You’d consider yourself lucky too if you got invited to a black tie event that would house cigar aficionados for a couple of hours. One interesting thing about Night To Remember is while it is a fundraiser by people in the cigar community for Prostate cancer, it was the 1959 Petreus that was the star of the night. This is a $60,000 wine that Rocky Patel won through an auction and shared it with everyone in is table. While wives would a wine from that year would taste awful, the smoothness of the 1959 Petreus was comparable to a cigar that has aged for ten years and was just as good.
Listen to the podcast here:
Cigar Cafe Radio 1959 Petreus | AFR-75 | Post Embargo by Alec Bradley
It’s Lane and Harris hanging out after taking a break. How’s it going, Harris?
Going good. It feels like it’s been awhile.
Sean went to the beach. You went to New York?
I did. I was at the A Night to Remember fundraiser with Cigar Aficionado.
How did that go? I saw a bunch of pictures that got posted and saw a whole lot of people that were all there.
It was great. It was my first time. I went was a guest of Rocky Patel and thank you to him for allowing me to go to that. A lot of the cigar industry people were there. Not every company but a lot of the ones you think would be there, Fuente, Padron.
I saw José Blanco was there.
What exactly is that dinner for?
It started 22 years ago. I might be off by a year but it started with Michael Milken, the famous investor. He had prostate cancer and his prognosis was he had twelve to eighteen months to live. He underwent treatment and was cured and decided to start this as a fundraiser for prostate cancer.
That was definitely going to be one of my questions because I know that you had talked about there being donations and it was a charity auction.
He partnered up with Marvin Shanken from Cigar Aficionado. They’ve been putting this on forever and they do a charity auction and most of it is rare bottles of wine. They do have some other things like they had a trip to Cuba, that Rush Limbaugh one, and other experience things but the big things were the bottles of wine.
This is definitely a not affordable luxury type event.
Not at all. They do the auction before dinner where everybody’s at the tables and they bring the bottles up and they’re in paper bags. Nobody knows what they are. You’re bidding on a mystery, they’re all rare, vintage.
It’s a blind auction. Is it a silent auction or is it a live auction?
Live auction. People are bidding from their table and it’s crazy the amounts these bottles go for. The first bottle went for $80,000 and another bottle went for $500,000 because people would bid, say $80,000 and then donate it back, and then somebody else would bid then they’d donate it back. The interesting thing is if you win the bottle, it’s a requirement that you bring it back to your table, immediately open it and share it with the people at your table. You have to, there’s no option.
You’ve got to drink an expensive bottle of Bordeaux?
Yes. I didn’t know if I would get to participate in that. It turned out that Rocky Patel won a bottle at our table.
That bottle is about as old as he is, isn’t it?
Yes, 1959 Petrus, and it was one of the bigger bottle too. There were some small bottles too, so that was nice. We got to try a little bit more.
After I saw those photos, I decided to look up that bottle of wine. Do you have any idea what a bottle of that cost?
I’ve heard that was a special one. Unfortunately I’m not an expert. I don’t know.
It depends on where you get it. I assume it depends a little bit on the size of the bottle, but I saw retail pricing on that bottle being between $2,000 and $9,000. I was very interested in Alec Bordeaux, but I drink the $30 bottle.
I was texting some pictures and posting on Instagram. If you want to see the pictures on Instagram, I posted on Birmingham Cigars, our store’s Instagram account, but I’ll post it on Cigar and all the other store ones too. My brother-in-law text me, he’s like, “Please tell me it tastes terrible,” because it’s from 1959. You always hear about those old bottles how you try them and they’re terrible.
That was what my wife said, she’s like, “Is a bottle from 1959 even any good?”
One thing, I don’t have anything to compare it to. I have no point of reference because that was the first bottle I’ve ever had from 1959, but it tasted completely different than the wine from dinner. The wine from dinner was Caymus, which is a good wine. It was more full body, complex. This to me was super smooth. It was almost to me like a cigar that had aged for ten years and it was good, but it might be past its peak. It was good. It was a cool experience to get to try that.
The other guys at our table, Gary Sheffield was at our table and Ray Lewis that was cool. At one point, I can’t fell asleep because we were walking down the street in Manhattan with Rocky and Gary Sheffield and they’re walking next to each other and I was like, “Just to tell you I collected your baseball cards when I was little. I have a million of them. It’s cool to meet you in person.” He’s very nice. He said, “I appreciate that.” I never envisioned meeting him in person.
Having dinner and expensive wine with.
I sat at the bar next to him before dinner for an hour or two.
That’s how I felt when we were hanging out with Rocky Patel on that rooftop bar. I was like, “Ruben Studdard is at this cigar event and Rocky Patel post a picture with me in it.”
Speaking of Ruben, he was on the finale of American idol.
I saw that he was on it. I didn’t even watch any Idol this year or last year. It got to the point where it was a formula and I wasn’t a fan anymore. I wanted to see the trainwreck people at the beginning.
I’m the same way. I saw it pop up and since he goes around our stores in Birmingham a good bit. Another cool thing after dinner, we were hanging out and smoking cigars. I was sitting there watching everybody then Rudy Giuliani came and sat down at the table and Nish Patel sit next to me. He’s telling stories..” He was great and he sat down and he’s a great storyteller and cool guy.
I saw that picture pop up with Rudy Giuliani and I was like, “What is this event?” They have politicians, they have all the big names in the cigar industry, they have a $60,000 bottle of wine. What did Harris get invited to?”
It’s invite only, 250 people. It’s not a huge event for what it could be. The only time I ever get to. It was cool. Carmelo Anthony was there. In the past, Arnold Schwarzenegger has been there. I was little disappointed he wasn’t there. It was great. We went to the Grand Havana Room after. It’s what I have always heard about but never been there. It’s in Manhattan, top of one of the buildings and the cigar club and most everybody whenever they are after.
Did you get to smoke anything hard to find or unique while you were there?
With dinner they had a lot of cigars. You could pick which cigars you wanted. They have some Liga Privada, a lot of it was your normal stuff, normal Padron Anniversary, nothing too crazy. I love Cynthia Fuente and she was there. I got to know her a little bit and she’s great. She always has one of those Fuente humidor bags with her. Anytime, I met her she always has one and she always has rare special Fuente. She pulled that out and I ended up smoking Angel Share. It was a box-pressed torpedo. I’ve not seen this size before. It was almost like a shark size Angel Share. I saw that in the bag. I was like, “I don’t know.” It was the most rare one in there probably. Everybody else who got one was like, “I’m doing it.” Definitely the latest I’ve stayed up in a while. I think I went to bed about 6:00 AM. Fortunately, I had a late flight the next day.
You’re used to not getting any sleep. Turning in when the sun comes up is different.
My new baby has definitely trained me well for this event. Rocky Patel is known for he never sleeps basically. I knew that being with him that it was definitely going to be a late night. It was even later than I thought. Nothing like eating Korean barbecue at 4:00 AM.
I don’t know anywhere I can eat Korean barbecue at 4:00 AM.
I honestly didn’t know that Korean barbecue existed. I’ve heard of it, but it was a cool place to have the little thing where they cook it at your table.
You know you’ve got Korean barbecue within walking distance of here? It’s on Valleydale, it’s called Ginza.
I’ve seen that. I did not know that was Korean barbecue.
They have sushi and they have Korean barbecue. They have the cooktop on the table. They have a pot of sake that’s made for four people and seems bottomless. It’s good sushi. The Korean barbecue, my wife isn’t a fan of.
It’s different. I like the meat mostly. All the other things I wasn’t sure about but different. Pretty good.
Ginza’s right around the corner here.
If you’re in Birmingham, check out Ginza.
What are you smoking?
I’m smoking something new from Alec Bradley. It is the Post Embargo. This was announced back in IPCPR and had a lot of delays. They decided to change the packaging and the bands. I was reading a little bit about that. I think they decided they weren’t happy with their branding of it so they completely redid it all of that. The cigars have been ready to go for months. It’s nice to have had a little extra age, but as far as I know, they’re now shipping. May have had a shipment a little bit before now too. Their new to Cigars & More. It’s starting off nice. It’s smooth medium body, which I feel is a characteristic of a lot of Alec Bradley cigars, but has a nice flavor.
I feel I’ve seen something on social media where I don’t remember if it’s George or Allen. It’s called the Post Embargo and even though we’re obviously still in a trade embargo with Cuba, the story behind the name is that we’re already past the point. Is that it?
I think so. The idea that cigars have progressed so far in the last, say twenty years.
We’re beyond that point where everybody’s like, “Cubans are the best in the world,” and it’s like, “They’re good, but everything from Nicaragua, Dominican Republic and Honduras is as good or better.” It’s pretty limited release, only 1,000 boxes of each size and then 500 boxes of lanceros. It’s in the $8 to $9 price range. Honduran wrapper, definitely I can taste. It reminds me of some of the CLE Cigars, Honduran tobacco.
I’m smoking from PDR, A. Flores 1975 Capa Maduro and it is a Nicaraguan Habano binder, Nicaraguan Habano and Dominican Corojo in the filler and it’s wrapped in an Ecuadorian Habano Maduro. It’s a pretty cigar. It’s dark. It doesn’t have any sheen or veins in it. The construction has been good. It’s medium-bodied starting out. There’s a little bit of spice, some earthiness. There’s a little bit of some cocoa sweetness there, but it’s fairly faint at least. I don’t know if I’m still in the first third or moving on to the first half at this point, but it’s a good cigar. I’ve had a couple of these. I think that’s the one that I’ve had before, not the Maduro.
The Flores y Rodriguez in dark red label.
I think this is the first one with the Maduro I’ve had. It’s pleasant. It reminds me a little bit of that AFR-75. Definitely a good smoke.
PDR is making some great cigars right now. They’re also sponsor on this segment right now. I saw Abe Flores at the big event in New York. He was there and he’s always great guy who had their cigars for a long time and I appreciate their support and Robbie Streitz had been on the show and had a great interview with him. Be sure to check that out if you haven’t listened to that before on the site. Anyway, I just want to say a quick thank you to those guys and be sure to check out their cigars.
It’s been a good couple of weeks of cigar smoking for me. Last week, I came in here to pick up my warranty replacement Rocky Patel lighter and while I was here grabbed a box of Nat Sherman Timeless Nicaraguan so I should be good on those for about the next couple of days.
We’ve been going through those quick. Which one did you get, was it the Nicaraguan?
I got the Nicaraguan in the 5×56. I wish there was something between the 5×46 and the 5×56, but I’ll take either one of them.
I always wish there was a 6×46. I like that size a lot, personally.
I think I smoked the one in here the day I bought it. I don’t think I’ve had one since, but I’ve got a bunch of them in my humidor. I was telling Gary that I thought I had 100 cigars in my humidor and I counted this morning and there are77.
You’re getting low. That’s a lot of cigar.
The first step is admitting that I have a problem. I went to a Drew Estate event here locally, and smoked the Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970 and then I followed it up with the Dark Corojo. That cigar had a lot of power behind it, a lot of spice behind it. I felt like I should have had to call Uber to go home last night, but I got to hang out with their local rep who I’d never met before. We’d been friends on Facebook or Twitter or something for a while because we have a lot of mutual acquaintances anyway. I finally get say, “I’m Lane.”
I found out he got promoted. He’s going to be the Regional Director now. They were hiring a new southeast rep.
I saw that on his profile. He’s going to the Midwest.
He said they are going to include us in the Midwest region. Any of those of you out there who want to be a cigar rep, they’re interviewing people. It’s a tough job. You’re on the road five days a week. Those guys work really hard. From Joya de Nicaragua, what I’ve smoked several of lately is the Cuatro Cinco. It’s not a limited edition but they make a few thousand boxes at a time.
You smoked one of those on the show before, haven’t you?
Yes. That is one of my favorite new cigars.
They packaged the Cuatro Cinco really well too. That’s a cool band that offset at an angle and everything.
It’s different than their other branding and packaging. It seemed they’re going to go more that direction.
Also got to go out to Barber Motorsports Park for work. I had a class with IBM and I took my entire camera bag with me because I knew that I was going to need to get pictures of inside the museum. Once I got outside I was able to take pictures of all the Porsche’s lined up and everything outside, and we got to go for a ride in a Porsche Panamera GTS, which is a four door. It doesn’t cost me more. It doesn’t cost me less, but they got to take us around. They’ve got a 2.38 mile race track where they do everything from motorcycles to Indy races.
That’s not part of the big track?
That’s the big track. They put us on the big track. They didn’t let us drive. They stuck us in the passenger and the backseats and the guys that I rode with said, “You’ve got a camera, send us the video and we’ll show it to our kids, get in the front seat.” I took the GoPro. I’d built out the mount the night before and it was going to stick it to my helmet, but they said they’re only taking us up to 120, 130 miles an hour and they didn’t require helmets for that. If they’ve been going up to 180 or 190, they would’ve made us wear helmets. I brought the wrist strap too and was glad to have it. There’s a video up on YouTube of us doing hot laps in a Panamera GTS. I wasn’t 100% sure I was going to do it before the class, but my wife kept pushing and she’s like, “You ought to do this.” After I signed three waivers to hold everybody forever harmless, I got in the car and got to go for about a five-mile ride, 100 miles an hour plus.
Indy race is coming up. I talked to those guys. We’re going to have a little cigar bar set up in the VIP area to light cigars for people. That’s the way that we’ve always done it. I have a buddy and he’s moved home to Chicago. By training, he’s always been a mechanic, but he is going to school to become a Java web programmer.
Because he was a mechanic at a fairly large local shop here in town, he was always able to secure panic passes for us. We’d go and we’d take our tailgating tent and set up and I bring cigars and somebody would bring a bottle of Courvoisier. We’d set up on a hill and drink Cognac and Crown and whatever and then wandered down. We even met Marco Andretti that way. We’re big fans of going out to Barber’s for that Indy race even if some of the drivers aren’t a fan of that track because they don’t see that track as being a practical course.
What do you mean?
Danica Patrick has been interviewed saying that, “We know Barber’s fun and we like coming out here to drive and compete, but the layout of the track,” it doesn’t jive with most of the other Indy races that they end up in. They’ve got sixteen turns out at Barber’s.
There’s a lot of dropped in it too.
There are a lot of elevation changes. There are a couple of bank turns.
She’s saying it’s all too much. You can’t race because you’re trying to turn.
Even in the streetcars we were in, they can go fast and they can get up in the 180, 190 mile an hour, but you got to do a turn, you got to slow down to 70 or 80.
That’s supposed to be one of the nicest tracks I think in the country. There’s Laguna Seca in California is one of the other top ones.
Their event people who were there with us taking us down said that the way that they feel about it is they don’t have a beautiful track. They have a track in the middle of a beautiful park. There’s the museum on site there. You’ve got a bunch of old race cars. They’ve got a shop downstairs where they’re restoring old cars constantly.
It’s biggest motorcycle collection in the world.
It is the largest non-profit organization in the state of Alabama. Things that you learn going to IBM training.
They’re talking about running some of our software on IBM hardware and they said that the meeting was intended to be focused about agility and power, hence getting to go out on the race track. They tied it and made it work related and we appreciate that.
We had Rocky Patel come do a big event at the store and it’s the first time we’ve had him in five or six years.
You were across the street. You weren’t even in this location.
The old store. We had some big events with him seven, eight years ago, early on for us. He’s always a huge draw. We had a ton of people come and we had the bourbon guys here and some of the wine guys doing samples.
I don’t remember what bourbon I drank, but I got a sample of one of them.
Was it Elijah Craig?
I think it was either an EC or EHT.
They had the Evan Williams Single Barrel and I had never tried that.
They showed that to me and I stared at a cockeyed and I couldn’t make sense out of it. I was like, “I cook with Evan Williams,” that’s not even funny.
They said that it’s new to Alabama. We’ve always had the cheap Evan Williams, but apparently they said it’s been around for a while but it’s now on the shelf and value-priced single barrel. I liked it. It was pretty nice.
I’m a bourbon drinker.
What’s your favorite bourbon?
My favorite day-to-day bourbon Four Roses makes a lot of good budget bourbons.
I love the Small Batch.
The Small Batch and the Single Barrel are bang for the buck, some of the best bourbon you can get. There is a bottle that if I were to go to the state store right now, I can get their entry level bottle for $20 and that’s stupid. They have a bottle of $30, they have a bottle of $40 and by the time you get to that $40 mark, you’re dealing with legitimate top shelf bourbon even though they still have a way to go. There’s a local bourbon club here in town and we got a barrel proof Single Barrel and they bottled it, it yielded 181 or 196 bottles, and then we were all able to buy a bottle of the exact same recipe for $71 bucks a piece. It was good. It was jet fuel. It’s 117 proof or something like that.
I’ve had more alcoholic bourbon than that before. Some of the Booker’s, starts pushing at 130, but it was really good. You knew that you were drinking jet fuel but it was easy on the nose. It wasn’t super harsh. They make fourteen different single recipes and then they mark them as such and I think we had an OESK that literally you stick an ice cube in it and you’re done. There are people who drink it neat. I like an ice cube or two.
I feel like I’m going that direction more lately. I was always be neat and now ice cube or two is nice.
In any kind of whiskey that you drink, whether it’s blend or whether it’s scotch or bourbon, whatever it is. Whiskeys and cognacs all have a natural heat to them, that’s why they work in snifters is because the narrow top of the glass focuses some of the heat and aroma.
It does make a big difference.
I know that we’ve got local cigar reps. We’ve got Jason Robnett who knows way more about bourbon than I do. I’m a fan. He is a freak.
He is. Not just about bourbon. Probably my favorite bourbon of anything is Blanton’s. Blanton’s is like a special one.
Blanton’s is very popular. Their bottle’s cool. You can get good deals on it, not in the state of Alabama. Is it $80 a bottle here?
With tax, somewhere $70, $80 range.
There have been times that I’ve been down to Florida where the state doesn’t set their liquor prices and you can find a bottle of Blanton’s for $45. That’s something that I try and do is anytime I’m down there, I’m going to look to see if there’s anything that I can’t get here. You start talking about Elijah Craig’s and Pappy’s and any of the Van Winkle bourbons and stuff like that. There are better bourbons you can get for cheaper that are not in the state.
That made me think something from the dinner in New York. They also auctioned off a lot of six bottles of Pappy Van Winkle. I think it was 2, 23; 2, 15 and then 2, 12. I probably have the years wrong, but it was the three different ones to each and I think they were all the bottles too. They weren’t ones that had rolled off the line.
There’s a big market for fake Pappy Van Winkle and stuff out on the internet. People will even take legitimate bottles and replace the contents with something and a lot of the secondary markets are now requiring people to post pictures of a laser etched date label on them and post pictures of a ruler next to the foil seal so that people that are buying them can verify that this bottle’s legit.
It is so popular right now that a few round of bottles say Craigslist or something and don’t know much about it. Somebody easily could’ve put a good single barrel bourbon in there instead of what it should be.
Here in Alabama, if you go out and you buy a bottle of Pappy 23 on the day that it comes out and you’re spending a couple hundred bucks, somebody is going to post that bottle for sale for $1,200 and they may only get $900 for it but that’s a good flip.
I have a friend who did that when it came out in Alabama.
That was the year that they had the internet video of the guys running to the Galleria ABC store.
He so got lucky I think they had misplaced the case and everybody was already gone and he walked in there to buy something else and they’re like, “We have these.” They only buy four bottles and they never do that.
They usually only let you buy one bottle.
He turned around and put it on Craigslist and had some guys drive six hours to buy it and paid him thinking he made several thousand dollars off for four bottles.
I’ll tell you who those guys were. Those guys are restaurant and bar owners who are going out and they’re going to buy it and they’re going to sell it at $125 for an ounce pour.
They do it all day long. It’s crazy. All that we said, it’s still crazy how much it went for.
When he bought it or when he sold it?
At The Night to Remember New York, they did an auction. A guy at my table, one of the people with us. I was shocked that he bid. He bid, won it, how much do you think?
He didn’t know what it was. He was bidding on a bottle.
Not when they said what it was. He knew what bottles exactly six bottles. He’s a big collector of it apparently.
It probably went for $30,000, $40,000.
$60,000. I was asking him about it after. We’re sitting next to each other.
Did you get to try any?
No, he did not open them. He’s like, “My son like Pappy.” I’m like, “That’s cool.” I was thinking, “That seems like a lot for six bottles.”
Right now the market for all the Van Winkle bourbons is tight because they have already ramped up production but it takes time to age. At a certain point, your price ought to come down but right now, it gets released in Alabama for literally a day and then all of it’s sold.
It’s like liquid gold if you can get it. Probably gets resold. I’m wondering how many times each bottle gets resold in a two or three times, at least.
Until Jason Robnett sells it to somebody and trades it for four bottles of something he likes better.
He always somehow gets people save room for him.
He always manages to get a bottle and then he says, “I can have four bottles of something else for this.”
He comes out ahead on those deals for sure.
I called him out one day and said, “I thought you didn’t like Pappy?” He like, “It’s not that I don’t like Pappy. I’ll drink it.”
It’s so valuable. I think we may have to kick Sean off the show. Was this the third one in a row he hadn’t been on?
It was at least a work-related excuse. He was down here at the beach, popped in for a day and said, “See you guys.”
That was cool to meet him in person. Talk to him all the time but had never met in person. Smoked almost a whole cigar.
That was one. One of those. Are you going out to the Masters this week?
No. I’ve been one time to the practice round.
Me too. That’s about a long time ago.
I went, it was five years ago, my granddad has gone to Masters every year for as long as I’ve been here. He gets tickets every year. That year he won the tickets. He won the lottery for the practice round tickets and he said, “I’ve got a place that you can stay. I’ll give these tickets to you and your dad. There are four of them. You can pick two other people,” so I called a couple of my cousins and we all went. We played golf somewhere west of Atlanta and then finished the drive the rest of the way in or somewhere east of Atlanta. It was between Atlanta and South Carolina but it was great. I got to see all famous golfers.
The course is immaculate. I was talking when we were watching it at the Drew Estate event and what you miss out on TV is how that course is set up for this one CBS broadcast every year. All their irrigation is underground. They’ve got all of their AV components behind the tee box and everything. They are built in to the ground. The guy who’s walking with cameras click it in and there’s HD and there’s nothing to it, but the grounds keeping. They have a lot of pine trees and there is no pine straw under any of them and there is a lot of pine straw under every other tree on the course.
Ward, have you gone to the Masters before? I’m a big golfer.
I’ve not gone to the Masters. I desperately want to. I go to Augusta a lot for work, but I had some friends that went. I’m willing to save up some money and go some time.
What we were talking about is my granddad passed and my dad and me practice rounds tickets a few years back. It’s the only time I’ve ever been. I get to go to the tournament. My granddad was ready to show up by then. It looks like someone has vacuumed that course. The way that they meticulously landscape everything there is amazing.
If I went my biggest problem would be the merchandise shed, building, whatever it is. I’ve seen pictures. I would spend so much money.
But all that stuff, you could only get there.
There is no online shopping.
It’s not really that expensive for that stuff. Getting there is the trick. It was $2 for the famous pimento cheese sandwiches and $1 for a lemonade.
The concessions on there were cheap, the beer and all those sandwiches.
The hats and polos and all that, that they weren’t bad.
If you stay in Augusta, good luck. I checked on our company website which offers discounts and things like that since we have a plant there outside of Augusta. The hotel prices, which are normally the ones I was looking at $100, somewhere in that range. These are $700 to $800.
There’s that. A lot of people who live in Augusta will rent out their houses for the week that the Masters are going on particularly for the golfers, but also for the fans.
You have somebody pay you $10,000 to rent your house for a week, that’s pretty good.
The cheapest hotel I saw was $250, which is also the percent chance increase of you getting murdered because I recognized the hotel’s location and I’m like, “I’m not staying there.”
Please don’t misconstrue anything that Ward has said as legal advice because you do not have him on retainer for this.
See you guys.
We got him to speak.
That’s Ward. He’s normally our studio audience every week or the local heckler, I’m not sure which to call him.
He was telling me in a previous life he had a radio show. He’s one of the biggest Alabama fans I’ve met.
He tailgates with an old boss of mine. I was sitting there looking at Facebook one day and it says, “You might know this guy.” I didn’t know that guy, but how does Facebook know that? It’s because of Ward.
I’ve heard the course in Augusta, it’s not in the best part of town, is it? When they built it, it was.
It’s okay. Once you get on to the course, it looks like you’re in the middle of this Garden of Eden idyllic scene. It’s cool. Getting off the interstate to get there is the trick because traffic backs up for miles and there are people who will be sitting on the side trying to sell tickets, trying to buy tickets, trying to sell parking passes.
I know a few guys who have cigar shops and they set up little mobile things. They have told me they sell an unbelievable number of cigars. They can’t set up where everybody’s passing.
It was cool because you see it on TV and everything but it’s minus eight now. That is stupid.
Jordan Speith. He was six under. He’s eight under and he’s only three holes into the day.
I watched the pre-Masters interview with him. He seems like the most down to Earth normal person. They’re asking, “What have you been doing with the green jacket since you had it?” He’s like, “I don’t know. My buddies, we’ll have a barbecue and I’m just going to wear it over there randomly and drink beer.” He’s only 22, 21.
He’s young and he’s wow. Eight under will win the Masters some years, and he’s on the second day.
Is anyone even close to him?
I’m trying to remember who it is. Somebody has a stroke or two behind him. The greens are slick this year, even more so than normal and people were missing two foot putts. I don’t know if it was the wind, or the green conditions but balls are rolling. There’s always going to be a top golfer who’s not going to make the cut.
Who was the guy I was watching the highlights? He had the six putt, kept missing it from two feet away. It was a guy who had won the Masters several times.
It’s Ernie Els.
It was on the first hole and he was five over after the first hole. They keep showing that how it went over and over. That makes you just want to quit.
He shot at nine on the first hole.
I think he was par straight on from there. It was like he just lost it. You got any interesting trips coming up, anything on the books?
I’ve got some friends from high school. It’s going to come as a surprise to our listeners that I’m a dork, I’m sure. I was on the Scholars Bowl team in high school and the last three years of my high school has gone to the National Level to compete. They have this fundraiser now every year where they host a trivia night, like Bar Trivia. Some of the people that I went to school with, a couple people who I know are researchers at Vanderbilt are constantly asking me, “We’re having another one of these. Why don’t you come?” I don’t want to drive home two hours to do a two-hour trivia event and then drive home two hours.
My family lives there. I go home probably once a month anyway but that’s a lot of driving for two hours of catching up with old high school friends. I’m talking about maybe going home tomorrow night. I told them I’d decide after I got out of the podcast and let them know for sure, but they’ve got a thousand dollars in prizes at this fundraiser event. I was like, “Who’s on our team?” They told me and two of them are researchers at Vanderbilt who are literally working on a cure for breast cancer. They’re pretty smart. We’ve got a sports guy who knows way more about sports than I’ll ever know.
What’s your specialty?
I was always the math guy. When we got to my junior and senior year, here’s the deal. Any calculus question or trig question is going to boil down the sine of X or cosine of X or one or zero. It’s a matter of canceling out the terms until you can spot the answer. I’d answer these complexly laid out calculus and trig questions as soon as they finished reading the question because I’m writing it down and canceling out terms while they’re still reading the question, but this is bar trivia format. The team has the chance to sit around and talk and write down your answer. It’s like, “If you put me in Bar Trivia, we’re taking home some prize.” I’m probably going to go up. I’ve got the kitchen pass from my wife already and she says, “You should go if you want to,” and then I was like, “I am generally opposed to this idea. I don’t want to drive home for a two-hour thing, but they’ve badgered me three years in a row and I’ve said no the other two times. I’m running out of no.” None of them are going to hear this at all much less before.
That’s guaranteed they will knock.
Your friends from high school don’t listen to your podcast?
Now what’ll happen is a couple of weeks from now somebody will.
I’ll probably go home and do this and who knows, maybe I’ll win something. Trips that I have coming up. Probably going to go to Charlotte for a Linux convention. My wife is going back to Cocoa Beach with her mom. She is not going to come to Vegas now. I’ve got a $600 flight credited American and one of my friends works for Slackware Linux and he’s a high school physics teacher too, but he’s working at this convention and invited me to go with him. He’s invited me the last four or five years and I’m finally at the point where it’s like, “I can go.” I found out I can fly first class to Charlotte and back for free. I need for work to tell me that I’m not going to get in trouble for using the cancelled flight credit that they paid for their ticket, but American says it’s on my account and not on the company’s account.
I think even with those, you can’t change names anyway so you would have to.
My boss has gone to HR and said, “Is it okay if Lane does this?” I said, “I don’t need a blessing. I need to know that nobody’s going to raise a stink about it because American’s going to let me do it. I need to know I’m not going to get in trouble for it.” They don’t have to say yes as long as they don’t say no. I think that’s probably it except for hopefully IPCPR in Dominican Republic.
Which part of the Dominican Republic?
We’re flying into Punta Cana and then we’re driving down to the south eastern coast. It’s a new resort. It’s an Excellence resort called El Carmen. It doesn’t even open until September. We’ll be some of the first people to get there, but it’ll be the two-storey, rooftop terrace room with the plunge pool on top and ocean view and all I can eat of basically anything I can think to eat.
That’ll be fun. Make sure to tell Sean about that one.
I’ve told José Blanco about it and he’s like, “They’re with my people. We’ll try and get you in,” but my wife is like, “We’re only going to be there for five days. I don’t know if I want to let you off the resort to go do that.” If we were going to be there a couple more days, she says, “I don’t have a problem with you going. It’s the amount of time that we’re spending there.” It’s around a wedding in Marathon, Florida. Her cousin’s getting married in the Keys and we’re going to the wedding and then leaving the next day or the day after that and getting on an airplane because it’s cheap to fly to Miami. We’re already going to be down there so let’s out honeymoon the couple.
I wanted to say a quick thanks to CLE for being a show sponsor. If you haven’t tried The First 20 Years cigar yet, you definitely need to.
You should smoke 30 of them. You have them back in stock now?
Yes, they’re back. They seem to be fairly available. We sometimes can’t get them but they’re coming back in pretty fast.
I want to say you guys are the only store locally that carries them.
We’ve been running out quick too. People know that they are now.
When I was in here to pick up my fancy warranty replacement lighter, you had three empty boxes on the shelf and I was like, “I was going to buy one, but now I’m not.”
When that first cigar first came in, I wondered how it to be a little more expensive from CLE. People don’t know that price point with them as much, and you’re getting into a lot of good competition. You have Padron Anniversary, Opus X. There are a lot of great cigars and I think it competes well.
CLE has not given me a single First 20 Years. Every one of them that I smoke has been bought and paid for by me.
I don’t even get one either. They don’t give anybody one.
That stick to me, it is a Liga killer. I know that we’ve talked about how I don’t like the No. 9 because it’s got a prominent earthy leather taste to it. It doesn’t have a lot of overt spiciness. It’s not in the flavors that I tend to gravitate towards, but I have smoked a lot of the T52’s and I think I’ve bought two since The First 20 Years was released. It is a fantastic cigar if your palate is anything like mine, but T52 is for me the cigar that all others are held up to as a measuring stick. It is one of my favorite cigars and I think I like The First 20 Years a notch better than that. Was it $12, $13, something like that?
Yes, depending on the size.
I think the Robusto’s $12.99 or something like that here. The aromas off of that cigar are right up there with an Opus or any of the other more expensive Fuente cigars. It is in another class as compared to other sub $15 smokes. It’s in another class to anything less than $20 from the stuff that I’ve smoked.
I don’t have the exact blend information in front of me, but it is a unique blend to the combination of inner wrapper around your filler they’re using is a little different than anything else out there.
Sean has had one and he’s not quite as big of a fan as I am. He said, “It’s a good cigar, but I didn’t have the religious experience that you had with it, Lane,” but I think it’s a fantastic stick. I think that the price, there is not a better cigar out there.
Any anything else going on you can think about? Anything interesting?
No, that’s all I’ve got. Since it had been three weeks, we had a lot of topics to cover but I’m glad to be back in the shop. As if I haven’t been here anyway.
Good to be back on. Hopefully we’ll do it again next week.
Sean will be here next week. We’ll have a third person for you all.
See you, Lane.
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