Far too much time has passed since a cigar post has been featured here at Smoke on the Water. What!? You thought this blog was named for the song!? Think again!
Someone needs to buy out the nail salon that sits between the other two stores in the following picture.
And then put a liquor store in it's place. Now that would be a perfect Trifecta. How sweet it would be to go one-stop shopping for Alchohol, Tobacco and Firearms!
Coming from Houston's Reliant Center after enjoying the rather large gun show there, I ventured over to Richmond Avenue Cigars. Which convienently happens to be two doors down from the fabled Collector's Firearms.
Woe is me; I've already spent too much at the gun show, now I've leapt from the frying pan and have lit the fire on one helluva fine cigar. The Edge, which carries cigar legend Rocky Patel's name. A fine maduro wrapped cigar in the size he calles The Missle. It's a 5"x48 ga. product, which would usually bring it in as a short Corona, but for the torpedo-type taper at the head.
More on this fine cigar later, after I've smoked more than the first inch which I've quite enjoyed thus far.
Richmond Avenue Cigars did not used to be open on Sundays. And so it was only on the rare occassion that I'd have some Saturday time off that I ever got to stop in there. However, just about a year ago, they made the leap into full service Sundays, much to the delight of many a cigar enthusiast.
And so it was that when I lost my triple-flame torch lighter somewhere along the line 'tween here and Kerrville, I detoured to this fine tobacconist upon going broke at wrapping up my tour of of the gun show. (I can't find this particular lighter anywhere else!).
I was very pleasantly surprised at what I saw when I entered. Last time I'd patronized the store, they had a rather tight walk-in humidor with two narrow rows, and an equally cozy retail lobby. Although it has always been a most accomodating place to sit, relax and enjoy a complimentary coffee with one's smoke, it was always a bit problematic to find an open chair among the few at the table. That's resolved now. Comfortably resolved, in the form of some nice, high-backed leather upholstered executive office chairs.
Which I didn't get pictures of. D'oh! Still, enjoy the rest of the store, m'kay? Just click on the pics to get 'em fullsize.
Iris will be glad that we live too far from here for me to visit often, it'd be hard to pry me away.
Being warmly greeted by owners Lynn and Dan Goodwin, I was instantly made at ease and encouraged to examine the (over twice the previous size) walk-in humidor's extensive inventory.
Dan & Lynn Goodwin, proprietors.
I of course did so, and quietly noted that I wasn't hectored to decide, nor hovered over as a potential thief, as happens at so many other tobacconists these days.
So after Dan kindly clipped the cap on the Missle, I put light to it and settled into one of those extraordinarily comfortable chairs. Being the sole customer at the time, Lynn engaged me in a most pleasant conversation, relating bits about the evolution of the store, the expansion of hours and square footage and what's in store for the future.
Quite a future it is, too. This store is but the beginning. Soon, there will also be a related 5,000+ square foot Cigar Lounge and Bar in Katy, Texas. It will boast the finest names in cigars, accessories and libations, all in a first-class environment. There's more, but I'll wait till later to give those details. Suffice to say, Houston has yet to see a cigar-centric establishment at this level........and sadly, Houston never will, due to the already near-total prohibition on smoking in virtually all public places.
Houston's loss, Katy's gain.
Talking about Dan and Lynn's new venture; the conversation led to the nature of the Cigar clientle, and the tremendous crossover with the interests of folks in the Shooting community. Lynn noted that an overwhelming percentage of her regular customers were an assortment of NRA members, CHL holders, hunters and gun afficianados of all sorts. Further, we discussed the remarkable similarity of the legislative battles fought in support of not only the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, but the rights of individuals to enjoy a fine cgiar, and for business to operate as they wish, free of nanny-state meddling and intrusion.
Such a pleasant chat with such agreeable people made the Missle's Honduran and Nicaraguan blend burned all the more smoothly in it's silky-dark Maduro wrapper. I can't overstate this, the Rocky Patel Edge Missle is a cigar not to be missed! I enjoyed this one down to the finger-burning level, and it never struck a single harsh note throughout. Be warned though, it's an ass-kicking strong smoke, not for the neyophyte. Be sure to enjoy it after a good meal, or be prepared for one hella seegar-buzz.
Speaking of buzz, that's what happened as the political conversation contiuned. A sure sign of true genius, the Goodwins are with me aboard the Fred! bandwagon. Especially after seeing the video of his masterful evisceration of the foul propagandist.
Would that it could have been a longer visit, but sadly, cigars burn down, coffee mugs grow cold, and I found myself compelled to hasten home to the loving company of my loving Iris. So, with farewells all around and promises to continue the conversation later, I made my way an hour South, to home, to finish this post (mostly written at Richmond Avenue Cigars), and to cook a hearty steak dinner for Iris and me.
And now that the night draws to a close, I sit here contentedly.
It would be hard to top a day which includes guns, cigars and bourbon. And friends.