Lounge Lizards - a Cigar and Lifestyle Podcast

Recorded at Ten86 Lounge in Hawthorne, New Jersey, the lizards smoke Punch Short de Punch & Liga Privada Unico Serie Papas Fritas for their third Short Smoke Special with nine year aged Knob Creek Bourbon. The guys discuss the long history of Punch and the fifteen year history of Liga Privada, they talk about the top cigar brands at brick and mortar shops in the US, and they try a one hundred proof, accessible bourbon. Plus: Mark Walhberg on the cover of Cigar Aficionado and Cuban/New-World Price Discussion

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!
instagram: @loungelizardspod

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 range from 60 to 90 minutes 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, Poobah, Pagoda, and Bam Bam, and our plan is to smoke a couple cigars, drink some bourbon, talk about life, and of course have some laughs.

So take this as your 102nd official invitation to join us, and become a card carrying Lounge Lizard. Planet Meat is here once a week. We're going to smoke two short cigars tonight, share our thoughts on them, and give you our formal lizard ratings. We discuss the long history of Punch, and the 15 year history of Liga Privada.

We talk about the top cigar brands at brick and mortar shops in the US, and we try a 100 proof accessible bourbon, all among a variety of other things for the next two hours. So sit back, get your favorite drink, light up a cigar and enjoy, as we pair 9 years aged Knob Creek Bourbon with Punch Short 2 Punch and Liga Privada Unico Series.

Papas [00:01:00] fritas. A double header tonight on the pod for our third short smoke special. We have a Cuban and a non Cuban. We're going to start with the Cuban. Of course, this is a petite Robusto. It's called the punch short to punch. It's factory name is, uh, Paresos and it's a 50 ring gauge cigar. By four and three quarters inches.

This is going to be a lot of fun tonight. I'm very excited. You know why? I love the double header. I love a double header. And I have never had the Papas Fritas. And I haven't had this in several years. You've never had the

**Poobah:** Papas Fritas? The Papas Fritas is

**Gizmo:** good, man.

**Bam Bam:** You're going to love

**Gizmo:** it. I can't wait.

It's going to be awesome. I can't wait. I'm so excited. We've had those cigars now for a few weeks. And they've been staring at me in the humidor. And I haven't touched them. So I'm very excited to try it. But first, boys, let's cut this thing. See, we're getting on the cold draw on the wrapper, of course.

Mmm, that's a good, you know, smelling and tasting cigar on the cold draw. [00:02:00] I do love the short to punch. I know you do. I've said that many times. I think Rooster does as well. I do too. Yeah. I love punch punch. I

**Rooster:** love short to punch. There's a

**Bam Bam:** nutty peanut buttery thing that happens with it if you get the right one.

**Gizmo:** And I got a dimple. I do, too. I do, too. What was the box code on these, Bam? This is R A T. Yep. 2020. Excellent. It's part of it, isn't it? Nah, that's La Corona, which is the mother factory of punch. Alright, boys, looks like this thing. The punch short to punch. Petit Robusto out of Cuba. It's a 50 ring gauge. By four and three quarters inch cigar.

These cigars retail for what, Bam, about 20 bucks now? 25 bucks a stick? Probably

**Bam Bam:** 23 a stick

**Gizmo:** and change. Yeah. If you get them with a few years of age, obviously you're going to pay a little bit of a premium, but... Yeah. They smoke great young. Nothing

**Bam Bam:** under 20 bucks. No. And I bought these, I've had these for a few years, of course, so they were a lot less expensive back in the day.[00:03:00]

This cigar, I've had, I've yet to take a puff on the light. It's delicious, dude.

**Gizmo:** It's really nice on the light. Right?

Very good. Very Cuban. Very Cuban.

**Bam Bam:** Very slight pungent.

**Gizmo:** It does have a little like, I love that though. I want to call it a twang honestly. I think it has a little bit of a, the front of your tongue, salty twang. Yeah, that's

**Poobah:** what I'm saying. It's like right on the light. You know, it's, it tastes very, uh, it tastes very Cuban to me.

**Gizmo:** It has the floral thing too. Yeah. I'm

**Bam Bam:** launching right into puba tonight. You do. I know that you frown upon this marca.

**Poobah:** No, no, no. I don't frown upon it at all. I don't frown upon it at all. I just don't buy a lot of them. It's not a

**Gizmo:** frown. Okay. Pooh, but turn that frown upside down. There is no frown to turn

**Poobah:** upside down.

All right. I'm neither here nor there. I have to give you, I'm

**Rooster:** everywhere. I gotta give you a 2014 punch punch. I'll change your mind.

**Gizmo:** That is a good cigar. It is so [00:04:00] good.

**Poobah:** I'll trade you for a 2014 D4. I do

**Bam Bam:** love the punch punch.

**Gizmo:** Awesome. It's awesome. We did that on the podcast. It was actually the first, actually, I think that was the second punch we did cause we did the punch man to, uh, the Italian regional.

We did that on the Christmas episode. In 2021, if, if you can believe it, more than two years ago, uh, we didn't rate that cigar and then we did punch punch the, I believe that's a Corona Gorda, correct? Or just a Corona Especial, I don't remember. Um, but we did that on episode 20. Corona Gorda, I believe. Uh, pretty early on.

I really like the size. Yeah, it's a short little Robusto. Somewhat Hermoso esque. Yeah.

**Poobah:** Somewhat Hermoso esque. I'm

**Pagoda:** getting an excellent draw. And a great smoke out, but this is fantastic. It's nice. It's

**Poobah:** nutty. A

**Gizmo:** little cedar, a little floral. I'm not getting the peanut butter thing yet, Bam, which was certainly the note that I was expecting given my prior experience with these a few years ago.

On the [00:05:00] retro, you do get it. Got it. Yeah, this is really nice.

**Poobah:** I'm getting, I'm, no, I'm getting like, it's sweet, it's, it's a little bit nutty.

**Bam Bam:** So when you get that, that sweet and savory type thing happening, that's, that's pretty complex.

**Poobah:** It's pretty nice, man. Yeah, that's a nice thing. Like, I light this up, I'm happy.


**Rooster:** you do get that nutty note. Mm hmm. Kind of like a... To me, it's more like a

**Gizmo:** walnut right now. Yeah, it's more that than an almond or a, yeah, it is nice. It is. It's really

**Poobah:** nice. And it's a little salty too. It's really great. Like that, it gives you that really that, that Cuban flavor profile

**Gizmo:** that we all loves.

There's something about the lingering when you push the draw out, the way that it sits on the front of your tongue. It's very interesting. It's, if, I would say it's pretty unique, even for Cuban cigars, like it doesn't taste

**Bam Bam:** like anything else. I'll go out on a limb and say that the Short to Punch is a little different than most other Cuban cigars.

And [00:06:00] I can't put my finger as to why. But it's, it's unique. You know, I'm

**Pagoda:** finding a little bit of creaminess on the top of my palate as well. Like it's really just taken over and filled it up. It's excellent.

**Poobah:** It's a good cigar. It's the one, provided it stays

**Gizmo:** this way. I do like the, like, like you said, I like the word pungent or the kind of sour thing that's happening.

I like that about the cigar. That's what this has. And I think if the complexity wasn't there in the way that we've described it... It would be awful. It would be awful. But I think it kind of adding another layer of complexity... Yeah. Makes the cigar ten times more interesting. Right.

**Bam Bam:** It's that savory sweet with that pungent and saltiness that you get that makes it a pretty, pretty good

**Gizmo:** smoke.

Let's see how it builds. You know what this kind of tastes like to me right now? You know, like, um, like, uh, the mix you have at the bar with like peanuts, pretzels, and then there's that little brown thing, the little like brown cracker thing in it. Yep. The flat cracker. You know what I'm talking about? Yeah.

It's like a bar mix. It's like a bagel chip. Yes. It's kind of like that to me. It [00:07:00] tastes like that right now. It's a very, uh, distinguished note there, boys. Yeah. Yes. So this cigar was announced in February 2019 at the Habanos Festival. Uh, it was the first new punch release announced in years. And it was actually the first regular production of Robusto in the market ever.

Which is crazy that Punch didn't have a Robusto. I didn't know that this cigar was so young. Yeah, they only released this four, announced it four years ago. It didn't come out till, this is probably one of the first batches.

**Bam Bam:** So you're telling me, I have two 2019 boxes. Yep. That's the first year. That's the

**Gizmo:** first year of release.

Really? Yep. Thank you for

**Poobah:** sharing. It's like a first. Yeah, man. Yeah. It's like a first edition of a book. That's

**Gizmo:** crazy. And you know, the thing that of course we'd look for is like, what are these tastes like with age? Yeah. This is the max age right now. So far 2019, 2020. Yes. You know, so we'll see how it does.

And then when we revisit this in a few years, right. You know, we'll see how they age, um, with a little more time on them. It's

**Poobah:** medium [00:08:00] bodied. It's it's it so far. Um, we'll see how it builds, but if you're looking for something that's approachable and, uh, kind of medium, full flavored, medium strength, it's, it's right there.

I mean, it kind of hits those checks of the box for me. Maybe it's a before dinner cigar. Yep. You know, you have a little bit of time, you're going to sit down and before dinner, you're going to have a quick, you know, a quick cocktail. This would slot in nicely unless all of a sudden it turns into like something super strong down the stretch, which I don't think it will.

**Gizmo:** Rooster, you've

**Bam Bam:** had a lot of these. You and I probably smoke more of these than anyone. In a group.

**Gizmo:** I love those. Do you smoke it with a coffee? Is that kind of the pairing for you? Smoke everything with a coffee. It's a good point. This to me is like a great coffee cigar on a Saturday morning. Yeah. You know, obviously we're doing, you know, it's [00:09:00] getting colder weather now.

So, you know, we're moving into, to, to, to fall and winter. Obviously the intention here of doing this hoodie weather, hoodie weather, baby. We're back. We are so back now.

**Poobah:** I would just like to state for the record. I don't refer to fall as hoodie weather. I don't, I do. I don't really own hoodies. Um, but you do

**Gizmo:** when it gets like, but you do when it's fifties and sixties, man, and I can comfortably rock a great hoodie.

I like a good hoodie. I don't like a cheap hoodie. I like a really high quality hoodie. There's no better time of the year than when I can rock a hoodie. Yeah. I'm like a vest guy. You're a vest guy. It's okay. I go hoodie instead of vest. I love vests. I'm

**Bam Bam:** a vest guy. I do love vests. Now, I had back to school night last week from one of my kids.

And I couldn't, I can't tell you how many dads walking around the school. With hoodies on,

**Poobah:** you know, with hoodies, no vest, usually vest,

**Bam Bam:** especially in town, like in where I live. I was surprised. It's

**Poobah:** like the dad uniform you put on. Yeah. But these like the zip up vest, [00:10:00] the khakis, some

**Bam Bam:** khakis, a few guys had a cool pair of shoes, nice jeans and a, and a hoodie.

It looked good. Hey, I'm, I'm gonna try it. Come on. Bam. I'm, I'm gonna try

**Gizmo:** it. Come to the dark side baby.

**Bam Bam:** I I might do it. I dunno. Bam, you're regressing. It's very .

**Poobah:** It's very Mark Zucker. Say that far ahead. It's very Mark Zuckerberg. And for that reason, I'm out. I'm

**Bam Bam:** out. I'm out To give you,

**Poobah:** to give you an idea, guys, I'm more Orvis.

I'm more Orvis, I'm more outdoorsy. This is nice. Orvis Outdoors kind of, uh, non-tech.

**Bam Bam:** Pagoda's making a statement.

**Pagoda:** No, I was just saying that Bam is, uh, always impeccably dressed. Oh, come on. And to see him in a hoodie would be a sight. That is not true.

**Bam Bam:** It

**Poobah:** would be a Have you ever seen him come on? And by

**Gizmo:** the way, had haven't seen and a hoodie

**Poobah:** Actually, can I, can I, yes.

I've had, I've had hoodies on. I'd like to editorialize. Um, pagoda. I like whatever these slip-ons are. The, I like them and I like the socks. What, what, what's going on? I have no idea,

**Gizmo:** man. , you have

**Poobah:** [00:11:00] multicolored socks on and these nice slip-ons. What are thoses, what are those kicks? Poop's,

**Pagoda:** kicks are nice. Call hounds.

**Poobah:** It's

**Bam Bam:** like a sneaker. You guys all have great shoes on. I've got the cheapest pair of 19 Target. I wear these on my job sites because they're so cheap, but they look fairly

**Poobah:** presentable. They do. They look nice. This doesn't look 19. 19 bucks. You can't buy a sandwich.

**Bam Bam:** No, no. I tell Mrs. Bambam, get me ten of these because they get ruined on job sites.

**Poobah:** I don't wear. You could break. You're on a job site. You're wearing that. You're going to break your foot off. For the listener. This is like a. Depending on the job. This is like a beach shoe depends on the job you're on a

**Rooster:** construction site. You should be wearing steel toed

**Poobah:** shoes or

**Gizmo:** something. Isn't that one of the requirements?

He just

**Poobah:** walks around and charges people. He's just like kids. No, no.

**Bam Bam:** So my, our sites are impeccably clean. At all fucking times, isn't

**Gizmo:** that one of the

**Poobah:** ocean you could still step in a nail or some [00:12:00] shit, right, bro.

**Bam Bam:** I'm sure he's wearing a jockstrap. He's got guys

**Gizmo:** in front of him all day. He's got like, you know, like they do in curling when the curling guys in curling guys sweeping his

**Poobah:** every step.

I feel like he just like off his iPhone. He just like, he just text messages and emails invoices to people. That's what I did. It's like, here you go. Here you go. Going, this job's over this job's over. Boom. This job's over this. Job's over. Estimate this. Job's over. Net 30, net

**Gizmo:** 30, net

**Poobah:** 30, net 30. Net 30. Net 30.

It's also 20% over net 30. That's right. .

**Bam Bam:** You're not lying.

**Gizmo:** Boy, this cigar is really good, man. Yeah, this is really good. I could get used to this. This, yeah. I am, I am. Uh, I'm, I'm. Happy that we're doing this tonight because like I said, I would not have reached for this this cigar I if I'm reaching for anything in punch, I'm going for the Corona the punch punch I mean, it's unusual

**Bam Bam:** because if you take your time with it and you get a faint whiff, you'll get some peanut butter It's just

**Poobah:** strange.

The [00:13:00] construction is Terrific.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, you know what I you know for the size of the cigar This, this 50 by a little under five, like there's actually quite a bit of tobacco in there, but it's, it's not heavy, but you can tell like, it's dense, it's dense, you know, it's packed well,

**Pagoda:** you know, it reminds me, like, isn't Rast around the same size?

**Gizmo:** Um, like the Rast is a traditional Robusto at five or five, yeah, five inches, I believe. I think it's 50 by five. So it hasn't, it's not much, it just has another quarter inch on it. What is

**Bam Bam:** reminiscent is that there is toothiness to this wrapper. There is. That you can reminisce to that Rast. Possibly the Rast is a bit more rustic than this, I think.

And a light lighter,

**Gizmo:** depending on the batch. And the thing about this too, you know, versus some of the, let's call it higher end or more premium Cuban cigars. This, you can very clearly see the... Seams. The, the seams, the veins. Yeah. You know, like the wrapper that they choose for this specific cigar is not perfect.

No. But, but who cares? Who gives a sh Yeah, who cares. [00:14:00] Yeah. It's not a

**Bam Bam:** gorgeous cigar, but it's, it's

**Gizmo:** not, it's a handsome cigar, but when it smokes like this, I don't care what it looks like. It's delicious.

**Rooster:** Excellent. And I like the size. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's, it's,

**Gizmo:** it's perfect. Well, this,

**Bam Bam:** like Puah said, it slots in great before dinner.

It's perfect for that 45 to an hour if the wife's kibitzing around. Sit down and have a

**Rooster:** cigar. I mean, I, I smoke this in the morning sometimes with a cup of coffee and it's, Yeah.

**Gizmo:** It goes so well with the coffee. Yeah. It does. And you

**Poobah:** know, obviously, It's almost like what you'd want a Hoyo to taste like, but Yeah, don't you wish.

But, but it doesn't. Yeah. You know, it's like, uh, You'll never get this in a Hoyo. I don't wanna, I don't wanna start to bash,

**Gizmo:** uh, We did that a couple episodes with the Epicure No. 1. Yeah. I wasn't here for that. You weren't good. Good for you. It was very

**Poobah:** weak. Mm-hmm. , what was the, what were the age? What was the age?

What was the number? It was four or five years.

**Gizmo:** Was it really? Yeah, it

**Poobah:** was legit because I have a bundle of those. Maybe I have 10 or something. Hold on. 'em that, that I just like tied up in a ribbon. Well, you and

**Gizmo:** I bought and like 'em back. No, [00:15:00] no. You and I. Did we split a box or something years ago?

Probably 2019's. Yeah. And I

**Poobah:** put them in the back of my humidor and I just tied them up in a ribbon, like an old Ramona Lundis ribbon. I just tied them up in a bundle and just put them in the back. We got left out. Um, you may

**Gizmo:** have been lucky dude. That was actually the first box split I did with you. We did that at the old lounge.

You and I bought that box.

**Poobah:** That's a just, they're just sitting there. I haven't had one. I bet that it sounds like I shouldn't.

**Gizmo:** So this cigar, don't touch it. Switching topics. Yeah. Some age on that guy. Back to the spec to some goodness. This cigar, like I said, was announced in February 19, released in 19. As we discussed, it was released simultaneously to the markup being reclassified into the value category.

Uh, of Habanos alongside brands like Bolivar, Ramon Iones, and Trinidad. It used to be in the multi local category, but they elevated it when they revamped the brand in 2019. [00:16:00] Trinidad is a value. I don't think so. As of today, according to Habanos classification, it's still a value, but I'm assuming they're, you know, they can't elevate it likely to a global brand.

I mean, that's the only, that's the only up this is right under global is value. So there's no in between. He mentioned Trinidad. How was that? Trinidad is next to this in the value brand. This. That's hilarious. It's hilarious. They don't know what the word value means. I mean

**Rooster:** a 2, 200 Fundy box. That's

**Gizmo:** not

**Bam Bam:** value.

Look, there is no value. Everything is expensive. Yeah. And

**Gizmo:** overpriced. I think that's the case across the entire Abanos catalog. Yeah, exactly. So, uh, these cigars, uh, only come in semi boy nature boxes of 10, uh, and as we know, Punch also has a very successful budget brand in the non Cuban market, owned by General Cigar, often represented, of course, by the Joker or Jester kind of, uh, character that they have.

How, how those figurines. I've never had one. Haven't I haven't had the phone in gas stations. I have had them. They're [00:17:00] they're, they're on the cheaper end of, they're not very good. Are they're cheaper

**Bam Bam:** in general. Remember when I first met a bunch of you, you were ha you had all do world punches in your hands.

No. No. Someone in here did not me.

**Pagoda:** Me, not me. That's a gas station to

**Gizmo:** off for sure. That's. It's not good, right? No. Yeah. I've never smoked. I've... Rooster's corroborating. Rooster's pointing at me. I've never smoked a punch. No, I'm just,

**Rooster:** you know, I'm... I haven't seen that, but, you know,

**Gizmo:** if you're saying it... I thought I saw

**Poobah:** that in the old...

No. Yeah? No, there was another mem... There was a member of our lounge, uh, who smoked those early on. That's true too. I don't think they were sold at that lounge. They weren't. No. And they're not. No. And they

**Gizmo:** shouldn't be. They should never be. So quite different, uh, is the Cuban story. And we did a little, we talked a little bit about this when we did the punch punch episode, which was almost a hundred episodes ago, I think it was episode 20.

Um, you know, so the punch brand was established around 1840. It was very, very popular in England. It's branding came from Mr. [00:18:00] Punch, who was a character on a popular puppet show, uh, which was very popular in England, uh, as well as it was taken from classic, uh, Royal imagery. You know, you know, in the King, you know, the jesters and jokers and whatnot.

So that's where that came from. And that's why that budget non Cuban punch brand uses that jester. That's if you go to a store that sells punch, they'll often have the bobble head figurine of the little punch guy. It's remember this.

**Poobah:** Cause I think I did the brand history in episode 20 for punch. I think you

**Gizmo:** did.

That's right. How am I doing?

**Poobah:** You're doing well. It was a long time ago.

**Gizmo:** The marker was owned by Manuel Lopez Fernandez, uh, via his company, Juan Valle Isia from 1884 until 1925. And actually his name is still incorporated into the sum of the punch branding and logos. So the main punch logo, not the one you see on the.

Cigar itself on the band, but I believe the box and certainly, you know, the [00:19:00] flagship brand has his name, Manuel Lopez in the logo. Okay. Once a major brand, many punch models were cut after the severe blue mold crisis. Uh, in the early 1980s and punch kind of took a major dive after that. How many

**Bam Bam:** of it told us they dropped a lot?

Yeah, they dropped a lot. How many do they

**Gizmo:** have now? We can go through how many they have now. Um, I'll read them off to you. The current line, uh, has seven. We can go through them. Uh, the coronations, which is a petite Corona 42 by one 29 only comes in a tubo. The petite coronations, which is also a petite Corona, same in a tubo as well in a dress box.

Um, They have the double Corona, which is an excellent cigar. I actually have those keyed up for us

**Bam Bam:** early next year. I've only had one my entire life. I'd love to get a box

**Gizmo:** of those. Yeah. We're going to do that early next year. Um, I actually already have those. That's a very cool cigar, by the way. It is the same size as the Lusitania.

It's awesome. Bolivar Coronas Chagantes and [00:20:00] the Hoya de Monterrey double Corona. Also they have the punch 48, which is a. La Casa Del Habano exclusive, uh, Hermosos number three, Grand Corona, 48 by five and a half. The short to punch, obviously, which we're smoking tonight, which is a Paraisos 50 ring gauge by four and three quarters.

And they have a new one coming out announced in 2020. Of course, it's not out yet. It's going to be either a dress box of 50 cigars, uh, and they're also going to have 10 aluminum tins of five. It's called the triunfos Petit Corona. So I would think that that's going to be very similar to the Partagas and Upman, I believe has those tins, uh, or maybe Hoyo does those, those five pack tins, the capitals, I think it's going to be the worst

**Poobah:** release that R and J ever put out was the, uh, they were just absolutely terrible.

What were those called? I like the up and ten five. The The well, yeah, the up. Those are great. Yeah. Up. Yeah. But that's a different, Ron's different kind of thing. That's true. The didn't [00:21:00] r and j put out something in the 10 at the same time that the particles capitals came out, which by the way, I feel like I have some of

**Gizmo:** those.

We do. You and I split that box as well. And,

**Poobah:** uh, I don't know, they were really not very good when they first came out.

**Gizmo:** The, uh, the Julieta is a small panatella that comes in a five pack aluminum tin. Oh, the Club Kings. The Club Kings. That's what you're thinking of. Just absolutely terrible. From,

**Poobah:** uh, Romeo.

They were just terrible. I mean, with no potential. The Capitol had some potential. I mean, maybe we revisit it at some point. Do you know what I mean? Yeah. Believe it. About 20 years in . No, no, no. It wasn't like so bad. It's part igu. I mean, it wasn't like, it was so terrible. It was just so, it was so young. It tasted so young.

Uh, you're not done

**Bam Bam:** with the, um, vitola list Are, that's it. Punch, punch. You didn't mention, you didn't mention punch punch.

**Gizmo:** I didn't mention punch punch? Nope. Oh, sorry about that, Bam. That is... Of course, the punch punch headliner, the Coronas [00:22:00] Gordas, uh, 46 by 5 and 5 eighths inches, you are correct. And what I love about that cigar, not only is its size, but it comes in the dress box of 25.

It also comes in the aluminum tubes of 10. Used to come in a slide box of 50, which is... They come in a 50 cap, but I... Discontinued in 2017. The 50 cab. Yeah, they don't make those anymore. Oh, you got them. Rooster. Rooster has a

**Bam Bam:** corner, but I'd love the, wait a minute. You have three 50 cabs.

**Gizmo:** 2014

**Bam Bam:** shared a wealth.

What the hell? Oh, I'm going to talk to you offline. We're

going to have an offline conversation, but the two bows in that punch punch, we're going to

**Poobah:** have an offline conversation. What does

**Gizmo:** that even mean? He wants to fight Rooster. We're going to make a deal. Get some cigars.

**Bam Bam:** It'll make you a deal you can't refuse.

**Poobah:** Speaking of small cigars though, so, well, not that this is really small, it's somewhat diminutive [00:23:00] in stature, but the Partiga Short to me is the best small cigar.

Out there

**Gizmo:** half Corona for me. Well, um,

**Rooster:** Ram

**Poobah:** what the, uh, demo? The, uh, the Club Corona The Club. Corona.

**Gizmo:** Corona Small Club. Corona. We did Small Club Corona. We did that on a previous, we did, yes, we did short smoke specials. Excellent. I brought

**Poobah:** that to the group. I mean, I was the one who, who brought it in. I loved the cigar.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. He introduced, pupa, introduced me to that cigar,

**Poobah:** and, and it was, it's a, it's a great. Uh, great smoke, but I think pound for pound though, if you're talking like something that really outpunches his weight class, I mean, a part of a short out of a, out of a good cabinet with some age on it.

**Gizmo:** I think that cigar is, I think that cigar for let's put it size aside.

I think that stands up to any cigar in the Habanos catalog, regular production. As far as quality smoke, the part of your short is right there. And what I [00:24:00] love about it. Is it truly has the best of part of his DNA in it? It's not an offshoot like so many others, small cigars, even with long filler in the bonnets catalog.

They just aren't in the same line. No, this is right next to any of the best of part of this, in my opinion, in

**Poobah:** my opinion, too. I, you

**Bam Bam:** know, it's funny, a lot of people that smoke the half Corona and that part of the short, they're going to immediately say half Corona.

**Gizmo:** I have, by the way, for the, for the listener out there, we're talking about the age and half Corona, right?


**Bam Bam:** the part of the short. Now, the reason for that, this is just my opinion. If you're, if you haven't smoked Cuban cigars for very long, that part of the short is a more sophisticated cigar. And there's beautiful, subtle notes in that cigar that you chase. It takes a guy that smoked, or a girl that smoked cigars, Cubans for a while, to actually capture that.

Where the H up, man, it's like a hammer and it hits you with flavor right away. Thank you for that hammer in my stomach right now. No, no, I hear you, [00:25:00] but the Partagas Short is a more sophisticated cigar. But from the point of view of flavor, and I love the flavor of that cigar, but it takes a seasoned guy to really get it.

But does the

**Gizmo:** Partigas?

**Poobah:** That I don't know. I don't know. I mean, it needs some, but I, it, but, but so does the, the Half Corona is a lighter cigar. Yes, it is. It's a much lighter bodied cigar. The Partigas Schwert Is to me is, is more complex. Mm-hmm. , it, it, it's, it's just got a lot more to it, it's more complexity for sure than, than, than than the half Corona, which gives you those up in flavors in a very abbreviated way.

Those kind of dessert flavors where it's not a subtle, you, you kind of get like the part of the short, like just punches out of its weight class, in my opinion, in terms of what it delivers.

**Gizmo:** So I, I love the

**Rooster:** D six. Do, I mean, D six is like a concentrated flavors of the D four into a D six, into a smaller it's [00:26:00] format and it's awesome.


**Poobah:** that's that. I agree. And the presentation's great. Yeah, I've got an aged box of those in, they're fantastic. They're 20. We do

**Gizmo:** fifteens. We should do that on the short smoked special in the winter, please. In February, or you know, January. Yeah, please. We, we should do the part his D six. We should do the Monty.

**Rooster:** The media

**Gizmo:** Corona Corona with the, uh,

**Rooster:** D six as a,

**Poobah:** as one episode. I don't think it was here, but speaking of like shorter cigars, did we, did we review if we did, I wasn't here. Did we review the. Monte Cristo, um, number two, the short one. What's it called again? The Petite No. 2. The Petite No. 2. Did we ever do that cigar?

No. I think that that's a sleeper, maybe.

**Gizmo:** So the Partica Short, by the way, we did on episode 16. It got an 8. 0. Great score. Yeah, which is an appropriate

**Poobah:** score

**Gizmo:** for that cigar. That's it's an elite score. Well, the thing I like about the part of his short is that [00:27:00] despite its name, you can get an hour, hour, five, hour, hour, 10 out of that cigar.

If you don't smoke it terribly fast. You're absolutely right. You can get a real it's a real value.

**Bam Bam:** And that's that's where the complexity of that cigar comes in because of it's so complex and the flavors are so subtle. You're chasing and

**Poobah:** the half Corona, it's all flavor and

**Bam Bam:** you're going through it really quick. That's how

**Gizmo:** I smoke that. So yeah, uh, the mother factory, like we said, of punch, uh, the cigar we're smoking tonight is a La Corona, which we were so fortunate to tour a few times when we've been to Cuba. Punch obviously gets, uh, a lot of special releases and is very popular for regional editions.

And I think the thing that I've. You know, kind of, we talked about this on a previous episode when we did punch, but I think the brand name punch itself kind of leads people to believe that it's going to punch you in the face. Really? Yeah. I mean, when I hear [00:28:00] punch, I think like this is going to punch you in the face.

It's aggressive. You get the assumption. You get the assumption that it's an aggressive brand name, but I don't think it certainly aligns with the, the, the name, the flavor profile on the cigar. However, I've not had the. Non Cuban version of it. So I don't know if those are rough. So, so the other thing that's cool about this cigar too, is this was cigar aficionados, number five cigar of 2020.

Really? Yeah. Made

**Poobah:** the top five. Amazing. That, you know, that legitimizes the whole thing.

**Gizmo:** Really just

**Poobah:** that, you know what, that validates every, all the commentary going tonight.

**Gizmo:** You

**Poobah:** know what? You know,

**Bam Bam:** thank Huba is going to throw his short to punch against the wall. Now

**Poobah:** that really validates everything. Is this the cigar that Mark Mark Wahlberg smokes?

**Gizmo:** I don't understand. All right. So for the listener, let's just tee it up here. That's bullshit. We lizards are a little frustrated that cigar aficionado puts out a big episode and [00:29:00] is sending us emails every day with two minute clips of an interview with Marky Mark Mark Wahlberg for the cover of cigar aficionado with Marvin R.

Schenken, who I don't know a bigger fan of Marvin R. Schenken than Marvin R. Schenken. This guy. Yeah. Okay. The guy doesn't smoke cigars. Nope.

**Poobah:** So can I, can I, can I. Caveat something I really like Mark Wahlberg in terms of it as an actor. I think like his ethos is like, he stands on his own two feet. He works his ass off Hollywood.

He works his ass off. I think the guy makes good movies. He's talented. And he actually like Stan, he actually stands for what he believes in this world. He came from nothing. He did, but he was, he's been a success since he was a teenager. My point is, is that like, he stands on his own two feet and he says, this is what I stand for.

Whether you agree with him or not, I'm down with that. Cause this is America. And like, Like I'm, he [00:30:00] moved outta Hollywood and he moved out to, I think, Nevada somewhere. Um, anyway, I, I'm down with his actual me too, this whole scene. I have no problem with it, but like, I just don't think he should be on the cover.

Of a cigar aficionado when he doesn't smoke cigars, it's

**Bam Bam:** absolutely disingenuous. That's

**Poobah:** all. It's disingenuous. By the way. It's a problem with the publication. I don't have

**Gizmo:** a problem. I don't think he drinks either. So that angle, he has a tequila company, which is what they're pushing. He's got to drink. I don't think he does.

I don't think he drinks that much. God bless

**Poobah:** him if he doesn't. But I mean, you know. More power to him, but, uh, how do you promote a tequila brand? Well, we, yeah, you have to about fact check that shit. I'll fact check it. He's got a drink. If he's got a tequila brand. Yeah. But

**Bam Bam:** how are you in cigar aficionado?

When you know, smoke cigars,

**Gizmo:** that's the problem. My, that's awful. And the way that the magazine cuts the interview up into these two minute clips and they're sending an email every day, here's what Mark [00:31:00] Wahlberg thinks about his movies. Here's what he thinks about his early career. Here's just send, just put the interview out.

Like you're peppering the inbox with a guy who doesn't even celebrate this

**Poobah:** hobby. Let me ask. I didn't. So I did not read the full article. Um, it's, it's effectively is the tequila is, is he using, are they using a diffuser or are they actually, it

**Gizmo:** doesn't, it doesn't even get into that. It doesn't even get into that what it is.

It's just a career retrospective. Tell me about making this movie. Tell me about making that movie. That's the whole article, the cover of, you know,

**Poobah:** and then they just plug his tequila

**Gizmo:** brand. It's a marketing ploy. It's marketing thing, you know, and listen to your point. I'm a big Mark Wahlberg guy. Me too.

One of the top three movies when it's on the television. The Departed. I stop. That's a great movie. The Departed is a little more intense than this one. Hear me out. Hear me out, Ted. Oh, I know [00:32:00] what it Did you ever see Shooter? Yes, Shooter. Shooter is one of those movies, when it's on TNT, it's an instant stop.

Lone Survivor! Lone Survivor! But that's a little heavy too for, you know, emotionally heavy. Shooter is just a fun, I'm gonna go out and just take some people out, great movie. The guy's a great

**Poobah:** guy. It's cigar aficionado. That's, it's the problem that that's, you know, like, but he doesn't

**Gizmo:** smoke cigars. When you look at the comment section on every post, the cigar aficionado has put up almost every comment from readers of cigar aficionado who are commenting on these Instagram posts are saying exactly the same thing we are.

That's right. To put someone on the magazine and, and someone who doesn't smoke cigars, think about cigars, talk about cigars. Makes no sense. You're disrupting the trust that you have with your readership, your subscribers. Right.

**Bam Bam:** Well, honestly, look, they've lost, they've lost the trust years ago. The way they rate their cigars, right?

That's a whole nother

**Gizmo:** conversation. It's [00:33:00] just, it's an odd

**Poobah:** decision. Can't say no to that guy's agent because that guy, because Mark, whoever his agent is represents the top 10 to 20 A list celebrities in the world. Yeah. And he probably just is like, you know, this guy wants to talk about, he wants, this is part of the PR swing.

Yeah. He's talking about,

**Gizmo:** I get what you're saying. You know, I get it. He's talking about his tequila that

**Poobah:** to this guy's

**Rooster:** agent? He just doesn't belong on CA.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. That's simple enough. He should be on

**Rooster:** Wine Spectator. Yeah.

**Bam Bam:** Agreed. Which is also a, he's selling a tequila. He's trying to sell a tequila. Right.

**Poobah:** He's not selling very difficult to say, no, you're

**Rooster:** not saying no though. You're not, you're just not putting him in CA, you're just putting him in another publication.

**Poobah:** How do I say no to this? So

**Rooster:** you think CA has a much larger subscribership compared to, no,

**Poobah:** I'm saying that this, whoever, his management, you say no, then that trickles through.

And then he, he's thinking, I'm not going to get access [00:34:00] to this other guy or to this other guy. Because the agent, his representation is going to

**Gizmo:** hold a grudge. Can I, can I just say, here's my thinking on Marvin Schenken when Mark Wahlberg's agent calls. Is, I'm going to put this guy on my cover and I'm going to sell way more magazines.

Because the people that are walking through the magazine shop, Barnes Noble, they're going to pick this up and buy it. That's what he's thinking. That's the yes. Simple enough. He wants to sell magazines. He wants to sell magazines.

**Poobah:** Yeah, he wants to sell magazines, but like...

**Gizmo:** But, but he wants the clicks and he wants the video views and he wants the attention.

And I get all that. I'm fine with all of it. It's just what we do and what we have here in this very niche community. And you put the name of the magazine is cigar aficionado. Just talk about cigars for 10 seconds. I

**Poobah:** disagree slightly because I don't think it's about selling individual books that month.

I think it's about him saying no and having access in the future. That's repercussions.

**Gizmo:** That's what I'm saying. I think it's dumb. It is dumb. I was [00:35:00] very irritated when I got that. I think it's dumb too.

**Poobah:** Yeah. Rooster. What were you saying?

**Rooster:** No, I was going to agree with Puba about, you know, if he says no to Mark Wahlberg, he might be cutting off that whole agency's pissing them off and that kind of that's Marvin Chang.

It's a repercussions. Yeah. He sells magazines because by putting celebrities faces on the, on the

**Poobah:** cover. That's correct. I guarantee you six ways to Sunday. I guarantee you six ways to Sunday. PR people in the same agency, the same representation is, is, are people that, that he's already had on the cover and doesn't want to have to get cut off.

That's gotta be it.

**Bam Bam:** You know, in the meantime, I'm washing this delicious short to punch down. With this decent spirit that we're drinking right now.

**Pagoda:** I don't know about decent. It's decent. It's a

**Gizmo:** spirit for sure. It's a decent bourbon. It's a nine year old Nob Creek tonight.

**Bam Bam:** Honestly, this, the first sip was rough.[00:36:00]

Pagoda, it is getting better and better. It is. It's improving. I agree with you. It's actually now that... Settling in nicely with this short to punch. It's actually enjoying it. Cinnamon bomb.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, exactly. I'll be honest. As far as bourbon goes, for 32 bucks, you can't beat that. That's pretty damn good. And the reason why I pulled this in, in thinking about short smoke specials, you know, sitting outside in the cold, smoking a cigar at the fire, what's going to warm you up around the fire, a bourbon of, you know, a hundred proof bourbon, 100 percent with a, with a good cigar or two in tonight's case.

I mean, This is perfect for that. We

**Pagoda:** do need a lot of ice for this. You do need a lot of ice. I had a need and I just couldn't hack it. Or maybe I was switching, uh, you know, from Belvenie to this. So, I think...

**Bam Bam:** You're such an

**Poobah:** elitist. It's got a dry finish. It tastes like cinnamon. It's nice. It's fine. It's pretty good.

It's nice. Like I

**Gizmo:** said, it's in the 30s. Sit by the fire. Yeah. It's barreled at a hundred proof. This is the nine year age. You know, not much of a [00:37:00] story, unfortunately on the Knob Creek tonight. It's a beam Suntory product ownership, obviously based in Japan. We did the Suntory Japanese whiskey among some others.

It's produced at the Jim beam factory in Claremont, Kentucky, and shares a very similar recipe to Jim beam, but obviously benefits for more age. I think it's a kind of an offshoot of Jim beam with just the age statements on it. It was founded in 1992. It was named after. Knob Creek Farm in LaRue County, Kentucky, which this is pretty cool.

It's named after where President Abraham Lincoln was born and spent his childhood. So that's what this bourbon is named after. In 2009, the brand ran into a well publicized shortage, uh, due to their under forecasting of their production in the year 2000. which obviously is nine years prior, uh, when the bourbon started aging.

And then because of that, it lasted so long. It lasted more than eight or eight or nine years in 2016 due to the continuing shortages and increased bourbon consumption. Cause it was, as we've talked [00:38:00] about, there's been a bourbon whiskey boom over the last 15 years. Huge uptick. Uh, they actually removed the age statement from the bottle for four years.

Yeah, so there was no age statement for quite some time, and then it returned to saying it was nine year aged in 2020 when they were able to catch up. Why did that happen? Because they were, they were so short on. They, they, they under forecasted how much consumption there was cause of the nine age thing that they actually pulled the age statement and, and we're selling, I guess, younger, younger blended stuff.

It's sister brands aside from Jim Beam are Booker's, Baker's and Basil Hayden, which we've done on the pod. They also offer a single barrel reserve, which is bottled at 120 proof rye whiskey, a smoked maple bourbon, which I don't think that that would be something we would be trying on this podcast. And, uh, other limited editions.

The other one that I would try though, uh, in 22, they introduced Knob Creek 18 year old. Oh, yeah. Which is the oldest expression that they've released. So, 18 year aged, I'm curious, double this. Yeah. [00:39:00] Age, I, I'm, I would think it'd be even a little smoother. I like this

**Bam Bam:** because it has, for me, a floral finish and I think poop is right on the money.

It's cinnamon on the front. Yeah, for me,

**Gizmo:** it's nice. And I think this cigar, as Puba was saying, the kind of medium to full body, it actually works perfectly. Very nicely.

**Bam Bam:** It

**Pagoda:** is actually working. You know, now with the ice and you're right. Then once it settles in, it's uh. Very drinkable. More than drinkable

**Gizmo:** for sure.

What's the price point? Uh, I think I got it for, I think 32 on sale. I think normally it's around 37. That's a bargain. So that's a bargain, bargain. Bargain bourbon with nine years age on it. It's,

**Poobah:** it's totally serviceable. I mean, um, anywhere. I mean, it's very good, uh, for me.

**Pagoda:** I think I would, I would make Manhattan's out of this for sure.

Yeah. Knob

**Bam Bam:** Creek is good for cocktails,

**Poobah:** right? Like, like, yeah, I can see, I can, I can see that Pagoda [00:40:00] cause it's dry enough where. It's not, not closer to a rye, but you know how a rye is dry. So, so if you mixed it in and you, you know, you're going to add, you're going to add a little simple syrup or a sugar cube to make an old fashioned, um, with some bitters, this isn't so sweet.

Um, Where it would mix, it would be great as a mix, you know, to do a

**Gizmo:** mixed drink with. And it doesn't have, where some of that bourbon, to your point when mixing, it doesn't have that like odd aftertaste that I get sometimes on a bourbon that I don't love. Right. Like it's just kind of, the finish is smooth, it's dry like you said, but it's quick.

It's clean. And it's not sticking around, which I like. Yeah. You know, and to me, it's not coloring the flavor of the cigar much. I'm enjoying that combo tonight. I am too. So what do you, what do you guys think of the cigar? We're over, you know, probably into the last third now. Past the second, uh, the halfway point.

**Bam Bam:** I've had many of these and I've never had a bad one. And I, I think the cigar just gets better as you smoke it.

**Gizmo:** It's [00:41:00] delicious for me. Mine has upticked and I'm getting like a little bit of a spice now, which I'm liking. It is. It has

**Rooster:** picked up in strength a little bit. But again, to your point, like I've never, never had a bad short to punch.

Never. No

**Poobah:** draw issues.

**Bam Bam:** No plugs. Nothing. Yeah, excellent draw. And the flavor, it's just so cool and unique. It's really,

**Poobah:** really good. It is. It's probably... Um, doesn't get as much recognition as it deserves. It's a bit more complex up front. And then I think down the stretched for me gets a little bit like flat and one dimensional, but not in like a really terrible way, not in a way that I don't like, it's just probably just a short finish that you're experiencing.

Yeah, it's just not, I mean, it's, it's a really good serviceable cigar. Like it's just a really good daily kind of

**Gizmo:** driver. I think he nailed it though, that's exactly, I didn't quite know how to put it, I'm kind of thinking about how to put that into words, I think that it has dropped in complexity as it's kind of gone past the halfway [00:42:00] point.

But I'll

**Bam Bam:** be blunt though, I kind of disagree a tiny, tiny bit, because I still get that pungent note. With a combination of fruit and floral, as far as I'm concerned, my humble opinion, that is the very definition of what a complex cigar can do. I

**Gizmo:** just think it's dropped to one level in complexity where right now I'm getting a little bit of the pungent thing and a little bit of spice.

I think that kind of twangy, really interesting thing on the front of my mouth. Has been taken over by the spice so and I'm not really getting much sweetness interesting So I think it's just I just think it's a little bit less complex at this point than it was but it's very much at The end it's very much.


**Poobah:** very much at the end. So it's kind of like it's concluding but it's not concluding in a bad way It's just kind of it's ending it's Which I think is okay. It's a short cigar. I'm going to smoke this for a couple more minutes and then I'm going to drop it. Um, it's just the upfront is the, the first [00:43:00] half or first two thirds are just more interesting than like the last third.

Yeah. Uh, it kind of just flattens out and becomes a little bit one dimensional, but I mean, I think for what it is. That's a, that's perfectly okay.

**Pagoda:** Yeah, I was getting like these muted, uh, floral flavors in the beginning, which is totally

**Bam Bam:** dissipated. Me too. I don't know. I need to hear Rooster on this because I have a little different,

**Gizmo:** look at him.

He's over here, by the way. So Rooster's relighting his cigar with what looks like a. He's going to

**Bam Bam:** singe his eyebrows

**Gizmo:** with a soft flame. Rooster, we'll be here when you're ready. Yeah. Whenever you're ready. What were you saying?

**Bam Bam:** I

**Pagoda:** think you need, I think you need to hold

**Bam Bam:** up. I think you and I love this cigar more than anyone in the room.

I want to hear what your opinion is right now. where the cigar is.

**Poobah:** I mean, I

**Rooster:** kind of agree with the guys, what they're, what they're saying about the cigar. It's not to me, it's not flat right now. I

**Bam Bam:** agree. I don't see it as flat,

**Gizmo:** but it has

**Rooster:** changed in profile a little bit, [00:44:00] but the spices, you know, the notes that we were getting

**Gizmo:** in the beginning.

Yeah, true.

**Rooster:** You know, those have kind of, you know, dissipated. Those are dissipated. A subdued a little bit, you know, at this point. I, I, but it's picked up in strength. I don't know if it's nicotine or like you're getting

**Gizmo:** more tobacco. It could be. It's just, it's, it's like we had this robust flavor profile we talked about.

It's true. And somebody just threw a blanket over it. Yeah, you're not wrong. It's a little bit of

**Poobah:** tar. It's a little bit of like youthy youngness that just is introducing itself at the end here. That just isn't as interesting as the front. And I think, which isn't unusual, you know, it's kind of just not, it's a little, it's a, it's showing a little bit of its youth.

I think that this a few more years, maybe or something that would, this would smooth out and become maybe a little bit more interesting. It's,

**Gizmo:** I think the smell at the burn line right now is actually more interesting to me than the draw. That has

**Bam Bam:** always been good from the beginning and still pretty good.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. I think the, I think the smell at the burn line maintained it's, it's interesting [00:45:00] note to my nose, but, and that's important. It is, but it's just not, it's not, no, but it

**Pagoda:** was working really well with the spirit. It is like right now, I think if you have like a sip. So that's just it. A little bit of puff.


**Bam Bam:** essential. That spice, this spirit cuts that peppery note that you're getting in the cigar really nicely.

**Poobah:** Yeah. I think like the last inch I could smoke of this thing, like I'd probably, if I was just by myself, eh, I'd probably take a couple more puffs and drop it. Yeah. Do you know what I mean? Like it's, it's, it's good.

Yeah. It's, it's, it's served its purpose. Sure. Sure. And, and, and I'm good now. You know what I mean? I don't need to drag it out. Yeah. I agree with you.

**Gizmo:** That's fair. That's pretty fair. I agree with you. All right, boys, let's do the formal lizard rating on the punch short to punch tonight. Rooster, you're up. Oh, um,

**Rooster:** I was expecting the

**Gizmo:** liquor rating first.

No, we're gonna do that at the end. No, that's last. Okay. Um, I'm gonna give it an eight. Okay. Puba.

**Poobah:** Yeah, I'll give it an eight

**Gizmo:** too. I'm also right there. I think this is [00:46:00] firmly an eight. Yeah. Um, I think if it maintained that complexity, I would be, you know, hoping that it ended up around a 9192 composite. But I think if this ends up seven or eight, so I'm very happy with that.

This is an eight for me all day. Pagoda. Yeah. I'll give it an

**Pagoda:** eight as well. I think I really enjoyed the beginning part. I, I'm still enjoying it, but the spirit has been fantastic. So I can't really, I can't really complain. Uh, the combustion has been great. It feels good in your hand and, uh, Um, the construction,

**Gizmo:** the construction, construction was excellent.

And I think that's lazy too. And, and bam, I don't mean to interrupt your rating, but I think it plays to the fact that it, it's a Corona mother factory cigar. I think all of the boxes I've seen have Corona factory codes on them. And it's only the last four years, which we know is well after. Cuba has had the, you know, quality control issues and, and manufacturing issues consistently.

Like it, it, this cigar is kind of in this fresh window of pretty consistent [00:47:00] manufacturing, at least definitely out of the mother factories in Cuba. So true. I think the cigar benefited. Bam. Sorry to interrupt.

**Bam Bam:** That's okay. I've got two 2019 boxes of this cigar. I'm going to hold onto it for another year. I haven't tried any of those yet.

I'll try one next year, give it five years and see what it's like, but I will give this cigar an eight. I think that's a very fair score. All right. So great score

**Gizmo:** for this cigar. Formal wizard rating boys is a flat 8. 0, which is I think perfect for this cigar. I did the

**Poobah:** math. Just for clarification. I still think it's really good.

It is depending on what my appetite was or my mood. Like I could put it down now. I could spend five more minutes with it, six, seven more minutes with it, but it's, it's really, there's nothing. Bad about the finish. Yeah.

**Rooster:** I just don't know how did they come up with the decision of packing these at just 10 in a box and not 20 or 25.

It's a good

**Gizmo:** question. Who makes that decision? I don't know. Yeah. And from a marketing standpoint, maybe they're [00:48:00] Cubans. Maybe

**Poobah:** for

**Bam Bam:** sure. Cuba being Cuba.

**Gizmo:** Huh? Yeah. I mean, may, you know, I, maybe they have data that cigars of this size, like under Busto, just perform better in 10 count boxes from a sales standpoint.

Mm-hmm. , you know, who knows what it is. But I'm happy with the 10 count of these. 'cause I, you know, I'm not reaching for, I'm terribly, they mean they, they use ai, .

**Poobah:** Ai use

**Bam Bam:** ai, ai, yes. No chat

**Poobah:** g p T over there, . I don't think there's much chat g p t. It's

**Bam Bam:** cool to have a cigar in a La Corona factory and smoke it here stateside.

It's very cool. There's something

**Gizmo:** about that. Yeah. Especially knowing the people that are there. Yeah. Meeting so many of those folks. It's awesome. Those, those memories. Yeah. It is nice. And when you have a cigar out of Corona that performs as well. Right. Construction wise as this did. I mean, the, the burn was great.

The combustion as Pagoda mentioned was great. I mean, it just, it was, it was really, really excellent. All right. So you boys ready to move on Liga Privada Unico [00:49:00] Siri. It's called the Papas Fritas, it's a 44 ring gauge cigar by four and a half inches long. And a pigtail. And it has a pigtail. Bruce's favorite.

Love it. And for the first time on the podcast, it only has one band and the band is on the foot. Yeah. Which, uh, you know, classic for this specific cigar. It's been out of quite, quite a bit of time. Came out over 13 years ago in 2012. They come in 50 caps used to come in 25. That's right. They don't come in 50 caps.

They just continued that. This is a delicious cigar. Yeah, I can't wait. So it does have that pigtail on it. The rapper, the

**Rooster:** rapper smells a little minty for some reason.

**Gizmo:** I am getting that. I'm getting a lot of dried fruit though on the foot, on the foot. Absolutely. Yeah. It smells really nice. I used to

**Poobah:** smoke these a lot.

Really? Yeah.

**Gizmo:** More secrets

**Poobah:** from Puba. Yeah. Back in the day I used to smoke these. Secrets. Yeah. So I used to, I haven't had one in years. So I'm not going to cut

**Gizmo:** mine. So [00:50:00] I pulled the tip off and I'm going to just do a little cut. Pulling the pigtail off. Let's cut this thing, boys. So we're getting on the cold draw.

Pagoda, what kind of

**Poobah:** cutter is this? It's a

**Bam Bam:** horrible cutter.

**Poobah:** Is it? It like looks so cool

**Bam Bam:** though. Honestly, the cold draw on this is really delicious guys. A lot of raisin,

**Gizmo:** dried fruit. Little figgy, little raisin. Open. Wide open. I feel like I'm home. So you've smoked a cigar a lot. So Pagoda's been bringing this cigar, uh, to the table quite a bit.

He keeps saying, when are we doing Papas Fritas? When are we doing Papas Fritas? And I'm happy we're doing it, because when I think about this cigar... I think of you. Yes, sir. No, this

**Pagoda:** is excellent. You know, I'm a big, uh, Liga No. 9 fan as well. Yeah, so am I. Yep. And, uh, I think the initial, or even now, I think Papas Fritas is, was using all the, all the leaves, the tobacco leaves from the Liga 9.

Yes. They were not really fillers. It's... They were using the medium length leaves which were left [00:51:00] out and... Yeah,

**Gizmo:** the, the, so the filler in this, it's, uh, it's... It's Honduran and Nicaraguan. They call it tripa corta, which means short filler. It's not technical short filler. Like you said, it's just leftover from all the other league of cigars they make.

Uh, this is the leftover leaves, so they're not wasting anything. So it's not a technical short filler. It's still handmade. Uh, but it's not the classic. If you were to cut this open, you're not going to find whole leaves like you wouldn't a lot of other cigars, but people love the cigar, like Pagoda, like, like, uh, Puba.

So I, like I said, I never had the cigar before, so I'm really excited. It's crazy

**Bam Bam:** that you haven't had this. Let's light it up. Yeah, let's

**Pagoda:** light this thing, boys. I do want to give a shout out to, uh, Steve Abreu, who's a junior banker who introduced me to these. You know, that guy is a lizard. Lizard Steven?

Lizard Steve. All right. And, um, you know, he introduced me to these and I've been a fan ever since.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah, this is truly a delicious stick.

**Gizmo:** So again, boys, this is a 44 ring gauge cigar by four and a half inches long. And

**Bam Bam:** these are under eight

**Gizmo:** [00:52:00] bucks. They're like six dollars. Oh, that's crazy. Which is actually the same price that they were launched at in 2012.

Fantastic. You can still get them for six bucks. That's how much I got these for tonight. Great deal.

**Rooster:** Nice on the light.

**Poobah:** Yeah, they're

**Bam Bam:** nice. I want to hear what Giz is thinking. This is the first time

**Gizmo:** you've had this. Yeah, it's, it's, to me, it's very much in the same family as the other Ligas that I've had. Namely the Corona Viva from, uh, uh, Liga Privada. I love that cigar. I smoke it quite a bit, you know, to Puba's point.

That's one of those cigars you can smoke in a hurricane. So when I do outdoors stuff, um, I reach for the Corona Viva when I don't want to have an Exclusivo from Padron. This is right in line with, yeah, I

**Poobah:** feel like it's funny. It's weird. You said hurricane, because I remember smoking this cigar. There was a hurric, there was a, there was a, there was a storm.

No, I'm being totally serious. I believe you. There was a storm. Um, hurricane Sandy. No, no, no, no, no. It wasn't [00:53:00] during Sandy. It was the one after that. That was kind of semi serious. Which one was that? It was, it was where like, there was a lot of power outages and I had to go to like a hotel,

**Gizmo:** the

**Rooster:** one in April.

Right. So one in April,

**Poobah:** maybe it was April power and it was, it was. Years ago, um, anyway, and I remember I went to the Marriott over in Park Ridge and I remember grabbing a cup of coffee. Chatfields. Chatfields. Chatfields. That's what used to be there, Chatfields. That was what the bar was called. And I remember I requested a room with a

**Gizmo:** balcony.

You have to request a balcony at the hotel. Yeah,

**Poobah:** and I'm on this balcony. It's like a two foot balcony. Every lizard needs a balcony. Right. And I remember going out and, uh, the kids were a little, and I remember I said, Julie, listen, I'm, I said, I'm just going out for a cigar on the balcony. She's like, well, [00:54:00] it's not a great example, but okay, fine.

And this is what I smoked. I smoked a Papa's fritas, Mrs. Pull the curtains. No, but I remember how satisfying it was. I was so thankful that I had a couple of these, like in my car and, uh, and I had a cup of coffee from the lobby and I. And I smoked one. I was like, Oh my God, it was like, so good.

**Gizmo:** Perfect.

Short smoke in a hurricane.

**Poobah:** How are you going to beat that, man? Yeah. It was like post hurricane. It was our post tropical storm or whatever it was.

**Gizmo:** This is really great on the light. And this is definitely a full bodied affair. Full flavored. Definitely

**Bam Bam:** full. You know, um, the tattoo. Hey, little, um, petite Casa Doris, dude.

This is kind of in the same DNA family from the point of view of the flavor profile and price for me and price point. Yeah, what a value.

**Gizmo:** Equivalent

**Rooster:** to four of the short to punch. Yeah,

**Poobah:** I gotta tell you, but I always like this cigar better than the Tatouage. Oh, yeah. Yeah, there's a

**Bam Bam:** bigger, it's [00:55:00] bigger, but there's more sweetness to this than you get in that Tatouage, that Petit Cazadores.

But this is really, I've never had a bad. Never.

**Gizmo:** Never. I, I, what I like about this versus the Petit Cazadorus is I like that there's an absence of that Nicaraguan spice that Right. Tattooi is always trying to punch you in the face with that damn spice. That's true. That's right. That's right. And this is more in line with that sweet but earthy Complexity and definitely full.

Like, yeah, this is like, if you're, you know, at the pubis point, you're at a hotel, you take the, take the lady away for a weekend, you go out to dinner and you want to have a quick smoke after dinner. This is perfect. This is perfect for that on the balcony at the hotel. The

**Poobah:** combustion is like, like super good.

**Gizmo:** It is. And it smells great at the, at the head of the cigar and at the burn line. It's really working. I haven't retro'd

**Bam Bam:** yet, but I will now.

**Pagoda:** But I think most of the guys I've given this, because I used to hand a lot of these out, [00:56:00] nobody has once said that this is not a cigar they like. They all have really enjoyed it.

And, um. You know, we, we do smoke in this flavor profile on and off.

**Bam Bam:** So this is definitely up your wheelhouse though. Yeah, this is dope.

**Pagoda:** Yeah, Pagoda. No,

**Poobah:** definitely. Yeah, but to me, it's not aggressive. It's just, it's just kind of full flavored, but like not

**Bam Bam:** strong. What he's saying is accurate. And I would actually give this to a cigar novice.

Yeah, I would too. To enjoy for the first time. I have. Yeah. And this is a great introduction. It'll keep you pursuing. It'll keep your, you in the pursuit of cigars.

**Gizmo:** And compared to that cigar, we just smoked at 23, 24, 25 to give them this 6 cigar. And they put it down. It's not going to break your heart if they do, but it seems unlikely that they will, given how this just tastes.


**Poobah:** you have like a, if you're on a golf course and you've got a beer, like an IPA in the cart, you know what I mean? And you just [00:57:00] like, don't give a fuck. About paying attention to the cigar. There's one a hole, but you want it to smoke. You know what I mean? And it's six bucks. Um,

**Bam Bam:** it's pleasant

**Gizmo:** and it's really nice

**Poobah:** and I'll tell you lots for me.

It's like, or like, you know, your wife calls you in from the balcony and you got to put it out halfway through. It's like, okay, I'm down for, I'm down three bucks. Wow. Yeah. Like, uh, but it's good. I mean, smoke it in the car. And you get halfway through it and you get to your destination and you thought you were going to hit traffic.

You got to ditch it. Who cares? It's, it's a good, it's a good, solid smoke. I wouldn't, you're good. You're like, if you're like coach butter maker, if you're butter maker, you know what I mean? And you're coaching the bad news bears and you got to, and a parent walks up and you got to throw your cigar out.

You're fine.

**Bam Bam:** You're, you're, you're good.

**Poobah:** It's six bucks. You throw it in the outfield. No, but have it.

**Pagoda:** Puba, I don't even know what to say because even if you [00:58:00] were to go and look for the cigar the day after you'd find it and you light it up, you'd still be able to

**Bam Bam:** smoke it. Yeah, it'd be totally fine. I'm guessing.

Pagoda has done that.

**Pagoda:** No, uh, I tend to finish the, What's the

**Gizmo:** binder and filler in this? So the wrapper is Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro. The binder is Brazilian Mata Fina. It's Brazilian binder. Uh, like the CAO we had, uh, I believe we did one other Brazilian cigar. Uh, and the filler, like I said, is Honduran and Nicaraguan.

Tripa Korta, it's called, which is short filler, just the leftovers in the factory. I'm

**Bam Bam:** impressed with the pronunciation. I'm trying, man. Wow, look at you. Is it Babel? Is it Babel? It's Babel, and it's

**Gizmo:** uh, we're over a hundred episodes, you guys busting my balls on how I pronounce this.

**Poobah:** Anyone remember... Tatum O'Neill.

**Rooster:** Yeah, of course. It's Marideth, Marideth McEnroe.

**Poobah:** Right. Sure was. Do you remember Tatum O'Neill and the Bad News Bears? Yeah. Do you guys remember her? That was a great movie. That was a great movie. I [00:59:00] mean.

**Bam Bam:** Wow.

**Poobah:** Throw in the baseball pitching. Kelly leak. Remember Kelly leak with the motorcycle. I wasn't born then.

I was never seen the bad news bears. Never heard of it. Never heard of it. Never heard

**Gizmo:** of it till tonight. No, it's a classic. All right, I'll watch. It's a classic. So boys, this cigar was released in December 2012. Obviously the name Papa's free to translate to French fries, which the CEO at the time, uh, from Drew estate, Steve Saka.

Uh, That one of his favorite foods and hopefully I guess it performs better than the other food cigar. We did the tattoo. Hey, pork loin.

So this cigar, as we talked about the, how they ship, they used to come in four pack tins. So you'd actually used to get a bundle of seven tins, 28 cigars. Then they moved it to a 50 cab. Uh, and now it's only [01:00:00] available in a 25 count cab. Right. That's right. Um, and it was blended by Nick Melillo, who of course was the, you know, the blend master, uh, drew a state for a long period of time, League of Pravada.

Who now, you know, founded Foundation Cigars, which we've done quite a few of his cigars. Um, and all was under the direction of Drew Estate CEO, Steve Saka, who also has his own brand now. So both of those guys have left Drew Estate since the cigar was released, uh, coming up on 13 years ago.

**Pagoda:** I love everything

**Gizmo:** Nick does anyway.

So yeah, we've had some really good experiences with Nick Cigar. Nick Cigar is on the, on the podcast, but

**Poobah:** it's very smooth. It's, this is not. An aggressive cigar.

**Bam Bam:** No, and if you retrohale this, you get a ton of cocoa. It balances the experience really nicely.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, it's a rustic cigar. Yeah. I'm getting a bit of like a, like a minerality On the front of my tongue.

Not yet. Are you guys getting that? It's like metal almost. No, not me.

**Pagoda:** I'm not getting, like, earthy minerality. Earthy's

**Bam Bam:** nice, I like that, yeah. [01:01:00] You know, and with the Knob Creek, if you take a draw of the cigar and sip your Knob Creek, it's really wonderful. The combination's great. If

**Poobah:** you want some cognac, it goes great with it.

**Bam Bam:** That's true,

**Pagoda:** too. No, but you know, the interesting thing about the Knob Creek is that it's, it's enhanced both the cigar helping, the second half of the first one, and, and, uh, it's also really helping the Papas fritas. I agree. It's a great

**Gizmo:** combination. I think the Knob Creek is actually going really well with the cigar, just like it did the first one, but in a different way.

A hundred percent. You're going to ice it up though. I think this, I think the bourbon though is kind of opening something up about the cigar in my mouth. It's kind of giving it a little bit more of a complex flavor profile. I'm with you right there. They're really working well together. They are.

**Poobah:** It's like a, it's a, it's a great budget cigar.

**Gizmo:** It is for six bucks. I mean, it's a quarter of the price of the Cuban we just smoked.

**Poobah:** So think about it. I mean, like, right. Or think about, like, how much an up and a half Corona costs or some of these things. And with the price of Cuban cigars right now, [01:02:00] which is kind of lunacy,

**Gizmo:** uh, I think that's a nice way to put it, by the way, lunacy is a very kind way to put it.


**Poobah:** You, you can, you can substitute in something in like this. Back, you know, instead of smoking your part of your short while you're barbecuing, which is what I would normally do. Maybe you save your part of your short for the lounge and you grab one of these Papa's Frieda's while you're barbecuing chicken in the summer.

You know what I mean? And having a, like a, uh, happened some knob, knob Creek. In a solo cup, you know what I mean? With that's, and it's, the ice is melted and it's mellowed out and you're in the backyard and you're in the backyard and you're barbecuing chicken and you're talking to people. You can hand this

**Pagoda:** out to everybody too.

Hand this out to

**Poobah:** everybody and you can hand this out to everybody and you're not losing and you're, it's. And everybody's happy. And everybody's pretty happy. I think that like, honestly, there's, there's a [01:03:00] place for a cigar

**Gizmo:** like this that.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah, I think we've all modulated our. The, the consumption of our Cubans because of pricing, right.

And we're pursuing new worlds and availability and availability. It's because of us as a substitute, but we're pursuing those new worlds that make a lot of sense for us.

**Gizmo:** Right. And we're finding on the podcast here. I mean, this is just another one. Like how many of these new worlds we've never would have reached for ever that have really are performing wonderfully.


**Poobah:** It's a totally good cigar. Like there's nothing wrong with this. No, it's awesome. Delicious. It doesn't have that full Nicaraguan ua kind of like That's right. I'm gonna punch you in the face right now. Nope. But it's got a

**Bam Bam:** little bit, I think Youku, you UBA can smoke that down to the nub.

**Poobah:** Oh yeah. And I have, sure, yeah, you have.

Yeah, sure.

**Pagoda:** Yeah. The irony, Fido, the, the Iron of Fido is that be smoking this after a punch Shot The punch, yeah. [01:04:00] Yeah, but it doesn't, yeah, it, I think it's, there's punch. You know, in its own right, it's reasonably mellow. Like from my perspective,

**Gizmo:** it's full in a really, really smooth way. So I think it's kind of giving you the full flavor.

It's giving you the nicotine and it's packaged with a nice little bow on it. And it's, it's a, it's a really, really smooth affair. The delivery is very smooth. It's very

**Bam Bam:** nice. And I'll go back to the Knob Creek experience. Once you take a draw of the cigar and take a sip of that Knob Creek. It is really quite nice.

I agree. It's, it's awesome. It's a full

**Gizmo:** flavored experience. I mean, to buy a 32 or 36 bottle of bourbon and a 6 cigar. It's a bargain night, but... It's an

**Bam Bam:** excellent night. It's not just a bargain though, it's delicious. It's a delicious experience.

**Poobah:** But like, look at the smoke just coming off the foot. It's just like flaming off.

Bro, the room

**Bam Bam:** is full of smoke.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, the combustion's great. It's great.

**Pagoda:** Gizzy, you still there? Because I can't see you. I'm just kidding.

**Gizmo:** So boys, Cigar Aficionado put out, [01:05:00] uh, which is apropos for, uh, Talking about this cigar tonight, smoking this cigar. Cigar Fushinata put out the top 10 hottest cigar brands in America according to retailers.

Really? So retailers took a poll of the cigars that people are coming in and asking for and buying. I gotta hear this. And I'm curious what you guys think of the top 10. I think I saw this. Yeah. Padron is number one. Nope. Davidoff? Not even close. What? No. All right. So, uh, Fuentes. Yeah. Yeah. So we'll start at number 10.

Rocky Patel has 7. 4 percent of the interest from consumers walking into retailers. Number nine is My Father. A little under 10, Romeo y Julieta, non Cuban, 11%, tied with Liga Pravada, which surprised me. I would have expected Liga would have been

**Bam Bam:** higher. Something's wrong there because

**Gizmo:** this should be higher.

Now this is what's weird. Padron. Is number five with the 1964 [01:06:00] anniversary series at 12. 3%. So let's hold on to that for a second because they come back to that. Lafleur Dominicana, Andalusian bull, which we're going to have at some point specifically pointing to the Andalusian bull, not just Lafleur Dominicana, that specific line of their cigars, 12.

3 percent Davidoff number four. 14. 8 percent and I'm sure price is factoring into that demand. Yes, it is. Number three. Which one? Repeat that

**Poobah:** one more time. Davidoff number four. Davidoff. Davidoff number four. No.

**Gizmo:** Davidoff is number four on the list. As a, as

**Poobah:** a, as a

**Gizmo:** brand. As a brand. 14. 8 percent the entire brand of Davidoff, then the Padrone line, the 1000 series, I'm assuming because they separated out 1964 from that, 27.

2%. Let's stop for two seconds

**Bam Bam:** because of the cost.

**Gizmo:** And yeah, and the value. It's very affordable. Yeah. So, when you do combine number 3 and number 5, 27. 2 and 12. 3 for both Padrones, that [01:07:00] puts them at 39. 5 percent of all demand walking into U. S. retailers goes to Padrones. So, while they're not number 1 on the list.

**Bam Bam:** It's fine. They get the major market share, it sounds like.

**Poobah:** Okay, so

**Gizmo:** what's number 2? Arturo Fuente, 29. 6%. And then he takes the cake with Opus X, Fuente, Fuente. Is number one at 34 and a half percent. Wait a minute. It's not

**Bam Bam:** surprising. Opus X takes the number one spot with that price point that they have.

Yeah. Their average price is 40 a

**Gizmo:** cigar. They've done a great job marketing. Oh my gosh. So that's, uh, so again, the top three, Padron, the thousand series, 27. 2. Number two, Arturo Fuente, their normal line, like the Hemingway series and whatnot, 29. 6. And then Opus X from Fuente Fuente. 34. 6. But you know what's

**Pagoda:** really interesting is I've gone to a lot of different stores.

I don't find Padron's at many stores.

**Bam Bam:** You also don't find a lot of Opus in a lot of stores, honestly. So [01:08:00]

**Gizmo:** you don't. But this is the brand's most requested, not necessarily the highest sellers. This is the percentage of people walking into the retailer asking for these cigars.

**Poobah:** Pretty interesting. I just wonder what the methodology was for the reporting, like, is it just, is it, is it anecdotal?

I mean, they're not writing down quantitatively what every person walks in and

**Gizmo:** asks for. So they're just giving anecdotal,

**Poobah:** qualitative read on.

**Gizmo:** So let's now move to the best selling. Brands. Okay. Actual sales. That's what matters. Percentage of retail quantitative. Number 10, Romeo and Juliet, the 5 percent I'm rounding up LaFleur Dominicana, the entire brand 6.

1 Ashton number eight, 6. 1. Tying with LaFleur Dominicana

**Poobah:** because they would

**Gizmo:** be in the conversation. Exactly. And there's some others in here that we haven't heard from in the requested. This is quantitative data. Exactly. Numbers. Uh, number seven, Rocky Patel. 8. 6%. [01:09:00] This one, no surprise. Number six is Perdomo.

Uh huh. 19. 8%. A lot of people love that line. Yep. Now we're under the top five. My father, 21%. Oliva is number three, tied with doff. Surprising. 22.4. Arturo Fuente is number two. 44.4, and number one is Padron. There you go. There you go. So that all makes 48%. Now that we cooking, we're cooking, now we're cooking

**Poobah:** with gas because that's quantitative data.

That's based on sales.

**Gizmo:** Exactly.

**Bam Bam:** As my mom used to say, now we're cooking with Crisco.

**Gizmo:** Okay. Right. So yeah, that's a pretty interesting. The drone is the number one seller. If you

**Poobah:** were to rack it in grinder's terms, if you were to rack and stack it, you would, it would come in about that. It makes

**Gizmo:** sense. It is a, it is amazing to see Padron at nearly one, you know, one out of every two cigars sold is

**Poobah:** Padron.

Not surprising.

**Gizmo:** No. Yeah, for [01:10:00] their quality. That's a testament to consistency. But you know, they don't market nearly as hard as the rest of these manufacturers. They don't need to.

**Poobah:** Exactly. They don't need to. You guys, you guys saw the, the pictures I sent when I was down in Boca Raton at, at this place, Strikes.

What a lounge. You guys saw the pictures. Nice place. Really great lounge. I mean, what a lounge. And you know what? Everybody was smoking. Everybody was smoking Padron's and everybody was smoking Davidoff. Yeah. Everybody. Yep. Yeah. Everybody in that lounge. Premier Lines. You know, you go, you go, it, cause down there, I mean, honestly, right now, it's like a, it's, South Florida is, you know, it's a mini pockets of it.

Whether it's Boca, Palm Beach, parts of my, parts of, you know, Miami and South Florida, it's, it's, it's like mini Beverly Hills and the people that are a lot of [01:11:00] money and people down there are, you know, you go to these cigar lounges, they're sparing no expense. No, they want premium bands. They're sparing no expense.

that, you know, they're out on their boats all day. They're doing their thing. They're in, they're smoking, you know, they're smoking Padron. They're smoking that they're smoking. Naturals are smoking Maduro's. I'm

**Gizmo:** curious, the pro drones that you saw, I don't know if you were close enough to see which bands or which lines do you, was it mainly the 64 line?

Was it 26? Yeah, it

**Poobah:** was, it was a mix of everything. I mean, It was, it was, there were, there were people smoking, exclusively family reserve. They were speaking to smoking family reserve. There were people like, uh, women smoking Davidoff. Yeah. You know what I mean? Like lighter, you know, cigars, smaller ring gauge.

Um, just a mix, but, but mostly that, like when I was walking around, they weren't smoking. [01:12:00] You know, they were all smoking pretty premium stuff. Um, and that particular humidor at that lounge is smaller than the Monte Cristo lounge, uh, in terms of selection. Um, you know, you know what, call it what you want, call it vanity, call it.

Whatever, you know, Davidoff and Padrone to me, um, from what I've seen kind of rule the day to all of us in a lot of these, in a lot of these

**Gizmo:** lounges, it's represented like that on this podcast and our listeners. Yeah,

**Pagoda:** but what surprised me that Monica was not. And their EP Korea wasn't there. And my father's in the top five.

I'm surprised.

**Bam Bam:** Like I was marketing, great marketing.

**Poobah:** Well, he makes a lot of cigars

**Bam Bam:** too many.

**Gizmo:** They do. Yeah. I was surprised to not see a leave a higher on the list. That's true.

**Poobah:** That's true. Yeah. I mean, cause you know, you get these people that it's, it's a market, [01:13:00] you know, you get these people, you're going to, you're going to be, you're going to be wearing a Rolex, you're, you're, you're wearing a.

20, 30, 000 watch and you're gonna, and you're gonna smoke a money, you know, a white label money crystal? No. No. Yeah. These guys down there and, and yeah, I'm just talking. Everybody's flexing. You know what I mean? Sure. But

**Bam Bam:** nationwide, I mean, if you know your cigar brands, you're going to pursue the best cigar brands.

Right? Life's too short to smoke an awful cigar. So you're going to gravitate to Padron and Davidoff. These are the best made cigars in the world.

**Pagoda:** Case closed. I'm just shocked that Rocky Patel itself was number seven. Uh, because wherever I see, it's like everybody gravitates

**Bam Bam:** towards. Yeah. Yeah. A lot of people do.

A lot of people do. Not everyone. A lot of people

**Poobah:** do. Yeah. Oh yeah. It's a shock.

**Gizmo:** We're going to be doing a Rocky coming up. We're on

**Poobah:** Halloween. I mean, people should smoke with. Why on

**Bam Bam:** Halloween? Poop is making a good point. People

**Poobah:** should really smoke what they like and they should smoke what they want.[01:14:00]

Especially for the guy who's smoking a lot. You know, I'm giving an example of people who maybe are going out, maybe some of these people just go out from time to time and have a couple of cigars a week, but didn't seem like that. It seemed like these, these people were, yeah, they were into what they were doing.

Yeah, they were into, you know, they were into it. So. It was nice to see a good lounge. And when you travel, I think it's cool to, to, to, to find a new lounge. Um, I'm going out to Denver next week. I'm gonna try out, uh,

**Gizmo:** brown, bam bam may join you. The brown palace. The

**Bam Bam:** brown

**Pagoda:** palace, the lounge in that hotel. I think senator's gonna fly in just for the day.


**Gizmo:** true. Grinder's out there too.

**Poobah:** Yeah. Yeah. I'm gonna meet him. Yeah. Uh, 'cause he just happens to be there, so I may meet him. That's cool. Um, uh, meet him out there and just try a new lounge. Yeah. It's a good place. And I heard it's a great place.

**Gizmo:** I love it there. Nice. So boys, we're about halfway through here on the Liga Provada Unico Papas Fritas.

It's [01:15:00] fantastic. I'm really enjoying the cigar.

**Pagoda:** For this tiny little thing, the smoke output is ridiculous. It's incredible how smoky the room is. Me and it felt like, you know, when an atom bomb takes off and you get the mushroom cloud, it was exactly like that. It was

**Bam Bam:** like. Yeah. You know, another thing, like you mentioned earlier on the list, I'm surprised how low the, on the list of Liga 9 product is.

Drew a state period. Yeah. I've never had a bad cigar in their line ever. And we're smoking one

**Gizmo:** tonight. Yeah. Everything that we've had from them has been delicious. And even the Undercrown, which is the kind of the baby brother line to the, to the Liga Privada line, that performed very well in this podcast.

You can't say that's a bad cigar. No. And that's, I think under 12 bucks, 10 bucks. Great value. And that was a Toro, I believe. It was pretty big. That's right. So boys, uh, more bad news here, uh, from the federal government. We keep having these, uh, conversations. These stories keep popping up. These bills. A new bill was announced.

I don't know if you guys saw this. [01:16:00] No, we didn't. So we just, you know, obviously won the FDA case. Uh, Judge Mehta ruled that the FDA was overstepping their bounds and removed the FDA oversight of premium handmade cigars. Well, uh, I believe it was representative or Senator Durbin out of Illinois announced a new bill called the Care for Moms Act, an extension of the Mothers and Offspring Mortality and Morbidity Awareness Act, uh, that was previously introduced and long story short, it includes new taxes for e cigarettes, roll your own tobacco, a 16x increase on pipe tobacco, And doubling the tax on small cigars like the one we have in our hand, and a massive tax hike on premium hand rolled cigars.


**Bam Bam:** is just another underhanded way to diminish this fu this industry. What they're doing makes absolutely no sense. If Senator was here... We'd have a complete [01:17:00] dissertation on this. You'd be losing it. It's absurd, it's ridiculous. Well, no one's

**Poobah:** going to go for this. It's not

**Bam Bam:** going to pass. I hope not. Look, I understand the whole e cig thing and the vaping and rolling your own cigarettes, but that has nothing to do with the ultra premium cigars that we're smoking tonight and that every listener on this podcast smokes.

It makes no sense. What's,

**Gizmo:** what's proposing the tax to the current language? Uh, the current federal excise tax is 52. 75 percent of wholesale capped at 40, a little over 40 cents per cigar and it won. You know what this, this bill is doing is it's moving it to a weight based tax, which is what they do in Europe and other countries, um, of 49 and a half dollars per pound and half wheel.

I got to give them credit. They actually did a breakdown of the a few different sizes. So credit to half wheel on this. They, uh, in a lot of cases, it would more than triple the current federal tax rate [01:18:00] on cigars. So here's their estimate that I'll read again, credit to half wheel on a Robusto. The current tax is 40 and you know, a little over 40 cents per cigar.

If the bill passes, it's going to more than, uh, 1. 37, a dollar and 37 cents per cigar, which is a 240 percent increase on a Toro. Again, capped at 40%, uh, 40 cents right now. If the bill passes, it's going to go to 1. 80 per cigar, which is going to be a 350 percent increase. On a Gordo, again, based on weight, 6x60, it's a big cigar, capped now at 40 cents, it's going to be a 500 percent increase.

Yeah, but

**Poobah:** how do they weigh every cigar? They're all going to weigh

**Gizmo:** different. They do it, I guess, based on the bundles of the shipments and whatnot. And they divide

**Pagoda:** it out. And, and I'm, I'm assuming they didn't use the boxes,

**Bam Bam:** you know, we're

**Poobah:** getting, it's going to cost them more in a way that to regulate it than it is.


**Gizmo:** Or it's, or it's, uh, you know, it's a self [01:19:00] regulated thing and they come in and they spot check it, you Durbin,

**Pagoda:** but there's. Hoodie go to Canada.

**Poobah:** Nobody's this is in passing. So for example, many cigar smokers on Capitol Hill. I

**Gizmo:** agree. I hope so. For example, if a Robusto cigar has a current MSRP of 9 and 50 cents, the federal excise tax is currently 40 cents with no state cigar tax in Florida.

After this act, if it were to pass that same 9 and 50 cents, cigar would raise to 11 and 43 cents. So more than, uh, more than almost 3. That's tremendous. Just on abo it's tremendous. So in a box of 25, that's another $75

**Bam Bam:** per cigar. Yeah. I, I, I hope poop's sentiments are true. I don't think this will pass.

**Pagoda:** And aren't you glad we are smoking these short smokes, Short and

**Gizmo:** light?

Yeah. This one would be capped at 40 cents. But yeah, it's just, you know, the, the federal government just has not had enough. Trying to chase down premium hand, hand rolled cigars. And, you know, like, like Bam said, it's like, I [01:20:00] don't understand how they're, they're not carving it out from cigarettes and other type of tobacco the kids are getting.

I don't understand it. And cigars, you know, and tobacco that you're inhaling. You know, we're not inhaling.

**Bam Bam:** We've covered this. There aren't any kids on the planet that are pursuing cigars. It just doesn't happen.

**Gizmo:** it's less than 1 percent of high schoolers have even tried a premium hen roll cigar. Right.


crazy. Disappointing. Terribly disappointing. You know what's not disappointing, boys, is this cigar. Dude. I'm really enjoying this. For six bucks, too, it just enhances the, enhances the experience.

**Bam Bam:** Just over halfway through, it's still beautiful and smooth and

**Pagoda:** delicious. I'm sure I'm gonna get it for 20 percent off.

**Gizmo:** You gonna find a

**Pagoda:** coupon? Yeah, I will.

**Poobah:** Hey. I'm gonna, we should all buy cabinets of. of these and then, and then flip them after the [01:21:00] tax,

**Bam Bam:** that's right. New business vertical.

**Poobah:** That's right.

**Gizmo:** Look at how much smoke is in this room. It's crazy. Crazy. How much smoke is in this room? A little tiny little cigar. Yeah.

You got to give Nick Malilo a credit. He's really, you know, he, he, that Connecticut broadleaf that he fell in love with over at Drew Estates, uh, created a whole. Line of scars a whole business out of, you know, I feel like Connecticut

**Poobah:** tobacco totally. And I feel like whenever you smoke a Drew Estate or a Liga, yeah, it's like, it's like blue.


**Bam Bam:** room, the room is

**Poobah:** a hue of blue room just turns to blue. Am I wrong? No, you're totally right. Look at the room. The room is. Like all blue smoke. Am I crazy? No, you're not. Or is it weird?

**Bam Bam:** Or is it the Knob

**Pagoda:** Creek? I think next time I'm going to put on glasses, I think soon enough goggles and then a mask.

**Poobah:** Yeah. This is the combustion is crazy on this thing. [01:22:00]

**Pagoda:** I wonder whether they spray the same thing, you know, remember, we mentioned this. Like for the Liga 9, there are rumors that they spray this with a coating of some kind. Yeah, which kind of really adds to the smoke output. It kind

**Gizmo:** of, I mean, look

**Poobah:** at the room.

Spray? They spray it? There's

**Bam Bam:** talk of that, because if you look at that Liga 9. They laced the

**Poobah:** cigars? I don't know. Laced with like, PCP?

**Bam Bam:** There's a glistening on that, on that wrapper. Yeah. Yeah. But I love that cigar. I don't care what they do to it.

**Gizmo:** And actually the one we did on the podcast, I believe, was the Toro.

The Corona Viva, I actually think is a better cigar. I'm gonna tee that up for an episode sometime next year. It's a really

**Pagoda:** good cigar. But I do think we need to do the double Corona before.

**Gizmo:** The double Corona? That's a big cigar. That's

**Pagoda:** a big cigar, but it's fantastic. That's good. That's the cigar I fell in love with when I fell in love with No.


**Gizmo:** Yeah, really. That's the one you went to first.

**Pagoda:** It was handed to me, you know, like, so it's, you know, because we frequent a lot of stores in New York City [01:23:00] and lounges, a lot of the lounges are really good humidors. I want to get to know the guys there recommending you cigars within the same flavor profile.

And that's how I got into it.

**Bam Bam:** You're a good target. I am.

**Rooster:** I'm really enjoying the cigar. I mean, I haven't had many of these. No. I mean,

**Gizmo:** I gotta get a box. Yeah, I do too. Yeah.

**Rooster:** I mean, it's amazing when you find a cigar that

**Gizmo:** satisfies you like this for six bucks, and that price, it's like such a home run. It's

**Pagoda:** crazy. Russo, I think I bought a cap for less than 200 bucks of less than four bucks a cigar.

A that was back in

**Bam Bam:** the day. That's incredible. Way back in then day. And that was No, no, I'm talking

**Pagoda:** about like, uh, yeah. In this lounge, because I introduced, uh, it to our, I and all the other guys. Ah, lizard. I, yeah. Lizard. Yeah.

**Gizmo:** It wasn't so, by

**Poobah:** the way, it's kind of a, it's kind of a cool cigar. 'cause it's like, [01:24:00]

**Gizmo:** it, it's,

**Poobah:** your expectation isn't like super high, but on the other hand it's delivering what you would expect.

Yeah. So it's, it over-delivers. It kind of over-delivers I think, in a little,

**Gizmo:** in a way it just, it screams value. Yeah.

**Bam Bam:** For the size it screams value. It totally over-delivers. It's a great way of putting it.

**Poobah:** Yeah. And I, because there's nothing really like, Like, it tastes good, the combustion's really good, it performs really well, it's satisfying.

It's satisfying. Now,

**Bam Bam:** post dinner, you have one of these, you could be one and done. That's what I love about it. Because it's

**Gizmo:** so satisfying. If you get home late, if you get home late after a night out, you don't want to sit down and smoke a cigar for an hour and a half. I mean, you light one of these, you're going to be totally satisfied.

Yep. If you're

**Bam Bam:** in our North Lounge, you have dinner, you want to get home, have one of these and go home and [01:25:00] you're done. Totally satisfied.

**Gizmo:** And you're totally

**Poobah:** satisfied. There's a viscosity to the smoke. That's

**Bam Bam:** a great way of putting it. It's velvety.

**Poobah:** Velvety, yes. Which is very, which is very Liga esque. Yeah,

**Bam Bam:** and we, look, we talked about that at the Liga 9, how velvety that smoke was.

Yeah. Right? And this was during the garage days. That garage was full of

**Pagoda:** smoke. I remember that. That day we couldn't see each other, by the way. We could not. Yeah.

**Poobah:** Yep. No. And like this whole room's the combustion on such a small cigar, um, how they do this and what goes into it and whether it's like a gimmick or whatever, I don't really care because I kind of like what I mean, think about it.

I kind of like what I'm getting. I mean, you throw a couple of these, if you're traveling, you throw a couple of these in your briefcase. You know, you hit up a lounge and you got a limited amount of time. Yep. Let's say you smoke half of it and ditch it, you're good. Yeah. And

**Gizmo:** your Peter James Case.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. Yeah.

Oh, by the way, I'm very proud. Yeah. We all ordered that. [01:26:00] All of you have Peter James Case.

**Pagoda:** Alright, one tonight.

**Poobah:** Peter James Case. Thank

**Gizmo:** you. Thank you for the, uh, Very proud. So bam, bam, by the way, founded a crazy 40 percent coupon. I don't know what kind of sale they were running, sent it to the chat. And we all ran out and bought an, uh, you know, uh, another case.

It wasn't on their site. No, no. It was only in the email. Right. So you get,

**Bam Bam:** if you're a customer, they continue to send you, they send you updates and so on, but they sent that coupon. It was incredible.

**Gizmo:** Yeah, it was a good

**Poobah:** deal. It was a great deal. And at least the zippers were.

**Gizmo:** So is

**Rooster:** that case made in

**Gizmo:** USA or Italy?

**Poobah:** No, no,

**Bam Bam:** no.

**Gizmo:** No, the ones

**Poobah:** you have, the original. Oh, the original one that Bam has? That's

**Bam Bam:** probably Italian. Yeah, I think it was made overseas. All the cases there are made overseas. They're not made in the States. Where, I don't know.

**Gizmo:** Is there a tag on it?

**Rooster:** There is not. No,

**Poobah:** no, not on this. I think ba, I think BA's original case from [01:27:00] 2018 or whenever he bought it.

Yeah, I bought this a long time ago. Is is probably Italian. Italian leather. What we bought was Chinese leather . No.

**Pagoda:** Yes. There's no leather coming outta China. You're gonna be

**Bam Bam:** very happy. Okay.

**Poobah:** I'm just kidding. Read the description. It says the leathers from China, so they're like honest about it. Hold

**Bam Bam:** on.

Lizard Landau bought a Peter James Case. I inspected it. I thought it was beautifully made. The leather's nice. It's a little different than this. It's not as soft, but I think over time, those cases do, that you work them in. The zippers are fantastic. They're never going to go. I think the leather, the leather gets soft.


**Gizmo:** I just say something about this cigar that's eye opening to me? And, and it kind of tees up with point, uh, Puba was saying before about value and kind of filling the slot of Cuban cigars in these moments where You don't really need one, right? You used to reach for one cause you had them and they were pretty reasonable.

You can get them all the time and they were priced well. Now it's like it just, this is such a, another hard reminder of the [01:28:00] absolute catastrophe. Habanos has created with their pricing structure and how many more cigars I am certainly reaching for. We are, I'm sure the listeners are as well. And I know cause I see it on these forums of guys saying, I haven't purchased a Cuban cigar in over a year.

Yeah. I, you know, I'm going to ride out my stock of Cuban cigars and my daily go to's are our new worlds that are performing well. Yeah. And it's like, this is another example of a 6 cigar versus a 24 cigar. We just smoked, you know, the same episode. It's

**Bam Bam:** crazy. Even some of the guys that we respect on a lot of the forums that we're on, they're saying the same thing.

There's merit to that. Right. And now that China's involved with the Havana, as I say, it, it, it's changed the structure of it. Right. Pricing

**Poobah:** has changed. Yes. And some of the hassle too, you know, now you're putting a lot of money on the line. To get cigars, you know, through customs, you're getting, you know, you're, you're putting a lot of money out.

It's a big risk. People are losing the [01:29:00]

**Pagoda:** global entry. Thanks, Pagoda.

**Poobah:** Yeah, totally. Where you could pick up, maybe you pick up a mild. Davidov petite Corona, that's going to, you know, okay, it's $18.

**Gizmo:** It's still less than pretty much anything the

**Poobah:** Obamas has, but Right. But it's, but it's in, it's in your hand. Yeah. In two days you could probably get it. Well, or Yeah, or at a re at a local retailer.

Local, yeah. And it could be actually, you could get it in a, in a tubo and, and like, Actually travel around with it. And so I think that I also think on the pod, we should, we should try some of those. I mean, we've, we've

**Rooster:** only, you know, the millennium, right? The millennium

**Poobah:** petite Corona is great, but I don't know.

There's some of these other stuff in the Davidoff line too. That's more mild that the signature series and the signature series and [01:30:00] things like that, that, you know, cruise. The green crew, things like that, that like, you know, you overlook, but like, it's here.

**Gizmo:** There's a lot of, I mean, listen, there's a lot of cigars.

**Poobah:** It's here and it's, and it's good tobacco.

**Gizmo:** There's a lot of cigars on the list that we haven't done. There's a lot of cigars that we haven't even considered. Right. And it's just, again, it's just continues to be eye opening as we smoke more new world cigars that we've not had before. And we're trying for the first time trying for the first time in a long time.

In your case, Puba tonight, it's like, Again, we have another 6 revelation tonight on the

**Bam Bam:** podcast. Yeah, that's true. I will say something though, just reverting back to the whole Cuban Habana C'est Catalog and you know, there are guys and girls out there right now that are looking to build a Cuban cigar collection.

Honestly, if you're going to overpay for a Cuban cigar, you're going to go for the, you know, the standard production cigars. You are going to get a D4, you're going to get a RAS if you're overpaying for it. So be it. You [01:31:00] got to get those sticks. You're just

**Gizmo:** smoking

**Bam Bam:** them less regularly. You are. You're smoking less of those, but you're going to collect them.

You want to have them. You want to have them. Yeah. And you're going to spend the money. I'll continue to spend the money on the staples, but absolutely pursue the new worlds that we're, that we're discovering.

**Gizmo:** Think about us. Like, had we not come into Habanos and Cuban cigars, like we discussed on our 100th episode, right?

We recapped like that journey into Cuban cigars that we had. Had we not done that when we did, and we did it after The significant price increases over the last two years. I think all of us would have significantly less Cuban cigars in our towers just because the prices are three, four x in some cases.

Yeah. I mean, it's just the value has diminished. We are so fortunate the prices have gone up very fortunate. Put

**Poobah:** a box like I've, I've, I've had eight box, I got boxes of eight, nine eights, cabinets of loosies boxes and boxes of up and twos that I bought before. Right. Right. [01:32:00] He's price hikes that are just sitting and we

**Gizmo:** have as well.

Yeah. You're just, we're not touching them. No, we're not touching them. Yeah. So I have a lot of Lucy's. I don't even touch them. Yeah. I

**Rooster:** mean, I don't know about you guys, but I haven't bought anything in the last, I don't know, eight

**Gizmo:** months. It's been a long time. Six to eight months. Like saving cigars. The only stuff I've purchased is that we're smoking on the podcast, the new worlds.

**Bam Bam:** Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It's a revelation, the new world market and how well they're smoking, how delicious they are. It's really something to,

**Poobah:** to experience. I think the Ashton V S G was a great discovery. I think there's a lot of stuff in the Padron line that we've discovered that's been great. The, there's the Warp Cigar.


**Gizmo:** D Warp is great. My father, I didn't have that. Yeah, the Don Pepin, the blue label. That Lan and

**Rooster:** Sarah. Fantastic. The Oliva

**Gizmo:** V, we just failed. That was, that was awesome. That was awesome.

**Bam Bam:** That cigar rated as high as. Any Cuban that we've ever had almost, it was pretty, think about

**Gizmo:** that. Incredible. Just think about that.

That cigar, by the way, is less than the cigar we have in our hand right now. Yeah. But it's

**Bam Bam:** also, it's fractions of [01:33:00] what some of the elite Cuban cigars are right now.

**Gizmo:** Significant fraction. It's insane. If you compare vitola to Vitola, of course, any Cuban land, uh, Landero, oh, is 10 x, it's tremendous. Or 20

**Poobah:** x. I just wonder if this is, if it's ever gonna, Adjust,

**Gizmo:** right?

If the pricing is going to adjust with the bonnets, I don't think so because they're still selling every box that they put out. Yeah. So, you know, it's driven,

**Bam Bam:** that's driven by the Asian market issue. No, but

**Pagoda:** you know, what's going to happen. I think in the long run is going to tip over and. You know, as the new world start infiltrating the rest of Europe and Asia, which is happening, that thing will slowly change.

And I think they're going to start getting real competition from equally good cigars. And

**Bam Bam:** honestly, this podcast is defining the nature of what that market will be. And it's, I think, projecting into the market, I think, rigorously. My opinion. Hey, listen, my opinion.

**Pagoda:** How many episodes ago did we discuss the fact that we'd smoked [01:34:00] an equal number of Cubans and New Worlds and the rating was exactly the same?


**Gizmo:** they're really damn close. Yeah. It's like, we're averaging out right around an eight. I mean, as

**Rooster:** long as the Asians are paying a premium

**Gizmo:** for these Habano cigars, it won't change. The prices are not going to change. Not at all. And if they don't increase their supply, if they do not fix their supply issues, cause it's still down.

If they're unable to fix that, the price, it levels it out. Now, if they flood the market with supply, then I think the tip is going to come faster. To Pagoda's point, and there may be a correction. There's never going to be a correction in the high end stuff. There's never going to be a correction in Cohiba, but Trinidad is a good example of a brand that is in desperate need of a, of a realignment price because there's no way that those cigars are worth what they say they are.

Yeah. And you know, it just doesn't add up. What's

**Bam Bam:** unusual on our forums, you see fewer and fewer of those showing up. Absolutely.

**Gizmo:** Because of price.

**Rooster:** Yeah. I mean, I saw a box of Colonialis 24. It's crazy. I mean, I've [01:35:00] seen prices on promo for 1, 150. No, thank you. And

**Bam Bam:** now you know how much I love that cigar. Yeah.

I love that cigar. I will never pay that

**Gizmo:** price. I have

**Rooster:** used their price used to be 9. 50. It's crazy. And now it's 7. 50. Yeah. On the cologne, which I mean, which is still like

**Gizmo:** crazy. It's still crazy. It's crazy.

**Pagoda:** Yeah, but even talking about defaults, you know, I was mentioning, we were talking about it, uh, with a buddy the other day, I was at Carnegie and I said, well, just less than two years ago, I bought a box of defaults for 215.

Oh boy. Now there's 600. And I just, the latest box I bought was 600. Yeah. I said, It's 3X. That's crazy. I said, I could get a hundred of the pub streeters. Yeah. It's crazy.

**Bam Bam:** It's crazy. But like I said before, uh, yeah, it's a staple. So those that are starting to collect Cubans, they're going to still pursue that, that, that those region, those, those basic staple lines.

Yeah. And they're just, they're just

**Gizmo:** going to smoke less of them. Unfortunately. Yeah. There's still a lot of empty [01:36:00] shelves in Europe. There's still a lot of empty shelves around the world. The Habanos has a lot of work to do to catch up just to replace stock pre COVID. There's a lot of supply needed to just catch up to normal stocking situations.

Then maybe if demand cools and supply is at normal levels on a regular basis, there could be a tipping point on, on, on price. I just don't see it happening in the near term. I think we're talking three to five years at

**Poobah:** least. You may be right because it may be just. The supply supply is the supply side is just so tight that it's just that tight.

It could be, we'll see. Yeah. We'll have to see. I mean, but I mean, it's going to get, something's going to have, there's going to be a tipping point at some point. I'm not sure that these prices are sustainable for so long because you've got to remember too, the U S market's a big part of the market. Yeah,

**Gizmo:** it is [01:37:00] a lot of people buying cigars here.

Yeah. All right, boys. So we're coming to the end of our evening here. With the now Knob Creek, we have to do the liquor rating. Yes, sir. And the Licca Privada, Unico, Papas Fritas. Any final thoughts before we do our ratings? Excellent experience tonight. Yeah, I thought all three, all three of our, uh, cigar and spirit tonight were great.

Very good. Excellent. Yep. Alright, boys, let's do the formal liquor rating on the Knob Creek 9 year.

**Bam Bam:** Like I said earlier, my first two or three sips were a little rough, but it has developed into a very tasty, very drinkable spirit. I'm giving it an eight. Okay. Pagoda.

**Pagoda:** You know, I, by the way, I would have started off the six, but after putting a lot of ice and the way it really complimented both the cigars we smoked today, and in fact enhanced it at certain points in time.

I think. I have to give it an eight. There you go. Uh, you know, just to be really fair, even with the price point [01:38:00] 32 bucks. Hey, listen, just get some extra ice. Dude, dude, if someone handed

**Bam Bam:** me that glass in a lounge, I'm drinking that thing. Yeah,

**Pagoda:** no, absolutely. Very flavorful. Very tasty. Yeah.

**Poobah:** Excellent. I agree.

Puba. Uh, I'm going to give it a seven. I think it was, I think it was good. It's serviceable. Um, not that complex, but like drinkable rejected, very drinkable. It's a seven for me.

**Gizmo:** So I'm at an eight. I thought it was very good. I think like, uh, Pagoda said, I probably would have started at a seven, but the way that it paired with both cigars tonight, I think is a merit.

I think the price is a merit. I love the flavor profile of the bourbon. I thought it was, it kind of sat in the background tonight, which I thought was great.

**Bam Bam:** It did. And like I said, when you first start out, it's a little rough, which is why your scores would have been low early on. You just gotta give

**Gizmo:** it some time.

**Bam Bam:** You do, and it opens up and it develops

**Gizmo:** really nicely. Yeah. So the formal liquor rating, boys, is a 7. 8, which I think is a [01:39:00] perfect score for that bourbon. Fair enough, yeah. Alright, it's time to do the formal lizard rating on the Liga Privada Unico series. Papas fritas, Rooster, you're up. So we smoked two cigars tonight.

**Rooster:** I mean, the short to punch, I gave it an eight. It's a 24 steak. I mean, in the current market, this Papas fritas is a 6 cigar. If not, you know, maybe a little bit less even.

**Gizmo:** Yeah. Depending on where you

**Rooster:** find the price of the short to punch. Nothing wrong with this cigar. Great construction, good flavor, smoking till the end.

I mean, how could you, I'm gonna give it a nine. There you

**Bam Bam:** go. Woo! No, that's a great score. It is? Yeah.

**Gizmo:** Puba. Well, I'm not gonna give it a nine. I was, I was between an eight and a nine.

**Poobah:** I'm not giving it a nine. There we go. I mean, I'll give it, I'm gonna give it a seven. I, I, I think, I, no, I, and I think, but it's a, it's a recommend for me.

I mean. I think the cigar is very, very good. [01:40:00] I think it's great to, you know, you know, get out the, get out the charcoal, throw it down, put some lighter fluid on the, on the barbecue and, or whatever. And I like it. I mean, I like the cigar, uh, but it's a seven for me. I mean, it's, it's, it's a recommend.

**Bam Bam:** Seven is a soft

**Poobah:** recommend.

No, it's a recommend. It's. But the punch is better.

**Gizmo:** The ending of this cigar is better than the short to punch.

**Pagoda:** It is way

**Bam Bam:** better for me. The sweetness continued all the way through. I like the

**Poobah:** cigar. I'm recommending it. All right. I'm recommending it. I'm giving it a seven. All right.

**Gizmo:** Gotta change it to an eight.

**Bam Bam:** You can't.

**Gizmo:** One, two, three. So for me, it's an eight. And I'll tell you why. So the short to punch, I also ended up at an eight. I thought it started as a nine. He was hovering around that ended up closer to a seven for me. I averaged out an eight. This to me, [01:41:00] start to finish was an eight all the way through. Um, I really enjoyed it.

I thought it delivered, uh, slightly under what I think I should expect from a league of provada. I think the Corona Viva, it, it edges this out quite a bit. Obviously I think that long filler, a little bit more of a cigar in that obviously a more expensive cigar, but. That to me is, is closer to a nine. So I'm very comfortable at an eight with this, which aligns very much with the short to punch the value, the value factors in, bro.

I mean, that's, yeah, that's great.

**Pagoda:** Yeah. For me, it's a nine. Listen, it's a nine, it's a nine, it's a nine. And I loved it. And I'll, I'll, I'll give you a few reasons for it as well. And I'll tell you why.

**Poobah:** You guys are lunatics?

**Bam Bam:** No.

**Pagoda:** I'll tell you why it's not a nine. Oh

**Bam Bam:** boy. I don't care if it's 20 or nine. Let

**Pagoda:** let the man speak.

Let's the man speak. So, so let, let me give you a logical reason. Piano, , it's, uh, reminiscent of the league number nine, which is one of my favorite cigars. Having said that, [01:42:00] coming into the cigar, you are already expecting, you know, they're short fillers, you don't know what to expect. It. Overdelivered from that perspective, the flavor profile was fantastic through and through it wasn't overpowering.

It wasn't, you know, a nicotine bomb. No, it was just very smooth. And in fact, it was very mellow and maybe because you aged it, right? The smoke output, fantastic. You're sitting, you can be on your deck, you can be on the golf course, you can buy 20 of them and give it to your friends. Uh, you know, Essentially, when you're comparing this with the punch punch.

You'd get one of these and you could get four of these. Right, for the value. For the same price. So the value proposition is also very, very high. So just because we're doing both the cigars together, there is, in my mind, the comparative side of it. And for me, it's just a nine. And I really enjoy it. You know, this could be your last cigar of the night.[01:43:00]

Because sometimes you want to end with something, we typically end with the exclusive or something in the same flavor profile, something strong, something which is flavorful, more oomph to it, you know, whether you experience a little bit of cocoa, a little bit of earthiness, minerality. And in some cases, a bit of coffee sometimes, um, I, I think just overall, my experience with this guy has always been great.

And whoever I've offered this to has always loved it. I think it's a nine for me. Yeah. All right. Very,

**Bam Bam:** very well said. What a dissertation for Pagoda. Wow.

**Poobah:** I don't know what to say. That was more than the usually like, that's

**Bam Bam:** true. Yeah. I love

**Gizmo:** it. He was giving it back to

**Bam Bam:** you very eloquently. Love it. Yeah. All right, Bam.

I, I, so let me just say my piece, okay, before any interruptions. I do think a seven is too low for the cigar because of how much it costs and what you're getting for the cost. I am between an eight and a nine, but I am going to, I'm going to gravitate toward an eight. Now I'm at an eight. I am in an eight, but [01:44:00] The versatility of this, what I said earlier, you can hand this to a cigar novice and they would love this cigar and it'll continue their pursuit of cigars and get into this hobby.

I think an 8 is a perfect score for this cigar,

**Gizmo:** personally. So the formal lizard rating, boys, is an 8. 2. Wow. For the Papas Fritos. That's a great score for this cigar. I think that, you know, I think that... That's a high recommend. And I think that that factors in value. It always works out perfectly. It works out good.

So it was a great night boys. So the Knob Creek nine year bourbon had a 7. 8. The Cuban short to punch from punch. We smoked that first. That was a flat 8. 0 and we finished with the League of Pravada, Siri Unico. Papas fritas with an 8.

**Pagoda:** 2. That's so fair because it's slightly edged out because of the price at the end of the day.


**Gizmo:** think it's a value thing. That's true. Yeah. That's true. Alright, so short smoke special number three is in the books, boys. And, uh, we'll do another one sometime in the winter of [01:45:00] 24. And, uh, until then, we'll see y'all next week. Keep smoking. Hope you enjoyed this episode. Thanks for joining us. merch store and ratings archive at our brand new website, www.

loungeblizzardspod. com That's lounge lizards, P O D dot com. Don't forget to leave us a rating and subscribe on your favorite podcast platform. If you have any comments, questions, if you want to reach out, say hello, tell us what you're smoking. Email us. Hello at lounge lizards pod. com. You can also find us on Instagram at lounge lizards pod.

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