Sunday, January 30, 2011

Lit Cigar Lounge Newsletter 1/30/11

From my friend Josh...


Upcoming Events at Lit
Join us this Tuesday, February 1st as we hold another Tuesday Night Cigar Club. We'll be featuring Punch cigars and Maker's Mark bourbon. The event goes from 6-9pm and as always we'll have cigar and drink specials, prizes and free appetizers.
Our Thursday Cigar Wars event was such a success, we're going to continue it in a slightly modified form.
Every Thursday, join us to enjoy one unbanded cigar along with your choice of a well drink or draft beer for $10. You can then rate that cigar and we'll keep track of your ratings to determine what our Lit customers think are the best cigars we offer.
If you're curious how the original Cigar Wars tournament turned out, here's the bracket.
Announcing Lit Smoker Series #7 February 26
We'll be having another installment of our popular Lit Smoker Series in the Sno Lounge on Saturday, February 26 from 2-5p.m.
Tickets are $25 and will go on sale Wednesday, February 2 at Ticketmaster and our casino box office. Space is limited, so don't procrastinate!
The event includes a Macallan 12 year old single malt scotch served over one of our signature Macallan ice balls along with three La Gloria Cubana Serie R cigars. We'll also have appetizers, prizes and some great specials on La Gloria Cubana cigars during the event.
Here's a nifty demonstration video of the Macallan ice ball that I'm sure you'll enjoy.

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Lit Cigar Lounge is located in the Snoqualmie Casino- 37500 SE North Bend Way, Snoqualmie, WA 98065.
Tel. 425-888-8265 To subscribe or unsubscribe, email jweltmer@snocasino.com

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Tabacos Baez Monarcas by Don Pepin Garcia

Great herf last night at the Patch - weather cooperated for us. In fact it was nice enough for me to sneak a second cigar in, which I usually don't do on a Friday night, not because I don't want to, but either my lovely wife will give me "the-look" that it's time to go, or the weather will just be too crappy to stick around. Last night was neither, so I enjoyed a couple of fine cigars while sipping Turkish tea. Nice, very nice.

So let me tell you about one of the cigars. (the other was an Oliva and I'm sure you know how I feel about those)
 :)

Tabacos Baez Monarcas by Don Pepin Garcia  6½ x 52

This was the cigar that I bought down at Rain City Cigars the previous week. It was up on the top shelf in the upper left-hand corner of the humidor, not a high traffic area as far as humidor are concerned. To tell you the truth, I've never heard or seen the Tabacos Baez label before. Guess that's why I bought it?


What did I think? It was OK. Again, nothing special. Maybe I'm setting my standards too high? I keep waiting for that cigar that's going to make me sit-up straight and yell: "WOW! This is a GREAT cigar!" I'll give you a couple of examples - Cuban Stock Royal Selection and the J Fuego Origen. Man, those are superior cigars!

Alright, back to the TB - Generally speaking it's not a bad cigar, I did enjoyed it. It had a good draw, nice smoke action, burn was flawless, but the flavor wasn't there for me. Kind of an ordinary smoke, so to speak.

Would I buy one again? Probably not. (however, I'd never turn one down if it was given to me)

My Rating: 7

Side note:
My friend and guest commentator Chris made it down to the Patch for the first time last night. It was nice to finally meet up, I really enjoyed talking cigars with him. I'm sure we'll do it again soon my friend!

BTW, what was the name of that "kick-ass" cigar that you smoked?

Monday, January 24, 2011

JOYA DE NICARAGUA ANTAÑO 1970

I went over to Starbucks in Georgetown one day last week for coffee, it had stopped raining just long enough for me to walk there instead of driving - gotta try to get my exercise in. Anyway, just a few doors down from the mocha factory is Rain City Cigars. Yeah, I think I was just looking for an excuse to buy a few cigars that day.

Friday night, Cigar Night, pouring down rain of course, so bye-bye Kirkland, hello Snoqualmie...

JOYA DE NICARAGUA ANTAÑO 1970
Magnum 660 6 x 60

This is the cigar I smoked while I was up at the Lit Lounge. By the way, it was surprisingly quiet for a Friday night - we found a place to sit right when we walked in. I wish I would have had that kind of luck while gambling.

So what did I think? Meh... it was OK. It's a great looking cigar though, dark oily wrapper, pyramid-chisel shape, BIG ring size, but it's a tad on the firm side. Draw was a little tough as well and it didn't produce as much smoke as I would have liked. It was smooth though, but it didn't have the full-bodied taste that I was expecting. On the plus side, it had a perfect burn, nice white ash and it lasted for-frickin-ever. Don't get me wrong, it's not a bad cigar at all, just not a superb one. (I'm clearly not an expert)

My Rating: 7

The rest of the weekend I was smoking my go-to cigars (Oliva's) - still some of the best cigars on the planet.

Side note: Saturday night we tried out the new Milagro restaurant in downtown Kirkland. Place was packed, and this is a BIG place too! Somehow we managed to time it just right and got a table right away, and in my opinion it was the best table in the house. If you're familiar with Cactus restaurant down the street, this place is on the same caliber, and basically it's the same type food; Tex-Mex. We liked it and the price was reasonable. My personal opinion is try Cactus first, if you can't get a table there, head over to Milagro. What's going to be weird is when they open "Mi Mexico", it's right next to Cactus - 3 Mexican restaurants in a two block radius. Oh well, I've seen stranger things.

One other note - I noticed that the new "Olive You" lounge is open. (back side of Olive You Restaurant)
Very NICE! Standing room only on Saturday night. Hope they continue to do a good business! I really like the restaurant.
;)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Upcoming Events at Lit

Newsletter from my friend Josh up at the Lit Cigar lounge -


Join us this Tuesday, January 25 for our Tuesday Night Cigar Club. We'll be joined by our old friend Master of Whiskey Ari Shapiro! Our featured products are Bowmore and The Glenrothes scotch whiskys and Sancho Panza cigars. We'll have free appetizers, prize giveaways and great drink and cigar specials from 6-9p.m.

The ballots have all been counted and the title of Cigar Wars champion goes to..... the La Aroma de Cuba Robusto.

This fantastic cigar beat out 15 other smokes over the past 3 months by getting your votes in head to head blind tastings during our Thursday Cigar Wars event.

Our guests' must have a tremendous palate, because Cigar Aficionado rated this cigar a 93 and just named it the #1 Best Bargain Cigar of the Year for 2010!

To celebrate the completino of 15 great weeks of blind tasting, we'll be doing a very special Cigar Wars celebration event this Thursday, January 27th from 6-9p.m. We'll be joined by the good folks from Remy Martin and will have some great specials on Remy and La Aroma de Cuba cigars! We've got some really good prizes to give out as well.

Cigar Wars will begin anew with a new format next month. Stay tuned for details.

Lit Connoisseur's Club

We have just received a new gift for our guest who complete their Lit Connoisseur's card!

It's a beautiful vintage Zippo style chrome torch lighter by Vector engraved with our logo.


All you have to do to get this lighter is pick up a Connoisseur's Card at Lit and complete it by smoking all 15 of the cigar brands listed on the card.

If you just can't wait, we're also selling this lighter for only $25.

We still have a few of the first Connoisseur's Club gift, the Lit logo Xikar travel humidors as well.

Lit Cigar Lounge is located in the Snoqualmie Casino- 37500 SE North Bend Way, Snoqualmie, WA 98065.
Tel. 425-888-8265 To subscribe or unsubscribe, email jweltmer@snocasino.com

Monday, January 17, 2011

Alec Bradley Tempus Centuria 49 x 7

Torrential rains and unseasonably warm on Saturday night. This was the first time that I've ever been to SnoCasino and the lot was FULL! They wouldn't even let us turn into the complex. That meant NO valet service as well. "Holy Crap! You mean I've got to park way up here on the main road? It's raining cats and dogs!"
We'd already driven all the way out here, so there was no turning back. I took out the umbrella and we walked in the pouring rain all the way down the hill to the casino - never done that before and hopefully I won't have to do it again, especially with my lovely wife, who just happen to be wearing high heels. Yeah, we blasted down the hill at a tortoise's pace. Ugh...

Oh well, it turned out to be a good evening though - I was surprisingly lucky on the slots.

Cigar Time!


We started out in the humidor at the Lit Lounge, I was looking for something good, something that I hadn't tried before. Yes, I saw the Cuban Stock on the shelf and brother it was calling my name, but I told myself to snap out of it and try something new. So I chose an Alec Bradley Tempus and my sweetie-pie picked out a Drew Estates Java - nice choice babe!

The staff cut and toasted the cigars for us, then handed them back for the final lite - Great service! I ordered a glass of rum (Pyrat Pistol) and a Kahlua and coffee for the misses. We had to stand for a while since it was so busy, but eventually a couple of the big green chairs in the corner would open up for us.

Anyway, so what did I think of the Alec Bradley Tempus Centuria?
I LOVED it! No kidding! I don't think it's quite on the same level as the Cuban Stock, but boy it was one heck-of-a good smoke. Excellent flavor, consistently smooth throughout, burned perfectly, just felt good in my hand. I'm sure you've smoked cigars like this before, they just feel right. (as opposed to cigars that are hard as rock, harsh as hell, and a draw that's like sucking a pea through a straw - not good)

Would I buy one again?
YES! Especially if they're out of Cuban Stock. :)

My Rating: 9

So last week I mentioned that I'd tell you about the $3 Cuban Cohiba that I bought in the Republica Dominicana. You heard me correctly - $3 US dollars for a Cuban Cohiba. Why are you laughing? Its got to be legit, right? It says "Habana, Cuba" right on the label...


I knew it was fake, but I was looking for a cigar to smoke while I was on the beach and this just happened to be the best looking fake cigar I could find. I'm not going to say that it was a "turd", but I can tell you that it was definitely a dud. Sometimes you truly get what you pay for, sometimes less...

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Lit Lounge


You know during the winter months I think I smoke more cigars in the Lit Cigar Lounge than I do here in Kirkland. Obviously they've got a great thing going up there! BTW, I'll be up there tonight (Saturday). ;)

Since most of the Kirkland bunch also frequents the Lit, I thought it pertinent to post their newsletter, well, that and the fact that Josh, the manager at the Lit was kind enough to mention this blog and a few of my compadres blogs. Thanks Josh!


Upcoming Events at Lit

We'll be opening at 10 a.m. on Sunday to show the NFL playoff game between the Seahawks and the Bears. Not only that, but we'll have $5 Stoli Bloody Mary's and Screwdrivers all day! Of course, seating in Lit is limited, so you can also watch the game on the giant screen in Club Sno and enjoy their drink specials: $3.75 well Bloody Marys and Mimosas. Both Sno and Lit will have breakfast sandwiches available as well. Go 'hawks!

Our Tuesday Night Cigar Club reconvenes on January 18th as we feature CAO cigars and Bushmills Irish Whiskey. You know the drill- free appetizers, drink specials and prizes. It's the best cigar event in the state!

Thanks to everyone who comes out every Thursday to take part in our Cigar Wars promotion. We are now down to our final two, as the Brickhouse Toro was defeated this past Thursday. Join us this Thursday as our final two cigars battle for the title of the Cigar Wars Champion! $15 gets you 2 cigars and a Woodford Reserve.

We want to take a moment to thank a few of our customers who have given us a kind mention on their cigar blogs. We really enjoy reading these and think you will too. The Kirkland Cigar Club , The Cohiba Club , and The Cigar Habanero Newsletter  are all great sources of cigar reviews and information put together by our Lit customers. Check them out!

Cigar Spotlight - My Father #2

The list of the top 25 cigars of 2010  according to Cigar Aficionado is out, and some of our favorites are in there, of course.


At #16 is the My Father #2 from father and son cigar making team Jaime and Jose "Pepin" Garcia. We've promoted this brand for a while and have had Don Pepin visit us for events on two separate occasions, so it's exciting to see My Father on the list for the second year in a row. The most striking thing about this cigar is the complex flavor that it has without being too powerful. Click here to read more.


Lit Cigar Lounge is located in the Snoqualmie Casino- 37500 SE North Bend Way, Snoqualmie, WA 98065.


 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Back from Vacation


Monday I was in Miami, sunny, warm, 80º Miami - just returned from a nine-night Southern Caribbean cruise. We've been to the Caribbean many times before, but never to the five islands that we visited this time, that's basically why I chose this cruise, that and the fact that this was also a New Year's Eve cruise. I won't bore you with all the details about how fantastic it was, but I will mention a few cigars that I smoked along the way...

St. John's, Antigua: Montecristo No. 2 (Cuba)

You know, no matter where I go, I always have an eye-out for cigar shops or for places where cigar smoking is not taboo. Spotting this shop on Antigua was like finding a needle in a haystack, seriously! Anyway, their selection was minimal, prices high, but from what I could tell this was indeed a "legit" shop for Cuban cigars. For my taste, the best cigar in the whole store was the Monte No.2, and of course it was also the most expensive. Don't ask what I paid. I'm fairly familiar with this variety, I received a box of them a few years back from a local friend that used to travel to Habana quite often. Let me tell you, 18 out of 20 of these cigars were some of the BEST cigars I've ever smoked - smooth, rich taste, perfectly packed, excellent draw, loads of creamy smoke. Yes, this cigar is just about at the top of my "favorites" list.

So what did I think this time?
The cigar continues to live up to my expectations. A superior smoke and I would gladly replace all of my Oliva's if I could smoke these instead. But, the price-factor and that little embargo thingy make it tough to make this my go-to cigar. Maybe someday?
My Rating: 10

Basseterre, St. Kitts: Patagas Serie D No.4 (Cuba)

I purchased this cigar at the Duty Free store on St.Kitts. It was reasonably priced and I don't think I've ever smoked one of these robustos before. Anyway, I smoked this one back on board the ship that evening.

What were my thoughts?
Meh, nothing special, but then again that's just my taste. The draw was a little tight, the flavor a bit harsh or peppery at times, plus I had to re-light it more than a few times. Now I was in the Caribbean where it's pretty humid, but my other fine cigars performed flawlessly. Oh well, guess I'll cross this one off my list for now. (or until my taste change)
My Rating: 7

Stay tuned for my next post - I'll tell you a little story about the $3 Cohiba that I bought in the Dominican Republic...

Side Note:
When we arrived and when we departed Miami we spent extra nights over at the Four Seasons Hotel on Brickwell. If you have a choice, take the Suite, you won't regret it! Oh brother, I was in heaven...

A rare photo of yours truly enjoying a cigar in the Habana Club.