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In the Beginning

never really thought that I would have this wild love affair with cigars but like any great love story, it has a way of taking on a life of its own. And before you know it, it consumes you and nothing nor no one can keep you from it. As unlikely as it was that this would be one of my most significant relationships, that is what has happened. And I’m so delighted to share with you my story about my love of cigars and what that love looks like as a woman in man dominated world. I had my first cigar in 2004. I remember it like it was yesterday. After a long day a friend invited me to dinner. Afterwards we stopped at this little quaint shop, no bigger than a small store front. We walked through and he spoke to those around. I had no idea what we were doing there. We went into a small room in the back where there were shelves of cigars. My initial thought was, “Why in the hell are we here? Cigars STINK and are for old men! But hell I’m here.” He pointed out the flavored cigar section and picked out several small, dainty sticks for me. They were in all flavors from Rum to Cherry, but my favorite was Grape. (Yeah, I’m a country girl. Don’t judge me.) I thought “how cute”. He paid and we took two chairs out and sat on the sidewalk with the other regulars. We debated everything from sports to world news and as I learned how to smoke through choking, I got it. For a moment in my super hectic life I relaxed, and for once I didn’t think about the long list of things I still needed to do. In that moment it was just me and this little stick which eventually would open up a world that I never knew existed. And then life happened. I no longer had the time to sit and chat due to my daughter’s hectic schedules. I might fit in a quick smoke on my long commute home or at the occasional happy hour gathering with friends, but that was about it. Until…one autumn night a friend invited me to a party. He said to come hang out with him and a few others at a new spot close to the house. I figured why not. I would show my face and then tell them I was out. But when I arrived, that all changed. I was seduced by the rich reds and coffee tones that decorated the place. It was a beautiful place. The guys and members were very welcoming, offering assistance in helping me select a cigar for the night. They didn’t know that I was not new to this stuff. I’ve smoked Heavens and CAO Flavours for years. Of course they weren’t anywhere in site, so I played it cool and allowed the gentleman to happily help me select a new cigar to try. It was a TL Johnson Legend Reserve Torpedo Natural. Smoking it was like kissing your soulmate for the very first time. You know the feelings when your lips connect and at that moment you know he/she is the one? Well that was me that faithful September night. I sat on the patio and got lost in the smoke, medium in body, and rich in flavor. The smokiness of the cigar helped the flavors linger in my mouth while coating my pallet in chocolate, cream, and a hint of nuttiness. There was also a nice cedar flavor that comes and goes throughout the first third. As the smoke intensified the fullness of dark chocolate took command of my mouth. Hands down. That cigar had me at hello. It left me in a full state of euphoria. I knew then that I would be back for more of what that night’s experience had given me. But I’ll save those details for next time…

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