Review: Argentum by Ave Maria

Argentum by Ave Maria
If you’ve not smoked a perfecto before, be careful not to mistake the head from the foot. Owing to their unique shape, perfectos also take a few minutes to “open up.”

This stick features notes of toasted almond, nougat, milk chocolate, coffee, and leather.

The pre-light taste was slightly off-putting, but that passed soon after lighting. The ash hold was superb and the burn steady, however the wrapper was seemed piecemeal.

Argentum by Ave Maria5” x 58
Medium to Full Bodied
Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro wrapper


Review: Captiva by Carlos Toraño

Capitva by Carlos Toraño
Discerning smokers will notice the name ‘Charlie’ on the label. This is not a typo or a knock-off, but rather the first offering by the junior Toraño.

So named after the Florida island, this stick features notes of sweet cedar, black pepper, coffee, and milk chocolate.

Capitva by Carlos Toraño6” x 50
Honduras, Nicaragua
Full Bodied
Ecuador Habano wrapper

Extension on FDA Regulations

This calls for a cigar!

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced they’ll be exploring a “new, comprehensive plan” for tobacco regulation. That includes extending the pre-market application for cigars by four years — to August 2021.

Though the agency has not eased their stance on proposed regulations for tobacco products — including cigars — industry leaders see this week’s announcement as positive news.

“We commend the objective approach,” said Mark Pursell — CEO of the International Premium Cigar & Pipe Retailers association IPCPR).

New Jersey Smoking Age Raised

Legislation signed last month will make New Jersey the third state in the country to raise the legal tobacco buying age to 21. The new law goes into effect November 1.

Hawaii and California are the other two states who currently require smokers to be at least 21 years of age to legally light up. Maine and Oregon are expected to be the next states to sign on to the trend.

Old Enough to Serve, but Not Be Served

The problem with this type of legislation, of course, is the fact that 18-year-olds are able to vote, fight, and in some cases die for this country… but they can’t enjoy a cigar and an adult beverage after a long day? Ludicrous!

Either make a blanket “official” age of adulthood at 18 or 21, but let’s end this hair-splitting once and for all.

Death and Taxes

California cigar enthusiasts: get ready to pay more for your smokes.

The state’s “other tobacco products” (OTP) law went into effect July 1 – increasing the tax rate from 27.3 to a staggering 65.08. The move is a by-product of Proposition 56, which raised cigarette taxes from 87 cents to $2.87.


Taxes will always rise, but it’s concerning when one ‘sin’ is singled out from others that have been largely exempt from increased fees.

Perhaps the only silver lining for CA smokers is the fact that the tax only applies to new stock, meaning any existing cigar in a tobacconist’s humidor will continue to be taxed at the old rate.