Episode 431: La Palina Black Label Robusto

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BACKGROUND: La Palina recently added the Black Label to its portfolio, a cigar purported to be the strongest La Palina blend to date. The line, which is manufactured in the Dominican Republic, sports a very dark and rustic Brazilian-grown Bahiano wrapper that covers a Dominican binder and filler tobaccos from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua. Said brand owner Paley, “The Black Label was another labor of love for La Palina, I am proud to be able to offer this exceptional blend.”

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The La Palina Black Label is presented in boxes of 20 and each stick will run you between $9 and $11.50 apiece. The Black Label was released in 4 sizes: the Petite Lancero (6 x 40), the Toro (6 x 50) the Gordo (6 x 60) and the cigar I’m featuring today, the 5 x 52 ring gauge Robusto.

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FEATURED LIBATION: Firestone 2014 Velvet Merkin
Our libation of the week is Firestone 2014 Velvet Merkin. This is a very popular, yet hard to find, Oatmeal Stout from our friends at the local Firestone brewing company.

A total of 3,500 cases of 22-oz bottles were produced, with availability in select markets across the United States.

The Velvet Merkin weighs in at 8.5% ABV and at 33 on the IBU scale. It comes in 22-ounce bottles at a suggested retail price of $16.99 and there is some limited availability of the beer on tap.

WHAT’S BEEN HAPPENING AT STOGIE FRESH?

  • NO PODCAST FOR NEXT 2 WEEKS. Stogie Fresh 5 will return again on January 11, 2015. We wish you all a great holiday season.
  • Doc talks about the recent craft beer and cigar tasting at The Boss Cigar shop in Arroyo Grande, California.
  • Doc discusses a new cigar brand: Sinistro Cigars.
  • News: U.S. government announced on Wednesday that it was expanding business, economic and political relations with Cuba.

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DOC’S CIGAR POSTSCRIPT: Black Patch Kenbano
I first featured the Black Patch Kenbano Gran Toro in Episode 359 of the SF5 podcast, back on Sunday, April 28, 2013. These cigars have been aging a total of 1 year, 8 months and 29 days in my humidor.

FEATURED WEB SITES:
La Palina Cigars
Firestone Brewing Co.
New boutique brand: Sinistro
U.S. government announced on Wednesday that it was expanding business, economic and political relations with Cuba

OUR SPONSORS:
Stogie Rate Online
Stogie Rate Cigar Inventory Software for iPhone
Stogie Rate 4.3 Cigar Inventory Software for PC/Mac
Buy Stogie Fresh Accessories

Episode 424: La Palina Mr. Sam Robusto

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BACKGROUND: Mr. Sam was a term of endearment that was given to the founder by his workers at the original factory. The La Palina Collection Mr. Sam is rolled at the El Titan de Bronze factory in Miami, Florida. It is constructed from a dark Ecuadorian wrapper that surrounds a Nicaraguan binder and filler blend.
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The Mr. Sam line consists of three sizes. This week’s featured stogie is, the 4.25 x 54 ring gauge Robusto.

FEATURED LIBATION: Hazelburn 12-year Single Malt Scotch
Springbank Distiller is the only distillery in Scotland to produce three different single malts using three different production methods. The Springbank scotch is a lightly-peated, maritime single malt, the Longrow is a heavily-peated scotch and the Hazelburn is a completely unpeated, triple distilled single malt.

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The Hazelburn Scotch Whisky is triple-distilled in copper stills, which insures that the whisky will be light, fruity and subtle.

Hazelburn saw its first distillation in 1997 and the first release of the whisky as an eight year old was in 2005. Hazelburn became available as a 12 year old for the first time in 2009.

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WHAT’S BEEN HAPPENING AT STOGIE FRESH?

  • Drew Estate Tobacco Company recently disclosed that they have entered into a definitive purchase agreement whereby Swisher International will acquire Drew Estate in its entirety.
  • Doc talks about wiping down the Spanish cedar in a humidor during the seasoning process.

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DOC’S CIGAR POSTSCRIPT: Ashton ESG 23-year Salute
This week’s postscript review features the Ashton ESG 23-year Salute. I first featured this cigar back in Episode 355 on Sunday, March 24, 2013. These cigars have been resting in my humidor for 1 year, 7.5 months and I pulled out a couple this past week for this feature.

FEATURED WEB SITES:
La Palina Cigars
Hazelburn Single Malt Scotch

OUR SPONSORS:
Cohiba Nicaragua
Macanudo Cigars
Stogie Rate Online
Stogie Rate Cigar Inventory App for iPhone
Stogie Rate 4.3 Cigar Inventory Software for PC/Mac

Episode 418 Crush & Roll West 2014: Recap

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BACKGROUND: Crush & Roll West, the Central Coast’s premiere cigar, wine and beer festival was in top form this past September 5th and 6th. The 6th annual event broke all attendance records as 780 attendees walked through the gates over the event weekend, representing a 23% growth over 2013 and an average of over 20% growth each and every year!

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Crush & Roll 2014 drew a total of 60 cigar, wine, beer, spirits and lifestyle vendors and 23 other local sponsors that contributed in various ways. Along with the burgeoning number of vendors, the layout of the event expanded as well. The majority of vendors were placed under an enormous 80 by 100-foot tent and the rest of the venue expanded in all directions of the compass.

SPECIAL INTERVIEW: Doc Interviews Christina Fontecchio, one of the organizers of Crush & Roll West

THANKS TO OUR MANY GENEROUS SPONSORS

OUR PREMIERE PARTNERS
Davidoff XHA-smbanner Roxo-Cellars
CIGAR PROVIDERS
Asylum Cigars Dignity Oliva Cigar Co.
Alec Bradley Cigars Don Vicente Cigars Intl. Partagás
Boutique Blends/Aging Rm Drew Estate Tabacalera Falto
Boyd’s Tobacco/Knockout La Palina Tarazona Cigars
Cesar Cigars La Sirena Ventura Cigar/Project 805
Chinnock Cellars Cigars Moscato Cigars
Davidoff Cigars My Father Cigars
WINE, BEER & SPIRITS PROVIDERS
August Ridge Vineyards Kaleidos Sharp’s Hill Vineyards
Barrelhouse Brewing Kelsey See Canyon Stone Brewing
Bowen’s Whiskey Libertine Pub Summerwood Winery
Bianchi Vineyards Michael Gill Cellars The Bruery
Broken Earth Winery Nuvino Tolo Winery
Cass Vineyard & Winery Paso Port Wine Company Wente Family Estates
Changala Winery Powell Mountain Cellars Zaca Mesa Winery
Dubost Roxo Port Cellars
Figueroa Mtn Brewery Sculpterra Winery
LIFESTYLE VENDORS
A-9 Designs Jewelry Plexus Slim Sunrun Solar
Chop Top Bottle Co. Purgatory Humidors The Boss Cigars
Cigar Box Purses Robert Michelson Inc. The Shirt Peddler
Eclipse Musical Instruments Sculpterra Artist
Love Crystal Succulents Sealoha Designs
MB Trading Sterling Silver SLO Co. Brand
Miner’s Mix Stogies & Stemware Art
OTHER SPONSORS
Ameripride J. Baker Photo San Miguel Lion’s Club
Best Western La Bellasera Smoke Magazine
Boveda Humidity Control Marathon Trading Co. Stogie Fresh Cigar Pub.
Burn 808 Michael Barry Band Tabacalera Falto
EOS Estate Winery Paso Robles Inn The Oaks Hotel
Hampton Inn & Suites Paso Ice Company Ventura Cigar Company
Holiday Inn Express Pozo River Bottom Band