Well ladies and germs, we are officially starting our long march to Halloween a little earlier than usual this year. And what better way to kick things off with than a double-feature of grizzly bear madness?!?! The correct answer is, of course, that there is no better way obviously. So make yourself a stiff drink and join the party!
THE CIGAR – WOJTEK THE WAR BEAR by POWSTANIE
Size: 5 x 50 (perfecto)
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano & Mexican San Andrés (barberpole)
Filler: Nicaraguan Condega, Jalapa, and Estelí Ligero along with Dominican Criollo
Factory: Fabrica de Tabacos Nica Sueño
Price: $12.00 (limited to 500 boxes of 21 cigars)
Mike over at Cigar Hustler (where we purchased these cigars from), and who happens to be the brand owner of Powstanie, had this to say about the blend:
“It’s special to me because it’s made in the greatest factory in the history of cigar manufacturers. I named it War Bear because my #1 employee told me the story about the war bear so I wanted to make it! It’s a great story. It’s probably the greatest blend I’ve created. And because TNCC exudes awesomeness they will agree!”
I like his confidence. And I like Mike, he’s a good dude, but ~ as world renown cigar reviewers ~ we of course would not let that cloud our judgment. Exactly three years ago we first met Mike Szczepankiewicz of Cigar Hustler fame when he attended a live show we recorded at RoMa Craft headquarters. That fine day he let us try out his brand spanking new Habano offering from his newly launched Powstanie cigar line and he talked with us about the story behind his highly personal brand (you can watch our interview with Mike HERE). And here we are 1,095 days later smoking his latest creation – Wojtek aka “The War Bear”.
The War Bear felt very small and light when I held it in my hand, which is something I’m not so used to seeing as how I wear size 13 shoes. Tut was reluctant to even light it up because he was getting one of the best cold draws he’d experienced in a long time with a strong sweet raisin note coming through loud and clear. There’s a heavenly spice upon torching the foot and the initial aroma is fantastic as well. Nicaraguan earthy tobacco flavor dominated our palates in the early goings. At the midway point the cigar really comes alive with the addition of a leather note that plays extremely well with the ever present earthiness.
The War Bear is medium strength with solid construction (near perfect burn lines and the draw was fine once we clipped the cap an extra one or two times). While not complex by anyone’s definition and lacking a multitude of transitions, this cigar is super smooth with a highly enjoyable profile and an aroma that will attract all the ladies and the bears to your campfire. That last sentence was incredibly cheesy but I’m too lazy to delete it. Yet I just typed a completely new sentence detailing why I didn’t delete it which makes zero sense. How about your drink 6 sour tart beers and we’ll see what you write, dickhead. Whatever, it’s a really good cigar so go find you one before they’re gone!
TNCC FINAL SCORE: 89
THE BEERS – SONOMA TART & HOP SHOVEL by BEAR REPUBLIC
Hops, and tart, and bears, oh my! The Bear Republic Sonoma Tart has a beautiful pour out of the bottle. The distinct tartness is so pronounced in the first third of the beer that we were all worried that it might stick around at that high frequency but luckily, some would say expertly, that pink Sweet Tart like flavor dissipated before our glasses were half empty leaving us with a unique and quite tasty brew. It’s crisp, it’s mellow, and we all guzzled it down happily!
Our second offering of the night from Bear Republic, the Hop Shovel, is named appropriately as this sucker shovels delicious bitterness straight into your mouth hole with each and every sip. Considering the outrageous IBUs (Bear Republic claims 100 IBUs?!? Our expert taste buds put it closer to the mid 80s at best but that’s ok), the Hop Shovel is refreshing as hell and it received a solid round of thumbs ups from the entire crew.
THE FILMS – GRIZZLY (1978) & BACKCOUNTRY (2014)
Grizzly is currently streaming for free on Amazon Prime and Backcountry is streaming for free on Netflix. Well, they’re free if you pay monthly fees for those services obviously.
Holy shit is this ever a fun movie! You’ve got bloody grizzly kills, a leading man who borders on Tom Atkins awesomeness (I say almost because at one point a cute younger female offers him a drink and he declines, not cool), and the grand finale involves blasting the titular bear with a fucking bazooka. That’s right, A FUCKING BAZOOKA!
Backcountry is a completely different cinematic animal than Grizzly and that’s exactly why I programmed tonight’s double-feature pairing these two movies. Backcountry isn’t so much a killer grizzle bear film as it is a very well done character study of a young woman played by the highly talented Missy Peregrym.
She manages to steal the show from her terrifying furry costar and this different approach to the standard creature feature divided us at the table. Personally, I thought the flick really worked until the editor jacked with a winning formula in the final act and started using slow motion, heavy handed music, and a bunch of other tricks that the film didn’t need at all. My fellow TNCC campers felt that the film disappointed well before that last thirty minutes. Disagreements here tend to lead to great discussions though, especially when heavy doses of alcohol are involved, so click the links below and let us tell you some campfire stories!
We had a roaring good time tonight, so thank you for bearing with us and joining the party! That’s right folks, if you were hoping that we wouldn’t sprinkle at least a dozen corny bear puns throughout tonight’s show then I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news.
Please leave us comments on the YouTube episode page, provide us with a review on iTunes, or be a real stud and do both! All these seemingly small gestures would be greatly appreciated as they let us know exactly what you’re thinking about this sweat soaked tidal wave of hardbodied insanity we like to call The Tuesday Night Cigar Club.
Below is tonight’s full episode for both your viewing and listening pleasure. Thank you for checking out The Tuesday Night Cigar Club and we’ll see you next time when we review another cigar, adult beverage, and film. May the wings of liberty never lose a feather…
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