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 Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market

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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:35 am

Original message removed.


Last edited by Milan on Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:24 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Kyle Weiss

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Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Wed Dec 28, 2011 2:01 am

Cubans, their cigars and (reportedly!) their country is amazing. It's too bad it has the situation it does, but they've managed.

Cuban mechanics--don't go on a road trip without one in phone distance (or in the passenger seat). Laughing
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Airborne



Registration date : 2011-07-06

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:52 pm

=


Last edited by Airborne on Thu Jan 19, 2012 4:32 pm; edited 1 time in total
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idbowman

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Age : 35
Location : Painesville, OH
Registration date : 2011-12-19

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Wed Dec 28, 2011 5:04 pm

I always keep a humidor of cigars on hand (nothing fancy...they're pretty much all in the sub-$8 range), though I usually only smoke them in the Summer out at the pool. I've had a Cuban exactly twice. The first was in High School and it gave me the spins. The second was this past summer and it was one of the greatest smoking experiences of my life (partially to the smoke, partially to the company I enjoyed it in)
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Harlock999

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Location : Los Angeles
Registration date : 2010-10-22

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Wed Dec 28, 2011 11:17 pm

Nice photos, but that looks like a very dangerous staircase behind you! Did you have to descend that to get your cigars?
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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Wed Dec 28, 2011 11:22 pm

Harlock999 wrote:
Nice photos, but that looks like a very dangerous staircase behind you! Did you have to descend that to get your cigars?

Definitely a shady staircase. I didn't have to go up or down it, but the guy who retrieved our cigars did. The bedroom was up those three inch wide steps. To be honest with you... the whole situation was pretty super shady. I mean Cuban jail, U.S. federal prison shady.
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Harlock999

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Location : Los Angeles
Registration date : 2010-10-22

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:58 am

Milan wrote:
Harlock999 wrote:
Nice photos, but that looks like a very dangerous staircase behind you! Did you have to descend that to get your cigars?

Definitely a shady staircase. I didn't have to go up or down it, but the guy who retrieved our cigars did. The bedroom was up those three inch wide steps. To be honest with you... the whole situation was pretty super shady. I mean Cuban jail, U.S. federal prison shady.

When in Rome (or Havana)... Cool
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PipeDreams

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Age : 37
Location : Hong Kong
Registration date : 2011-06-11

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:11 am

Great pictures! I'd love to visit Cuba some day. Here in Hong Kong, all we get is Cubans. You can even buy better Cohiba and Romeo y Julieta tubos and some 7-11s! I bought a Siglo IV (I think) for the princely sum of $50 US at a 7-11 last year!
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szyzk

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Age : 37
Location : Warren, PA
Registration date : 2011-03-21

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:26 am

PipeDreams wrote:
I bought a Siglo IV (I think) for the princely sum of $50 US at a 7-11 last year!

affraid

Gray market Cubans are cheaper than that! That's robbery!



Great photos, by the way! And an interesting story, idbowman!
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PipeDreams

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Age : 37
Location : Hong Kong
Registration date : 2011-06-11

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:56 am

szyzk wrote:
PipeDreams wrote:
I bought a Siglo IV (I think) for the princely sum of $50 US at a 7-11 last year!

affraid

Gray market Cubans are cheaper than that! That's robbery!



Great photos, by the way! And an interesting story, idbowman!

Tax on cigars is extremely high here: $300 US a kilo. It was a three pack of Siglo VIs (oops), and I thought the price was for all three! I get most of my Cubans from Geneva to get around that pesky tax issue!
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szyzk

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Age : 37
Location : Warren, PA
Registration date : 2011-03-21

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 3:35 am

PipeDreams wrote:
I get most of my Cubans from Geneva to get around that pesky tax issue!

Smart man! It's ridiculous that you have to go to those lengths to get something legal, though!
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Hunter5117

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Age : 62
Location : Somewhere between Kansas and Missouri
Registration date : 2009-07-29

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:16 pm

My oldest son lives in Dubai which is supposed to be the cheapest place to buy CC's, cheaper even than Havana. Not sure about that but the prices he pays inside an official Casa del Habanos store would make you cry, Most normal CC's like a Monte #2 for under $10, even the Behike's are in the $30's depending on which one you want.
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docwatson

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Location : Central Massachusetts and midcoast Maine
Registration date : 2008-03-21

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:44 pm

Last time I was in Cuba was 1966 at Guantanamo Bay while serving in the Navy. Of course we couldn't venture off base in those days, so actually I never saw the real Cuba. The pre-Castro years look like paradise there in the old photos, with vibrant nightlife, and good living. Times have changed for those people, and not for the better, but they still live on a beautiful island.
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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 7:16 pm

Quote :
Times have changed for those people, and not for the better

It's all relative. I met Cubans who were very happy to live in Cuba. I suppose it's just like any other place. You know, there are actually people who feel that living in the US is difficult. Lose your house, your job, your health benefits, etc... and living in Cuba might not be so bad.
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docwatson

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Location : Central Massachusetts and midcoast Maine
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PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:08 pm

[quote="Milan"]
Quote :
... and living in Cuba might not be so bad.

I suppose you are right if you don't mind living under communist rule!

As for the majority of Cuban citizens, they know of nothing better, because they have never experienced the freedoms we have.


Last edited by docwatson on Sun Feb 26, 2012 10:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Boxerbuddy

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Location : Boston, Massachusetts
Registration date : 2011-10-06

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:32 pm

Milan wrote:
Quote :
Times have changed for those people, and not for the better

It's all relative. I met Cubans who were very happy to live in Cuba. I suppose it's just like any other place. You know, there are actually people who feel that living in the US is difficult. Lose your house, your job, your health benefits, etc... and living in Cuba might not be so bad.

I'd venture to guess those Cubans who don't mind living there have never been outside Cuba, as most of them haven't. There's a Cuban that married into my family, and he talks about how oppresive it was there, how Castro and his governement imprisoned some of his family for daring to speak against communism.

If I become destitute, give me the freedom to work my ass off and recover any day over depending on the governement to give me a home/health care/job or whatever....and worrying about government heavies coming to take me away because I said something that Castro doesn't like.


But yeah Cuban cigars.....you can bet they were fake if they were $20 a box. To tell you the truth other countries have come such a long way with their cigar making....Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Honduras, that the gap in quality between Cubans and these other countries is virtually non existant. Smoke a Padron serie 1926 or a Diamond Crown Maximus and tell me its not of the same quality as any Cuban. Don't get me wrong I love Cohibas, Montecristos and the bunch, but just don't buy the hype anymore....other cigars are so good now that Cubans have become nothing special.
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szyzk

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Age : 37
Location : Warren, PA
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PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:53 pm

Boxerbuddy wrote:
...the gap in quality between Cubans and these other countries is virtually non existant. Smoke a Padron serie 1926 or a Diamond Crown Maximus and tell me its not of the same quality as any Cuban. Don't get me wrong I love Cohibas, Montecristos and the bunch, but just don't buy the hype anymore....other cigars are so good now that Cubans have become nothing special.

The quality is definitely there, but I'm going to have to disagree to a point. Nothing else tastes like a Cuban. No tobacco grown on soil outside of Cuba has done it.

I participated in two blind taste tests. Both times I scored 100% (I named the 10 Cubans as Cuban, the 10 Nons as Nons). Some of them were specifically picked for their "crossover" tastes - I, and the others that participated, were set-up to fail - but I and a few others were able to distinguish the flavors correctly. Overall the participants had an 80% success rate, and it should be known that some who participated had very, very limited experience smoking Cubans so they actually dragged down the scores a bit!

If you enjoy the Cuban flavor and seek it out, nothing can beat a Cuban (no matter how good it is). But there are definitely quality cigars that are Non-Cuban with, in my opinion, a wider range of flavors.

Rant not directed at anyone here: Why are some smokers 100% exclusive in their tastes! Why limit yourself? If you aren't enjoying both equally you're missing out! I just get bugged when people say "all Cubans are overhyped" or "all Non-Cubans are junk".
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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 10:53 pm

Yeah... our freedoms do exceed those of Cubans. I hope someday they experience our same freedoms. Hopefully that day does not bring some of the same problems our country is faced with including: school shootings, unequal access to education, an ever-escalating divorce rate, an unsurmountable drug problem, political corruption, an economically marginalized majority, debt, a broken health care system, dependency on non-renewable resources, increasing levels of poverty, did I mention debt, etc...

Freedoms are good, but too many freedoms can create problems. I think that's part of what our country is currently dealing with.
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Boxerbuddy

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Location : Boston, Massachusetts
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PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:59 pm

Milan wrote:
Yeah... our freedoms do exceed those of Cubans. I hope someday they experience our same freedoms. Hopefully that day does not bring some of the same problems our country is faced with including: school shootings, unequal access to education, an ever-escalating divorce rate, an unsurmountable drug problem, political corruption, an economically marginalized majority, debt, a broken health care system, dependency on non-renewable resources, increasing levels of poverty, did I mention debt, etc...

Freedoms are good, but too many freedoms can create problems. I think that's part of what our country is currently dealing with.

Really answering this post thoroughly would take about 2 hours and possibly a whole page of text....lol I don't want to subject anyone to that...or myself for that matter. I'll just say this in response to the last 2 sentences.

I'm not sure there is such thing as "too many freedoms". How would you feel about a politician that said "too many freedoms can create problems". That to me, would be a scary person. That's along the lines of "I think there comes a point where you've made enough money"...guess who said that.
What drives me nuts is that some people actually believe they have the right to decide such things.
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jefe1037

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Age : 35
Location : West Chicagoland
Registration date : 2012-02-07

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Mon Feb 27, 2012 1:06 am

Milan wrote:
Yeah... our freedoms do exceed those of Cubans. I hope someday they experience our same freedoms. Hopefully that day does not bring some of the same problems our country is faced with including: school shootings, unequal access to education, an ever-escalating divorce rate, an unsurmountable drug problem, political corruption, an economically marginalized majority, debt, a broken health care system, dependency on non-renewable resources, increasing levels of poverty, did I mention debt, etc...

Freedoms are good, but too many freedoms can create problems. I think that's part of what our country is currently dealing with.

this is a getting a little rubber roomish
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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:15 am

Quote :
I'm not sure there is such thing as "too many freedoms". How would you feel about a politician that said "too many freedoms can create problems".

Well... there actually is a such thing as too much freedom, this is why there are laws. I would support a politician who said "too many freedoms can create problems" if I believed the freedoms he was talking about were creating problems. This is kind of what politics is about. The problem is when it's forced on you. That sucks.
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docwatson

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Location : Central Massachusetts and midcoast Maine
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PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:23 am

I agree, let's have this moved to the Rubber Room or get back on the Cuban Cigar thread!!! Very Happy
OK, to start I'll ask if anyone here has had the pleasure of tasting the true Cuban Bolivar, or el Rey del Mundo cigars if they are still being manufactured???
I know that we can get Cubans from pipes2smoke.com which is Max Engel's company in Toronto and a fine man to deal with. It may be time for me to do some comparison tastings again.
Doc
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szyzk

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Age : 37
Location : Warren, PA
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PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:45 am

docwatson wrote:
OK, to start I'll ask if anyone here has had the pleasure of tasting the true Cuban Bolivar, or el Rey del Mundo cigars if they are still being manufactured???

Absolutely, Doc, they're still being manufactured!

The Bolivar Belicosos Finos, Coronas Extra, Royal Coronas and Petit Coronas are some of my favorite cigars. I have a few Gold Medals and Inmensas in the humidor but I haven't tried them yet.

The ERdM Choix Supreme is another cigar that I really enjoyed, but I've only had a few and haven't ever bought any more.
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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:36 pm

I smoked a lot of Hoyo de Monterrey coronas because they were affordable. We smoked a number of Montecristo, Cohiba, and Romeo y Julieta Churchills. It's been so long it's nearly impossible for me to compare Cubans to non-Cuban cigars. I'm more into cigars now than I was then. Fuente, Padron, Camacho, and many other companies make some pretty outstanding cigars that I imagine could give 85% of Cubans a run for their money? The Cuban cigar market is kind of a novelty, but I'll never forget staring at the soil and thinking how beautiful it was. There has to be something to the soil, climate, traditions, seed strains, etc... that make some Cuban cigars the best in the world?

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docwatson

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Location : Central Massachusetts and midcoast Maine
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PostSubject: Re: Reminiscing Cuba's Black Market   Mon Feb 27, 2012 4:01 pm

Thanks for the replies gents. I can see that your palates are far more experienced than mine when it comes to Cuban smokes.
And yes, Milan, the reason that Cuban's have such a special flavor and quality to their leaf is definitely all that you stated. Soil, location, seed, temperature, etc. all add a special quality to ANY tobacco throughout the world. That is what makes connoisseur's desire to have certain makes.
As to whether Cuban cigars are still considered the best in the world is left up to the individual smoker, as I always say "it's purely personal preference". Everyone's palate is like fingerprints, different.
Keep on puffin'
Doc
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