There is a certain cigar company that I had, for whatever reason, written off in my head. I’ll refrain from naming the company, because I didn’t think they were necessarily producing bad cigars…just not fit for my personal preferences and palate. I’d tried some of their offerings over the years and just decided they weren’t for me. So, as a whole I had avoided them for a long, long time. I have to admit to completely overlooking them whenever I visited shops. The thought of purchasing anything from their range never crossed my mind.
Recently, at one of the many cigar shops I find myself in throughout the state of Florida, I happened on to one of that company’s reps who gave me a cigar. I respectfully accepted it thinking it probably wouldn’t be my style…but I’d give it a go anyway. Days later, I thought “What the heck?” and fired it up. Unexpectedly, it was a great smoke…nothing at all like my memory of any of their other blends I had sampled over the years. Not just “OK,” not just “a little better” than expected – a very, very good cigar with some unique flavors and perfect construction. I don’t know if the cigars changed, this particular blend or stick is just different from the others I’ve tried, or my preferences have just drifted that much…or possibly even a combination of all these factors. I do know this has piqued my interest, and I’ll definitely be buying a few more to give them another chance. I’d certainly be more interested in trying some of their more recent blends, and less reluctant to try anything new they release.
With all the myriad cigar offerings out there today, it’s easy to dismiss an entire manufacturer’s offerings, knowing that there are many more fish in the sea. But, it makes me wonder what else I’ve been missing out of sheer callousness brought about by experiences long past. I know I can’t smoke them all…but I’d like to give it the ‘ol college try! What about you? Did you ever have a cigar brand that you thought didn’t appeal to you as a whole? Or, perhaps you’ve avoided certain cigars because of the tobacco’s origin, where it was rolled, or some other criteria? Have you revisited them? How willing are you to set that prejudice aside in the future to try something new from that maker/country/style? Conversely, are there manufacturers/regions/lines from which you automatically expect great things?