PROLOGUEIt's the first day of the year. Yippee. More important to me, is it's also the return of Golden Girls re-runs to Hallmark Television. The insane-making 24/7 movies have ceased and we are back to our regularly scheduled programming. I almost teared up when I gave Ruby Vondella the news; and a celebratory slice of Velveeta. "We made it. We made it."
Speaking of regularly scheduled programming --
THE CIGARDon Pepin Garcia
My Father No. 1
Natural Habano Rosado wrapper
5 1/4 x 52 Robusto
PRE-LIGHTMilk chocolate complected canvas of even hues and some light marbling over-top. Foot tobacco is a somewhat dulled red cocoa and packed to a medium+ at least density. Very tightly crafted triple cap. There are some thin veins, each and all running vertically with the length of the shaft -- none large enough or positioned as to cause issue in the burn. Nice amount of near pretty spider web veins and a slight stretching of the leaf wrapper at a few spots. Seams are tight and evenly so. Only the slightest of sheen over-sets the marbling.
Hand-feel is smooth and lightly oiled but still a tad toward dry. Balance is nice in the 52 gauge Robusto, but also, I tend to feel the awkwardness of a beyond 50RG between my fingers. Charmin squeeze shows an even throughout strong medium+ density with a very lively spring-back. I'll say it: "A Robusto should never be beyond a 50RG."
Solid schnoz-notes of caramel and cocoa are at the shaft with a background of honey. At the foot is an equally solid barnyard and some trace of cedar. Nibbling off the cap, I get firstly a quite resistant draw. -tight, I shall call it. Aggressive white pepper is on the cold draw, and a backing of hay. Also, there is a nice dose of coffee introduced alongside the chocolate.
LIGHTToasting the foot sends off an aroma of sharp barnyard and kick-tuchus white pepper. There's a sharpened hay there, as well and some cedar. Actually an interesting toasting -- and one which takes quite some time on account of the My Father offering's zaftik density. Light itself is eager. First hot draw is a very dry cedar underneath a coarse-ground white pepper blast. You might think I'm meshugah, but once that clears and before the cocoa and caramel take to the finish on the back of cedar -- there is a lavender. It also reappears at the end of the finish. Retro-hale is cedar spice and a finely ground but strong black pepper. A leather note is introduced to my palate, as it drops there from my sinuses. Third hot pull is a transitioning cedar from start to finish. White pepper falls away, but all else is on board and up comes the curtain for --
ACT II should say that packing has softened a tick ahead of the burn. Burn is not even, but was a tough toasting due to density and due also, to being on my porch. Its line is a razor. Ash is light grey to pepper. Draw is a medium+ easily. Very full smoke out-put. A medium+ profile out of the gate, gentlepersons.
Cedar, every. Everywhere, differently. On the retro: spiced. On the draw: straight. End of draw, sweet. Finish: seasoned -- and then the snake eats its tail. Very long finish. Slick tingle mouth-feel. Notes black pepper, lavender, leather, coffee, cocoa; in that particular order. But they hang around too, to overlap. In this overlapping, they remain delineated enough not to mottle, but to create new flavor notes.
A ton of smoke out-put and into my smoke-hole. My throat catches on spiced cedar and black pepper roasts in my chest. Spiced Cedar was a drag queen out of Chicago. We would talk occasionally, but not once was she stuck in my throat. I swears it on a stack of Bibles.
A seam opens a notch ahead of the burn. Strength is mounting, but currently a medium. The lavender has become an exotic spice. Exotic Spice, now that particular drag queen was once caught in my throat. I kid, I kid. The line-up, other than the swapping of lavender for exotic spices (which I'll pin point in a tad) remains strictly unchanged. That is pretty darn impressive. The exotic spice adds to my tingly mouth and I'm shocked I ain't parched. Moisture is somehow perfecto-mundo. When the sweet cedar comes in, it does so with such a gusto, that the entire profile length feels its wake. Nice off-set to the spices and pepper. Oh! Exotic spices: a kitchen spice with the addition of wasabi powder and trace of curry.
Retro-hale is painfully not necessary here, gentlepersons. It doth burn and too not add much that ain't there already. Ash clumps at an inch of dense, lightly oiled. talc. Act one skates through beautifully so. Flavor is full. Body is medium+ as the exotic spices add in and ramp up (still in the lavender's line-up position). Strength is a firm medium.
ACT IIBlack pepper is pinch-hit for by a returning and aggressive as ever, coarse white pepper. Strength simultaneously ticks up to medium+. I walk off two/three minutes to see if the burn stays ready -- it does. Exotic spices and white pepper stay on my tongue and palate, respectively and throughout. Ash picks up a yellow tint and smoke pours to the point of OMFG LOL.
NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT
Up top is a bit o' fun. It's a line-up card of sorts. Self explanatory, I hope -- 'cuz I ain't explainin'. Please keep referring back to that until I tell ya not to; as I'll be adding to it from here on out.
Leather heats up and sweats out oils at the start of transitioning as the mid-point looms. Coffee becomes espresso and then its crema is high-lighted in a nice sweet bite. Cocoa does not strengthen, but lengthens and is a chocolate goodness with a dab of dairy in its creamy richness.
Draw tension lessens to a boundary-pushing medium. Packaging softens evenly to a medium density. Ash is a tick darker than salt and spot-on pepper, mainly the dark salt. A loose sheath has formed and it easily reaches an inch before I roll it off to the same consistency as prior. As the final act is set to start, a slowing of pulls is recommended as it seems this My Father could be over-smoked. No prob there, as it is full profile'd and a little goes quite further than a long way. Burn is and has been even for a bit now, on a -medium burn-line.
At the very end of the second act, caramel comes back on and immediately marries with the chocolate. A salty mineral vibe attaches itself to my lips and tongue-tip. Mouth-feel is divine.
ACT IIIRoasted nuts come on here and my My Father no. 1 line-up is fercockt. Wait wait wait. It's a hazelnut after another puff -- and another puff after, finds the espresso and in there, brings with it a toasted cream. Whew. I believe it was the crema evolving. Brilliant! Both the My Father and moi. Wasabi lessens two ticks as the band approaches, and I do believe I shall ride it out in a sweeter (and less light-headed fashion) than I had previously imagined. Make no bones about it, though, there is a strong nec herein. It simply comes on easy.
All notes to construction hold. Smoke lessens a tick. Profile is a robust medium+. Fine fine fine -- -full. A My Father no. 1 on the first of the year of our L-rd. Beautiful, as the sun sets beyond the trees in the park across the street, as the bums hunker down in it for a cold one. I am blessed. I do hope you find yourself blessed, as well.
My very best wishes to you and your mishpucha throughout the year and forever.
NOTESA rigidly regimented and delineated delivery of some fairly complex flavors. Great construction. It's almost too perfect, too un-flawed. Almost.
LESS SCHTICK MORE STICKBetter yet, here's a copy/paste of the line-up card:
Bearing in mind a let's call it -full profile w/ near flawless construction.
EPILOGUEI failed to mention time. Dunno. It seemed to smoke long for a Robusto. I'd say an easy ninety minutes, too, I always say to put a couple hours aside. Your mileage may vary -- especially since I gave you no real idea of mine.
Postscript: on top of Golden Girls re-runs returning today, I also landed a couple of handicapping classics at my local St. Vinny's. A fiver landed me:
1) A hardcover edition of Picking Winners by Beyer; with the 1975 receipt from its original sale in 1975.
2) Betting Thoroughbreds by Davidowitz; also hard-covered.
I just might review each for this here blog right here.
Thanks for reading, gentlepersons. May yer mishpucha have a dy-no-mite 2016.