Friday, November 29, 2013

10/28 - 11/12 - Everything's excellente


Directly after our annual Swiss Herf I had to make a ride to Frankfurt because on the next day we'd our scheduled flight for two weeks of vacation in the Dominican Republic... no worries: I'd enough cigars with me that I wasn't in need to buy some of the crap you can get there...

The Secrets Royal Beach in Punta Cana was our home for two fantastic weeks... good food and drinks, friendly people, a nice hotel area, picture perfect weather...

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Lobby of the Secrets Royal Beach Resort


The only negative thing that I can point out is the us of the word "excellente". All staff is trained to use it anytime for anything... everything's excellente, not just good! It's funny at the first days but then it starts to get on one's nerves... You couldn't answer "Muy bien" if somebody asked you "¿Cómo estás?"... everybody waited for an "excellente" or "super-excellente"... That's caused by the main slogan of the hotel: "We are not good, we are excellent!"

Let's say: complaining on a high level... anyhow.... we spent two very relaxing weeks and had a very good time...

View at breakfast

Beer and cigar, one of my combos

Smoking at the beach

Waves

Beach art

Tracks in the sand



Foam party in the pool

Foam party in the pool

















Angel - thx for the drinks supply

Saturday, November 23, 2013

10/26 - Habanos Catador, Day 2


After a short night we met again around 9 am in front of the hotel where we stayed. I was early enough to fire up a Diplomaticos No. 4 from the late 80s, a perfect cigar to start this day.

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Diplomaticos No. 4 from the late 80s

In the lounge we'd a quick breakfast, then Tom started with the official program of the day... background infos about many cigar related stuff, we tried to find out the age of different (old) cigar boxes and had a lot of interesting discussions... To give us all an impression of some old and crusty cigars - and to show that machine made cigars can be excellent too - he handed out a Cabanas Chiquito to all of us that we smoked immediately. If I remember correctly it was from the late 80s, maybe early 90s... but great to smoke anyhow! Thx again, Tom!


LGC MdO No. 2 from 1995


The nub of an excellent smoke

Cabana Chiquitos

After a short lunch break Ralf took over to continue with some "sensorical lessons"... sounds boring but it outstanding... first of all he handed out a Partagas Churchill de Luxe from 1999 - dark and oily with a nice and intensive smell.... Additionally we started to go through a sensorical kit with many different smells while we enjoyed this fantastic cigar. Many smells were easy to recognize, many really hard and many others were big surprises... all in all a very educational afternoon!

Partagas Churchill de Luxe from 1999

Partagas Churchill de Luxe from 1999

Aroma kit



Time flew like crazy and it was time for dinner, due to the fact that we'd a reservation in a restaurant we'd to leave the lounge for a little while... and it was worth it: we'd some terrific food: game - venison to be precisely -  because it was exactly the time of the year for that.

Outstanding dinner with fresh venison

Back in the lounge another highlight waited for us: the final tasting of this event, a Romeo Julieta Robusto Edicion Limitada 2001. We all filled out the tasting sheets while enjoying the smoke, you can find the detailed tasting notes on www.feltedhat.com under the following link: http://bit.ly/1ebnloP.

But this was still not enough, an awesome brandy tasting followed... good stuff even though I decided in the end to stuck to my beloved Single Malts but it's a nice and interesting change...

Romeo y Julieta Robusto EL 2001

Romeo y Julieta Robusto EL 2001


The range for the Brandy tasting

Montecristo "C" EL 2003 and Glenfarclas

The evening ended late in the night and unfortunately I'd to leave early in the morning because we'd to drive to Frankfurt from where we'd to leave to the direction of Punta Cana for our 2 week vacation... but that's another story...

Thx for the organization of this great event, it's different than the ones we'd before but it's outstanding!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

10/25 - Habanos Catador, Day 1


My report is a bit delayed which was caused by the fact that my vacation (with zero internet access) started immediately after this event...

This year's Swiss Herf of our cigar group was different than the years before... we held it as a Habanos Catador course with theoretical and practical "lessons". It may sound boring but it was a lot of fun...

It started - as usual - at the Portmann shop and after all arrived we settled down in the lounge to enjoy fantastic cigars, some Zacapa XO and different whiskys.

Cuaba to start the herf

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RG Lonsdale from 2002 and Zacapa XO

Hoyo de Monterrey Short Hoyo Corona from 1986

The first serious part of the evening was a blind tasting which really surprised all of us... a Hoyo de Monterrey De Dieux from 2001. Honestly tastewise no Hoyo for me, it reminded me more of a Partagas 898 uv which is exactly the same size - Corona Grandes... I think it was a big surprise for all of us!






Finally I also had one of the Upmann Monarch Tubos from 1999 with me that I'd picked up in Dubai recently... it's a fantastic smoke... and a good match with the Glenfarclas from Whisky-Doris... luckily I will have a stop at Dubai airport soon, maybe I can grab another box of those...

Upmann Monarch Tubo from 1999 - outstanding good