Did some updating to my humidor to try to figure out a way to make humidification easier and stupid-proof, because I was spending WAY too much time messing with, and worrying about, my stash going bad. It's supposed to be fun, not stressful.
So, I bought some acrylic Boveda mini-humidors to put inside of my bigger cabinet. They have been GREAT! Best purchase I've ever made as far as cigars go. The Boveda packs fit in the bottom of each individual case and they've kept my smokes perfect and I only have to attend to them about once every three months. Stress-free and stupid-proof.
Here are some pics, and some comments on some stuff that I'm currently smoking ...
Top shelf, from left ...
Zino Platinum Scepters: Tubed (tops off for storage), great smoke, spendy, people seem impressed when given one of these
Perdomo 10th and 20th Anniversary: One of my current favs, smooth, consistent and Fox Cigar has a weekly special on them as a 5 pack, best value for quality cigars that I've found
Camacho Variety: Was never a big fan, but they've sorta' re-branded and I gave them another shot and I've been very pleased, and they look good in the humidor (that's part of the fun)
Cohiba Red Dot: Meh. Inconsistent. A bit disappointing. First one was harsh. Second one, much better. Gonna' let them sit for a bit and see if that helps.
Caldwells: Absolutely fantastic. My best current cigar(s) in my humidor. Perfection. Smooth, consistent. Smoke these until they burn my fingers. Blown away by how good these are. Currently have 'The King is Dead", "The King is Dead, Jalapeno" and "Savages". All are wonderful. I can't recommend these strongly enough ... OUTSTANDING.
JP Carillo Inch: Another really quality smoke. Was a freebie thrown in by Fox in one of my orders and I ended up buying more. Hearty and consistent.
Camacho: Good, but can be a bit strong. Gotta be in the right mood to light one of these up.
Second row, from left:
LaBomba 601 Napalm: Got these because they're kind of a novelty smoke (long twisted cap, which doesn't show well in the pic) but they've actually turned out to be pretty good. Robust, but tasty.
Drew Estate Larutan: Has been a favorite for a long time, mainly due to consistency and taste, but these seem to be a bit more bland than I remember. Still good as a casual smoke.
Rocky Patel Howitzer: Got these entirely as a novelty. Fun to pack one of these and show off when people who don't smoke are around. 7 inches by 74 ring gauge. Like smoking a baseball bat. They're ok for awhile, but ... you'll wear out before getting half way through. Good conversation starter though.
Fuente: Feels like every humidor should have a couple of these, so I do. Good smokes, always consistent.
Montecristo White: One of my go-to smokes for a lazy afternoon. Not overwhelming, consistent and predictable. I always keep a constant supply of these around.
Bottom row, from left:
Far left mix: Various infused cigars. Usually for when people who don't smoke a lot visit, and a nice change of pace.
Middle: Drew Estate "Toast" and "Plush". Also infused and frankly, very good. Usually grab one or two of these a week, mainly just as a palate cleanser, but they're actually very good. Great for friends who rarely smoke cigars. They don't taste like perfume, like some infused cigars do.
Right: CAO Vanilla. Disappointed in these. Vanilla flavor is almost non-existent and the smoke itself is pretty bland. Was a nice experiment, but mostly a fail.
Undercrown Sungrown: Really good. Smooth, consistent and needing to be re-stocked!
Buenaventura Pralines: This was a Fox freebie that turned into an order. Chunky, strong and consistent.
Warped GR88: Inconsistent, but not disappointing when good. Mild, but not lacking flavor. Burn has been inconsistent though, which is frustrating.
@Swaye told me to buy 94 rated cigars.
I have many thoughts on the OP and will try to get some in later. GREAT POST @DHD
Its a job but worth it
15% humidity most of the year
But I just live here
Just reporting what I'm seeing out there on the internet.
1) What size is that cabinet? I love that size. I just did my design meeting with a custom humidor maker in NY. Having mine made 40 inches tall, 33 inches wide, and 16 deep, all hand done custom to my specs. I'm using quarter sewn white oak exterior in a hand rubbed walnut stain, glass front, spanish cedar interior. He is also installing a complete Oasis Magna 3.0 humidifcation system, mounted high, completely spanish cedar enclosed with wood baffling and full wifi enabled LED lighting throughout. Pre-wired and plug and play. You do not want to know the absurd amount of money I am spending on this. But the 2K prebuilt China ones were just not what I wanted. When it comes in in a couple months and I get it dialed in and loaded I will do an image post like yours. I might have to sell the trailer to afford this thing, but at least my stogies will display well in the homeless camp.
2) I actually have one of those Boveda acrylic humidors right now that I use as a sort of dry box. Love these things. They work great. Hope I don't need them in my cabinet because after spending many thousands of dollars if I have to use them I will be pissed!
3) Cohiba Red Dot. I agree. I bought a box and have had a few. Inconsistent is a good word for them. I have had good US owned rip off Cohibas before, so maybe with a bit more rest they will get better. I have had MUCH better results with the Cohiba Nicaragua N54. Excellent smokes. My new deal is paying absurd amounts of money and actually getting Cuban Cohibas. This is not for the faint of heart. But, ultimately I'd like for a quarter to a third of my stash to be true Cuban goodness. I have Bolivar, Romeo y Julietta, Ramon Allones and Trinidad boxes still aging (do not smoke Cubans right away you MUST age them for a year minimum) but smokeable, and a monster order of Trinidad and Cohiba due to arrive in the next few weeks. Will update as the Cuban journey develops.
4) Carrillo. I have been promoting Carrillo here and to my cigar buddies for quite awhile. If there is a better 10-14 dollar stick on the planet I haven't found it yet. I have MANY boxes of Carrillo. Pledge Prequel and Sojourne, La Historia, El Senador, Obscura Maduro, etc.
5) I do not have flavored cigars. If friends come over and want a flavored cigar I tell them to get out and come back when their balls drop and they grow hair on them. Only partially kidding. I know lots of "real" cigar guys who light up infused here and there but I have never developed a taste for it. I've tried a bunch of Acid and Tabak and they always pretty much disgust me. To each their own.
6) Drew Estate and Fuente. So, these are two of my go to brands. What I am finding is that after smoking hundreds and hundreds of sticks I am really coalescing around a handful of brands. DE (specifically Liga Privada and to a lesser extent Herrera Estelli), Fuente - love Hemingways, and almost anything Don Carlos, and really getting into the rare and hard to finds like FF Anejos, Don Carlos Reserva, God of Fire, and the various Opus lines (those these are hard to find and super expensive). I am also a big Padron fan, and love all the family reserve stuff, the 1926 and 1964 line as well - these are not cheap though. Carrillo as previously mentioned. Love everything he makes and it is budget friendly, which is nice because so much of my taste now is not budget friendly. As previously mentioned latest path is to build a respectable Trinidad and Cohiba lineup of actual Cubans, and I still have a nice smattering of "highly rateds" that I take flyers on. I like to see what gets rated highly at CA and Halfwheel and then buy a box if they are affordable - La Flor Dominicana, My Father, Warped GR and San Cristobal are some examples.
7) I am on a Lancero kick now and have been trying to get a few good boxes of Lanceros.
8) My lighter collection is small but getting pretty respectable. I'll do a feature on this at some future point as well. Just added my fist ST Dupont Maxijet in Opus X colors.
9) Like the Buenaventura shoutout. I have a deep into cigars buddy who swears by ADVentura (not related) and I have been thinking of giving those a shot. As I am finally developing a palate (no expert at all but I actually can hit some tasting notes finally), the romance of small batch producers is starting to have some allure. Will report back if small batch adventures start in a real way, or if I continue to be a tourist with it.
Cigars are the best.
This was a great thread.
I’d enjoy some again, but just not on par with the E.P. Carillo and My Father stuff I’ve been enjoying lately.
I agree on the E.P. Carrillo recommendations. (Called it JP in my original post, duh, was late)
Every Friday afternoon, Fox Cigar releases a 5 pack Fuente special and it always includes one of the Opus X varieties along with other good Fuente sticks. And it's very reasonably priced. If you're on their email list, you'll get a heads-up, but you gotta' act fast because they sell out quickly. Unfortunately the last 2 Opus X's I got from them seemed very dry to me, not what I was expecting because Fox does very good work, and I've gotten some top-notch freebies from them.
Cigarpage always has a deal going where you can get 5 packs of most anything at a reasonable price. Huge variety and I've been pleased with their shipping and quality. (No freebies like Fox though).
Of the Camachos that I've got, the Connecticut Churchill has been outstanding. Every one has been consistent. They're mild, but very even burn and easy draw. I've been pleased with all the Camachos lately, but the Connecticut Churchill has been great.
I'm missing Padron's from my stash, but that's only because I blaze through those as quickly as I get them. Always outstanding.
So, gotta ask. When you're getting the real Cubans, are you satisfied with the condition that you receive them in? Not dry? Does the shipper take care to throw in some Boveda in the shipping? I would guess the turn around on shipping has got to be a couple of weeks, right?