I never thought I’d get to meet one of my personal “idols” as it were. Alas, the stars lined up for me and I got to meet probably my favorite cigar blender in person today – David Blanco of Blanco Cigars!
Mr. Blanco was in Fort Worth today for a Hiram and Solomon Cigars event along with a couple of reps from H&S. Blanco’s blending capability is legendary – from his super budget oriented Primos line, the ever-famous Nine, the CigarObsession series which goes without saying and now the H&S line.
It was really interesting just to talk to Dave and hear about his trials, tribulations and his life’s work. As with almost every cigar blender I’ve encountered, his passion for the craft is unbelievable and in a way I envy him – it must be nice for your passion to also be your livelihood (I’ll get there eventually – just not there yet).
For me, the day consisted of great cigars, some awesome grilled food and some good drinks on top of all of that. I tried three of the H&S cigars today (out of six total), and while I cannot do an in-depth review as I was pairing with drinks and my palate wasn’t completely clean, I’ll offer my impressions of the three I tried (and I’m glad I tried them in the following order):
*Traveling Man: An Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapped cigar, this pretty much had the characteristic Sumatran medium-bodied flavors of a sweet caramel, a smooth nuttiness and a cinnamon/nutmeg on the retrohale. Very pleasing way to start the day.
*Fellow Craft: Nicaraguan Habano wrapped goodness. Medium/full bodied consisting of notes of a sweet creamy cedar and a balanced but not overbearing peppery retrohale. A good “middle of the day” stick.
*Master Mason: Dominican Maduro wrapper. The most robust of the three at a nice full body consisting of freshly tanned leather, dark chocolate, coffee and a hint of nutmeg on the nose. Very thick smoke and a perfect way to end the day. A wallop of nicotine strength too – medium/full on that.
I hope to be featuring full reviews on these blends soon, I’ve got more than one of each. There are also three blends I’ve yet to try so we shall see what holds, but now I just need to go home, have some ice cream and chill after an awesome day.