Lounge Lizards - a Cigar and Lifestyle Podcast

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Recorded at Ten86 Lounge in Hawthorne, New Jersey, the lizards pair the CAO BX3 in Robusto with Peroni and Stella Artois Non-Alcoholic beers. The guys do a deep dive on CAO history and marketing decisions, they recap the Fuente and General Cigar lawsuit over this cigar line, Rooster visits Canada and Senator goes to a surprising movie.

Join the Lounge Lizards for a weekly discussion on all things cigars (both Cuban and non-Cuban), whiskey, food, travel, life and work. This is your formal invitation to join us in a relaxing discussion amongst friends and become a card-carrying Lounge Lizard yourself. This is not your typical cigar podcast. We’re a group of friends who love sharing cigars, whiskey and a good laugh.

website/merch/rating archive: loungelizardspod.com
email: hello@loungelizardspod.com to join the conversation and be featured on an upcoming episode!
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What is Lounge Lizards - a Cigar and Lifestyle Podcast?

Released every Tuesday, the LOUNGE LIZARDS podcast helps listeners navigate the experience of finding and enjoying premium cigars (both Cuban and non-Cuban) and quality spirits. Episodes are normally around 90 minutes long and feature a variety of different topics including food, travel, life, sports and work.

The podcast features seven members: Rooster, Poobah, Gizmo, Senator, Pagoda, Grinder and Bam Bam.​

This is not your typical cigar podcast. We’re a group of friends who love sharing cigars, whiskey and a good laugh.

Join us and become a card-carrying lounge lizard yourself! Email us at hello@loungelizardspod.com to join the conversation and be featured on an upcoming episode!

**Gizmo:** [00:00:00] Welcome to the Lounge Lizards podcast. It's so good to have you here. It's a leisure and lifestyle podcast founded on our love of premium cigars, as well as whiskey, travel, food, work, and whatever else we feel like getting into. My name is Gizmo. Tonight I'm joined by Rooster Senator and bam bam. And our plan is to smoke a cigar, drink some non-alcoholic beer, talk about life, and of course, have some laughs.

So take this as your 93rd official invitation to join us. And become a card carrying lounge. Lizard Plan meet is here once a week. We are gonna smoke a new world cigar tonight. Share our thoughts on it and give you our formal lizard rating. We review c a o history, we recap the Fuente in general. Lawsuit over the cigar.

Rooster heads to Montreal, and Senator goes to the movies, all among a variety of the things for the next 90 minutes. So sit back, get your favorite drink, light up a cigar, and enjoy as we pair both Peroni and Stella Artis. 0.0 non-alcoholic beers with the C A O BX three in sto. A STO tonight from c a [00:01:00] o.

It's called the BX three. It's a beautiful 52 ring gauge by five inch cigar. A lot of Brazilian tobacco in this boys. Mm. And our first c a o on the pod tonight. It's a nice looking cigar. Yeah. We've had a lot of listeners actually request C a O. Um, the brazilia is very popular as we know. We see a lot of people smoking that.

Did they request this cigar? And this was one that a listener specifically requested was, was BX three buel? It's a must do then. Yeah. So, uh, BX three stands for brazilia times three. Hmm. So what's cool about this cigar is it has Brazilian tobacco in the wrapper is Brazilian, the binder's Brazilian and the filler is a combination of Brazilian hondu and Mexican and Nicaraguan.

So it kind of has a little bit of everything. Interesting. That

**Senator:** sounds more like B times 2.1, maybe. 2.2. This is a potpourri.

**Bam Bam:** Not quite three

**Senator:** is what this is. It's not a pure,

**Gizmo:** it's not a pure. It's not a piro, so it has a little bit of everything in the filler, but we'll see how it is. Let's cut this thing [00:02:00] dark oily wrapper on this thing though, Bruce.

Yeah. Yeah. The wrapper actually does

**Senator:** look pretty nice. Mm Yeah.

**Bam Bam:** Wide open.

**Gizmo:** Mm. Flavor's fine. Yeah. On the cold draw. A pleasant draw. Mm-hmm.

I don't know what I'm getting on as as a note, I don't think I'm getting anything. Not much that I wanna call out. Classic kind of dried fruit that we say on every New World episode.

**Senator:** I'm getting like Raisin and a little mustiness on the cold draw.

**Bam Bam:** I can see the Raisin League of nine esque.

**Gizmo:** See how it is? It has a very ornate band on it. Yeah. I don't like it that we'll talk about. Well, let's like this thing boys. The c A O BX three reus, though. Again, it's 52 ring gauge by five inches long. Looks like a well constructed cigar. We'll see. Mm-hmm. It's pretty heavy for the size. I mean, it's definitely, there's definitely a lot of tobacco,

**Bam Bam:** this thing.

Yeah. And [00:03:00] I actually am gonna go out and make a prediction. I think. We'll, like the cigar. You think so? Yeah. I'm, I'm liking that cold draw now. Okay. 'cause I think about it.

**Gizmo:** So I've had these in my tower for, I don't know, six or eight weeks. Mm-hmm. But I'm ready to wait. The cigar?

**Bam Bam:** No I'm not. Yeah. Let's get it over with

**Senator:** to Gizmo's point about this being a heavy cigar. This took a while to light my dad. It did.

**Bam Bam:** Wow. You need a new world lighter for the new world cigars. Single. Not all of them. That's true.

**Gizmo:** It's nice on the light. It's interesting. It has like a, like a weird, um, it's like, like a dark chocolate espresso thing, but it's very unique.

I mean, now the

**Rooster:** cold draw was getting like, like you said, like dried fruit and fig type thing, but it was accurate on the light. Yeah. [00:04:00] It's more, it's

**Gizmo:** dark

**Senator:** espresso. Yeah. Like very dark espresso. I think that's exactly right.

**Gizmo:** Well, this is, it has a very interesting flavor in, on the front of my palate though.

Quite a full flavored cigar. Yeah. This is the most robust, uh, cigars. C a o. That was the, the whole thing of, uh, the BX three was, it's the brazilia times three. It's just the, the most full cigar with Brazilian tobacco that they've made. Right. And that was the intention here. Are you getting any

**Bam Bam:** great, great smoke output?

Yeah. Nice smoke output. Absolutely. Any ammonia at all? Like, like it's, I'm ultra

**Gizmo:** young. Not so far. I'm not.

**Bam Bam:** Maybe I'm going a quick tad quick on the draw here.

**Gizmo:** There's a little bit of a interesting is it must is it, there's something

**Senator:** there that's very different. It's like even on the cold draw when I said there was a mustiness, there's like metallic this weird,

**Gizmo:** I get a metallic, like I wanna do that with my tongue

**Senator:** that I can't really kind of describe.


**Rooster:** the

**Gizmo:** [00:05:00] aroma is nice. Yeah. It smells good at the burn line. Yes. It also smells good at the head of the cigar.

**Bam Bam:** Well, the wrapper smells great.

**Senator:** Yeah. I mean, the more I draw on this, I'm getting a lot of just dark cocoa, um, espresso notes, which I like.

**Rooster:** Yeah. Like real dark black coffees. You know, rich.

**Senator:** Yeah.

Like even just smell the aroma. Like I just got a whiff of like bam smoke and it literally, it's like I'm in a coffee shop right

**Gizmo:** now. Yeah.

**Bam Bam:** It's not harsh at

**Gizmo:** all the smoke. No. And I'm finding the flavor to be pretty smooth right now. Mm-hmm. On the light. Yeah. You know, a lot of these full flavored

**Rooster:** but not full strength so far.

Yeah, that's true. But the flavor

**Gizmo:** is full. Right. And I think a lot of the new world manufacturers, as we've discussed, they do this thing where they really wanna punch you in the face on the light, and then the cigar just fizzles out, falls on its face. Mm-hmm. By the, you know, the, the middle or the last third.

But this is a, a nice opening so far. So two other cigars in this line, they have a [00:06:00] Gordo, which is a six by 60 and a Torro, which is a six by 52. So I was gonna get the Gordo. I know, uh, Senator loves those six by 60, but I decided to go, it's double Gordo.

**Bam Bam:** Uh,

**Senator:** I'll be, how about the double? I'll be missing the next four episodes.

**Gizmo:** Jesus. It's gonna be in the hospital.

**Senator:** I just can't imagine. I mean, this, this, honestly, I'm sorry. In strength, it's, I think this really leans toward full. It, uh, that's, I'm getting more strength the more I smoke this and I'm like, nicotine strength, just both. Yeah. Okay. Like this cigar, it, it's full in flavor we agree on, but I do think there's a little bit of nicotine strength to this.

I, it, it's making me smoke this slower Yeah. Than I normally would. Like, my mind is telling me just pace yourself. This is, there's something

**Bam Bam:** more there. Yep. And I think that Tino grow as we go through it. Yeah. Especially as it gets

**Gizmo:** hot. Oh yeah.

**Senator:** I'm just surprised because the Brasilia is obviously like their, their famous cigar and uh, there's maybe one or two guys that are lounge here that I see smoking those routinely and I know they have 'em in the [00:07:00] humidor.

I haven't had a Brasilia since, I mean, over 10 years ago probably. I just remember they used to come in random samplers every now and then, or like you get free cigars with your order and I'd see a Brazilian there and I can barely remember what the flavor profile was, but I do remember it. Being a bit robust, having a little bit of strength.

And I was saying that to this guy here who always smokes them. And he was telling me, he's like, no, I find 'em to be mild, medium at best. Really. So then I even looking up this, just right before we recorded, a lot of people describe this as medium and strength. I think at least early on there's, there's more than medium strength here.

**Gizmo:** I agree with you. Totally. I think, I think too it, you know, as I said, just kind of feeling it, looking at it for how dense it is. The draw is great. Yes. Just a touch of resistance for me. Mm-hmm. It's not like wide, wide open. It's just got a little bit. And it's burning wonderfully. Yep. Made very well. I mean, it looks like it's made well.

And this is a cigar that's under 10 bucks. I was gonna ask you how much really? Oh, under 10. Under 10. So, you know, we have a lot of listeners [00:08:00] say to us, Hey, why don't you guys do more budget cigars? Why don't you do more cigars that are cheap? And I think we do quite actually, quite a, we bit at them. We've done a lot.

We have more coming up. We, and we have more coming up too. That's true. But this is a good example of a cigar that you can find this in almost every humidor. Mm-hmm. I mean, this c a o is everywhere. You

**Bam Bam:** know, I've ever had a C I O before.

**Gizmo:** Really ever. I thought you

**Senator:** said you've had the Brasilia. I've

**Bam Bam:** never had that.

Really? I've made a c It's very high end. I've made a

**Rooster:** conscious You don't smoke this crappy, shitty

**Bam Bam:** cigars. No, no. I've tried to avoid them. Honestly, not knowing anything about it. We're gonna start calling you bougie. Bam. No bougie, bam. You know that's not true.

**Senator:** Well, this is the guy who said his first cigar he ever smoked was a dab off, was dabbled off millennia.

That's a, the pyramid was my first cigar. That's insane.

**Bam Bam:** That's true. That's true. That's a good point. Remember, I'm new to the hobby

**Senator:** compared to, I started smoking cigars. I couldn't afford to dab it off. Millennia. Okay. So I was college.

**Bam Bam:** Remember my, when my son was born, he was, he's 16, so I've only been smoking cigars for 16 years.

16 years

**Gizmo:** ago. Roo Rooster's. Fourteen's

**Bam Bam:** been spoken for 47 years. [00:09:00] Hello?

**Rooster:** Hello. How old do you think I am?

**Bam Bam:** Geez, you had an like 1920.

**Gizmo:** 1920. Every time he says that he goes back another 20 years. I love it. For the listeners keeping count, next time it'll be 1900. You get a prize that make me 103 years old today.

So c a o says the story of the brazilia. I don't read, I, I don't wanna read the whole thing, but the whole idea for BX three was to take the success of the brazilia line as, as senator was talking about, uh, to take the tobacco from that. And they said that they wanted to see how far they could take the flavor and how much, as they say, this is one of our call out quotes, just like fruity, decadence, exotic intensity.

Oh boy. Oh, look at that. They could pull out of the tobacco, uh, while still delivering a balanced profile.

**Senator:** Brazil exotic intensity. It's a nice,

**Gizmo:** it's pretty accurate. Are you sure He was talking about the cigar?

**Senator:** [00:10:00] Alright, alright. Right. Alright. Right. Alright.

**Gizmo:** So yeah, I, uh, so these cigars come in a really, really decadent box of 20 with, uh, c a o logo on top, very colorful BX three. And then under that it says Brasilia times three. That's a nice box. Pretty cool box. Yeah. Yeah. Very colorful. That box is worth 50 bucks. Yeah, it's very well made too. I don't have it with us tonight, but Nice.

Um, it's, it's very, very well made, so I don't need to go through the list. I mean, these guys make. A ton of cigars.

**Senator:** Mm-hmm. The thing that's strange to me, I don't know of any other brand that uses Brazilian wrappers, tobacco, Brazilian, anything. Yep. Yeah. I mean, am I, is, are there others? I've, I've never heard of any other,

**Gizmo:** I think this is the first one.

There's not a lot.

**Rooster:** C a O does a lot of Brazilian stuff.

**Gizmo:** I think this is the first Brazilian tobacco we've done on the podcast. A, a listener could call us out, but I don't ever remember calling out Brazilian [00:11:00] tobacco. I don't know if, does ABO use some Brazilian tobacco? Possibly. I don't know. Not that I've

**Bam Bam:** ever heard, honestly.

**Senator:** I just say that because it's kind of surprising. I mean, obviously there are a number of brands that will have like one kind of limited cigar where they'll do something funky and have tobacco from some like Costa Rica somewhere. That obviously makes tobacco, but it's not predominant like mm-hmm.

Dominican Nicaragua, some of these other places. So you see that, but I'm just surprised that. Not only, it's not like they just do this in a limited capacity, like they've built their brand around Brazilian tobacco, which is just surprising to me because no one else really even tries to imitate that.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah.

Yeah. And it's just the wrapper. Correct. All three, uh, everything. It's pure.

**Gizmo:** Wow. That's why I said it should

**Senator:** be the Brazil 2.1.

**Gizmo:** Brazil two times 2.20 boy. Because the filler has a combo of four

**Bam Bam:** different times. Yeah. You mentioned that earlier. Right,

**Gizmo:** right, right. What's interesting about this, you know, you just said, uh, you called out how successful the Brasilia is 'cause we see that a lot.

Guess how many. [00:12:00] Lines in c a o They have VAAs You mean not fatas lines? Just the lines of cigars, including like the Brasilia, the BX three, the Flathead, which you guys have seen. I, I thought 8 34. Oh my God. Okay. I didn't that, yeah, I, when I was looking at this before we came today, I can't believe how many cigars these guys make.

Who's buying it? I mean, you're talking a, a, a, a list of, and this is just, look, there are a lot of gas stations

**Senator:** out there. Yeah. Sorry.

**Gizmo:** You know, the, you're like, think about they're just a small piece of general cigars. Amazing. And just inside c a o, they have 35, uh, 34 lines. Wow. 35 lines. And they keep adding more.

But like Senator said, I think this is a cigar you see pop up. You see C O A C A O a lot in like the starter packs. Yeah. Or like the, you know, trials. Mm-hmm. Or when you, you buy something, you get something free. You're always getting a c a O in this, like the flatheads, the Brazilians, the Americana. Yeah. Or the American, uh, tobacco one, which I see a lot at retailers, which has [00:13:00] like an American flag type design on it,

**Rooster:** smell the aroma out of the foot.

Right now I'm getting a little bit of like a floral note just out of the smoke. Hmm. It's like it has changed from the beginning.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. Honestly, it's funny, I'm getting almond and

**Rooster:** walnut. Yeah. On the, uh, on the smoke. On the drawer or on

**Gizmo:** the smoke. On the smoke. Yeah. I'm getting

**Senator:** a little bit of, of kind of all the above.

Yeah. Honestly. Um, which is very surprising. This is developing more complexity than

**Bam Bam:** I would've expected. Yeah. And on the retro, it's actually quite nice. I'm surprised. Yeah. Cocoa and a lot of coffee on the retro

**Gizmo:** hill. It's like an incense. It it, the intensity, right? It does push. Yeah. Yeah. It's surprising.

It does kind of give you a, especially in the nose, I think, even when you're smelling the burn line of the foot. Mm-hmm. Like you're getting a very intense Yeah. Experience in the nose.

**Bam Bam:** I can't say that I'm not enjoying this right now. I

**Senator:** kind am Same. Right. And the thing actually that I appreciate the most about it, this isn't like anything I've smoked before.

Mm-hmm. Right. Mm. [00:14:00] Like the fullness is like not as full as a padro 90th, but it's like in that like a liga, it's going for real full intense, bold flavors. Yeah. Very smooth. Yeah. But the profile is pretty unique. Yeah, it's very enjoyable.

**Rooster:** I mean, I must say like there's some $40 cigars

**Gizmo:** that I've had that don't perform like this, that, that don't.


**Rooster:** You know, perform just like this. Yeah. And I would take this over those any day.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. Right now

**Bam Bam:** it's true. Yeah. Yeah. We're only an inch in.

**Gizmo:** We'll see. I'm just happy that it didn't come out of the gate swinging and, you know, like we're, we're what, at about quarter of an inch, half an inch? Mm-hmm.

Generally we have that experience with a cigar, a new world cigar, and then by that half inch, one inch mark. It's, it's face in the dirt. And I think that this is kind of building from the start.

**Bam Bam:** Try the retro hill on this thing. It is really good. Nutty coffee. Oh

**Gizmo:** wow. It's really quite nice. Yeah. Guys, push it through your nose.

It's really nice. If you do that really nice, kind,

**Senator:** if I could do that [00:15:00] intentionally. You can't do that. It just, no, it just, I, I can, but it just happens. It's like so bizarre. It's a subliminal thing with Senator. It's, it's like amazing. I'm just smoking a cigarette all of a sudden. I'm like, oh, wow. That was incredible.

I'm on the same

**Rooster:** boat. I can't really direct royalle. See? Really? Yeah.

**Bam Bam:** I can't whistle it. It's like Pavlov's dog, you know? Just things happen. I can't

**Gizmo:** whistle Senator, uh, uh, rooster goes, I can't whistle either,

**Bam Bam:** but it just happens when I walk down the street.

**Rooster:** Like almost like a lot of people can whistle, but I can't,

**Gizmo:** I can't whistle.

Well, I think a whistle is a practice of the tongue. Mm-hmm. The muscle control, but retro hell is, this is simply closing your mouth and pushing the air out of the doesn't, doesn't come set of holes.

**Senator:** It comes outta my ears. Not everybody can do it. I, I think it's much easier for, people can't, it won't come out who have smoked cigarettes before if you've never actually inhaled a product.

Like you do cigarettes, it's much harder.

**Gizmo:** So I'll give you this. I've never smoked cigarettes. I've never smoked cigarettes and I've never smoked weed in my life. Weeded once in my life. I've never inhaled anything intentionally, ever. Mm-hmm. [00:16:00] So that's, that's an interesting point. Like I, I'm able to push it through my nose.

**Bam Bam:** It's, you can't do it. So the tough thing about it is when I started to do that, 'cause everyone told me you got a retro to get the actual profile and flavor notes to the cigar, blah, blah, blah. Yeah. I would do the retro at the end of the draw. So as I pull it in, not at the beginning, but as I'm, as I'm pushing the smoke outta my mouth, just capture a little bit and I just, you, you just change your, your, your exhale to your nose and it comes right through.

**Rooster:** Can you, can I actually see smoke coming outta your

**Gizmo:** nose? Yeah. You should be able to. You see? Yeah. Yeah. We're watching a demonstration of bam retro hailing. Oh yeah. There you go. Oh yeah. Look at that. Alright,

**Senator:** GIZ, you're next. At the end, you're next, you

**Bam Bam:** do it at the end of the, of the exiting of the smoke.

**Gizmo:** I didn't see it.

I didn't see any smoke. I pushed it out. Yeah. Yeah. Was it too far? Was the, was the normal? Do it slowly. Do it slow. Try to make rings outta your nose. Nose

**Bam Bam:** like a bull. Yeah. Only one. Nostri, please.

**Gizmo:** Which one? Ba first to left, then the right. Ah. Okay. Standby. [00:17:00] Dealer's choice. It's coming outta your ears.

**Bam Bam:** No, I think I got, I got it.

I saw it. I saw it. You

**Gizmo:** can't make me laugh while I'm doing it. Okay. Sorry.

**Bam Bam:** I do enjoy that part of cigar smoking. I have to admit,

**Gizmo:** I, I really like it. And when you find, you know what I like about it? Is it often for a cigar that's maybe mediocre, like we've talked about so many times mm-hmm. You have a cigar that's like not great.

Sometimes that retro hill is actually what saves it. Yeah. From, you know, like as far as an experience, like Yeah. Gives you a little bit more than you're getting on the regular draw. Yeah. You know? Or the regular exhale

**Bam Bam:** of the draw. I'll do it maybe four times per cigar. Yeah. Three or four times only

**Gizmo:** grinder.

Like retro hails. Every, every draw. Every draw. That's a lot. That's a lot. So c i o has been around quite some time. Um, in 1968, the brand was founded by Jono Ossner is his name in Nashville, Tennessee. Uh, he was, he grew up in Istanbul, Turkey. So that's a little bit of a different [00:18:00] story than what than we get on.

He's a Turk. He's a turk. Interesting. On most of the, uh, origin stories. That's not derogatory, by the way. No, no, I don't. No. But he is, and and why I say that, why I think that's interesting is you don't get those kind of stories in tobacco. Usually it's starting from a Spanish country like Cuba or, you know, uh, uh, Mexico or Dominican Republic or Nicaragua.

A Turkish guy in Tennessee. Yep. Turkish guy in Tennessee's. A wild story that's, uh, started c a o cigars when it's been around forever. And that was in 1968. Oh, okay. Um, they started, uh, with, with pipe tobacco. Uh, he was a, you know, he, he liked to modify pipes and produce pipes and then tried to launch a brand in the eighties.

It didn't go well. Uh, and then finally had success late eighties, early nineties. And, you know, I don't need to go through the whole story, but they were acquired by General Cigar in 2010 and the family left. And that's been the story of c a o since is it's just an, uh, a very volume heavy brand, uh, for general [00:19:00] cigars.

So he's not affiliated with c a o. None of the family is affiliated with c a O. He died about five years ago. Mm-hmm. He died in 2018. His kids were involved since the late nineties. You know, uh, I found some articles from Cigar Aficionado where they were talking about c a o as a family business, a family affair.

But it seems like they're one of the ones that actually survived and arguably thrived in the cigar boom. Where so many of those brands in the nineties kind of came and went, you know, flash in the pan. Yeah. They. Survived on the volume side of it. Hmm. You know, producing their tobacco, they're everywhere.

And they produce tobacco from every region, every type of tobacco. Me, every, every type of tobacco you can think of. It's in CAO's portfolio. And like we said, what Senator was saying for Brazilian tobacco, these guys are certainly one of the high volume producers who put out Right. Tobacco from Brazil. Was he, was he a blender himself?

I think he started, like I said, as a pipe to pipe tobacco, uh, guy, I guess he, he got, [00:20:00] he found his footing there. Um, and then they started to, uh, they started to read up on how to manufacture cigars. I guess they thought that might be another successful segment of the business. He was thinking that and he started to play with, uh, manufacturers.

Yeah. I mean, mean, I mean pipe tobacco is very cheap.

**Rooster:** Yeah. You know, you can buy a, like a third of an ounce of pipe tobacco that's decent and it's. Under like eight, nine bucks. Yep. And you can smoke that for a long time, as opposed to a cigar that's like 10 bucks. $10. I mean, it's rooster. You've

**Gizmo:** smoked, uh, pipes?

Yeah, I use,

**Rooster:** uh, I do mostly in the

**Gizmo:** wintertime. Really?

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. Even now?

**Gizmo:** Yeah. In the wi, like occasionally, not like every day. Okay. I've never had a pipe. I haven't either. I'd like to try. So my father-in-law loves pipes and he loves it because it's a smaller time commitment. Mm. So he's able to, instead of, even when you light a reus though, you, you know, it's an hour.

If you smoke slow like rooster, it might be two hours for us, it might be [00:21:00] 45 minutes or an hour. And that's not knock, that's just, that's just how you smoke. But my father-in-law's kind of in the rooster camp, so when he sits down and smoke a cigar, it's a time commitment. Whereas the pipe, you can smoke for 15 minutes.

**Rooster:** Right. Well the pipe you have to keep, there's really two kinds of tobaccos. You have the aromatics and the non aromatics. So when you smoke pipes, you really have to keep two different pipes. Mm-hmm. One for aromatics and

**Gizmo:** one for non aromatic. Interesting. And what is aromatic? Sorry? I'm aromatic

**Rooster:** is basically flavored.

Non aromatic is non like, you know, your cherry and chocolate and all that stuff. And then the non aromatics are like Virginia Blend and Virginia Tobacco and uh, just

**Gizmo:** gentleman blend. Yeah. Like Don Hill. I mean, it's just, there's no flavor. Got it. Yeah. So it's just, it's kind like smoking a cigar. Is it like smoking like an acid cigar, which is flavored versus a No.

**Bam Bam:** So I've been around, I've been in rooms where, you know, a proprietor would walk around with this pipe. Honestly, the right flavored tobacco makes a room smell beautiful. Oh, it smells really be beautiful. [00:22:00] It's beautiful. It does. So

**Gizmo:** it's really enjoyable when you smoke a pipe.

**Rooster:** Like when you smoke a cigar, you are getting the flavor when you draw in the, but on the pipe, it's more the external smoke that's coming out of the pipe that you enjoy more than the Interesting,

**Senator:** interesting.

So you're not tasting as much

**Rooster:** of what? We're not tasting as much as what you Yeah,

**Gizmo:** that's a good thing. At least to me. I mean, I, I could be totally off for this. I do think that pipe tobacco, or smoking a pipe is less offensive to non-smokers around you. Well, the

**Rooster:** aromatics. Aromatics, 'cause you have, you know, the flavors of cherry and chocolate and because they're flavored, so.


**Gizmo:** Interesting. So yeah, the, you know, c uh, c a o, he got some help from the Placencia. Uh, we, we talked about that two weeks ago. We did the, uh, the, uh, what was that called? Uh, the Alma Forte. Oh, the Alma Forte. The Alma Forte. Uh, we did the, uh, the Salis, the generation five. The, uh, nesters, uh, Placencia was one of the guys [00:23:00] who actually helped, uh, Jono develop his cigars.

That's cool. Help c a o uh, in the nineties. So that was the story. Uh, they moved to the United States in 1995 and fully transitioned to the production of cigars. And that's kind of it. Other note I wanted to make too was c a o had partnerships. This is wild. Had partnerships with M L B N H L and the N B A Chicago Bulls, what, in the late nineties official partnerships featured at the sporting events

**Bam Bam:** now where sports enthusiasts, I don't remember any

**Gizmo:** of that.

Yeah. And it also shows you what a different time it was 25 years ago. Wow. Yeah. That would never happen. That would never happen. You weren't smoking cigars in 95.

**Bam Bam:** That's that's true. That's true. I guess they were smoking cigars in stadiums. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** But it, it was official partners of the M L B Allstar game and, uh, N H L Hockey All-Star game.

That's pretty wild. The N B A Chicago Bulls. That's wild. This was like the official cigar of the Chicago Bulls. Interesting. [00:24:00] Which is just crazy to think like, can you imagine that like Steph Curry, like endorsing, like paone cigars or something like it would never happen today. No, it would never happen today.

I'm surprised

**Rooster:** that part of, and that's kind of during the boom, like the early,

**Gizmo:** early part of the boom. Yeah. Yeah. Mid to late

**Senator:** nineties. These were the days Michael Jordan was smoking cigars on the team bus on his way to games. That's right.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. He'd go play 36 holes, drink, come back, shower, go in the locker room, smoke cigars, and then play a game.

Love it. It's

**Bam Bam:** amazing. Incredible. The era of real men. Okay. That's right. Didn't he do, uh, Luan? Wasn't that his

**Gizmo:** cigar? He loved Yeah. Parti against Luan. Uhhuh. He loved Toyo. Double Coronas is another one he loves. He actually turned Alex Rodriguez onto those, I think. Really? But yeah, he loves, uh, and he loves Cuban cigars, especially double Coronas.

Nice. So boys, this is really, this is really pretty damn good. This is performing

**Bam Bam:** beautifully. Very smooth, great flavor. Yeah. No rough edges at

**Gizmo:** all. I

**Rooster:** keep thinking about the price [00:25:00] point, and we think about a cigar that's under $10 and it delivers this much enjoyment. Yep. It's a home

**Gizmo:** run. Oh yeah. And I'm finding that it's kind of flavor-wise, like maybe I'm settling into it.

Mm-hmm. Or it's just the way it's been blended, but I feel like it's kind of slowly taking steps forward. Which I think is the journey that I like in a cigar. The flavor

**Bam Bam:** profile I'm thick on. This is a pretty unique flavor profile. It's not potpourri completely, it's not coffee. To me, it's a combination of the two, which makes it very different than any cigar I've had before.


**Senator:** agree. I mean, the thing I really like, it's just getting more and more complex as you smoke it, which you don't expect from any cigar. That's right. At that price point, definitely not. Yeah. So that's a huge surprise. The other thing at this price point I expected, when they talk about a bold cigar mm-hmm.

You've gotta really age tobacco when you're going for bold flavors so that it doesn't kick you around and it's not harsh or aggressive or a nicotine bomb. And this is not harsh or aggressive at [00:26:00] all. No, that's I'm really shocked.

**Bam Bam:** That's a good question. Does, is there an age, do they know, do we know how many years they've aged their tobacco?

**Gizmo:** I looked everywhere for it. Okay. There is no age statement anywhere about the tobacco in the cigar. Now, I gotta imagine in the filler, at least in the Honduran Dominican Nicaragua, and I gotta imagine it's at least, you know, a couple years, two years. Yeah. I would think. Are you, are you gonna put young Nicaragua tobacco in the middle of a cigar?

I would think not, but I don't think any

**Rooster:** new world cigars are rolled that fresh. Okay. The tobacco has just aged a little bit longer than a Cuban cigar, so. Sure.

**Gizmo:** Any

**Senator:** premium new world cigar? Yeah.

**Gizmo:** Yeah.

**Rooster:** Performing anything that's like above eight, $10, they,

**Gizmo:** they have to age the tobacco. This is performing like that though, for me.


**Senator:** it is. There's no doubt that this is aged. I mean, I'm not getting any harsh.

**Rooster:** Yeah. Something is happening on the. On the front, on the tip of my tongue. On the front that you mentioned earlier. Yeah. That it's kind of like a numbing.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, I don't know what that is. There is something weird there. I

**Bam Bam:** don't know what it is.

I'm not getting that. I was [00:27:00] getting a a, maybe I was smoking it too quickly, but a little bit of an ammonia earlier that's gone. It's absolutely pleasurable. Very smooth. Very tasty. Yeah. This is great. It's shocking

**Gizmo:** actually.

**Senator:** I read that they actually roll these in Nicaragua. Hmm. Yes. I believe that's true.

And I'm wondering is that like most of CAO's lines, do they have them rolled in Nicaragua or what's

**Gizmo:** the I. I think that they're, that's where their major facilities are. Okay. They're a US company, but like Padron, I think they manufacture most of their stuff in Nicaragua. But I mean, they've gotta have, I don't know what the numbers are because it's general cigars, so I think everything's kind of funneled into the story of general Now.

I don't know how much of their employees and, and how many people they have working on this, but for how many cigars they must produce, I mean, it's gotta be, it's insane. Significant operation. You're probably talking five huge operation. 7,000 people. Oh, I mean, at least, right.

**Senator:** I just can't get over it. Look at the ash on it.

Look at bams, look at mine. This is ridiculous. We all have

**Gizmo:** at this price point. Yeah. For 10 bucks. I mean,

**Senator:** perfect

**Bam Bam:** burn. [00:28:00] It's performing like a padron. It is from the point of view of performance.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. Yeah. Right. The construction's excellent. Yeah. Excellent. Let's talk about the band. 'cause this band has quite a story right now.

So first off, it's very ornate. Uh, it's a very colorful rainbow type of flag on it. It glows in the dark. Yeah, it glows in the dark.

**Bam Bam:** It's, it's a little gaudy from my taste. A little gaudy

**Gizmo:** a bit. Okay. Uh, so it has c a o BX three and a big X in the middle. The other thing I think is cool on the back of this two boys, which I've never seen on a cigar Oh yeah.

Is there's a QR code. Yeah. So I, I've

**Senator:** actually started to see this on a number of cigars really? And I, I

**Gizmo:** honestly, I don't love it. I think it takes away

**Senator:** for me the problem. What is the purpose? What is the utility of having a QR code? I think I know the brand. I can go to their website. Am I gonna scan this code just to go visit their website?

I, it could be

**Bam Bam:** something special, guys, you don't know.

**Senator:** Let's see. Gizmo's gonna try it.

**Gizmo:** I can't get the, I can't get it out of the way of the smoke.

**Rooster:** Get 2.5% off on your next

**Gizmo:** order.

**Bam Bam:** [00:29:00] 2.1, 3.1.

**Senator:** I mean, um, if there is some great utility to it, I'm all for it. But I, I've yet to experience anything useful out of this and I just think it looks tacky on the back of the label.

**Gizmo:** What do you got? GIZ does a scan. It's not scanning because I don't know if it's the smoke.

**Senator:** Can you imagine the day if there are QR codes on Cuban cigars? Oh, please. No.

**Gizmo:** None of them are gonna work. None of none of them are gonna work. You just go to the website and it's like, sorry, we're down. It would show a restaurant.

Yeah. This is not loading in my, uh, with my camera

**Bam Bam:** here. Well, rooster took the band off and straightened it. Let's, yeah,

**Gizmo:** so you can get a, on a straight band, but it's not working. This use easier hair as you like to call it. It could be, uh, yeah. Very well. Could be. Yeah. See it's not,

**Senator:** this is why these are a joke.

It doesn't

**Gizmo:** scan on mine either. No it doesn't. What's the purpose of this?

**Bam Bam:** I think the glossy surface is reflecting light back and it doesn't capture,

**Gizmo:** I don't know, ruined that whole segment. Yeah,

**Senator:** no, I, it's made my point that I hate seeing these [00:30:00] QR codes. I mean, really, what is the utility of them?

**Bam Bam:** I have to say though, if we were, you know, we're drinking a beer with this, if we were drinking a spirit, the experience may be different.

I like the beer with the cigar,

**Gizmo:** so let's talk about it. So we've actually had a lot of listeners asking us to do more non-alcoholic pairings. Obviously rooster here. Yep. Doesn't drink. So we can include Rooster on these ratings and more of these conversations. So it's nice. So we're actually gonna have two non-alcoholic beers tonight.

Yeah. So we're starting boys with the poni. 0.0. 0.0.

**Bam Bam:** Hey, Mambo, Mambo, Italiano.

**Gizmo:** So I'll start by saying, this is not great. Mm-hmm. It's not

**Bam Bam:** bad. You know, initially there was zero flavor, but that's, there's still kind of no flavor, but it, it grows on you a bit, but it's very bland.

**Senator:** I love that it started with no flavor and there's now kind of no, no flavor.

It's really evolved. [00:31:00]

**Gizmo:** Yeah. This is, uh, this is not great. Nah. It's very

**Bam Bam:** light, extraordinarily light.

**Senator:** Hmm. I mean, the funny thing is though, when I, when we first poured this and I had it, like Bam said, there was no flavor. But I also, I just didn't get any, it didn't taste at all, like poni to me for some reason.

As it has sat a bit, now it's start, it's starting to taste more. Yeah. Like the flavor that you get in Poni, that's, that's not as robust,

**Bam Bam:** but as it warmed up a bit.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. Yeah. So when, if, if you were having the alcoholic version of Peroni mm-hmm. Flavorwise, is it that I've had a lot of this. Is it that much more robust than, than, so I had this

**Bam Bam:** in, in college when I lived in Italy.

Okay. Which we lived on this shit. Really?

**Senator:** Look at this guy. College. He's drinking Peroni. Say it bougie. Bam. He starts with a David off his first cigar. This is all bougie. Bam. Bougie. I was drinking Nat White in college. I haven't ever had

**Bam Bam:** champagne or caviar until this podcast. Well, so what are we doing? I mean, what are we talking

**Senator:** about?

And I'm always having that when I was a grown man. Not in college, [00:32:00]

**Gizmo:** but

**Senator:** keep going. Let's hear about college. You're made and Butlers and everyone else

**Bam Bam:** took care of you. None of that. I do like, I do like this beer. The regular version of it. It's, there's a lot of nice wheat. Um, it's hoppy. It's it's a nice, smooth lager.

It's great.

**Gizmo:** I have not had much of the regular one. I think this is an okay. It's okay. Non-alcoholic. I don't think there's it, it's missing. I think we, you were talking about it, uh, rooster. It's missing a bite. Well, we drink a

**Rooster:** lot of iPASS. Yeah. Like non-alcoholic iPASS, and they have that kick that bite and this doesn't.

Mm-hmm. Um, I haven't had this before, so I mean, it's okay. Not, probably not the best, um, non-alcoholic beers out there. Yeah. But it's, it's

**Gizmo:** all right.

**Bam Bam:** Now you've had the Stella that we're about to have too, right. I haven't

**Gizmo:** had the Stella either. Oh, I have, oh, you have? I'm actually excited to try the Stella 'cause I, I, I really liked that

**Senator:** taste more like Stella and has, is that right?

A bit more flavor. Interesting.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. One of my

**Rooster:** favorite ones, like lately is the Becks. I love the Becks. [00:33:00]

**Gizmo:** Mm. Does it have more flavor than this? We did that on the podcast. Yeah. I remember that. We did the Beck Becks

**Rooster:** Guinness

**Gizmo:** Athletic Brewing. Yep. Yeah. Oh, that's, that stuff's great. Yeah. So these two tonight are like the fifth or sixth, uh, non-alcoholic beers we've done in the pod.

Yeah. I don't see, it's weird

**Senator:** about it. It just, it drinks like a light beer and it's not designed to be a light beer. No. I mean, laggers are light, but not, not this light, right?

**Gizmo:** Huh? I

**Rooster:** don't like the Heineken zero for some reason. Mm. I agree. That's my least favorite non-alcoholic beards. It

**Senator:** has an aftertaste where it just tastes artificial.

It like, does not taste like real beard. Yeah. And I feel

**Rooster:** like they do the most amount of marketing. Heineken zero. Even like, I'm sure even Formula One racing, it's Oh yeah. I mean there's, it's true's

**Senator:** commercial. Lot of money. So it's funny you say that. When I was in Singapore before the pandemic, so maybe 2019, actually yeah, it was late 2019.

I was there and they were setting up. I just missed, uh, there was a Formula One race in Singapore. And, um, as I'm walking [00:34:00] down the street, there are like Heineken zero, like reps literally handing out free what I thought was beer at, at first in the streets. And I'm like, oh, this is amazing. I'll take a Heineken.

And then I'm looking, I'm like, what does this mean, Heineken zero? He is like, there's no alcohol. I'm like, no, you can have it back. I just handed it back to Ken, but they were just passing 'em out, I mean, by the hundreds in the streets to people. So their marketing is very serious.

**Rooster:** Yeah. They've been spending a lot of money on

**Gizmo:** marketing.

Hmm. Well it's definitely a growing segment. We've talked about that previously in the podcast. There's Oh yeah. It's, you know, you're seeing more of it in liquor stores. You're seeing sections in liquor stores for Yeah. Na beer. I know you had a struggle finding it tonight, but tonight for

**Rooster:** some reason I called like at least three different ones and they had like two or three different ones.

And that's rare. Normally you would, they would have like at least eight or 10, even a, like a small liquor store. Like total wine has a lot. I mean, they have section of an aisle. It's like literally maybe [00:35:00] about one third of the aisle is non-alcoholic

**Gizmo:** beers. Yeah. Wow.

**Bam Bam:** And they're national. They're a national chain, right?

Total wine. Oh, yeah. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** They're huge. Yeah. Great place to go.

**Rooster:** But the only problem is they don't sell cold

**Gizmo:** non-alcoholic beers. That's interesting. Yeah. That they don't wanna waste the fridge space on it in their eyes, I guess. Yeah. Like the, there's a liquor store near me. The, um, uh, what's that? Wine traders, they have a couple of those in the area.

Mm-hmm. And they have a full two doors of their, you know, refrigerated beer section dedicated to. Non-alcoholic beer. Nice. Yeah.

**Rooster:** What, I don't know if you guys have noticed this, but a lot of liquor stores now, they have a chiller. So you could take like a six pack of beer and dunk it in it, and then within five minutes it brings it up to what

**Gizmo:** really, where

**Senator:** have you seen this?

So I love this because when I lived in DC years ago, oh my God, that's cool. My favorite wine shop there. Um, uh, [00:36:00] Calvert Woodley for any DC listeners. They have a wine, they, oh, for years they've had this. Right. And it was like the only place I had ever been where you could buy, if you wanna buy like an obscure bottle of wine, that's not gonna be chilled.

If it's like a wide or rose, 'cause it's not super popular and you have to go somewhere and bring it to someone's house for a party or something like that, you just throw it in their chiller I'd, i'd, I'd do it right when I walked in, I'd do the rest of my shopping. By the time I was done, I'd come back, pick it out.


**Rooster:** that's amazing. Ready to go within five, 10 minutes. Yeah. And it's, it's like cold water,

**Gizmo:** right? It's not ice. It's like,

**Senator:** no, it's very cold. Cold. It would literally take five minutes and it was perfect. It's

**Gizmo:** fantastic. That's amazing. It is. So, uh, we'll jump to the Stella in a minute. I wanna go back to the cigar for a second and talk about this band, uh, because this was actually a callback to an earlier episode.

I don't know if you guys remember, we talked about this about a year ago. This is the cigar and this is the band that Carlito Fuente, Arturo Fuente sued General [00:37:00] Cigar because of the X right, on this band, because he has a trademark Sure. For his Opus X for successful line, for Arturo Fuente, uh, and claims, I guess, that he owns X, the letter X as far as, uh, cigars go and putting on, I see X putting on cigars.

I still seeing X. He own, he owns that alphabet. He owns the alphabet, but he sued, uh, general Cigars simp, you know, purely because of the release of the c a o BX three

**Bam Bam:** band. And he lost, because I'm looking at an X right now

**Gizmo:** there. It's, it hasn't gone to court yet. It hasn't, it hasn't happened yet. So this is, uh, I guess about a year ago.

You know, his argument is that he's had this, uh, Exxon cigars for, for many, many years. He has a trademark on it, and he's trying to get this. X banned from being on Wow. The c a o cigars. Let's see how many taps it takes. Okay, so BA's knocking off his ash, we're doing a tap test. Alright, one ash. One. [00:38:00] I think it's more of an issue for one tap opus to

**Rooster:** not have the X C A O could, they could put an O on it for, you know, for it matters.

Sure. I mean, it's doesn't really matter. It's true. Who cares about

**Gizmo:** the X? They put

**Rooster:** a big B on it for

**Gizmo:** Brazil. Yeah.

**Senator:** I mean, I, I understand Fuente and, and just anyone that works for and represents the brand being very concerned about the X not being, I. Uh, not taking advantage of the brand equity that they built with that, but I, I mean, I'm pulling up like an Opus X label on my phone that's nothing like it, and this, and there,

**Gizmo:** there really is nothing in common.

I mean, and, and are, do you ever say to someone, oh, what are you smoking an X? Right? It's like, no. You say, oh, is that an opus? Right? You don't even, sometimes I don't even say the X, you say, is that an

**Rooster:** opus? But it is in the name, it's called the Opus X. You know, this is not the C A O

**Gizmo:** X. Yeah. Mm-hmm. That's the Opus X.

So you relate the X to Opus. Sure. Yeah.

**Senator:** And to your point exactly, it, it, it's a line within the c a [00:39:00] O brand. Yeah. It's not actually part of the brand. It's

**Gizmo:** one of

**Senator:** 36 lines. They're, they're not trying to like coop the brand. It's just what is so funny.

**Bam Bam:** I'm just thinking they could put a bikini top on the brand.


**Gizmo:** Christ. The thing, you know, the thing about this for me, and I guess this is part of general cigars argument too, is nobody's gonna look at this cigar and say, oh, that's an Opus X. You know, nobody is gonna confuse this. Not at all for an Arturo Fuente product, you know, because you're looking for the ornateness of, yeah.

**Senator:** I think we're, they'd have a more legitimate claim if C A O for some reason didn't put c a O on the band and it just said that X and BX three. That's a good point. Then. Sure. People would see that and say like, huh, is that an opus? Who makes that? Right. But they're very transparent. It says right at the top, C a o.

I mean, if anything,

**Rooster:** this is like rainbow colors on the band. Yeah. And it could be like an L

**Gizmo:** G B T Q. It could be. It could be anything. That's true.

**Bam Bam:** It really could. Yeah. You know, and the X for on this thing, it's just two slash lines. [00:40:00] Right. The Opus is, like you said, very ornate. Yeah. Deliberately designed.

Yeah. It's

**Gizmo:** like night and day. And you're also talking, this is a $10 cigar and what Opus is less than 30 or 40? None. You know, that's, I, I have to

**Senator:** suspect that that lawsuit is just a warning shot to anybody. Not to try. Yeah. To get too close to or imitate the actual Opus

**Gizmo:** logo. Yeah. So the other thing that, uh, so the other argument the general has was that they already use an X on a bunch of their cigars, including the CX two, the c a O extreme, and others CX two, we're gonna have to review that.

Oh, yeah, yeah. We have to do that. And then, uh, general also put out that they were disappointed, uh, in this baseless argument from Arturo Fuente because given the legislative and legal hurdles facing the premium cigar category, you know, and products today from the F D A and, and, you know, the United States government trying to reg Overregulate cigars like we've talked about so many times, um, that this is just [00:41:00] a complete distraction and a waste of resources, you know, for everybody.

So we'll see. Uh, we'll see how that ends up. That's about a year now that, that's kind of been sitting around. But, um, yeah, General's trying to get a, a attorney's fees and everything else. Sure. So we'll see what happens. See what happens. Yeah, this might rate better than the Opus X we did on the pod. I think it will.

Everybody talks

**Rooster:** about the angel share

**Gizmo:** Opus. Awful.

**Bam Bam:** Sounds like a, A gimmick. It's a gimmick.

**Senator:** I'm sorry. I've had it. It's awful. Really? It's awful. I've not had it. So when we were at our, at a former lounge of ours, they had it and I bought it. Awful. Really? And then, uh, one of our friends here who's a member, who's a big opus guy, um, also Big Las Cal h hf, also a big Las Calvers guy.

Hf, uh, hf. He gave me a heavily age angel share that he kept for years that was [00:42:00] better. But again, this is my problem with Opus. Like if you're gonna pay a premium price for a new world cigar, it should be age. It shouldn't need age. I should be able to smoke that. Now we're smoking $8 cigar. We have no idea how long it's been aged, but by the taste we know this is aged tobacco.

Yeah. And that angels share. It tastes young and fresh and muddled. Not a cigar. Enjoyed.

**Rooster:** We should put an opus band on this and give it to

**Gizmo:** him. You see what he thinks? I gotta say, I mean, for, for $10, this cigar is way outperforming it. Price. It's really performing well.

**Senator:** I agree. It's kind of shocking. You told me this was double the price.

I would easily believe it. I'm just surprised

**Bam Bam:** how smooth it is halfway through the cigar. Me too. Yeah, it's, it's just sustaining that smooth experience.

**Rooster:** I mean, I, it's hard to tell, but if you take this, you get a box of this and let it sit for like five years. Mm-hmm. I mean, what does it turn into?

**Gizmo:** Yeah, that's a good question.

Tell us again how long you've had these in your [00:43:00] tower. These been in my tower for six to eight weeks. This line only came out a year ago. So these are properly seasoned. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. They've been, you know, they've been in probably at 60 Nice. 5 66. Okay. Going on six or eight weeks now, you know, so, you know, sitting alongside my Paros and other stuff, so Oh, that to it.

Yeah. Osmosis.

**Senator:** Just maring in those.

**Bam Bam:** It's not the ca it's the marination.

**Rooster:** It's sitting next to the eight

**Gizmo:** caps of loosies. That's exactly right. Definitely marinates there, baby. So, uh, let's get the Stella going. Yeah,

**Senator:** I'm ready. I'm gonna jug the rest of my, uh, I. Your Pi Peroni zero. Hopefully it doesn't hit me too hard later.

**Gizmo:** There's only four of us. We need. We need you on your game. You'll drive me home, right? I will. Alright, so will your car. But that's true,

**Rooster:** that too. This is Premium

**Gizmo:** na. Premium Na Boy. So is, so Garone is popping all of our bottles as you brought a bottle opener. [00:44:00] Very prepared. Very kind. So just like normal Stella, the non-alcoholic Stella also has a bottle cap.

This is called the Liberte Liberte 0.0 from Stella Trois. I'm a big Stella fan. I really like their normal. Offering a beer. I do too. Like I, when I'm at a bar that's a great beer at a restaurant or something, I'm often ordering Stella. They make really cool glasses. They do. I

**Senator:** love their glasses. Oh, the chalice.

That, that's the best. But that's the Belgian influence. You have to love that. I mean, I, I told you when I visited Brussels, it's like every beer there has a special glass that these bars stock. It's insane.

**Gizmo:** That's great dedication. That's so cool. To the craft. Oh yeah.

**Senator:** Stemware matters as we've established.


**Bam Bam:** Some of the best beer I've had was in Germany, and don't, don't laugh. The country of Georgia. Really incredible beer there. Georgian [00:45:00] beer. Georgian beer.

**Gizmo:** Tell

**Bam Bam:** us about it. What, what, what? It was very IPA esque lot. It's very hoppy, delicious, smooth, A little fruity. So you can take four or five down a lot of alcohol content, but delicious.

**Gizmo:** You know what beer I love? I think we talked about it the other day. I, I, when I, when we're in Cuba, they have that crystal, it's called, oh dude, the green bottle. I don't want anything else when I'm in Cuba. That was our warn, substitute and

**Senator:** Kristal. Yeah, I saw a guy this morning. I don't know if you saw this, um, one of our groups that were a member of post a photo, uh, in Cuba, and he said breakfast and he had a ra, nice and a crystal that he had the, he had like the bottle and then it was like poured in a nice glass.

And I was like, salivating looking at this photo morning. That's jealousy.

**Gizmo:** That is this

**Senator:** guy from Canada, I think, right? I think so. Yeah. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** He

**Rooster:** always posts a picture of he's getting his, uh, he's getting a pedicure and he goes, it's what, it's, you know what time it is? Like he gets one [00:46:00] every time he goes to Cuba.

**Gizmo:** Wow. You notice that, that's one thing I've never thought of when I land in Cuba is where can I get my toes done? Nope. No, he, I've never.

So what do you guys think of the Stella 0.0 Libert Day? It's a little bit better. Yeah? Yeah. This is definitely better than the Peroni. A little bit. It's got a lot of foam.

**Bam Bam:** It'll get better as it cool. Uh, you know, warms a bit, I think.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, I think that's pretty good. Yeah. It's nice. Again, it doesn't have the bite that the normal no Stella does.

And the, which doesn't have a lot of bite. And this beer's a

**Bam Bam:** bit darker than the

**Gizmo:** peroni. Yeah. Yeah. Pretty good though. I think this is definitely pairing better with the cigar.

**Bam Bam:** What I love about the non-alcoholic beers is how refreshing and easy they are to

**Gizmo:** drink. Yeah. And they don't sit in your stomach the same way.

No. You know, when you have a few beers, you kind of feel that bloat. Yep. But it doesn't happen with these, we didn't

**Rooster:** do the Brooklyn Lagger. No. That's the one that I gotta, gotta find the right one.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. [00:47:00] Brooklyn makes good beer.

**Bam Bam:** They do. Their summer ale is off the charts and their IPA's Excellent.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, this is definitely working better with the BX three for me.

Yeah, I mean, this is tough

**Senator:** because honestly I, I mean I, bam said he liked the pairing. For me, this cigar is so robust. I would love a spirit with this. Really.

**Bam Bam:** I like that it cleanses my palette with each sip. You know, you know

**Gizmo:** what I would love with this is rum. Oh yeah. I would love rum with this. Okay. I think, I think rum would pair very well with the cigar, but I'm enjoying the D n A and I.

You know what I like about the A too is that tomorrow morning I'm gonna wake up and I'm gonna feel like a million bucks. Exactly. Right. You know,

**Bam Bam:** unless you have a

**Gizmo:** rum chaser later, which I'm not planning to do. So boys, we're about halfway here on the, uh, c a o BX three whatcha guys thinking. No issues at all.

Yeah, I'm very happy.

**Senator:** I'm pleasantly surprised.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, absolutely. Same. Would you [00:48:00] say this performed better than your memory of the Brasilia that you had? Did. Yeah.

**Senator:** The problem is honestly, I don't really remember the Brasilia very much. That's why I do wanna review it at some point, just 'cause a zillion people smoke it.

Mm-hmm. And, um, I don't really remember. I just remember it having some strength. That's really, I can't recall the flavor profile, but if it's anything like this, I mean, I'd be very happy. Yeah. This is great.

**Rooster:** This cigar has a very unique aroma from the foot that you don't get from

**Gizmo:** most cigars. Yeah. There's definitely something there.

From the Brazilian tobacco. It's, yeah. It's like a, I don't like a

**Rooster:** scented floral. Yeah. Not floral, but like, kind of like a weird, like a scent, like

**Gizmo:** perfume.

**Bam Bam:** It's weird. I get that potpourri that Yeah. And the coffee combo, which right. Is strange.

**Gizmo:** I feel like there's an element, you know, when you're, you, you're grinding coffee at home and you brew it right away.

Mm-hmm. If you grind it yourself and you brew it, it, that aroma that comes off the machine while it's, it's the best. It's brewing. That is the best. There's a hint of that in the aroma coming off the [00:49:00] foot here, which I really like. There's definitely a heavy coffee thing going on here. We always

**Rooster:** like cigars that are kind of have like those chocolate Sure.

Coffee espresso. Yeah. Dark chocolate notes.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. This definitely has it. Yeah. This checks all those boxes. Yeah. For 10 bucks. Crazy. So boys, it's a, uh, big summer at the movies. Mm. And I'm a movie guy. I haven't like, I actually haven't seen any movies. You know, you, you guys know I've been pretty consumed outside of, uh, yeah.

Outside of work and other things, um, over the last few months. So I actually haven't seen many movies, but I know Senator went to the movies this weekend. Oh yeah. Which I was surprised to hear. So I wanted to hear what, what was your review of Oppenheimer?

**Senator:** So I'll have, you know, that's on deck for this weekend. Ah,

**Gizmo:** yeah. Id like to go see that. I'm gonna see it tomorrow. Oh, are you? Okay. There you go. It looks great. So did, how, how big was the, the bomb when they dropped it? [00:50:00]

**Senator:** The, the bomb was filled with Pepto-Bismol? No, you know, the entire country. They dropped it on turn pink.

**Bam Bam:** Wow. That was what he, he went to see the Brownie Point movies. Yes,

**Gizmo:** he did. So I'm being facetious. Our, our friend senator to the listeners dismay, we need all of our listeners to sit down right now. He's the last person I would think of. That's, dude, that's why I'm setting it up like this. Senator went to see Barbie.

Look, when

**Senator:** it's Oscar season, Senator sees Barbie. When, when it's Oscar season, I'm gonna be nominated for Husband of the Year. That's right. All right. And my acting was

**Gizmo:** award-winning husband Excellent.

**Senator:** During it. But, uh, yeah, my wife wanted to see this Barbie movie, which, uh, is exploding. I mean, it's insane.

It's like breaking records for, it's like opening weekend. Yeah, it did. Huge numbers. Um, they're making crazy money on this movie, but, um, she was very clever in then she said, can we please see the Barbie movie? Your favorite Margot Robbie is in it. I mean, how am I gonna say I she's not wrong. How am I gonna say no to a Margo Robbie movie?

So [00:51:00] obviously I said, okay, I'm in. Um, what I did not know, also going in and I was so pleasantly surprised during the movie Will Ferrell's in it and he plays the c e o of Mattel. That made Barbie, the company that, uh, came up with it. He's hysterical, like as good as he's ever been, just perfect for the role.

Uh, so it, it's actually, it has several funny moments. I was pleasantly surprised. It's watchable. I expected to sit there bored outta my mind. I also thought it was gonna be this like, crazy feminist diatribe. It's not, it's very reasonable, tolerable. Um, so yeah, it's actually not bad. So if your wife tries to drag you into it, earn the points and just go, yeah, it's, it's really not that bad a movie.

Earn the points. Giz. I'm good. You're gonna turn down. 120 minutes of Margot Robbie on screen front and center. Sounds like a

**Bam Bam:** colossal mistake.

**Gizmo:** I mean, it is an interesting phenomenon with the, with the, like the internet's been taken by [00:52:00] this, this whole thing. And then obviously the success of the movie was a surprise to me.

I'm surprised it whooped Oppenheimer like big time. Oh yeah. Wiped the floor with it as far as numbers and Christopher Nolan movies usually do very, very well and it did, but comparatively, Barbie wiped the floor with it

**Rooster:** also. I mean, mission Impossible

**Gizmo:** just came out. Yeah. Yeah. That got Crush Jones movie just came out as well.

Yep. Unreal. They got, they both got crushed. Wow. I mean, it, it's

**Senator:** just nuts. Like, the fact that, I mean, one that I even, I honestly, my wife and I haven't been to a theater to see a movie probably like two years. Mm-hmm.

**Gizmo:** And that's what surprised me when you said you were going Yeah. And I'm like, I seriously thought you were gonna see Oppenheimer.

And then,

**Senator:** I mean, that was part of the deal that's we're gonna see next, but Yeah. Yeah. Um, I, I was like very shocked, but you know, I said, okay, fine, I'll be supportive. I'll go. But in the theater, you expect to be the only guy there. At worst case, 40%, it looked like 50% of the theater there were men, like with their spouses or girlfriends or whatever.

And then it was funny because before I went to the [00:53:00] movie, UBA sends a a, a photo and a text on our group chat. His dad in Florida. Got dragged to see it. That's right. With his wife and his dad. Now look, I showed up in what I normally wear poop's. Dad is in a photo wearing like a pink shirt in like a Barbie photo booth at the theater and I was dying laughing.

I was like, thank God my wife did make me do this. Well, the Ken Wig.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. You know, I gotta give them credit too. The marketing on this film was, has been, yeah. Off the charts. Incredible. It's not by Disney. Right? It's not a Disney product. It's not a Disney movie. No. I think it's actually a Mattel thing. You know, I don't know what, what, uh, what. Company produced the film.

Mm-hmm. But I think Mattel has a significant ownership in the intellectual property of it. The thing I

**Senator:** do appreciate, I mean, one, when this came out, I thought this was like a movie for little kids, basically, but it's more geared toward adults. Yep. And um, the thing I do appreciate, given Mattel had clearly a role in influence with this movie, they're very self-deprecating and like, own the criticism of like, [00:54:00] all the flaws of Barbie and how it like, fucked up some like young girls into thinking like, this is the way every single girl needs to look.

That's right. Yep. They completely own that in the movie. So I, I was actually kinda surprised that they didn't really sugarcoat anything. But,

**Gizmo:** you know, to their credit, I mean, they've done a lot of work to. Create other types of Barbie that's true of different type of skin color. Yeah. And, and different type of hair.

And you know, they really have tried to kind of be more inclusive of all little girls out there, I guess smart

**Senator:** that are into Barbie. They reinforced in the movie. And honestly, I, at first when I started seeing the characters on screen, I was like, okay, this is kind of a, a woke film of like diversity for diversity's sake.

I will give them credit. There's insane diversity in this movie, but every actor, actress played their part perfectly. Like it, it all made sense, which was very refreshing 'cause I was worried at first that this was just checking a bunch of boxes and half these people were not really fit for the roles, but everybody was actually very good.

That's great.

**Gizmo:** So what would you have rated the movie? [00:55:00]

**Senator:** Oh, so my wife asked me this after she gave it a nine. She loved it as every woman loves that movie. Um, honestly, because it exceeded expectations. I'll give it a seven. Seven, okay. I went in thinking for sure at best to be a five or a six. Wow. But the Will Ferrell scenes, I audibly laughed several times in the theater.

I mean, he is so good in this role. Just that alone. If you don't even see it, just look up eventually when they have clips of him. It's hysterical, but it honestly, it's really not a bad movie. Hmm.

**Gizmo:** Love o Farrow. Yeah, he's great. Love him. Oscar worthy.

**Senator:** All right. Let's not go that far. Actually, Mar No. I will also say this.

Margot Robbie. I thought they just cast her because obviously she's stunningly beautiful like Yep. Has Sure. That can, can play Barbie. Yeah. And I think she's a very good actress, but I don't ever regard her as like one of the greatest, like women actress of all time. I, I don't hold her in that category, but I will say in that movie, especially the whole movie about her.

She was excellent. Like she really, really did that role justice. How was Ryan Gosling? [00:56:00] So I was talking to my wife about this. I'm not a big Ryan Gosling fan. Uh, there's very, most of what he's done I don't think is anything that impressive in this movie. He was perfect for it because it's just like a dumb guy needs to play that role and I think he fits that very well.

Oh boy. So, I mean, it was just, you know, he, anyone could have played it, just any like dumb guy with like a blonde wig or something, you know, or blonde hair could have played it. So he didn't hurt the movie? He didn't help the movie. He was just there. Okay. He was just there. Alright,

**Gizmo:** so there you go. Boys Senator goes to the movies.

Can you believe it? No. That like, as far as surprising things that you could put on a Bingo card that I never thought would hit would be Senator Giving, giving us a review. Of the Barbie movie.

**Bam Bam:** You need to update the, I'll just say this lizard, Gabe, I'll

**Senator:** just say this. You do go with your wives. All right.

Earn the points. And you're gonna sit there and say, I'm act. This was not bad at all. Okay. And trust me, 120 minutes of Margaret Robbie, you're not gonna,

**Gizmo:** yeah, that's not terrible. No, it's not. [00:57:00] Yeah.

**Bam Bam:** I like her in everything she's done. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** Yeah.

**Rooster:** Ryan Gosling, uh, Uh, the movie got an

**Gizmo:** Oscar. It was a musical.

Lala Land. Lala Land. My wife loves Lala Land. She always has that on.

**Rooster:** I don't love the

**Gizmo:** film. I don't like

**Senator:** musicals. Yeah, me neither. That's so sorry. Like Barbie, I could do because Margo Robbie, but I'm not sitting through a fucking musical. That's not gonna happen. I'm not Mrs. Giz.

**Bam Bam:** She likes it. 'cause she's a dancer.

Yeah. By

**Gizmo:** trade. Exactly. And she loves musical theater. Yeah, yeah. Makes sense. And

**Senator:** every woman loved La la Land. But I'm saying for us, that's not in interesting to me. No,

**Gizmo:** but that was a movie. I don't know. Here's a good question for you because Oppenheimer obviously is one that I want to see on a very big screen.

Can't wait to see that. I didn't feel like that about La La Land. We watched it on the couch, whatever, watched pieces of it. I was on my phone. She loved it. Yeah. Barbie, do you think that's one you need to see in the theater like

**Senator:** that? I think Bam needs to see it in the theater, actually. Do

**Bam Bam:** I? Okay. I mean,

**Senator:** and we want a full

**Gizmo:** review.

Yeah. We're gonna do a part two to this.

**Bam Bam:** That's a no.

**Rooster:** So Oppenheimer, something unique about that movie. There's, it's, there's no C g I. [00:58:00] No, c g I. And it's filmed with some special

**Gizmo:** cameras. Well, it was filmed with the IMAX cameras on actual Kodak film. So it should be

**Rooster:** washed in like an IMAX

**Gizmo:** movie theater.

Well, yeah. The problem is, is he filmed it in this what's called 70 millimeter imax, which I think there's only 11 or 12 of those screens in the country. Wow. So, to get that theater, I think we'd have to go to New York City. You have to go to a big metro area usually. Why do that in the first place?

**Senator:** That's, you can't

**Gizmo:** watch it in Wayne.

So Yeah. If you wanna see it at a normal IMAX or a, a big screen, there

**Senator:** is a little bit of let's, let's just all go in and build ourselves an IMAX there. Exactly. Exactly. Mean Christ. Where you

**Gizmo:** can smoke cigars. Yeah, yeah, yeah. We're talking now, we're talking food cigars movies. Mm-hmm.

**Rooster:** Yep. Yeah. Oh yeah.

**Gizmo:** So, yeah, I do wanna see Oppenheimer though.

I'm, I wish that I've seen it already, but, 'cause I, I just love his films, man. He's awesome. I love Chris's Christopher Nolan films. He's like, interstellar is probably one of my favorite films ever.

**Senator:** That is an incredible movie actually. Sorry, you mentioned Nolan, so like, obviously he did The Dark Knight, uh, for a while, the trilogy.

Yep. And, um, [00:59:00] I, I couldn't believe reading this, apparently the Monday that, uh, that weekend through Monday that Barbie opened, the record was held by Dark Knight and Barbie beat it. Wow. That's

**Gizmo:** insane. That's amazing.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. That is

**Gizmo:** amazing. It's incredible. And like you said, rooster movies like Indiana Jones, storied Franchise, mission Impossible, all those movies are very good.

Yeah. Both of those kind of flopped. Yeah. Yeah.

**Rooster:** It's odd.

**Gizmo:** So there you have it boys. Full review. Thank you, Senator. My wife

**Senator:** also told me that apparently they were considering casting, uh, Amy Schumer as Barbie. What? Oh boy. She's, I told my wife, there is no chance in hell I would've sat through that movie if Amy Schumer was the star.

I agree. And it would've flopped. I mean, who, no guy is gonna agree to see that with their wife. No. The only reason any guy was sitting in that theater was Margo Robbie, let's, let's be real. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** They know what they're doing. Yeah.

**Senator:** And she [01:00:00] knows what she's doing. She produced the movie and basically cast herself as Barbie.

Is that true? Is that right? Yeah. Margot Robbie produced the movie. Wow. Wow. Yeah.

**Bam Bam:** Hmm. That's quite the

**Gizmo:** payday for her. Yeah. She's gonna do well. Fantastic. So not

**Rooster:** only is she a good actress. Yeah, she's great. Smart business, great Feet. And she can produce. She's got it all.

**Bam Bam:** Got it All. A whole

**Gizmo:** package.

**Senator:** We, we should have her as a guest on the pod.


**Bam Bam:** please make that happen. With your powers. Gives

**Senator:** Use your powers. We, we've already had guests from Australia. That's true. She's a Australian. Yeah, this is true.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. I'll call, I'll call Rob from, uh, she was

**Bam Bam:** Wolf for Wall Street. Great. In that movie. Yeah. That was a great film.

**Gizmo:** Oh yeah.

**Rooster:** I'm trying to think what else was she in?

**Bam Bam:** She's in a movie called Amsterdam. Yep. It's a period piece. It's on H B O now. Nice. Funny, interesting. Quirky little movie.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, she's been in a bunch of stuff.

**Bam Bam:** And, um, don't forget that other character that she

**Gizmo:** plays. Oh yeah. She plays, uh, uh, uh, in the, uh, it's suicide squads comic. Yeah. [01:01:00] Uh ha. Uh, and they gets with an H, she carries like a bat.


**Bam Bam:** Halle

**Gizmo:** Hayley. Uh, I don't remember that. Something like that. Yeah. There's listeners screaming Harley Har Harley

**Bam Bam:** Harley Quinn. That's it. Harley. Harley Quinn. And they spun off a film for her, just on her own. Did she? From that, I think. Did that come out? I, a while ago, I think. Hmm. I don't remember. I didn't like her in that.


**Gizmo:** didn't watch the whole thing. So are you guys impressed with my Yeah. Look at Rooster. How fast I'm smoking. Wow. Rooster's loving the cigars. Keeping up. Keeping up. Yeah. So boys, we're on the last third here. Rooster has joined us in the last third. Yes,

**Senator:** sir. You give him two non-alcoholic beers and look what

**Gizmo:** happens.

Imagine he's three. He's gonna be slurring his words soon.

**Bam Bam:** Gotta teach you to Retro Hale next.

**Gizmo:** This is really damn good, man. It's, it's awesome. I gotta say for a $10 cigar. This might be one of the ones that has surprised me. Yeah. This is, this is a top five surprise for me right now. Easily. Now, if

**Bam Bam:** you, if you had a party and you gave this out to guests, you know it's a good cigar.

But what is the general perception of this cigar out in the world? Do people [01:02:00] take it's seriously, do they not look at it as a serious cigar? Is it like a novelty type

**Gizmo:** of a cigar? I don't see, here's what I'll say. The whole market in general, I'm asking about, I don't, don't see a lot of people, people smoking the market itself, c o in a lounge, aside from sometimes there's a couple guys that smoke the Brasilia.

I don't see it in lounges, neither do I. But that's a very micro view of, yeah. The cigar community. I don't know what people are smoking. Mm-hmm. What are people walking into j and r? Or, or, or total wine, let's say, and just walking into the humidor and buying cigars. Are they buying these and smoking them on their deck or the golf course?

I don't know, but clearly they must be doing something right. Sure. With the amount of volume they're doing,

**Rooster:** I would hand this cigar. Without the band.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. See, and there's a reason for that,

**Gizmo:** right? Yeah. Yeah. Because what

**Rooster:** if you give me a c a o, I already have like a pre notion that this is Yeah. This is like, I have, I have like a picture in my head that this is what it's gonna smoke like.

Right. And

**Gizmo:** it's nothing like it. No. Well, I think the [01:03:00] other thing that c a o loses on me is I don't feel my perception of their brand, kind of like Ashton prior to smoking the V S G and understanding a little bit more about their line. C a o doesn't have that kind of good, better, best thing that you think about A Davi off or a padron.

Padron has the thousand series, which is in this price range then, then they have the 64 and 26 line, which the next step up. Then they have family reserve. And beyond that with the, uh, with the hammer that we're doing in a couple weeks for our, our 100th episode. But, This brand, I don't feel like they have those steps of quality that you can kind of see the, the differences in the three cigar, the three types of cigars they sell.

Everything they sell is really. Budget friendly, which is fine. Obviously we're, we're seeing that tonight, but I've not seen anything that calls out from a C A O. Hey, this is a really high value, high dollar cigar. Well, I think

**Bam Bam:** they [01:04:00] need to go through a rebranding, honestly, if they're cigars. If they all perform like this and they, I don't think they all do.

I don't know. You know, I don't know. But the band on this is a little. Hokey.

**Gizmo:** I, yeah. I like it. I don't mind it. Yeah. I think something simple

**Rooster:** would be better. I agree. Yeah.

**Senator:** I mean, I'll just say I think Gizmo's point's a really good one. That they're all, there is no, there's no premium version of a ca a o cigar.

They're all just kind of sitting at the same, very accessible place. And I, I, my perception always with c a o has been like, this is a beginner cigar. Yep. 'cause the only time I would see it was in like, some sampler pack or some free, you know, freebies that you get from a cigar. Yeah. Uh, a retailer that you order from.

So I, I've never taken the brand seriously at all, honestly, because of that. But this cigar does not smoke anything. Like, no. A beginner like I, I, in fact, I would not give this cigar. I agree to a beginner who doesn't actually smoke many cigars at all, [01:05:00] because this is a full. Premium experience that they would not be able to handle or appreciate.


**Gizmo:** beginner on a light stomach, having some alcohol with it at a party or something that could hit 'em nibbling on, on hors d'oeuvres or something. Not having, not having a meal. I think this might borderline knock them on their ass. Maybe.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. But the smoothness is a little

**Gizmo:** deceptive. The smoothness house.

But the nicotine is gonna get you Yeah,

**Senator:** smooth. But it's still a

**Gizmo:** robust cigar. It's robust not, which is your intentional in the blend, you know, this is, they're dos makes it great. Brasilia times three, you know, that's what they're trying to go for. Not just in the, the, the makeup of the cigar, but also the intensity.

And it's

**Senator:** hard to do that. I mean, we think of so many cigars, like we've talked about taua plenty of times. And like my big frustration, I honestly, I'm, I'm at this point outside of that little petit casados, I just don't like the brand. Agreed. And the reason is they claim they go for these, you know, fuller flavored cigars and with all of them you get maybe an inch that is somewhat full and the rest just fizzles out and it's like you like a pepper [01:06:00] ball best and is nothing really interesting or exciting.

So it's hard to deliver robust, complex flavor all the way through a cigar. How they're doing this at $10 I is unheard of. Yeah. I mean there's very few cigars. They're able to do this. They

**Bam Bam:** did this in Tah, can't do this. They just can't

**Gizmo:** do it. Yeah. They could

**Rooster:** easily sell this cigar with a little better band on this and sell it for 20.

**Gizmo:** That's some more. That's so funny. You and that's

**Bam Bam:** why they need to go through a rebranding

**Gizmo:** in my opinion. Yeah. I think BA's a hundred percent right about that. I, I think exactly. I was just gonna say what Rooster said. I. If I'm c a o, you're tasting the cigars, it's coming off the line, it's obviously performing great.

Why not introduce this as a next tier of the brazilia line, like a padron might do with more age tobacco, more Brazilian tobacco, however you wanna market it, and elevate your brand and attract smokers who want to be in that, let's say 13 to $18 range, or even 20, like Rooster [01:07:00] said, 20, I think. Yeah. That's

**Bam Bam:** a category, right?


**Gizmo:** a category. It's a step above. It's a step up from that, you know, call it sub 10 or 10 ish cigar right

**Bam Bam:** Now. See, that's a, that's exciting. The potential of that idea.

**Senator:** I think it's settled. We're starting a cigar marketing company. Yeah. I'm deadly serious. It really should hire us as, I'm not even kidding, consult, like, oh yeah, we're

**Bam Bam:** doing it, dude.

I think

**Gizmo:** it's a home run. Yeah. And I, you know, if you're, I don't understand why they wouldn't have done that. Why introduce this? I dunno, at a near price point to the Brazilia line. Yeah. When you're trying to get so much more out of it, you're certainly going for a more experienced smoker. Like why not price it and market it that

**Senator:** way?

Yeah, and I just think like, you know, like any product, the consumer wants to be taken on a journey like Padron and d it off what they do so well. It's so satisfying when you start smoking those cigars that you maybe start with a thousand series or a 64 cigar and then you know, there are all these other things that cost a little bit more and you're wondering [01:08:00] why and you wanna see what kind of flavor it delivers.

And same with dava often and even other, more accessibly priced cigars have things that are a step up that you can kind of work your way through their line. I, I think it's disappointing when you don't have that experience, like even cigars that we've tried randomly, like warped, you know, we, we found a warped cigar that we like the My Estro Depo.

With that cigar and our friend Henry, uh, had clued me into this. There's a version of that Maestro del Tiempo that is made exclusively with medi Tiempo leaf, which is crazy,

**Gizmo:** like, uh, like some of the cohibas stuff. Cohibas,

**Senator:** right. He gets, it's like so few cigars ever are made like that. Yeah. And it costs more.

He's had it, I am pretty sure he gave me one once. It was, it's a bigger ring gauge, isn't it? Yeah,

**Gizmo:** a little bit. Not huge. Slight. It's like, it's almost like a mag 46, like a 46 ring gauge. Or 48 or something.

**Senator:** Yeah. 48 probably. But like, that was an excellent cigar and I was willing to take that journey because I, I started with what was an incredibly excessively priced cigar.[01:09:00]

I mean that mice de, it's sub 10, right? Oh, it's like $7.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, eight bucks. Most, I think it was eight or nine bucks. Wow.

**Senator:** Yeah. And so it's like I started there and then, okay, I'm willing to then take the leap to their more premium version. Mm-hmm. And that was great too. I just think there's a lot of utility in that.

**Rooster:** Yeah. I mean, a brand that kind of comes to mind is, I mean, I don't really, I haven't really tried a lot of. His cigars. Rocky Patel. Yeah. I mean he makes a lot of cigars, right? He makes a lot of like way too many cigars sub like seven, eight, even five, $6 cigars maybe. Yeah. But then he also has some $20 and you know, some better.

Yeah, his premium cigars as well. Premium cigars with a better band and And he markets them and he does. And people do smoke them.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. Like the decade or whatever. Or the age. Limited and rare, right? Yeah. That's like a

**Rooster:** do the same

**Gizmo:** thing. I'm looking at their list of cigars. I mean, it's just like their approach is just volume.

Hit you with volume, almost like a New Jersey diner where you sit down and the menu. Nothing wrong with the New [01:10:00] Jersey diner. No, no. But what the menu is overwhelming in a way.

**Senator:** What? I'm sorry. On the New Jersey diner thing, that c a o Flathead Cigar, I've never smoked one, but I've seen that band. I mean, it looks like an ad.

Yes. It looks like the logo for a diner. See, it does. It looks shitty. I'm sorry. And is why

**Gizmo:** Bendix Diner on Route three?

**Bam Bam:** Honestly, this, it looks, it looks like a gimmick and you stay away from those cigars. Yeah, and it's a shame because we missed out on this one for so long. I.

**Senator:** The one we're smoking today.

Honestly, their marketing is just terrible. Oh yeah. If they could change that, I think there are a lot of people that would take the brand much more seriously. True, true.

**Gizmo:** And I think as I'm looking through what they do here, they do have some other cigars that have the, the Brazilian tobacco in it. They have all different kinds of tobacco in their cigars.

Why not? You know, why not align your range with, with the different types of tobacco and then create good, better, best, simplify and give your customers a little bit more of a journey. Mm-hmm. You go to their website, it's just like, look at it guys. It's just like, it's endless a Chinese venue. It's, it's, it's like [01:11:00] you go to the the Chinese restaurant and there's 700 things and there's no direction as to where to go.

Yeah. When you go to a fine restaurant, you know there's a selection of a certain number of things, and you have a clearer picture of where they're trying to drive you. I don't think that a brand like this right now, which is a detriment to them. 'cause I think they could be killing it with the cigar. I agree.

In the next tier of smoker, the more experienced smoker they could be reaching for them and they're not Yeah. They should probably kill

**Rooster:** half of their portfolio. I agree. Yeah, that's true. And concentrate on like, just do like maybe a dozen different, uh Yeah. And just focus on that and have different tiers.

**Gizmo:** Yep. Up their prices a bit. Yeah. Maybe. Because the problem you have too is when you train someone like me or any of us, that this is a $10 cigar, this is hard. Now I. To jump to 18. Yeah. Because you've put it in that budget yard cigar type of you, you know, even factory seconds or six or eight bucks. You're in that kind of range that [01:12:00] it's hard to push this to a padron price.

Yeah. You's true. Could tweak the

**Rooster:** blend a little bit more. Change the band and remarket, like you said. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** You know, and just really, it'll take time. Reduce that cigar.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. It'll take time to do that. But I think it'll

**Gizmo:** catch It could, yeah. Especially like you said, if they eliminate Yeah. A significant piece of their portfolio.

Because I've never heard of most of these cigars, but man, I'm loving this cigar right now.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. This, it's consistent.

**Gizmo:** So, rooster, I wanted to ask you, 'cause we talked about it two weeks ago with, uh, pagoda on the, uh, on the episode with the, uh, Alma Fuerte. He went to, uh, Montreal. Right. And had a great experience in Canada.

And you just came back from Toronto, which is obviously a different, different experience in Canada. What was your. Well,

**Rooster:** what was your experience? Yeah, I went to Toronto for one of my, uh, one of my best friends who I grew up with him through high school. So he actually, you know, went to move to Canada with [01:13:00] his family and then, and his son just got engaged and they had a beautiful, uh, ceremony and stuff at the, uh, winery area of, uh, Niagara by the lake, uh, overlooking Lake Ontario.

We could, I mean, we did have cigars there, but in general in Toronto, you cannot smoke a cigar anywhere. I'm not talking indoors, I'm talking even outdoors. The law in Ontario is you have to be, 21 meters. Um, it's, it 20. Yeah. About 30 feet away from any building even in the front of your house. Sitting outside, A neighbor can complain that they're getting that, that the aroma is offensive and they can call the authorities on you and you have to stop smoking.

Uh, no outdoor parks. Uh, there's no cigar lounges. It has to be a private cigar lounge where you guys smoke. This is a [01:14:00] living.

**Gizmo:** Hell yeah. This is horrible. It's a living hell. But yet

**Rooster:** there's a, there's a wheat wheat store. Every single corner. Like, you know how we have nail salons here, like in every block?

It's like that. I mean, there's like, they're selling in cannabis, cannabis stores every, every single

**Gizmo:** block. And they're smoking weeded anywhere.

**Rooster:** No, the, it's the same thing. Yeah. Okay. Yeah, yeah, yeah. But you do smell it everywhere.

**Gizmo:** Where's the

**Senator:** smoke? What's the point of buying a home there if you can't fucking use your property?

How you please and home so much? I'm gonna buy a house, so I have to sit 30 feet from the outside of my own home. No, you can't

**Bam Bam:** just to smoke. That's the same. You have to smoke in your home and contain that smoke. Yeah, because your neighbor could report you. Yeah,

**Gizmo:** that's pretty much what you have to do.

It's insane.

**Rooster:** It's insane. I mean, I was sitting wow. In an area, it was an outdoor park, and I saw a couple that were smoking a cigar. So I, you know, I sat about maybe 15 feet away from them, and I laid a cigar and there's this woman sitting behind me and the wind is not blowing in her direction, [01:15:00] and she's at least 15 feet away from me.

And I could hear her on the phone having a conversation with her friend complaining about my cigar smoke that's not going in her direction. Look at this American guy on, and cigar on and on. And I was like, you know, I kind of felt bad. I'm like, I don't wanna offend anybody. Yeah. It, it affects your smoking experience.

It affects that. Right. So she's like, oh, this guy is sucking on a cigar and all this, all, all the smoke.

**Senator:** This asshole who calls himself Brewster,

**Bam Bam:** God,

**Rooster:** Americans. I'm like, the smoke is not even blowing towards you. It's blowing the other direction. Yeah. Yeah, it was, it was insane. Wow. Crazy. That's crazy, man.

Even, even at the venue, even at the engagement party, it was outdoors at the winery, under a tent. At the end of the event, I brought a lot of cigars and I just, there was a table I opened up. Boxes. I said, here you go guys. Anybody want to have a cigar light up? And there were at least 15 or 15 or [01:16:00] 18 guys who grabbed a cigar and we all had a great time.

Then this woman came over, she's like, can you guys move? Literally like the same thing about 20, 30 feet away from the tent. I'm like, this is outdoors. There's a tent. This is a private function on a big

**Gizmo:** piece of private property, right? That people have spent

**Senator:** a lot of money for. Right? The winery, it's

**Rooster:** 120 acres of land.

I'm like, what are we affecting? Your fucking grapes? Grapes are gonna be infused with the fucking, can you go to the

**Bam Bam:** woods? Woods, please Smoke in

**Gizmo:** the woods, will you? Geez. That's crazy. I told you on the last episode we discussed this. I have a friend who doesn't live in Montreal. I think he lives in Toronto area, somewhere around there.

He smokes in his garage. He actually works for a, uh, a review website and he, you know, obviously smokes a lot of cigars for reviews way more than even we do. I think they do five to seven a week, uh, in review cigars. That's pretty much all he smokes. And he has a private contained office with, you know, filtration and smoke eaters.

[01:17:00] He's still worried about the smoke getting out and someone kind of catching the wind of it and the authorities coming into his home and shutting him down. It sounds like a communist country. Insane, dude. It's crazy. What,

**Rooster:** on top of that, I got $150 fucking parking ticket. Who, who keeps $150 parking ticket and

**Senator:** it's like 20 bucks.

They were targeting you once you lit up a cigar on, on Canadian soil.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. They saw that New Jersey plate. Did, did you make the rooster

**Rooster:** gesture? No, I ripped that thing right up and put it in the fucking garbage.

**Gizmo:** No,

**Senator:** there's a warrant out for his arrest in Toronto right now. Yeah. You did not do that.

**Gizmo:** Well, there's two for smoking and for the ticket.

You know

**Rooster:** what I did? I, I put a different, uh, plate on my car before

**Gizmo:** I went there, my

**Bam Bam:** man. Nice. James Bond oh oh seven. Yeah. Flipping those license plates.

**Gizmo:** He has a little button in the inside. The Tesla just, it rotates. The once for a gone. Have you noticed I don't have a

**Rooster:** front license

**Gizmo:** plate? I didn't see that.

No. I got a question for you. How was, uh, taking the Tesla to, uh, Montreal? Of here? So what's that? Six hours? Not,

**Rooster:** no, it's, it's about

**Gizmo:** [01:18:00] 400 miles. Okay.

**Rooster:** So it should take you about seven, seven and a half hours. Uh, if you go straight. So taking the Tesla, I'm glad we took the Tesla as opposed to the other Ev because at least you have the superchargers and when you map it out, it shows you would have to make three stops, about 20 minutes each.

But what they don't tell you is once your car reaches 70% charge, and I'm trying to like charge a hundred percent, it really slows down, oh, from 70 to a hundred, it's gonna take like an additional maybe 20, 25 minutes to get to the full potential. Wow. So that, that was an issue. So it, it took a little bit longer, but uh, I mean, I would probably not do that.

Probably take a regular, you know, gasoline, uh com combustion car there. I

**Senator:** wish you would've told me before you went. I mean, well, the other, as much as I love Tesla, they're just not built for long

**Gizmo:** road trips. Well, you know, the other

**Rooster:** reason why we took the Tesla was because I looked at [01:19:00] flights. So the flights were.

Fairly reasonable, but to rent a car for a week, it was $1,500. Wow. I was like, come on.

**Gizmo:** Crazy. That's crazy, man.

**Senator:** How do people deal with this in Canada? This is insane. Can't smoke a cigar. Everything in Canada is ridiculously priced. Alcohol is a fortune. It's like literally double what we pay for anything

**Rooster:** there It, so it's not like regular stores.

They have these stores, they're called lc something, L C Q or something like that. Mm-hmm. I mean, they're just like the A, B, C stores in Florida and they're the ones who sell it and you can't really get anything. You can't find anything there. Wow.

**Gizmo:** Wow. It's odd. So did you go to any cigar shops? I know Pagoda talk about there

**Rooster:** aren't any.

Yeah, I went to the L C dh, which is in the area called Yorkville, which was there last time. So there's a sign, L C

**Gizmo:** dh, but it's closed. Wow. Wow. Yeah. I guess a combo of the prohibitive laws and the problems that Habanas has had. I. Stocking sup, you know, stalking the retailers. Well, I remember going a dead,

**Rooster:** it's like a death [01:20:00] sentence.

Yeah. I remember going to that L C D H, you know, a few years back when we went there, it was open and I went in beautiful spot, had a bar, couple of employees. So I grabbed a cigar and I was gonna light it up and sit down with my friend and have a cigar in this. This girl comes over, she goes, I'm sorry, what are you doing?

I'm like, just bought a cigar. I'm gonna lie. What do you think? I'm doing an off and sit down and my friend's gonna order a drink. Oh, no, no, no, you can't smoke here. I'm like, I can't smoke in a cigar store that has a lounge and a and a bar. She's like, no. I'm like, okay, so I can smoke. You have benches right outside.

Can I smoke there? You have an outdoor area all set up? She's like, no, no, no. You can't smoke there either. I'm like, I can't smoke outside your

**Senator:** store. You're to buy them and just look at them to them

**Rooster:** and look at visitors. Just stiff 'em. She goes, no, you have to be 30 feet away from the store. So I gotta sit like on the street.

I should have brought like my own, own, uh, lawn chairs and put it right in the middle of, uh, yeah,

**Gizmo:** you could have brought the rover with the TV [01:21:00] on it and just, this is insane. Set it up in the middle of the streets. I'm like, I'm like, why is this?

**Rooster:** She goes, oh, because the labor laws, I mean, uh, the employees.

Can't really be around cigar. I'm like, so why do you work here? Don't, you're working at an L C d H, don't, you're working at a tobacco store. People are gonna light up. She's like, well, you know, that's, that's I

**Gizmo:** feel

**Bam Bam:** for every cigar smoker in Toronto after this, in

**Gizmo:** Canon in general. Yeah. It, it's, I feel

**Rooster:** is apparently a little bit

**Gizmo:** more, uh, the French area

**Rooster:** loss.

Yeah. Yeah. It's, it's the Ontario

**Gizmo:** region. It's like that. That's crazy. It is.

**Senator:** I would never survive there. I'm sorry. I mean, I don't know how people do it.

**Rooster:** It's crazy. And on top of that, the cigar prices,

**Gizmo:** they're insane. Yeah. They're so prohibitive. They're ridiculous. Are they similar to what you, what, what Pagoda was saying?

Yeah. In, in Toronto, like 80 bucks for money.

**Rooster:** Two, I mean, my friend can't order cigars. He has tried to order from the us but the customs and the duties, one, pick off the box. They pick them up or he has to pay, I think I shipped [01:22:00] him some cigars and they got confiscated or he had to like claim and, and uh, pay customs on it.

So, which was a box of cigars that's like maybe two, $300. He had to pay an additional $200 on top of that. Wow.

**Gizmo:** It's like a hundred percent. 150% of wholesale. Yeah.

**Senator:** I'm surprised how effective they've been in enforcing this. That's true. That like everybody follows it. I say this because. I mentioned, you know Singapore.

Singapore is some of the strictest laws of any country, right? They have the death penalty. If you possess even a tiny bit of marijuana, literally the death penalty, you literally, it's like a thousand dollars fine in Singapore. You can't smoke indoors anywhere in Singapore. It's outlawed, but there is a place.

They give you the whole spiel and they tell you you can't smoke here. I remember going and buying cigars and I'm like, wait a minute. I'm not gonna stand in a hundred degree weather to smoke this. I'm only gonna buy it if I'm can smoke it here. Woman says, now that I've told you Singapore law, should you choose, you can follow me to this [01:23:00] back room.

And the sign on it love. It says, employees only. And I'm looking, Senator works the magic. Should you choose? Should you choose? And I follow her. I'm like, either this is gonna be great or I'm gonna get jumped and like they're gonna take all my money. I don't know. I dunno what's behind this door. This is very sketchy, this whole setup.

It's like a very dark place too. And me and the guy that works with me, we go back there. Tons of guys sitting there drinking, smoking. Oh man. And even in Singapore where they have some of the most intense enforcement, they have ways around it. I can't believe in Toronto that. Nobody's found a way to just like get around these ridiculous, I mean, maybe there

**Rooster:** are some private lounges that I maybe just don't

**Gizmo:** know about.

And that's possible. I would imagine it'd have to be like the setup we have here at 10 86 where it's a member lounge. Mm-hmm. Club, you know, you, you can't just walk in off the street. You have to be a member of it and it's gotta be like almost like an island in the middle of a lake or something that Yeah, you take a boat to like 400 acres.

Yeah. You take a boat to or something. Or an industrial

**Bam Bam:** area like this. Yeah. Where it's away from residential. It

**Gizmo:** could work. [01:24:00] That could work. Yeah. I mean it just makes no sense to me how there are cigar

**Rooster:** retailers that are in Canada, but they ship to the US Yeah. And not sell cigars in Canada. That's crazy.

'cause of the

**Gizmo:** tax. Wow. Bellhop. Yeah. Oh, they don't

**Senator:** ship within Canada? No. Wow.

**Rooster:** That isn't

**Bam Bam:** Cuban Lus Canada. Canadian as well. What's that? Isn't Cuban lu. They're not a Canadian, uh, company. No,

**Gizmo:** no. They're outta Sweden, I believe. Switzerland, yeah. Yeah. Way off. Most of 'em outta Switzerland. But you, even f o h uh, Rob Isle in Australia, I think most of his business is not Australian business because of Australian tax.

Now their laws of smoking aren't as crazy, but the taxes on, you know, consumable goods there, you know, I guess vice tax. Wow. On alcohols you tobacco, but their neighbor

**Rooster:** New Zealand is like that. Yeah. It's the worst. One of the worst cigar loss.

**Senator:** My advice to Canadians, I'm sorry, but whoever's the next president of Canada, they need to vet if this person's a cigar smoker.

'cause someone's gotta change. Yeah. You need to

**Gizmo:** get a lizard in up there. [01:25:00] Absolutely.

**Senator:** I get, if I don't agree with someone and they wanna be restrictive about some of this stuff, but there needs to be some outlet for people to be able to do this in a way that doesn't disturb anyone. And the fact that you can't even do it in your own home.

I, I, that's just wild to me.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, it's insane that your neighbor can call the cops on you for smoking a cigar in your own home. Oh, I'd be in

**Bam Bam:** jail. I would be

**Gizmo:** in jail. Rooster might be the next time he goes there. That's right. On several counts. He may never go again.

**Rooster:** You know, I, we had an Airbnb. I did light up outside.

**Bam Bam:** Fuck yeah, you did my man.

**Gizmo:** This is why we have anonymity on the podcast. People wonder why we have the nicknames. This is why these are some of the reasons. So, boys, we're coming to the end of our evening here. Uh, we had two non-alcoholic pairings. The PERONI 0.0 and the Stella Artis. Yep. Liberte 0.0. And the c a o BX three whatcha are guys thinking before we, uh, give all three of these things a rating [01:26:00] Overall a good experience.

Yeah. I think it was a positive, really, really good night all around. Sure. Look at bam. His fingers are about to burn. Mine are too. Look at mine. Yeah. You know, I'm taking it all the way down.

**Bam Bam:** You mentioned the Padro in 2000 series in a similar, you know, price point that was very highly rated in this group.

I'm curious where we stand with this guy.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, and I think

**Bam Bam:** both performed great. Both were delicious, very

**Gizmo:** affordable. And I think that the journey that this took us on from the light to now, it hasn't picked up in a really kind of oomph way. It's been very consistent, smooth, very consistent. It's stepped up a little bit at, in the second, third, and now in the last third, but a touch.

It's not gotten hot. Even though I'm down to my fingers, it's not blasting me with nicotine. It's true. Like I'm very, very surprised.

**Rooster:** Agreed. And usually by the end, Like I have like maybe an inch left. Cigars get harsh. Yeah. You know, and this is even some of the best

**Gizmo:** cigars. Get harsh.

**Senator:** Oh, that's the thing.

Even good cigars do. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** Even some of the best [01:27:00] cigars get harsh down at this point. No heat. Yeah. This has been great. Alright boys, you ready to do the formal non licor rating? Sure. And our drink pairings tonight. What are we starting with? We'll start with the poni. 0.0. Bam, you're up. I'm giving that a six.

Six. Senator? Five. Five. I'm gonna give it a six as well, rooster On

**Rooster:** the, uh, PONI? Yeah. Yeah. Five.

**Gizmo:** Okay. So the formal non licor rating on that one is a 5.5, which I think is appropriate. Sure.

**Senator:** Yeah. I just think for, for me, you know, the whole point of coming up with a non-alcoholic version of an existing alcoholic beer Yeah.

Is to try to come as close as you possibly can to the alcoholic version. And a lot of 'em have, they have, right. Like Yeah. Guin is zero, almost unrecognized, almost indistinguishable. That and the actual real thing. Some of the, uh, athletic brewing IPAs, they have drink like real beers with alcohol. Mm-hmm.

This initially, I would never even guessed it was a poni as it [01:28:00] came down and kind of warmed up in temperature. You start to be able to tell it was a poni, but it's just so much lighter Yeah. Than an actual peroni it, it was very unsatisfying. That's true.

**Gizmo:** I agree. Are you guys ready to do the Stella Artis Liberte 0.0.

Bam, you're up. It's a little

**Bam Bam:** bit better. I'll give it a seven.

**Gizmo:** Okay. Senator? I'm also at a seven. I am as well, rooster?

**Rooster:** Uh, Stella. Yeah. Between a six and a seven. We'll go with a seven.

**Gizmo:** Okay. So a flat 7.0 then for the Stella non-alcoholic. So let's look at, uh, some of the others that we've done on the podcast.

We did, uh, we did several. We did the Becks non-alcoholic, which is a 7.2. Back on episode 57. We did the Athletic Brewing Run. Wild i p A, which I know is one that we all reach for. Mm-hmm. Uh, quite regularly, especially with cigars. Episode 69. Funny enough, it was on the Warped Maestro Depo episode. We did that one.

[01:29:00] Right. And that got, that got a, a 9.00 my goodness. Yep. It's great. It is a good beer. We also did, Guinness, the Guinness Draft non-alcoholic, that was delicious. On episode 57, alongside the Becks non-alcoholic, uh, with the Drew Estate underground Maduro, we gave the Guinness Draft NA an 8.4, and the Becks NA a 7.2.

So the Peyronie to 5.5 and Estella to 7.0 kind of align I think with the others that we've done on the podcast so far. Yeah, it kind of makes a lot of sense. I think the

**Senator:** pro's not a recommended and Estella is

**Rooster:** a recommended. Yeah, I think, I think the Beck's kind of

**Gizmo:** edges the Ella. Yeah. Just a little bit.

And that kind of makes

**Bam Bam:** sense, that rating. Yeah. Yeah. I'm surprised the Guinness were rated so

**Gizmo:** low. 8.4. Yeah. And it's not a surprise to me that the athletic did so well that that is just an excellent, that beer

**Senator:** is better than [01:30:00] some IPAs with alcohol. Yeah, I totally agree.

**Bam Bam:** In the summer, that is a great drink.

Yeah. All day, every day.

**Gizmo:** It's excellent. I love, I love having a cigar

**Rooster:** with it. I mean, I know you guys don't like the Sam Adams that much. I kind of like it. I I haven't had it. I enjoy that.

**Gizmo:** I'd like to try

**Senator:** it. Yeah. I get a weird aftertaste that mm-hmm. That really ruins this

**Rooster:** flavor of cigar from you. It's got a little sweeter, like, kind of like a wheat beer kind of thing.

It's, it's an

**Senator:** hazy, yeah. It looks great in the glass. Yeah. Just don't

**Rooster:** have the taste. I, I don't mind it.

**Gizmo:** Alright boys, it's time to do the formal lizard rating on the C A O BX three and Ribo. Interested to see how this lands Rooster, you're up. Yeah,

**Rooster:** I really, I really enjoyed it. I mean, I have not smoked a lot of c a o cigars in general, but this cigar just right away when we lit the cigar, was very happy with it.

The aroma coming out was robust, full, very flavorful, and till the end, it was just [01:31:00] a, it was a great journey. It didn't really change that much, but it delivered. Oh yeah. And especially when you keep the price point in mind, I think it's, it's a great cigar. Yeah. I'm gonna give it a nine.

**Gizmo:** My man. Wow. Senator.

**Senator:** This is tough. I'm, I'm between an eight and a nine. Mm-hmm. Uh, that's what I've been going back and forth on. And the, the thing is, if this, there are many smokers that I, I know and, and imagine. This is easily a nine four. It's anyone who loves a really, really robust flavorful cigar that's delivered smoothly, um, has kind of deep cocoa coffee notes, it checks all those boxes.

The only thing for me, I've said this before, I, I, I smoke in volume, you know, I smoke a number of cigars in a sitting. I'm not, I'm not rooster, like one or two in a sitting and I'm done. I want like four or [01:32:00] five in a sitting and then I'm good. So it's an indictment. No, no. It See Jerone, I don't say that in any judgment.

I'm just saying for me, I, it's smoking rooster's, eyebrow

**Bam Bam:** scalp a

**Senator:** bit. He knows that he takes two hours to get through a little petite Corona. Not today. Oh, that's true. That's true. Because you were two alcoholic beers deep. And we know what

**Gizmo:** happens

**Bam Bam:** when you have those. He gets wild.

**Senator:** But because of that, This cigar is not something that I would slot in my rotation when I'm smoking in my usual volume of like a four or five cigar night.

The utility of this cigar for me is if I'm gonna have one or two sticks, this would definitely, this could slot in those moments. So for me, in nine or a 10 are cigars that would slot very much into my regular rotation. I could see having, often I can't for the reasons I just described, so I'm gonna give it an eight, but that doesn't mean I, there are many smokers that this is deserving of a nine four.

But for my palate and [01:33:00] kind of how I prefer, I. To smoke it, it's gonna get an eight. So if you were

**Rooster:** only smoking like two in a sitting and this was one of them,

**Gizmo:** I'd be very satisfied. Like a Cuban and then this, oh,

**Senator:** abs ly. I'd be, I'd be very happy with that. But that's what I'm saying, like for my palate, the problem is the number of times I do that is not that often.

So I won't pick this up as as much because I'm not gonna have this if I'm gonna have four

**Rooster:** or five. But I, I must say that on a strength scale, it's not that strong. It's, it's, it

**Gizmo:** is medium to me. Initially it started off with,

**Rooster:** it's not a padron 90th. Yeah. Like that would be a one and done it leveled out.


**Gizmo:** still do a couple of cigars,

**Senator:** you know. I agree. But my benchmark always, especially for New World cigars, is a petroni in the 64 line. And I could smoke many of those and feel wonderful. I, there's no problem in a, in a sitting in an evening I couldn't smoke, I would not smoke two of these, even in the same sitting where I would do that with an EXI and have no problem.

I've done that. So that's why for my palate, [01:34:00] This has just a little too much strength for my regular rotation, but it's slots in really nicely when I'm just gonna have one or two spots. Yeah, I was,

**Rooster:** I was probably at an eight, but keeping the price point that under 10 bucks makes, makes sense. Brought it up to nine for sure.

Makes sense. Yeah,

**Gizmo:** yeah, yeah. So I, I've also been struggling between an eight and nine. I think I'm leaning, uh, like I'm having difficulty. Like I wish I could give it a decimal. I know we can't. Um, but it is something I think that if I was handed this or I walked in a humidor and I saw this cigar, I'd be very happy if I was just smoking one.

I just came back from Florida. This is, I, you know, I wasn't smoking a lot of cigars when I was there. If I was running any humidor and I saw this, I would absolutely grab it as a one and done. To Senator's point, the frequency of that is probably twice a year, maybe three times a year disappearing at all.

I don't think this is a cigar that will find its way into my rotation. I do think it might work if you're outside and you don't care and you just want to have a cigar, and maybe it's a little [01:35:00] windy, but it's not something that I'm gonna run and buy. I think there's a lot of listeners who would love it, like, big time, love this cigar.

Um, and I thought it was very good, but I think for those reasons, I'm gonna also be an an eight. Okay.

**Bam Bam:** Bam. I, I'm at an eight. An eight is an elite score. I agree. Make no mistake. Right. That's a great score. Yeah. What I found unique is the, again, the, the, the floral and coffee notes that came together beautifully.

Very unique. I've never had that experience in a cigar, but I was impressed by the smoothness and the consistency of the cigar. It was really something nice for the

**Gizmo:** price points. Excellent. Yeah.

**Rooster:** I, I, I mean, I don't know. I could be wrong, but I think if this cigar had a dard off band on it, all of you would be giving it a nine.

Yeah. So I'll give the band, I band

**Bam Bam:** the C. So let's rate the band. Can we rate the bands? No, because the band, I'm giving

**Senator:** it a three. Here's, here's Colin. Can I just clarify? 'cause Rooster's suggesting that the, the, the brand is why we're rating it. That I wanna be clear what would get this A nine for me is very simple.

If this were [01:36:00] just turned down in strength a little bit closer to, and for me, right? Again, for my palate, I'm not surprised. Rooster's a nine. Obviously you love a 90th. I don't love the 90th. It's too much for me. Again, because I smoke four or five sticks, I'm not gonna slot a 90th one or two makes perfect sense.

So for me, if this was just toned down in strength a bit, this would get a nine because I would then smoke this more regularly. But at its current strength and how much I, how many cigars I smoke, that's just what precludes it from getting a nine. But I'm not surprised that you would give it a nine because if you're smoking one or two sticks in a sitting.

This is a great cigar, it's perfect. This is right in his wheelhouse. Right. And if that was how I smoked, if I just had one or two usually in the sitting, this would easily get a nine for me. But because I don't, I need the cigar just a bit toned down in strength for it to crack my regular daily rotation.

**Gizmo:** So the other thing I wanna say too, 'cause we talked about the Padron 2000 is a a, a cigar that performs well in that same kind of budget range, maybe similar in strains with that Nicaragua tobacco with a little less age on it than [01:37:00] we get. Yeah, absolutely. That's right. With the 64 26, it's kind of right in line with that.

For me it is with that padron line. And that's a line that I haven't smoked since we recorded that episode. I haven't had one of those. What was the rating on that guy? So that cigar, so the former, uh, lizard rating on this cigar, the c a o BX three tonight in Ribo is an 8.3. Impressive. That's great. That's impressive.

That's a great score. That's, that's a, yeah, that's a score. Total Recommend guys. I'll be honest. Do we talk about the brand? I thought we were walking in here tonight. Oh, maybe in the fives. Yeah. I agree. Like I was, seriously, I think we all thought that in that zone because of the brand. Yeah. The fact that he got an eight of 0.3.

Sure. An 8.3 is really something. So the Padron 2000 actually boys, I'm guessing 7.5. What? Yeah. So Rooster gave that a seven uba, a seven, uh, Senator and I and Bam gave that eight. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And I think that's appropriate. Yeah. Wow. I think that's appropriate. I haven't picked that cigar up. We did that on episode 25, which by the way is almost 70 [01:38:00] episodes ago.

Amazing. Uh, I haven't touched that cigar since. I haven't thought about it once. Yeah. And that's

**Bam Bam:** just that for us in our rotation, these cigars don't usually make it in our weekly, monthly, or even annual smoking, um, effort or time. Yeah. But this cigar and that cigar, there's a lot of utility in it. There are a lot of people that would love that.

And it, we love those cigars. Yeah. We just don't go

**Gizmo:** for them. Yeah. For

**Rooster:** somebody who's starting out and wants a fuller, this is a great experience. Oh. I think this is

**Gizmo:** great. This is

**Senator:** perfect. And, and even if they're not starting out. Yeah. And you know what I'd love, and again, I just said if this were just toned down in strength a little bit, I'd smoke this regularly.

And if I were like rooster at one or two in a sitting, usually this would easily get a nine for me. Yeah,

**Gizmo:** yeah. You know what I'd love to see too is I'd love to see c i o take this line and evolve it, re you know, put out some other olas, put out some more aged or limited type of, uh, blends of this tobacco and, and kind of in this same mindset in a Corona.

I can't imagine [01:39:00] now that's a cigar that might slot for me. We talked to Mondale. I don't reach for Robusto, I just don't reach for them, except in the Padron exclusive. That's really the one I reach for the most. Yeah. You guys know this. This is not gonna slot over an exclusive to for me, ever. No. Even at $5 more for the, it's just not gonna touch that.

So if a Corona came out or something, uh, an interesting size, I'd love to see that. 'cause I would give this another shot. Sure. Absolutely. In a

**Bam Bam:** different size, you know, and our rating, you know, it's a, it's a great recommend,

**Gizmo:** very strong 8.3 strong recommend point is brilliant. Yeah. Very strong. Recommend for an under $10 cigar and 8.3 is really good.

Yeah. A ton of merit

**Senator:** for this cigar. I, I'm just personally happy we did this because I, I always say this about some of these new worlds that we're not as familiar with. I love that. Now if I'm in a cigar shop and I have to buy from them, I can't smoke what I bring in. If I saw this, I know I'm gonna be very pleased.

Mm-hmm. I, I would never have picked up a c a o cigar without trying this. Yeah. Our

**Gizmo:** repertoires expanding. The other thing that, uh, you know, going back to our earlier discussion of the bands and [01:40:00] Opus X, we have to go back and look at the rating for the Opus X. Perfection. 8, 8 8 was abysmal. We did that on episode 31.

It was a 6.6. Do you know how much a cigar

**Bam Bam:** costs? 40 bucks. $37. Yeah. At the time. I'm sure it's more now. I'm

**Gizmo:** sure it is.

**Rooster:** You know, and this, this one was recommended by a listener. Yeah. Correct. Which is very cool. Very cool. So this is, this is really cool and this is great and we definitely encourage that.

Yeah. For the listeners to, you know, because it's hard for us to just go out. And just pick random cigars. Mm-hmm. Which

**Gizmo:** we don't wanna do, don't wanna do. So we were, we, we'd love this. Yeah. So please, listeners, when you email us with those recommendations, we're, we're going out and getting them because, you know, we're coming up on episode a hundred.

We have a lot of cigars to smoke. So if you mean, point us in the right direction,

**Rooster:** that's, there's only so many Cuban cigars and we have done a lot of them. So, but the new world, I mean, it's, there's a lot out there. Yeah. That we don't

**Gizmo:** know about. So a great pairing tonight, boys, the Pironi [01:41:00] 0.0 got a 5.5. The Stella Artis 0.0 Liberte got a 7.0 flat.

And this excellent surprise of a C A O cigar. The BX three in Reto got an 8.3. I mean that, that's shocking to me. I can't get over. And the Barbie movie got a, that was a nine, right? Seven. Well, that was in the, in the, in the Senator household. It was a composite. Eight composite,

**Rooster:** uh, Mrs. Senator's score. She

**Gizmo:** gave her a nine.

Oh yes. It's a composite in the house. Would be an eight. Score an eight.

**Senator:** Margot. Robbie though. 10. Oh, absolutely.

**Gizmo:** 10. Alright boys. Great seeing you. Great night tonight. We'll see everybody next week. Hope you enjoyed this episode. Thanks for joining us. You can find our merch store and ratings archive at our brand new website, lounge lizards pod.com.

That's Lounge lizards P o d.com. Don't forget to leave us a rating and subscribe on your favorite podcast platform. If you have any comments, questions, if you wanna reach out, [01:42:00] say hello, tell us what you're smoking, email us hello@loungelizardspod.com. You can also find us on Instagram at Lounge Lizards Pod.

We really appreciate your time and we'll see you next week.