escort ordu kıbrıs escort escort izmit escort bodrum escort rize escort konya escort kırklareli escort van halkalı escort escort erzurum escort sivas escort samsun escort tokat A tale of a Behike, Gran Reserva, Reserva and a hotel. - UK Cigar Forums


No announcement yet.

A tale of a Behike, Gran Reserva, Reserva and a hotel.

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • A tale of a Behike, Gran Reserva, Reserva and a hotel.

    So it is time for another tale of adventures in cigar land, this time in an altered state of reality, or so it felt at the time.

    Last night was the fruition of something Jimmeh and I have been trying to make happen for a little while. As many of you know and are probably bored of hearing about, the proprietor of Le Casa Del Habano - Teddington is a friend of ours whom we often find ourselves lucky enough to share a day/evenings smoking time with, as did Deano and I last Saturday. Over our recent smoking sessions Jimmeh and I have repeatedly mentioned the Ten Manchester Street hotel to Ajay as an island of peace, quiet and cigar smoke. He had expressed an interest in trying if for himself so we planned a smoke there together one evening. After an initial attempt was aborted due to ill health this finally managed to take place last night. What a night it turned out to be.

    I arrived on the dot of six thirty more by chance than design but at least that meant I missed the congestion charge and had free on-street parking. I was in a suit and overcoat as it seemed appropriate for the occasion. Deano and I had been talking about the El Rey del Mundo Choix de L Epoque (UK 2009 Regional) on Saturday so I sat down and purchased on of these from the hotel humidor and started to puff away, surrounded by my increasingly ridiculous amount of cigar and non-cigar related paraphernalia I now seem to carry everywhere. As soon as I had my first coffee and cigar lit, Jimmeh arrived. He joined me in smoking by lighting up one of his many, many NC's he had returned from the US with. He immediately annoyed me by discovering one of the cigars he had purchased for me in the US (the Don Pepin Garcia My Father) was the wrong stick (I had wanted the Don Pepin Garcia My Father Le Bijou 1922) and also he informed me of yet another Rocky Patel he had tracked down that I have yet to source and try (RP Nording).

    We sat there chewing the fat over his US travels, his meet with Rokkitsci, forum silliness and politics, cigars and women. Time wore on as it has a tendency to do when chatting and smoking but we noticed that seven thirty had come and gone and Ajay had not arrived. Ajay is notable for his punctuality so his being late was unusual but not entirely unexpected due to him never having been to the venue before. Eventually he rang my mobile. It turned out he had been walking up and down Manchester Street but been unable to locate the hotel. He had parked near Manchester Square and repeatedly walked the block entirely failing to see the LARGE WHITE FLAG with the hotel logo flying out front. We talked him into finding the hotel over the phone and laughed about his inability to see the HUGE WHITE FLAG. I console myself with the fact that this must clearly indicate there is no part of him that is French, he clearly lacks the penchant the French have for flying large white flags at the drop of a hat.

    We did the "tour" of the place with Ajay and chatted about the venue and it's humidor. We commented about the cigars we had chosen to smoke and our journeys up and Ajay's recent jaunt to a Ch?teau in France with various forty and fifty year old cigars he had taken to share and smoke out there. Needless to say there was plenty of appropriate wine, spirits and food consumed whilst he smoked them. You know the usual, nothing remarkable so far you may think, and I would totally agree. Then reality started to get less real!

    Ten minutes or so into our evening another mutual friend from our Wardour Street smoking days turns up totally unexpectedly. He had popped in and decided to have a quick smoke on the way to the airport. He was just popping off to Moscow for business, you know, AS YOU DO! Well he floors me and pulls out one of the sticks I have been hunting for, the Partagas Reserve from 2005. He gifts me the cigar! I get him a short smoke from the humidor and a drink before he has to fly off. Ajay met this friend once before when we took him to Teddington so we soon fell back into chat only to be interrupted but Ajay pulling out mysteriously bulging humi-bags.

    Now when I smoke and socialise with friends one thing always holds true, they take the piss out of me! Apparently it is remarkably easy, so I let them get on with it. Well this is when it started for the night. Ajay turns to me and says, knowing full well the answer to the question already (as it was he who sold it to me), "You have smoke the Cohiba Gran Reserve haven't you?". Well I think for all of a second and reply that yes I have, with him, on the sampling evening! He replies "Good, so you won't want this then" and proceeds to hand Jimmeh and our friend a Cohiba Gran Reserve each. I am thinking "oh, that sucks balls on a galactic level" only to be further unimpressed by Ajay telling us that these are sticks from the original batch, not the mass batch that was shipped to everybody and that they are in a different league. He had used his contacts to source them when in Cuba some time back and been very careful to hold onto them. At this point I was thinking "oh, this sucks balls on a multi-dimensional level" but sat there grinning through my annoyance at my uninvited friend now having "my" original Cohiba Gran Reserva! He is Italian so I considered shouting at him loudly and seeing if he ran away but he is an annoyingly decent and likeable fellow who tolerates me, so I have to play nice, as few enough people do tolerate me!

    Ajay turns to me and says, "well you have not smoked this" and proceeds to place the Cohiba Behike 56 in my hand. My mood is now "I want both, he is Italian and cannot have any" but of course I keep this to myself. I look at the Behike, smell it, feel it, study it, as you would with a cigar we have heard so much about, seen only briefly and certainly never smoked. Ajay informs the gathered that he brought back a small number of each of the three Behikes from his recent trip to Havana. Eventually I bite the proverbial bullet and start the cigar. I would write a review but as I have mentioned elsewhere on this forum the scuttlebutt is that the smallest of the three Behikes is the best so I will refrain from commenting until I have smoked all three. I will go so far as to say, not "typical" Cohiba flavours but good. This is hardly surprising as there is zero ligero and extensive use of Medio Tiempo. I suspect many of you will get the opportunity to try them soon enough, especially those of you how do events in the summer, wink wink.

    Ajay also gifted a Behike 56 to Jimmeh, so he now had both cigars, my mood just continued to simmer but green eyed envy is never a pretty thing so I just concentrated on my cigar. This had an unfortunate result in that I smoked this large cigar STAGGERINGLY quickly. Now those of you who smoke with me know I am a slow smoker. As an example I took from 11am to 6pm last Friday to smoke one Ramon Allones Phoenicios (I bloody love this cigar) at Teddington (in case you are wondering I started smoking there at 4pm Thursday and finished when Deano took me home at 5pm Saturday). I ploughed through this cigar, more as a result of my concentration than anything else. When I finished Ajay looked somewhat unimpressed. He thought I had smoked it stupidly quickly and said I did not give it time for the flavours to fully develop. I will admit that I smoked it quickly, faster than Jimmeh for once but I certainly do not remember smoking intentionally fast. This is another reason I am currently reserving judgement on this cigar until I give it a "second interview". Jimmeh may well have thoughts on the cigar he is willing to share.

    Whilst Jimmeh and I smoked the Behike Ajay smoked a Partagas Salomon 155th Anniversary. He has been sitting on a few of these sticks for years apparently and decided tonight was a good excuse to smoke one. He said the start was not good at all, but after about the first inch or so (of a large cigar) he looked like he was a million miles away. The more of this particular cigar he smoked the more he fell back in love with it.

    During my smoking of the Behike our Italian friend had raced off for his flight leaving me with my Partagas Reserva and taking his Cohiba Gran Reserva that Ajay had gifted. The remaining three of us drank coke, diet-coke, coffee and water as appropriate as we had each individually driven in. We discussed Cuba, cigars, the forum, more cigars, cars, how Trevor (me) reads too much into everything, yet more cigars, took the piss out of Trevor (me) and finally what to smoke next. Jimmeh offered me a D4 from his travel humi but I refused it as I was not in the mood for that. Ajay excused himself for the bathroom and pushed a Cohiba Gran Reserva into my hand. Well, he offered me a choice of that or the Bolivar Petit Belicosos, some choice! Upon his return he asked why I had not lit the cigar to which I replied that it was a long smoke and I did not have time to appreciate it. He said either I light it or he will and that I should not rush it, I could finish it on the drive home if I needed.

    Now some of you may remember the review I wrote of the Gran Reserva I smoked on the sampling night. How I thought it was good but not great and certainly not worth ?85. Well this cigar is a TOTALLY different kettle of fish. I see what Ajay means about the very initial run being a rung or ten above the "standard" Reserva. This stick also benefited from never having sat in a cedar box. The first Reserva I smoked came out of one of the presentation boxes and the odour and taste of the cedar (or glue, depending who you talk to) just corrupted the cigar. If you smoke a Gran Reserva take it out the box and put it in a humi bag or humidor a week before you intend to smoke it so the cedar taste and smell has a chance to fade, I cannot suggest this strongly enough!

    Loving this cigar from the first puff, which is reasonably uncommon for me, I smoked it much more slowly. The conversation continued. Ajay finished his small meal and we all had more coffee. He turned to me and gave me direct orders to smoke the Partagas Reserva soon and not to add it to my collection of various sticks, he insists that it is for smoking, not looking at. Anybody else I would think this rude coming from, especially since they did not give me the cigar, but from Ajay I know he has reason behind it.

    The conversation at the latter part of the evening revolved around many things but the topic of the new smoking lounge thing that some forum members are trying today came up and the Dunhill cigars they sell. Ajay said next time I am over he will give me one of the ones he was given as a sample. I asked him how they are and he said "I said I would give you one didn't I?" with a knowing look. Lets just say that in his speak that is not a glowing endorsement and that my desire to try them has diminished but not utterly gone.

    There were many other interesting topics, such as things in the cigar business world, how the number of regional editions had grown to a stupid number but has now been cut back (thank god), how there is a school of thought that the Behikes will be more variable year on year than most cigars and various other things. Grab me in conversation if you really want the dirt, LOL.

    They close the smoking terrace at 11pm in theory but we received the polite wink that it was time to leave at gone midnight, great place.

    All I can say now is thanks to Ajay and my friends for a great night. I am glad we finally got to "show off" the place in London we enjoy so much but the evening was really just taken to a different level by the two rare cigars James and I smoked due to the generosity of Ajay.

    P.S. Pictures to follow when I can upload them.
    "In Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love, they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock!"

  • #2
    My brief thoughts on the Cohiba BHK 56: Great cigar - Instant fan. I am by no means a cohiba guy - but i loved this! The first half is almost a non event but the second half is outstandingly amazing - so full flavoured and tasty! You do need the first half though as it slowly crescendos up to the full bodied final. The cigar just kept me guessing as it was getting more and more powerful and more and more tasty! This has become the new "birthday cigar" for me i think!

    The Gran Reserva - Completely different ball game. Whereas the BHK built up slowly - this is full bodied from the start and just amazingly tasty all the way through!

    What great cigars! I am over the moon that i was able to smoke them last night - thank you again Ajay! They are both completely different so i cannot even begin to say which of them i preferred - they are just both amazing! Looking forward to smoking the BHK again in the future; i doubt my budget will stretch as far as a Gran Reserva again in the near future!


    • #3
      I am utterly jealous, obviously Ajay was in a great mood, and I unfortunately am still at home with a limp foot, missing out on some great sticks.

      Glad you boys enjoyed them, and welcome back James.


      • #4
        "Amazingly fantastic", you sound like a twelve year old school girl.

        Oh yes, you have only smoked the Gran Reserva once, that being last night. Well if "strange" Americans keep sending you random CASH then you can smoke more of them!!!!!

        Deano is pissed we didn't ask him along, have to explain at some point why that was not an option.

        "In Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love, they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock!"


        • #5
          Re: A tale of a Behike, Gran Reserva, Reserva and a hotel.

          You picture me however you want.... Just keep it to yourself.


          • #6
            Sounds like a very good night. Gran Reservas AND Behikes...someones living the life.


            • #7
              I'm pissed? Sorry, I wasn't in London so I couldn't have come even if invited.


              • #8
                thumbs up!

                i imagine your face throughout the evening started off like this (correct even to the colour)




                then finally of course

                and for you to love a cohiba... well that shows those original reserva are SPECIAL!


                • #9
                  And the horse you rode in on...

                  Originally posted by Big_T_UK View Post
                  Well if "strange" Americans keep sending you random CASH
                  I had no choice.

                  This snot-nosed kid suddenly up and PayPals me money. No note. No explanation. No nothing.

                  I'm thinking, "You know, the lad probably feels obligated for some reason or other and wishes to compensate me for something or other. Either that or he is just so overwhelmed by my devilish handsometude that this is the only way he can show his appreciation."

                  However, I am a tad upset that he feels the need to recompense me in any way for anything, since it was my pleasure to act as his host and -- frankly -- I enjoyed his company so much that any expense that may have been incurred was totally incident to the pleasure of the evening(s).

                  So, I'm looking at this PayPal-ed money and notice that it's got this option on it: Accept/Reject.

                  Okay, laddie boy, here's what you can do with your blood money: I press Reject. PayPal tells me the money will be returned to Jimmeh.

                  Hah! I win! But it's not enough. I must now teach this upstart a lesson. Send me money will he? I'll fix his wagon. Who does he think he's fucking with? Some Turkmenistani hunchbacked beggar dwarf fresh off the turnip truck? I PayPal him money! (Well, not real money, actually, just those funny Brittania Spears Lbs. Stirling Mosses.) That'll teach the young whippersnapper! Guess I showed him a thing or three.

                  Then he sends me an email saying "WTF? I was just refunding your money on the aborted Partagas Short split."


                  I'd completely forgotten about that.

                  But the little shit didn't say squat in his payment and the split happened a long time ago and I'm too fucking old to remember what I had for breakfast much less what deals I'm working on with whom from months ago.

                  So, to save what little face I could salvage, I just told the lad to keep it.

                  Wot the 'ell. 'e's got ter scrounge ev'ry tuppence (thruppence? fruppence?) 'til 'e can find employ, especially if 'e's goin' all a'spendthrift wif you,of an evenin', Big T.


                  • #10
                    Lmfao thats actually made me giggle like a school girl. You should quit this rocket scientist nonsense and write a book or something. In fact nevermind that, you could leave the pages blank and jus make sure the picture of the author truly reflects your devilish handsomeness and we already have a bestseller on our hands.

                    You save on printing costs too.


                    • #11
                      Good work!


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by moppy View Post
                        Sounds like a very good night. Gran Reservas AND Behikes...someones living the life.


                        • #13
                          Anyone who hasnt been to 10 Manc it is the norm to hand out Gran reserves and rare cigars on their first visit, i'll be there Tues & Friday next.


                          • #14
                            OK, here are the pics, nothing amazing to look at but you get the idea....

                            First, proof we finally got Ajay to Ten Manchester Street! LOL Doing the tour.

                            The Partagas Reserva from 2005 using 2000 tobacco.

                            Then the Cohiba Behike 56.

                            The Partagas Salomon 155th Anniversary.

                            The "original" run example of the Cohiba Gran Reserva.

                            And finally myself and Ajay, horrid photo of me as usual.

                            "In Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love, they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock!"


                            • #15
                              wow what a night that must have been, a great read that was