Cu-Avana Maduro February 20th, 2005 Gonz Share: Every winter, I get into this rut. I feel like I'm always running the 2 minute drill. You football nuts out there know what I'm talking about. The no huddle offense. Move the ball quickly, plow forward, hope the defense goes into the "prevent" defense, or as I refer to it - the "prevent winning" defense. Anyway, about February of each year, this happens. Go go go go go go go go. I start hoping that by running a hundred miles per hour, it'll make winter go by quicker. And this year has been brutal, abso-spectacularly brutal - snow, cold, ice, snow, rain, sleet, sideways snow. And occasionally the sun will come out and just tease ya a little bit - man I've got the cabin-fever real bad. My winter habit - work 12 hours, go home, have dinner, work a few more hours - tear off another 1/2 dozen emails to my fans, watch B-movies until 2am, go to bed, then get up at 6am to start all over again. (Anyone out there see a movie called Miracle Beach with Amy Dolenz - what a classic! If you haven't seen it, rent it, it's the greatest B-movie of all time.) That's my routine, all the while choking down cigar after cigar to keep my glazed eyes from closing. Every night I dream it's going to be 50 degrees when I wake up and I'll actually be able to see grass in my backyard (How do some of you actually live in Michigan and Green Bay.) So, here we go, 2 minute drill on Gonz's pick too, I'm taking you to the end-zone. Cu-Avana Maduro on 2, ready, break! You can't go wrong with this play and it'll catch the defense way off guard. For those of you that emailed me on that my Cu-Avana Connecticut Shade pick was too mellow for ya, don't turn me off yet. This medium-bodied, slightly spicy, tasty maduro wrapper has real depth of flavor. Coming off of a month where I smoked a bunch of Indian Tabac Corojos, the flavor profile on this gem still fancied my tastebuds. Don't expect a ligero-filled choke-ster that grows hair on your chest with the first puff, but grab hold of the fantastic flavor that'll roll off your tongue. The Connecticut Broadleaf is georgeous, slightly toothy, and slighty oily. The cigar is solid, packed well, impeccably rolled. Go ahead, light it up, take a chance, I just threw you a bomb into the end zone. You'll immediately get a chalky-white firm ash that'll hold and drop, not flake and fly. The draw requires a little tug, I love it best when I can let a cigar hang out of my mouth for a 1/2 hour while shoveling snow and I don't choke on it. This is probably one of the finest maduros I've smoked. Why? The wrapper provides the depth of flavor that you might find missing in tamer cigars. I never had a favorite Maduro before, but there are nuances of sweet cocoa that caress a potentially flat flavor and it keeps me running out of the huddle for the next play. Plus, if you're in the mood for a couple cigars today, the all-Dominican-filler is not going to rock your boat, but keep you interested enough to press on. You won't find a dull finish, there's a lingering body but still dissipates from the surrounding room quickly. As I break out of winter, I've found something to look forward to each day - a great cigar like Cu-Avana Maduro. And I can't wait 'till this weather clears and I can actually sit on the porch, slow down, and get out of this 2-minute panic that keeps me wondering if we're hitting the next Ice Age. Throw me into the igloo with a few boxes of Cu-Avana Maduro, and I'm happier than a penguin floating aimlessly on a block of ice in Antarctica.