make his own cigar, and with that came the RP Vintage lines.  Things really exploded for Rocky Patel who made hit after hit cigar.  His biggest success was the RP Edge a then unbanded cigar sold in 500 count boxes recommended for the most experienced smoker.  These high octane cigars were inexpensive… and quite good.

Rocky has also remained loyal to his saving grace, the internet.  Rocky Patel has made many exclusive lines and brands for quite a handful of online retailers (almost as many as Gurkha).

Recently Rocky’s rep had been tarnished a bit by some sub-par releases and consistency issues with the Edge (they’ve never been the same since the 1st release).

So Rocky has gone back to the drawing board and with the success of “small batch” cigars has made Seasonal Blends and other limited editions like his RP Decade and ITC 10th Anniversary cigars (notice the letters ITC, not Indian Tabac, that way no royalties need be paid to Indian Motorcycles – smart!).


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Size: 5″ x 60

Vitola: Robusto

Wrapper: Maduro

Origin: Honduras

Age: 3 months

The Di Fazio Maduro is a medium bodied chocolatey offering from this small boutique outfit from Miami.



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Size: 5″ x 60

Vitola: Robusto

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut

Origin: Honduras

Age: 3 months

The Di Fazio Connecticut is the mild offering from this small boutique outfit from Miami.


This super big ring gauge cigar took a while to light due to it’s girth, but it gave me time to admire the gorgeous Connecticut shade wrapper.  A flawless satiny leaf!

Once lit, this cigar gives off tons of smoke, with a nice woody creaminess, with a little tea on the finish.


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Di Fazio Cigars is a new boutique to the biz.  Established in 2008, the Di Fazio family has set a goal to deliver a fine super premium to the cigar aficionado.


Using a combination of tobacco from the DR, Nicaragua and Honduras, the Di Fazio family wants to blend the perfect cigars for every occasion.  They currently have three offerings: the mild and creamy Connecticut, the rich and sweet Maduro and the complex Picoso.


Here’s a write-up from Cigar Aficionado:

Carmelo Di Fazio, a 41-year-old Miami television executive with a lifelong love of fine cigars, has entered the cigar business. Born in Venezuela of Italian descent, Di Fazio is a self-described dreamer who loves to smoke cigars. He created his company, Di Fazio Cigars Corp., last year.Di Fazio cigars are rolled at the up-and-coming Fabrica de Tabacos Raices Cubanas S. de R.L. factory in Honduras, the boutique operation that also makes Illusione and Alec Bradley Tempus cigars, among others. They come in three varieties—Connecticut, Maduro and the intriguingly named Picoso.

The Connecticut blend has a Connecticut-seed wrapper grown in Ecuador, with Indonesian binder and Honduran and Nicaraguan filler. The maduro has a Nicaraguan wrapper, Honduran binder and Honduran and Nicaraguan filler. The Picoso, which takes its name from the Spanish for “spicy,” is the boldest blend, and is a Honduran puro.

Di Fazio Connecticut – this smooth, but flavorful cigar is offered in 4 sizes with a flawless Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper.


Di Fazio Maduro – the rustic and flavorful maduro wrapper comes in three sizes.


Di Fazio Picoso – Spanish for “spicy”, this oddly named line is a Honduran puro and comes in 4 sizes with a rosado hued Honduran wrapper.


If you seen one in your local B&M, pick one up and give it a try, the Di Fazio family has assembled a marca for every palate!


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Size: 7 5/8″ x 49

Vitola: Double Corona

Wrapper: a frighteningly toothy Connecticut Broadleaf

Origin: Nicaragua

Age: just arose from its coffin

The Frank.  You may have heard of it.  The Frank (short for Frankenstein’s monster of course) is 1st of a hopefully long line of Monster Series cigars released by Pete Johnson of Tatuaje fame for Halloween.  Thirteen evil cigars are stuffed into a blood-splattered coffin and were distributed to only 13 ghoulish retailers randomly selected from a drawing, 666 terrifying boxes total.  Empire Cigars was lucky enough to be one of the thirteen stores selected to carry the Frank.

The Frank is adorned with an eerie green band that separates it from all of the other Tatuaje lines.  The Frank is slightly box-pressed (very Frankenstein-y) and is long and big.  Pete has revealed (at Brothers of the Leaf) that the Frank is actually a Tatuaje Taino with a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper.


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