Deep in flavor. Deep in your mind.

Monday, April 30, 2018

"Fifty-Three" Kaplowitz Radio

53KR

Now on Mondays. K/M: book-end yer week-end with Kaplowitz Radio | Stick Men.


On this programme, I give ya bits about, while smoking a Gran Habano Corojo #5:

  • Garage Sales
  • Tree pollen
  • My broken zipper (on #ZipperDay!)
  • Hardcore wrestling & the DIY punk vibe
  • Open relationships & monkey AIDS
  • Abigail Rose Kaplowitz & Snack Tray

Thanks for listening, Gentlepersons.

& thanks to show sponsors: 
www.CaldwellCigars.com
www.IllusioneCigars.com

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Sunday, April 29, 2018

Cigar News Weekly Report: Gurkha, Aganorsa, Camacho, JC Newman, IPCPR


"All the news that's fit to poach."

GURKHA: CANADA

Are you Canadian (sorry) & crave over-priced yet 'beautifully' packaged cigars with minimal flavor? Good news! Gurkha is now in an exclusive partnership with Kretek Canada to distribute its brands throughout the Great White North. That's right, now you too can get a free sword with certain purchases of certain cigars which will likely unroll. Kretek International is the Canadian division of Kretek International. The co. controls U.S. based distributor Phillips & King as well as Ventura Cigars, under its own premium cigar division.

CASA FERNANDEZ > AGANORSA

Welcome to the world, AGANORSA! This, in a rebranding of its previous nom de tobacco, Casa Fernandez. The family owned & operated (Dad, Eduardo Fernandez & son, Max) have announced this move to more closely tie their famous Nicaraguan grown leaf to their cigar offerings. Their offerings themselves won't see name changes under their new umbrella moniker and include JFR, Lunatic, Guardian of the Farm, and the self-titled Casa Fernandez fronts. For you graphic design nerds, a new logo is a-comin'. I'm more of font geek. All this will be distributed by AGANORSA Leaf.

CAMACHO COYOLAR

Camacho Cigars has announced the regular production re-birth of the Coyolar. The new-but-not-new offering should be available shortly. It was way back in 2005 when the Camacho Coyolar was first offered, then shelved in the 2013 brand revamp. The Honduran puro received its name for the near Nicaraguan border farm where the employed leaf originated. This re-launch will use the same blend as its predecessor. It will again be positioned in the powerhouse realm of the Camacho portfolio. They'll be rolled of course and as ever, at Diadema Cigars de Honduras, S.A.

JC NEWMAN PENSA

EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY (sorry I yelled) Puros de Esteli Nicaragua S.A (PENSA) will be known as J.C. Newman PENSA. The co. renamed the second largest cigar factory in Estelí, Nicaragua for pure vanity's sake. But who am I to talk? I name everything Kaplowitz. The factory is run by Omar Ortez and Lazaro Lopez, who will soon each see their names legally changed to J.C. Newman, breeding untold confusion around the Turkey-Day table, but too deemed necessary by J.C. Newman. In closing, J.C. Newman. J.C. Newman. J.C. Newman.

IPCPR TRADE SHOW

The International Premium Cigar & Pipe Retailers Association's (IPCPR) Convention & Trade Show is headed back to its usual venue of the Sands Expo in 2019 (June 29-July 2) and again in 2020 (June 27-30). This of course in FAB-u-LOUS Lost Wages, Nevada. If you Gentlepersons recall, the trade show's contract with the Sands was canceled -- we were told by the hotel/casino to take a hike. Bumped... we were bumped. IPCPR fell back on the Las Vegas Convention Center, a not-so-ideal fill-in to fall-on.

My questions are as follows: is the contract stronger this time around or will we be re-bumped (or stand the chance to be)? I mean is The Sands THAT great? Larger though, is why Vegas at all? With more and more spots there employing smoking bans, why not find more welcoming environs? Are cheap buffets & gaudy steak dinners really that important? I bet it's more of that jet-set toxic masculinity alpha male stuff I've been hearing about. Fogs the judgment. Though it ain't so alpha at all to crawl back to where scorned ya, to where appreciates you less & less -- just to say you can because you think they're so cool. Fuck, that's actually some beta shit, huh? Better get more 'spensive watch bling to distract attention from all that cucking.

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"Fifty-Two" Kaplowitz Radio

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Weekly Recapitulation Vol. XLV

Why not Kaplowitz?

BLOG POSTS

Cigar News Weekly Report
Nomad Therapy Maduro
A Review of Recent Grade A Cigar Offerings
Illusione Cigars Cigares Prive

PODCASTS

18. Kaplowitz Reads Kaplowitz
"Fifty-Two" Kaplowitz Radio
Stick Men: Episode Seventeen

NOTICE: "hidden" BONUS CONTENT (may be) in "certain" posts.

read: LAST WEEK'S RECAPITULATION.

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& join the Kaplowitz Media Group HERE

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Keep me going.
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s/o to K/M sponsors:
Illusione Cigars: for your cigar comfort. www.IllusioneCigars.com
Caldwell Cigars: creation | innovation | ambition. www.CaldwellCigars.com

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Illusione Cigars Cigares Prive in Toro "Prensado Suave" - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz


Why not Kaplowitz?

Illusione Cigares Prive Prensado Suave

WRAPPER: Nicaraguan Corojo
BINDER: Nicaragua
FILLER: Nicaragua

STRENGTH: Medium
FORMAT: "Prensado Suave" Toro, box-press
ORIGIN: Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A. (TABSA) Nicaragua

Toasted overtones of rich bright sweetly sour notes braced by rigid bitter/pepper-spiced undertones which are somewhat darker. Salted savory roasted underbelly nethers. Quite nuanced and very complex. Balanced supremely-so. Retro-hale high-lights a sweet/sour spice. Medium-full flavor.
  • Pepper, front-loaded black & white
  • Spice, cinnamon (sweetly)
  • Woods, cedar & pine
  • Nuts, peanut butter (the natural kind)
  • Grains, oats (toasted)
  • Coffee, Americano
  • Fruit, plum
  • Leather
  • Hay, creamy
  • Earth, bright
A robust medium bodied offering. Quite rich for that part of the spectrum. Smooth and soft with a decent tongue-tingle. Finish is a complex lingering of sweet/sour/bitter on long legs. Ends cleanly, coolly. Medium strength'd, as well.

Combusts slowly and evenly of pace and line. Grows excellent ash. Puts out a very nice bit of smoke from each end both actively and passively. Room-note is a savory pepper-spice sweetness. Construction stays firm and cool, press holds admirably and draw is excellent.

FINAL GRADE: A-
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

Whilst Illusione is a sponsor *buy a box* of mine, that in no way *buy a box* influenced my review. *Buy a box*.

PRESS:
"Cigares Prive, a line of cigars by Illusione that was designed to be shop exclusives for various retailers will now be available to all retailers. The line was showcased at the 2016 IPCPR Trade Show ... Cigares Prive is now being released in two blends – a Nicaraguan Corojo and a San Andres Maduro. Both blends will be available in the same set of three sizes each packaged in 25 count boxes." - Cigar Coop (9/23/16)

"I have smoked a very large number of Illusione cigars over the years, and have found the vast majority of them to range from very good to legendary. The Illusione Cigares Privé Corojo falls short of the latter, but it toes the line nicely ... the new Illusione Cigares Privé Corojo is a wonderful addition to an already great line-up." Halfwheel (3/24/17)

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"Fifty-Two" Kaplowitz Radio

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

"Fifty-Two" Kaplowitz Radio

52KR

In a somewhat new format, Kaplowitz Media's flagship show takes to the webs with a deep look at the Illusione 888 w/ some stream of conscious prattle on boy-O-ing it may or may not produce.

I can't be sure. I wrote that copy beforehand and in the 2nd/3rd person, to boot. OK fine. I kibbitzed (from what I recall) re:

  • Aunt Stella's Passover Sedar
  • Creativity & nicotine/caffeine
  • Clothes dryers & microwaves
  • Domino's Pizza vs. Little Caesars
  • What goes on a pizza?
  • + more(?) ...

Thanks for listening, Gentlepersons.

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s/o to show sponsors
www.CaldwellCigars.com
www.IllusioneCigars.com

A Review of Recent Grade A Cigar Offerings


"Sent to prison by a military court for a crime they didn’t commit, these men promptly escaped from a maximum security stockade to the Los Angeles underground. Today, still wanted by the government, they survive as soldiers of fortune. If you have a problem. If no one else can help. And if you can find them -- maybe you can hire the A-Team."

Gentlepersons below is a list as shallow and pedantic as Lois Griffin's meatloaf. It is a list of recent (April 2018) cigar offerings I humbly found to be worthy of A (- to +) review ratings.

THE A-LIST
{Names are links to full review.}


HONORABLE MENTION


EDITOR'S NOTE: I seem to have smoked an awful lotta meh as of late (the three smokes listed above notwithstanding, natch). Check out a couple of my sponsors, they ain't meh:




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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Nomad Therapy Maduro in Toro - Cigar Review Redux by Kaplowitz


Why not Kaplowitz?

Nomad Therapy Maduro

[I first looked at this blend back in something called "2015" in its Robusto format. You can read that HERE.]

WRAPPER: Pennsylvania Broadleaf
BINDER: Nicaraguan Habano
FILLER: Nicaraguan

STRENGTH: Medium-Full
FORMAT: Toro
ORIGIN: Tabacalera Fernandez, Nicaragua

KAPLOWITZ SCALE
[K=least, Z=most]

flavor: I
body: W
strength: O

(primary note)
sweetness: W (dark chocolate)
sourness: P (coffee, finish)
saltiness: A (w/in an herbal lilt)
bitterness: I (espresso bean/black walnut)
savoriness: W (beef jerky, leather)
pungency: W (black pepper)

complexity: O
balance: O
smoothness: L

KAPLOWITZ SCALE
[K=worst, Z=best]
(parenthetical notes - good/bad)
construction: W (excellent draw/some shoulder degradation)
combustion: W (even burn/dry clumping ash)

FINAL (re)GRADE: B+ (originally B)
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

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"51" Kaplowitz Radio

Monday, April 23, 2018

18. Kaplowitz Reads Kaplowitz

18.KRK

Read:
  • Cigar News Weekly Report
  • "Do cigar reviews REALLY matter?"
  • Pier 28 Maduro - Cigar Review
  • Odds & Ends: April 2018
  • Illusione ~ultra~ - Cigar Review
  • Gran Habano CT #1 - Cigar Review
  • Illusione Gigante CT - Cigar Review
  • Cubanacan Heritage - Cigar Review
To read along, search any of the above using the search bar to yer right. I'm going back to bed.

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Sunday, April 22, 2018

Cigar News Weekly Report: Aging Room, Tatuaje, Black Label, Joya de Nicaragua, Ventura & Giannini, RM101 | Lost&Found

"All the news that's fit to poach."


AGING ROOM PURO CEPA

Aging Room (Rafael Nodal) has announced Puro Cepa, a new cigar coming out next month. The nom de tobacco is Spanish for "Pure Bred," fitting for the Nicaraguan Puro it is. Within its xenophobic composition is a representative bit of leaf from Esteli, Jalapa, Condega, & Ometepe -- the country's major growing regions. The Puro Cepa will be rolled in three sizes: a Robusto (Rondo) Toro (Mezzo) & Grande (Super Toro). The Super Toro will fight crime in the inner city night. Not really. All will be housed in 20ct. boxes. Really.

TATUAJE GOV'T CHEESESTEAK

Get ready to drop to yer stupid Saints & Sinners knees, Gentlepersons! (Is SnS still a thing?) For there is a new Tatuaje event-pack, “Gov’t Cheese Steak!” Always with the fun names, are Tatuaje and L’Atelier, for their event-only cigars. News of this latest broke when Pete "Don't Call Me Dick" Johnson took to Instagram w/ a pic of the 10ct. bundles. Their format is a Petite Lonsdale sorta one, draped in Broadleaf.

BLACK LABEL BISHOPS BLEND

According to an earlier this week announcement, the 3rd Black Label Trading Co.’s Bishops Blend entry is set to arrive just before April showers bring May flowers. The original Bishops Blend debuted in 2016 w/ an Ecuadorian Habano Maduro top-leaf, Ecuadorian Habano binder, & filler via Nicaragua, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania. Brand-owner James Brown described the flavor, and you can probably find those notes somewhere. Formats include: Corona Larga and Robusto, each in 20ct. boxes. All will natch be rolled at the co. factory, Fabrica Oveja Negra in fab-u-lous Nicaragua. Production will be limited to 600 boxes of each vitola. Calm down, Darryl Martin. (Inside joke.)

JOYA DE NICARAGUA ANTANO GRAN RESERVA PRESIDENTE

Joya de Nicaragua, for the first time in 1/2 a decade, will be offering an exclusive release for the Tobacconists Association of America (TAA). This on April 29th in La Romana, DR at the organization's convention. 2018 sees both JdN & TAA celebrating Golden Anniversaries. The cigar is a Toro extension to Joya de Nicaragua’s Joya de Nicaragua Antaño Gran Reserva line. A line originating in 2005 and brought back just last year. The idea is a more mature and refined Antaño 1970. The blend is Nica Puro and will be made available in 20ct boxes, rolled at of course Joya de Nicaragua SA, in of course Nicaragua.

VENTURA CIGAR CO. | MICHAEL GIANNINI

Congrats to Michael Giannini on having been promoted to General Manager of Ventura Cigar Co. Wanna know more about his resume? What am I, LinkedIn? Wanna know more about Ventura? What am I, a cigar reviewer? Oh. I adore their Slaughterhouse (Natural Robusto).

ROOM 101 | LOST&FOUND: SUPERSTROKE

Remember when Matt Booth retired for 6-months? What a hoot. Now he's joined farces with Lost&Found for “three very small limited releases.” We'll first be experiencing SuperStroke. I did not mean for that to sound quite-so sexual. Caressing a Dominican binder and fillers via the Dominican Republic, Brazil, and Nicaragua, will be an Ecuadorian sun grown wrapper The SS will be available in Corona & Robusto formats and that SS crack ain't funny cuz see Fred lost family in the Holocaust (inside joke). Between the two vitola are ~5K sticks. Lost&Found is an idea I covet and am quite mad at Robert Caldwell for beating me to. Look into it, Gentlepersons. Tho the name says it all.

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"51" Kaplowitz Radio 

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Weekly Recapitulation Vol. XLIV


BLOG

Odds & Ends at the Ides: April 2018
Nomad Cigars Fin de Los Mundos: Stick Men Review
Pier 28 Maduro by Espinosa Cigars

PODCAST

Stick Men: Episode Sixteen
"Fifty-One" Kaplowitz Radio

read: LAST WEEK'S RECAPITULATION.

NOTICE: "hidden" BONUS CONTENT (may be) in "certain" posts.

Like Kaplowitz Media on Facebook HERE
& join the Kaplowitz Media Group HERE

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s/o to K/M sponsors:




EDITOR'S NOTE: one post shy of a full slate this week. Kaplowitz Reads Kaplowitz returns next week, as does Cigar News Weekly Report. Podcast offering & blog post, respectively. thx - kap

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Pier 28 Maduro by Espinosa Cigars - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz

"Why not Kaplowitz?"

Pier 28 Maduro
WRAPPER: Mexican San Andres
BINDER: Nicaraguan
FILLER: Nicaraguan

STRENGTH: Medium (billed as M/F)
FORMAT: ("Super") Toro 656
ORIGIN: La Zona Factory, Nicaragua

Dark but not somber overtones of a roasted bittersweet varietal. Pepper-spice is a rather simplistic bit which cycles up&down hither&thither throughout the profile. Not much by way of sour entrants and lesser in terms of savoriness, which is led along by a toasted salted note. Not too terribly balanced and rather lacking in complexities. Very straight-forward. Nuance is lacking as well, in a failure to "stick to the ribs" manner and entrench itself in the palate. Medium. 
  • Chocolate, semi-sweet
  • Pepper, black
  • Maple Syrup (slight char)
  • Coffee
  • Sugar, brown
  • Fruit, red/purple juice
  • Compost
Softly fluid delivery to the ol' smoke-hole but not spitty. Cool temp'd. Falls short of the richness it seems to attempt. Medium bodied. Strength is a mild-medium. 

Combustion combusts perfectly -- for all intents and purposes. A slightest of maybe not even bugaboo is a tick of blistering at char-line in the 2/3. Excellent pacing. Great smoke out-put both passive and active. Ash builds solidly, easily to an inch+ before I roll it off. Construction is constructed nigh equally as well as combustion combusts. No hard/soft spots. Shoulder stays firm and cool gate-to-wire. The draw is an even medium tension throughout. Really one of the finer-rolled Espinosa offerings I recall.

PRESS:
"Pier 28 Cigars is the brand owned by Espinosa West Coast Sales Manager Tim Wong. Last year at the Trade Show, he launched his first cigar, the Pier 28 Habano. This year, he returned with his second line, the Pier 28 Maduro.

Pier 28 Cigars are produced at Erik Espinosa’s La Zona factory in Estelí, Nicaragua. It is sold primarily in Wong’s territory and is also available at Espinosa Cigar lounges." - Cigar Coop

"As you might recall from last year’s show, Tim Wong debuted his Pier 28 line of cigars. Shortly after the show as part of the pre-FDA release deadline rush, he announced several extensions to the line that would be available in limited quantities. This year, he showed off the second line, the Pier 28 Maduro, as it is ready for widespread release." - Halfwheel

"Until recently, Pier 28 was only sold in the western territories of Tim Wong, an independent sales rep. Pier 28 launched nationally after IPCPR 2017 and is now available in both an[sic] Habano and Maduro." - Small Batch Cigar

FINAL GRADE: B
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

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"51" Kaplowitz Radio

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

"Fifty-One" Kaplowitz Radio

51KR
I smoke a shitty Serrano offering whilst discussing:
  • Crossing the street
  • For Duty & Humanity
  • One-Punch Man
  • My workout regimen
  • Bob Saget, Artie Lange, Gilbert Gottfried
  • OPB suck compared to PBS
  • Farting through a campfire
  • "Why not Kaplowitz" NEW TOTE BAGS
  • Mowing my yard
  • Obnoxious Sgt., annoying bit actor, dead
  • My smoking blanket
  • My diet
  • Footlocker or closet
The Serrano sucked balls.

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SPONSORS







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yup

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Odds & Ends at the Ides: April 2018

Here's the deal-iO this ides up-date:
  1. Stick Men returns to a podcast format
  2. K/M Tote bags for sale
  3. New sponsor: Caldwell Cigars
  4. Cigar Contest: Drew Estate
Them's the bullet-points, lettuce delve...

My Fellow Gentlepersons,

Whilst April showers are bringing us May flowers, K/M is bringing some stuff, too.

Stick Men is once again a podcast and statistically speaking, you Gentlepersons would rather not see our faces. I try to not take such things personally. Fuck you & thanks for listening.

Kaplowitz Media tote bags: buy them & put shit in them. Every purchase supports Kaplowitz Media programming. Shop HERE. "Why not Kaplowitz?"

Oh and welcome aboard NEW K/M SPONSOR Caldwell Cigars. I've long been a vocal fan and am downright giddy over this development.

Finally and speaking of K/M sponsors: enter this Drew Estate contest.

Till the ides next,
Kap

Report a typo, win a No-prize.

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Keep me going.
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"Fiddy" Kaplowitz Radio

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Illusione Cigars ~ultra~ op. no. 3 - Cigar Review Redux by Kaplowitz

WRAPPER: Nicaraguan Corojo
BINDER: Nicaraguan
FILLER: Nicaraguan

STRENGTH: Full
FORMAT: Petite Robusto
ORIGIN: Tabacos Valle De Jalapa S.A. (TABSA)

More? Soitenly From the co. site: "A blend of Nicaraguan Criollo '98 and Corojo '99, and finished with a[sic] AAA Grade Corojo Colorado Rosado wrapper. Full-bodied and very complex, enhanced by a good amount of Ligero from 2 regions in Nicaragua."

How's 'bout this from Cigar Aficionado re: its no. 9 kin (their #6 cigar of 2015): 
When Illusione brand owner Dion Giolito released the Illusione Ultra line, they were the most full-bodied cigars he had ever blended. Big and box-pressed, the cigars came in near-black wrappers and were made in Honduras. That was three years ago and Giolito has made some changes. 

While the cigars are still indeed dark in appearance, they aren’t quite as close to black as the originals, and the Ultras aren’t made in Honduras anymore. Giolito moved the production to the TABSA factory in Nicaragua, citing logistical reasons. But a change in factory can have a significant effect on a cigar. In the case of the Ultra, it seems to have been a change for the better. The cigars performed so well and so consistently that the Ultra Op. No. 9 made it to the No. 6 spot on our list. 

The cigar is an imposing toro and one of this year’s best examples of a strong, spicy Nicaraguan blend that also has some of the qualities of a pint of coffee stout. The smoke is dense and chewy and leaves a reverberating peanut-and-caramel aftertaste that sticks to the palate. Since it was first released, Ultra was intended to be a full-bodied offshoot of the core Illusione line. Giolito makes fewer Ultras than any other brand in his repertoire."
*
*       *
This Petite Robusto iteration is less-so imposing in size & a tick paler than dark in shade... oh heck... lettuce just get to it, Gentlepersons:

Full-flavors are dark and then bright. Yin & Yang. Well-rounded, then. Overtones are a darkly roasted sour note with its own salty nethers alongside bitter bits with their own sweet nethers. Sweet Nethers was my B-Boy name back in the day, yo. A high-riding undertone is a slightly salted savory note which tandems with a pepper-spice which drives the whole dang rig. Excellently balanced and quite complex. Even more-so, nuanced. A great bit of complexity is found across over-under w/ a mingling of sour-pepper-spice.
  • Pepper (black, red, white)
  • Chocolate (semi-sweet)
  • Coffee (beans)
  • Nuts (black walnut)
  • Wood (hickory)
  • Herbs (anise, alfalfa)
  • Mushrooms
  • Earth (compost, top-soil)
The notes are rigid but not mercilessly-so and the body does slowly build in creaminess. There is an occasional sharp pull, but not bite. Smooth like fine grit sandpaper. Rich. Full & heavy but not dark & burdensome. Some light shines through. 'Nuff for the Yin & Yang thing to hold. Finish is long-legg'd and bittersweet with a pungent kicker. Medium-Full bodied, this ~ultra~.

Strength is a robust medium ya feel in the noggin and in a bit of schvitz upon the upper lip (me, anyways).

Combustion occurs because I applied fire AND I AM GOD and does-so on an even line with only an occasional and slight ripple. Very nice both active and passive smoke out-put yields a sweetly-spiced leathery room-note. The pace is even and moderate. Ash don't grow a bunch, but it is windy in my carport. OK, breezy. Fine, the ash seems visually aerated.

Construction features a firm and smooth roll from gate-to-wire sans hard/soft spots. The draw is a tick stiff, we'll call it medium+ in tension. Seams hold nigh invisibly-so. Shoulder stays well-formed and cool smoke is delivered on-down to nub.

FINAL GRADE: A-
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

I earlier reviewed the Illusione Ultra op. no. 9 HERE.

Whilst Illusione is a sponsor *buy a box* of mine, that in no way *buy a box* influenced my review. *Buy a box*.

Report a typo, win a No-prize.

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"Fiddy" Kaplowitz Radio

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

"Fiddy" Kaplowitz Radio

50KR

On this MILESTONE installment of K/R, a K/M production, I smoke/remark upon a Gen. I Nomad Fugitive & too do go on re:
  • Calorie counting
  • Sumo & Haiku & Judo
  • Learning Japanese
  • Eating rice
  • Needing a couch/futon & TV
Thanks for listening through fiddy, Gentlepersons. Here be to fiddy mo'!!!

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ENTER to win a Drew Estate contest of which I am loosely affiliated.

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s/o to K/M sponsors:
www.IllusioneCigars.com
www.CaldwellCigars.com

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Gran Habano Cigars Connecticut #1 in Robusto - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz

Advertised as "one cigar that shows a mild smoke does not have to be bland," is this GH CT. Which I suppose is a welcomed departure from the same idea of 'not your grandfather's Connecticut,' or some other iteration of 'CT reinvented.' Always replete with apologies is the offering cloaked in Connie. Oh, well. I remain a fan, myself -- sorry not sorry, unapologetically. I'm sorry but I never apologize. Ever. (I do much prefer Habano.)

Lettuce gander the stick...

Overtones of acidic green sour notes with a dropped back sweetness and twixt lies or perhaps lays a mineral lilting. Bright. Undertones are really not much, so perhaps they are the aforementioned dropped back sweetness. Warms and rounds out some in 3/3, a pinch of salt is added underneath. Pungency is a simple white pepper which gets quite nice as the acidity dials back. Still, not much nuance, less complexity. (Medium flavor height.)
  • Lemonheads candy
  • Grapefruit juice
  • Wood, oak (green)
  • Pepper, white.
  • Sugar
  • Coffee, weak brew
  • Grass/hay
Body is mild-medium with a rather unpleasant acidic/mineral finish of unfortunate lengthy-legs. Smooth on the draw, a tick gruff thereafter and temp is a bit heated, as well. Some bite. Rigid notes delivered into softer ones. Ends with a sharp-tasting hang-over. Strength is mild.

Combustion is a fast-paced thing, burns evenly, and reaches an inch of ash at a time before dropping off. Quite smoky of an out-put both passively/aggressively. The draw is quite open and sometimes a bit empty/hollow, also I already mentioned the warmth of temp. Seems under-stuff insofar as pack density -- other bits of construction show tight seams cap/shoulder holding up excellently.

WRAPPER: Connecticut
BINDER: Nicaraguan
FILLER: Nicaraguan

STRENGTH: Mild-Medium
FORMAT: Robusto
ORIGIN: Danli, Honduras

FINAL GRADE: B
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

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"Forty-Nine" Kaplowitz Radio 

EDITOR'S NOTE: A No-prize awarded to Mike Weinstein (again) for spotting my now repaired typo. Remember, you too can: Report a typo, win a No-prize.

Monday, April 09, 2018

"Forty-Nine" Kaplowitz Radio

49KR

Wherein I smoked a Gran Habano Corojo #5, discussed it &
  • Ivory Soap
  • Sumo Wrestling
  • My "Optical" white Chucks
Also, I read my
  • Illusione Gigante CT (cigar review)
  • Cubanacan Heritage 2016 (cigar review) 
  • hey! Play (poem)
Not a bad amount of entertainment for an abbreviated show.

EDITOR'S NOTE: there was a roasted sour note entered into the GH profile right after I quit recording. Stayed on till the nub. Nice. Interesting, at least.

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Sunday, April 08, 2018

Illusione Cigars Gigante Connecticut (CT) - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz + Bonus Content

wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut
binder: Nicaraguan
filler: Nicaraguan

strength: Medium
format: Gordo (6.5x58)
origin: Nicaragua
blender: Dion Giolito

KAPLOWITZ SCALE
[K=least, Z=most]

flavor: Medium
body: Medium
strength: Mild-Medium

(primary note)
sweetness: W (butterscotch/hot cocoa)
sourness: O (coffee)
saltiness: A (pink)
bitterness: O (softwoods)
savoriness: O (oats)
pungency: O (white pepper)

complexity: I
balance: T

KAPLOWITZ SCALE
[K=worst, Z=best]

(parenthetical notes - good/bad)
construction: T (fantastic draw/light cracking under band)
combustion: I (excellent pace/airy ash)

FINAL GRADE: B+
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

Whilst Illusione is a sponsor *buy a box* of mine, that in no way *buy a box* influenced my review. *Buy a box*.

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"48" Kaplowitz Radio 

BONUS CONTENT:

Victor Sinclair Connecticut Yankee in Churchill

W. Habano Connecticut
B Honduran
F. Dominican, Nicaragua
O. Dominican

FINAL GRADE: B-

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Thursday, April 05, 2018

Cubanacan Cigars Heritage Grand Reserve Edition 2016 Maduro in Lonsdale - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz

That wasn't a title. That was a damned paragraph.
Sans any further ado, adon't, or amaybe -- lettuce away...

Dark but not inky medium-full overtones of pepper-spice alongside toasted woodsy dehydrated savoriness. Bittersweet undertones with a dash of salt. No detectable sour entrant into the somewhat dry profile. Therefore, not well balanced. Nor is it complex and its rigidity doesn't allow for a depth of nuance. Rather straight-forward but not wholly unpleasant.
  • Black pepper
  • Wood, hard & charred
  • Espresso beans
  • Beef jerky
  • Licorice
  • salt, roasted
  • Earth, top-soil
Body-wise, bite is mainly staved off, but the name of the game ain't smooth. Smoke lends to a heavy but stiff medium-full sensation. Rigid, I'll say again. Finish is short-lived but is a rather nice bittersweet thing. Speaking of bittersweet, my marriage is no longer on the rocks, as my wife is moving out in 2wks time. Whew. Being on the rocks was rough! Ends with a hint of charcoal (the Cubanacan). Temp warms-some but not egregiously. Dry goes the smoke-hole.

Strength is a sinewy gentleperson, Gentlepersons. Medium.

Combustion performs without cause for complaint, even though construction eyes rustically and offers a very dry hand-feel. Loose seams pre-light, tighten via progression and draw is a perfect medium. So I am nit-picking cosmetics. I can do this, for I am myself beautiful. Oh, ash grows long and well. Oh and the thing just went out at the gateway of 3/3. Real-time, Gentlepersons! Real-time!

WRAPPER: Maduro
BINDER: ?
FILLER: Nicaraguan

STRENGTH: Medium-Full
FORMAT: Lonsdale
ORIGIN: Nicaragua

FINAL GRADE: B-
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0

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Where every purchase supports Kaplowitz Media programming.

"Forty-Eight" Kaplowitz  Radio 


Wednesday, April 04, 2018

"Forty-Eight" Kaplowitz Radio + Bonus Content

KR48

Ohana Pulse Maduro in Gordo, box pressed (review). Andre Breton "The Forest in the Axe." Chips Ahoy cereal > Cookie Crisp. Pancakes (spaghetti cheat meal). Rotating 6 days. Tire repair. Facebook algorithms. [JOKE SEGMENT.] Dr. Seuss, reddish-brown (poetry reading, mine). My marriage is no longer on the rocks and ain't that a relief? (Divorce.) Newspapers, Pine-Sol, White Chucks (boring). First purchase on solo checking account. Gran Habano La Conquista in Robusto - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz (reading). Keep me going.Keep me GROWING. Donate HERE via PayPal. Thanks for listening, Gentlepersons. Special thanks as always (until the checks stop coming) to: www.IllusioneCigars.com & www.CaldwellCigars.com [co-presenting sponsors of the show]

BONUS CONTENT

Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Gran Habano La Conquista in Robusto - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz

"Gran Habano introduces its La Conquista line of cigars, a beautifully blended cigar that will treat the smoker’s palate to a spicy, peppery, and long leathery finished delicacy. From the novice to most sophisticated smoker, La Conquista’s refinement is certain to romance and captivate the senses." - co. website

"Additionally, the company will be releasing La Conquista, a full-bodied cigar that uses a Nicaraguan wrapper and binder along with filler from Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Columbia, which also is being manufactured in Honduras. The profile is described as spicy and peppery with a long, leathery finish, and packaging that the company calls traditional and very different from other Gran Habano products. Sizes, pricing and a formal release date are still being finalized" - Halfwheel (2015)

Now 'tis me go:

Bright and brawny notes with overtones of a piquant/sour tendency. Well-back, or, under-undertones are a savory sweetness. Only trace bitterness and salt nods. Not balanced, therefore, but pleasant. Complex in doses with nice nuance in the primary notes. Humsoever, not overly depthful. Medium-Full flavors, robustly.
  • Pepper (white & black w/ cayenne kicker)
  • Wood (cedar [must be the sleeve] and oak)
  • Spices (clove, cardamom, nutmeg)
  • cocoa butter
  • Leather
  • Citrus (lemon zest/orange pith)
  • Nuts (pine)
  • Earth (dirt)
  • Hay
Smooth with a nice tingle which remains pleasant. Heavy like a light on his feet cruiserweight. Quite rich, soft -- like a protected heavyweight. Finish is a lengthy sour/sweet thing with peppery complexities. Ends cleanly although with a slight mineral lilt. Smoke warms in 3/3 but not egregiously-so. Medium-Full bodied. Does border on some bite in 3/3 and doth too set a'tingle my lips.

Strength is a bit more mellow than I'd imagined. A slight head-swoon. A bit of warmth in chest. Medium till the back-loaded bits touch M.-Full. Then I see the world through a pleasant fisheye lens. Bit of a throat-catch.

Combustion happens (mainly due to me lighting the end and continuing to puff throughout) on a wavy line. There is considerable aeration of the ash throughout, as well. At times threatening to tunnel, but never tunneling. Said inch grows easy to a solid inch and, really, I roll it off in thirds. The pace quickens here and there. Too, there is an occasional blistering at the char-line.

I do (did?) notice some soft spots hither and thither and they seem to accompany the more aerated chunks of ash. Construction is nice in that there are nigh invisible seams and a very smooth draw of medium tension.

WRAPPER: Nicaraguan Corojo
BINDER: Nicaraguan Corojo
FILLER: Nicaragua & Costa Rica and Colombia

STRENGTH: Medium-Full
FORMAT: Robusto
ORIGIN: Honduras

FINAL GRADE: B
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

Gran Habano is a sponsor of mine. That did not influence this review.

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Monday, April 02, 2018

"Forty-Seven" Kaplowitz Radio + Bonus Content

Hey, It's a new installment of Kaplowitz Radio, a Kaplowitz Media production.

47KR
In which I read cigar reviews I wrote of:
  • Hiram & Solomon Shriner
  • Valacari NeoClassic
  • Torano Vault P-044 Green
  • Illusione Cigars ~MJ12~ Maduro
I also speak to:
  • The Entubado bunching method
  • My broken dryer & former barber
  • #NPRpoetry
  • Tracy K. Smith
  • My own poetry
  • My new beanie
All this + MORE whilst smoking and reviewing a PDR 1878 Cubano Especial Capa Madura in Robusto. WOW WHATTA SHOW.

Special thanks as always (until the checks stop coming) to:
[co-presenting sponsors of the show]

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BONUS CONTENT
& the winner is...

Sunday, April 01, 2018

Hiram & Solomon Cigars Shriner - Cigar Review by Kaplowitz

[from the co. site] "Medium bodied blend with a smooth and perfect construction. The unique blend of tobacco from five different regions produced an unparalleled smoke offering a perfumed sense of a bouquet with a finish of cocoa and cappuccino. Comes with a Fez Humidor 100% Hand made from 47 cedar pieces and holds 20 cigars."

The humi idea is cute and even meaningful if you're in the super-secret handshake group. Also, remember when cappuccino as all the rage before the latte took over? OK then, lettuce gander the ceegar...

Flavors (medium) This took me a second to see: the overtones are bright. Undertones, dark. Sweet-bitter salty up-top and below savory(vegetal)-sour(candied). A pepper-spice set to a hair under moderate swirls the length and width of the thing cushioned heavily by creamy richnesses. Quite balanced, although there ain't a lot of notes to do-so w/. Not complex, but verily nuanced in its dark nethers. At the mid-point marker and then on-down, there is a clustering of notes not aided by a building up of sweet barnacles body. Pleasant still, but lacking utterly in delineation. The second half is a simple (yet enjoyable) sweet creamy stick.
  • Cappuccino (sure why not?*)
  • Cocoa butter
  • Leather (Suede)
  • Wood, sweet cedar 
  • Pepper, white (sauteed in buttah)
  • Chocolate, white
  • Salt, roasted
  • Black cherry (fleeting)
  • Hay, wet
  • Earth
*Maxwell House International Cafe Sugar Free Decaf Beverage Mix, French Vanilla Cafe (I'm guessing here).

Body (medium) Very smooth, quite rich & soft to the point of heavy. Lip-smacking. Long sweet finish that just don't quit and densely builds with each draw. Cool of temp throughout. Strength (mild) Does kick as high as to be almost M.-Medium at the back-loaded 3/3 but that happens near the band, so I'm OK with deeming this Shriner to be mild.

Combustion hits a jagged spot in the 1/3 but pulls through on its lonesome. Operates mainly on a slight curve. Good smoke out-put both passively & aggressively, leading to a sweet leathery cream room-note. Ash barely makes an inch, doing so only twice. Seems a bit dry there although its core is quite oily. Construction Shows some loosening of seams via progression and a top-leaf which wants to pull off from burn here and there. There is also a substantial softening of pack density, although this doesn't cause harm to a nice smooth draw of a medium tension.

WRAPPER: Ecuadorian Sumatra
BINDER: Indonesian
FILLER: Brazilian Arapiraca, Habano Jalapa, Habano Ometepe & Dominican

STRENGTH: Medium
FORMAT: Toro
ORIGIN: Plasencia Factory, Nicaragua

FINAL GRADE: B
A 90-100 B 80-89 C 70-79 D 60-69 F 0-59

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Report a typo, win a No-prize.

"46" Kaplowitz Radio w/ Will Cooper