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City Cigar Emporium

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WEEKLY FEATURES: Can a Banker Named Herman Make a Great Cigar?

In May of 1816, a man named Herman Upmann was born. And Herman loved money, so he worked hard to become a successful banker in his native Germany. But then, in 1843, Herman travelled to Cuba. And Herman's life changed, as he realized that money took a distant second place to his love for the leaf. The brown cigar leaf, that is.

Since 1844, Cuba has been producing cigars under the shortened version of his name, 'H. Upmann'. And this brand is not just one of the oldest, but also one of the most respected. John F Kennedy, for example, cited it as his favorite brand, and famously bought 1,200 sticks of the 'Petit' just hours before signing the Cuban embargo into law. It was also a favorite of Winston Churchill and Milton Berle.

So yes, a man named Herman CAN make a great cigar. In recent years, the more popular series from Upmann have been the 'Magnum' and the 'Connoisseur'. In the latter, a vitola called the 'Connoisseur A' was released in 2013 and has been praised for its complex mix of cocoa, cedar, and black tea notes. And this fine cigar is our current Cuban 'feature of the week'.

For more on the Connoisseur A and the non-Cuban feature, check us out here:

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WEEKLY FEATURES: Like Father, Like Sun

It's a true grind to be voted Cigar Aficionado's #1 cigar of the year. You're competing with up to 800 other cigars that year, and the number one gets smoked over and over again in blind taste tests to make sure a grievous mistake has not been made.

This is why the 'My Father' brand getting this distinction TWICE in the past five years is so darn special. Recently, a vitola in the 'Le Bijou' series won the prize, in 2015. And in 2012, the honour went to the Toro size in the Flor de Las Antillas line.

But this shouldn't be surprising. The Flor de Las Antillas is the brainchild of master blender Jaime Garcia, who used a carefully selected variety of Nicaraguan tobaccos, combined with a flavourful sungrown wrapper, to craft this blend. In Aficionado's review, they dubbed it a 'classic', while noting the delicious nutmeg and white pepper notes throughout.

The Belicosos in the series is this week's City Cigar non-Cuban feature of the week. For more on this cigar and the identity of the Cuban feature, check out our website below!

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Most people's first cigar is not a 'Juan Lopez'. It's also often not a cigar smoker's second, third, or even tenth choice when they're starting out. But it's a brand that - once explored - tends to impress.

Just ask the experts at Cigar Aficionado, which has twice bestowed a 94 rating on the Lopez 'Seleccion No.2'. In 2008, they accompanied a high rating with a spot in their top 25 list, nearly edging it into the top 10 with a number 11 pick. In their description, they noted the 'subtlety and finesse' while comparing it favorably with the famous Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No.2.

Another aspect they noted is the fact that Juan Lopez cigars tend to get better with age. Some grassy notes that are prominent in young Juan Lopez cigars tend to fade with time, revealing some much richer and more palatable flavours. Since all of our Juan Lopez 'Seleccion No.2' cigars have reached a box age of at least 2.5 years, this is great news. Even better news is that this vitola is our Cuban feature of the week!

Learn more about the Seleccion No.2 and our non-Cuban feature at the link below:

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WEEKLY FEATURES: The 'House' That Cigar Aficionado Built

When Cigar Aficionado dubbed the Casa Magna Colorado Robusto the top cigar of 2008, there was instant controversy., for instance, marveled at the 'almost totally unknown cigar' that beat out vitolas from Padron and Fuente's Opus series - not to mention every Cuban cigar on the planet.

But perhaps it won the honours because the Casa Magna - which translates to 'great house' - just had more rooms and a better paint job. Many reviews point to the gorgeous Colorado wrapper, which attracts the eye before the palate is even involved. There's also more complexity on display here than is typical for a non-Cuban cigar, with flavours like coffee, chocolate, leather and raisins noted by those who have tried it.

Regardless, we can attest that the Casa Magna Colorado Robusto has long been a top-seller at City Cigar; in addition to the aforementioned benefits, it's also priced lower than any other Cigar Aficionado #1 pick in our current stock.

And this week it's our non-Cuban feature of the week! For more on this fine cigar and the Cuban feature, visit our website below:

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WEEKLY FEATURES: A Good Reason to Re-Think That Wall

We all know that U.S. President Trump plans to build a wall across their southern border and that 'Mexico's gonna pay for it'. But, with Mexico's cigar industry suddenly improving in leaps and bounds, he may want to reconsider.

Take the 'Casa Turrent', for example. Since this brands' release to the public in the spring of 2015, it has already garnered some very impressive praise. In late 2015, the 'Torpedo Maduro' was voted the 13th best cigar of the year by Cigar Journal magazine. And then, last year, the Robusto was dubbed the 12th best cigar of the year by Cigar Aficionado.

This is even more impressive when you consider Mexico's rocky history with the critics. They never gained even a fraction of the respect of Cuba, Nicaragua, Honduras or the D.R. until the federal government made a crucial decision - to allow other countries' tobacco to be imported and used in Mexican cigar blends.

Since then, Alberto Turrent has taken advantage, first with the acclaimed 'Te-Amo Revolution' series, and now with the inaugural series from Casa Turrent. And this week, we invite you to dip into a flavourful Mexican dish, as we designate the 'Casa Turrent Serie 1901 Torpedo Maduro' as our non-Cuban feature of the week.

Find out more on the Casa Turrent and our Cuban feature at the link below!

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WEEKLY FEATURES: Want something different? Catch some 'Reys'

There's nothing wrong with Montecristo cigars. They're great. Same with Cohiba, Romeo Y Julieta, Partagas, and Hoyo de Monterrey. But as cigar smokers evolve, we tend to want something new. And with Cuba, oftentimes that something new is just something old that we haven't yet been formally introduced to.

In the case of the brand 'Saint Luis Rey', we're talking about pre-WWII old. But Saint Luis Rey is the perfect example of a brand that gets overlooked by new smokers in favour of the more popular stuff. And it's the perfect example of a brand that suddenly seems new, because it's up there with some of the best of the Cubans.

But, sometimes we just need an excuse to get out of our comfort zones and try something new. And that's exactly what City Cigar's weekly features are for. The Saint Luis Rey 'Regios' is our Cuban feature of the week.

Get more details on the SLR Regios and our non-Cuban feature at our website link below:

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WEEKLY FEATURES: Riding on Their Pigtails

These days, there's much debate on the ethics of cloning. If we go just a few steps down this path, how long before we reach the slippery slope?

We're talking, of course, about cigars. A shocking number of non-Cuban brands strive to make their products sound as Cuban as possible, without ever quite reaching the stars. Some even go so far as'cloning' Cuban features directly, with mixed results.

But sometimes the results - and overall quality - are GREAT, as is the case with the L'Atelier brand. Devised by the makers of the famous 'Tatuaje' brand, L'Atelier is modelled around the style of the renowned Cohiba Behikes. Mostly, this means they mimic the sizes (offering 52, 54, and 56 gauge vitolas). But they also mimic the Behike's 'pigtail' cap, which in turn was modelled after those on the 'Trinidad' brand.

It's long debated whether or not Trinidad cigars were withheld from the public for 29 years because Castro wanted them all to himself. What's not debated is the quality of these smokes. Like L'Atelier, they offer an ultra-smooth smoking experience, but with enough big flavour to satisfy the most grizzled of cigar vets.

The Trinidad Coloniales and L'Atelier Lat 54 are our two cigar features of the week! For more, check us out here:

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WEEKLY FEATURES: Whaddya Get When You Cross Churchill with Napoleon?

A petite Churchill, of course. This riddle was solved by the Romeo Y Julieta brand back in 2012, when they added to their expanding Churchill series with one more vitola, this one an alternative for those who like their Robusto cigars a liiiiitle bit shorter. The Petit Churchill measures in at 4" x 50, and is our selection for Cuban 'feature of the week'.

But perhaps you find an RYJ a bit 'tame' for your taste. Then you need a cigar that's 'untamed', of course. The Dominican 'La Aurora' brand has something right up your alley with their 'Untamed Robusto', a potent, chewy, maduro cigar that's akin to drinking a cup of coffee on steroids. Is it you on steroids or the cup of coffee? You're just going to have to smoke it to find out (it might be both)!

More details on our Weekly Features below:

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WEEKLY FEATURES: No, 'Double Ed' is Not Some 1920's Era Gangster

In Hollywood, if a movie is a smash hit, you can expect a sequel within a couple of years. But Cuba is about as far away from Hollywood as it gets, so it can take a lot longer than that to exploit a smash success.

Take Montecristo, for example. By the 1980's, Monte was one of the top-selling cigar brands in the world. Yet, the brand took about two decades from the mid-80's to 2004 to release a new series. This was the 'Edmundo' series, which - since not that different from their 'Classic' series in flavour and strength - also saw great success.

But once again, they take their time rolling out the hits. After the Edmundo was released in 2004, the Petit Edmundo arrived in 2007, and then the Double Edmundo six years after that. At that point, in 2013, this vitola was named Cigar Aficionado's #15 cigar of the year, as they cited the 'gorgeous colour', 'hints of oak and leather' and 'chocolately finish' as the reasons for the honour.

Sound good? Well it'll taste even better with the feature pricing this week here at City Cigar!

Learn more about the 'Double Ed' and our non-Cuban feature of the week below:

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WEEKLY FEATURES: Cohiba Turns 50 & We Celebrate

As we enter into the tail end of summer, the time is ripe to buy some of Cubas FINEST to enjoy with the remaining warm weather. So we decided to feature what is arguably Cuba's finest brand: Cohiba.

Since it's creation in 1966, Cohiba enjoyed nearly two decades of mystique followed by over three decades of worldwide worship. Since finally being released to the public in 1982, the brand has released four distinct series, all of which have been highly praised. This includes the 'Siglo' series, which was devised in 1992 to commemorate the so-called 'founding of the Americas' by Christopher Columbus.

But even skewed history can't taint the quality of the Siglo series. The tobacco is grown in the finest fields of 'Vuelta Abajo', and put through an extra fermentation process that is unique to Cohiba. The result is some mild sweetness, vanilla and cocoa bean flavours, and just enough grassiness to offer some Cohiba grit. The Siglo II is this week's Cuban feature.

Our non-Cuban feature also oddly relates to the number '82'. But in this case, it has nothing to do with the year of general release. For this vitola, it describes the percentage of Ligero leaf used in the blend. And '82% ligero' is code for one thing: STRENGTH. And Spice.

For more, check out our website here:
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