For the second time in the last four episodes the TNCC finds itself paying tribute to a celebrity (in this case a cultural ICON) who has left the world of the living far too early. And as I’m typing up this episode page I’ve just been notified that Master of Horror Wes Craven has passed away. I do not like this trend – at all. It means, without debate, that we are getting older and with age comes a sharp increase in the opportunities for grief and pain to suddenly and abrasively enter our lives. Fortunately, we have these magical creations called cigars and alcoholic beverages to aid us in navigating through the oceans of sadness that we often find ourselves adrift in more and more. Despite all of the above, this is a very fun show. Give it a listen and join us in giving the middle finger to the inevitable miseries of life!
THE CIGAR – MONTECRISTO CLASSICS SERIES TORO
If I’m going to drop $10 or more on a premium cigar, I want there to be no confusion on my palate that I’m smoking a PREMIUM cigar. Sometimes you hit a homerun, sometimes you hit a single… sometimes you strike out while attempting a bunt. Seriously, is there anything more pathetic than a fruitless bunt? But I digress. The good news is that among the vast population of premium cigars on the shelves and online there are a few brands that always seem to deliver the goods. Everyone has their personal preferences for sure, but I’ve learned over the years that Drew Estate and Oliva are two brands that will usually treat me right nineteen times out of twenty. And I’m starting to believe that Montecristo might deserve a place on that list as well.
I have been a fan of the Montecristo Texas Edition for years (yeah yeah I’m a homer, so sue me!) and, now that we’ve started utilizing the Cigar Pairing Guide here on the podcast, my eyes have been opened to some of Monte’s other fantastic blends. Much like the Espada Quillon that we featured on Episode 11, the Classic Series is a complex cigar that’s extremely worthy of two hours of your time. Minimal but nice spice early on slowly transitions to flavors of almond and cream as the cigar progresses. If that sounds good, up next is a very prominent butter note that had Tut and myself clicking our heels in delight. Yak Boy struggled mightily to find this treasured butter note but, alas, we couldn’t talk him into performing a full blown retrohale despite the promise of buttery goodness. Here’s a trip down Memory Lane to the first time we unsuccessfully tried to peer pressure Tut in to blowing some smoke out of his damn nose…
Butter dammit! BUTTER!!! Ugh. One of these days they’ll make a stogie that has notes of Guinness and bacon burgers and maybe he’ll finally take the plunge in to the wonderfully sensuous world of retrohaling. The cigar felt solid in my hand with just the right amount of give and construction overall was superb. The entire crew gave the Montecristo Classic Series a unanimous thumbs up and I’m confident you will as well. Unless you’re some kind of weirdo who doesn’t like butter…
THE BEER – SIERRA NEVADA SUMMERFEST LAGER
Speaking of repeat success stories, the Summerfest lager is another winner from Sierra Nevada. Refreshing and crisp but featuring just enough hops to make your taste buds take notice.
The Cigar Pairing Guide provided to us by The Montecristo Social Club recommended a lager to accompany the Montecristo cigar and it was a very solid recommendation indeed. The cigar and beer really played nice with each other throughout the evening. While not the most memorable offering from the boys in Chico by far, the Summerfest has just enough complexity and flavor to compliment your cigar out on the back porch without overpowering things like the loud girl at the party or a flatulent dog in the car.
THE FILM – HELL COMES TO FROGTOWN (1988)
Our group is comprised entirely of children of the 80s and, therefore, we all have both shared and personal memories of the man known as Rowdy Roddy Piper. As huge wrestling fans, we knew him as the smart ass heel that you absolutely loved to hate. He was just so damn good at driving the audience and his opponents fucking nuts. Then, right as my preteen self was just beginning to discover the filmmaking artistry of John Carpenter, Roddy showed up in “They Live” and his legend was cemented for all of eternity in my mind. While viewing “They Live” for tonight’s episode would have been the most obvious choice, I didn’t feel as though I could get through it with dry eyes just yet so I decided to steer the show’s movie choice in a drastically different direction…
Boy is that ever an understatement! As usual, I’m not going to divulge too much of our reactions to “Hell Comes To Frogtown” here, you’ll have to listen to the podcast for that brilliant insight and analysis (and throw us a bone by adding a review on iTunes while you’re there). But I will state this emphatically – Roddy Piper chews up the screen every time he walks in a scene and it’s a damn crying shame that he didn’t make more films. Rest in peace, Mr. Piper, and thank you for the smiles and the memories.
The cool thing about tonight’s episode is that all three subjects are readily available. You can find Montecristos in almost all cigar shops, reputable liquor stores, and online. Sierra Nevada is one of the oldest and most successful breweries on the craft scene and you can more than likely find several varieties in your local supermarket. And “Hell Comes To Frogtown” is available for streaming right now on Hulu. So there – we just gave you a perfect Saturday night! You’re welcome.
We’ll see you here next time when we review another film, cigar, and beverage. May the wings of liberty never lose a feather.