blog1It’s day two at the International Premium Cigar and Pipe Retailers Trade Show and I can’t begin talking about Sunday without first going back to Saturday evening.

For dinner on Saturday we decided to grab a steak with our friends from Rocky Patel. It was a nice evening which included some table side entertainment. Although the guys sang some David Ruffin at my request and did an outstanding job, it was a actually street performer that would later steal the show.

As we were heading back to our hotel and walking along Canal Street, we encountered a gentleman playing the bongos and free-style rapping. Now this gentlemen wasn’t just ripping rhymes but he was rather targeting his lyrics at those passing by. He was very good, so much so that Rocky Patel offered him a job to perform at his booth the next day. Much to the delight of folks at the trade show on Sunday, he took Rocky up on his offer.


So let’s talk about the cigars. We started things off with Oliva. We have developed quite the partnership with them and it has a lot to do with Albert Sosa. He does a great job servicing our stores and interacting with our team members. He also served us up some great espresso and a cigar which got the day started off good. For you Oliva fans we will be adding the O’s to go along with the V’s, G’s, Nubs, and Connecticut.

We also checked out new products at Kristoff, Villager, Xikar, and Perdomo. Our last stop was with Gurkha cigars. It is ways interesting to see what is new from these guys each year. We added a wonderful new Cask Strength cigar and an ABC exclusive smoke called Shine. We also have a new gift set coming but you will have to wait for Christmas to open that one.

It was a busy day, and I didn’t have enough time to take many pictures. Hopefully we have a little more time for that tomorrow between world-class cigars and street performers.

Chris Gwaltney, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits category manager: premium cigars and craft beer

Follow me on Twitter @abcCigarChris

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