Friday, April 29, 2011

Ashton Family of Cigars

I was invited by my friend Josh (El Jefe de la Lit) to an Ashton cigar tasting seminar up at the Lit Cigar Lounge Wednesday night. Brutal traffic getting out of Seattle, plus the added bonus of torrential rain mixed with snow,  an exceptionally pleasing trip. Typical weather for the end of April right? Anyway, I wasn't about to miss this event, so after an hour of being on the road, I finally arrive at the casino. My Better-half couldn't make it this time, so no need for valet parking. I drove around back and parked in the garage. Simple.

Up at the Lit Lounge I was greeted by Josh, who checked me in and showed me a few selections of cigars to choose from for the evening tasting: Mild, Medium and Full-bodied. He also handed me a gift-box that contained a beautiful black Ashton ashtray, compliments of Ashton Team. (NEAT-O) Anyway, I chose the bag of medium-bodied cigars since I had not ate dinner yet. Wise choice. I looked around the room and spotted one of the few remaining chairs. Place was packed for a Wednesday night.

The two gentlemen representing Ashton Cigars:

Manny Ferrero - Senior VP
Saiid Karroum - West Coast Sales Rep

Manny was the one who would give the lecture tonight. You know, I thought I knew a little bit about cigars, but compared to Manny I know squat! Seriously!

Anyway, this was indeed a cigar tasting, so we were instructed to try all three cigars and discover how three cigars in the same category could taste so different. This turned out to be true for me - I only had time for two cigars, but each one was uniquely different and I must admit that I loved them both. (more on this in a future blog)

Manny is a pretty cool guy, sharp dresser, articulate, and knows how to work a crowd, especially a group like ours. He gave an excellent presentation on the finer points of producing an Ashton cigar. He also explained how the pairing of different drinks affects the taste of what we like to smoke.

Great talk Manny!

Anyway, after two very good cigars, I had to call it a night - school night you know! I would however buy two handfuls of a variety of Ashton cigars, so needless to say I'll be reviewing a lot of these in the next few weeks. I'm looking forward to it!

My thanks to Josh and the Lit for inviting me to the event and to Manny and Saiid for a superb evening of cigars. Good job guys!

Side note: Thanks for the 20% discount Josh!

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