Q & A: Seasonal Pairings
What kind of cigars pair well with a pumpkin beer?
9/10/12 | by BT of Provo, UT
Like Christmas commercials before Thanksgiving, pumpkin flavored beers keep appearing earlier and earlier every year. But they’re pretty delicious, so I guess we can’t be that mad at the onslaught of delicious libations this time of year. So what sort of savory cigar can we pair with them? First, let’s start with a mellow, creamy Connecticut-wrapped blend. The creamy nature of the wrapper will pair nicely with the pumpkin flavor and leave a rich, mellow finish on your palate. If you’re looking for something a little heartier, go with a Nicaraguan blend with a Habano wrapper. The spice from the blend will pair really well the spices of a pumpkin beer and knock you into a coma of flavor that is best suited to enjoy after dinner.
by Sean G
Review: Punch Bareknuckle
The Gloves Are Off
Potent, spicy, but incredibly smooth on the finish, this is one of the best Punch cigars we've ever experienced. From the packaging to the bands to the blend, everything is top notch here. Expect a massive complexity that builds and builds into a finale of epic earthiness followed by pepper and a hearty aroma.
Article: Spot The Differences Between Originals and Seconds
Rocky Patel Vintage 1990
• Cigar bands
• Available in boxes, packs of 5, and singles
• No blemishes, soft spots, or discoloration
• Perfect flavor, aroma, and construction qualities
• High end premium price
Rocky Patel Vintage Seconds
• No cigar bands
• Only available in mazos
• Small blemishes, inconsistent wrapper color
• Perfect flavor and aroma
• Affordable everyday value
Can you really tell the difference between a second and a first? I bet if we were on the golf course, I could hand you an unbanded second and you would be none the wiser. Seconds are often overlooked throughout the industry and I believe this is due to a lack of trust. I challenge you to seek out cigar seconds on a regular basis and here’s why: you’ll find yourself having the exact same experience compared to burning a first, but you’ll notice your wallet remains quite heavier as a result. Seconds are not attempts at recreating or reproducing a popular blend; they are simply cigars that do not pass a factory’s quality control standards due to small blemishes in the wrapper, maybe slight discoloration, or maybe they have a small problem with construction. However, at the end of the day, seconds are the same as the factory’s firsts in terms of flavor and blend, but available at a drastically reduced price.
As cigar consumer’s become more educated and more experienced, they also become more discerning regarding their cigars. They understand the differences between a premium cigar and an everyday cigar, they want more refined complex flavors, and they expect perfect construction characteristics. This fact puts more pressure on factories for better quality control standards. As factories increase their quality control processes, more seconds become available, and that’s where we jump in to grab them up.
We carry seconds in Alec Bradley, Rocky Patel, and other high end brands while continuing to add more to our lineup on a regular basis. I thoroughly enjoy burning through seconds. Sure, every now and then I come across a poor draw or a cigar that really should have been discarded at the factory, but for the majority of what I purchase as seconds, I find myself saving money while still enjoying those premium flavors I love. What makes seconds even better is handing them to your friends or golf buddies because let’s face it; they probably won’t appreciate a fine cigar as much as you, unless of course they’re active enthusiasts like yourself, in which case they’ll appreciate the premium flavor profiles. The only downfall to seconds is the fact that they come and go randomly since they are a product of quality control. My suggestion; regularly check if seconds are available in your favorite brands and if you find some, get them. Not only will you be surprised with the quality of the cigar, but you’ll grin from head to foot knowing you paid pennies for something that sells for dollars.