Latin America Play by Play

Alex_SvensonAlex_Svenson Posts: 1,224Moderator admin
Headed down south again. I just got to the Chicago airport and my flightt boards in about an hour or so. If all goes as planned I will arrive in Managua about 9pm this evening. Staying at Hotel Camino Real across the street to avoid driving on the roads at night then making the 90 minute stretch to Esteli in the morning. Tuesday I am going to head over the boarder to honduras for a quick overnight trip. It has been several years since I have been to Honduras so I am pretty excited. Not visiting has not been due to a lack of desire, but rather a safety issue. Honduras has become much more dangerous over the last 24 months. Still, I am excited to visit some of my favorite factorries and see what has changed. With any luck, Hondurras will be back on my radar as a regular place to start visitinng again!!
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Comments

  • roland_7707roland_7707 Posts: 2,834 ✭✭✭
    have a fun, safe trip. bring us back something good.
    One God, One Truth
  • wwhwangwwhwang Ottawa, ON, CanadaPosts: 2,878 ✭✭✭
    Nice! Hope you have a safe trip, Alex. I'd love to see some pictures, if you can take some.
  • denniskingdennisking Posts: 3,703 ✭✭✭
    thanks for the new play by play. travel safe.
  • YankeeManYankeeMan Posts: 2,187 ✭✭✭✭
    Be careful!
  • Valla con Dios Alex!
  • Alex_SvensonAlex_Svenson Posts: 1,224Moderator admin
    Just got on the plane in Miami for Managua. Man this is the busiest travel day of the year and it shows, this plane is stacked up. Sometimes american hooks me up with a comp upgrade to first class if they have extra seats... not this time. My big 6'5" 300 pound frame is snuggled in nicely in the middle seat. At least there are some smaller folks next to me. I cant tell you the number of times they have filled my row with all 250 pounders. They are closing the door. Will update from Managua if I can get an internet connection.
  • denniskingdennisking Posts: 3,703 ✭✭✭
    Alex Svenson:
    Just got on the plane in Miami for Managua. Man this is the busiest travel day of the year and it shows, this plane is stacked up. Sometimes american hooks me up with a comp upgrade to first class if they have extra seats... not this time. My big 6'5" 300 pound frame is snuggled in nicely in the middle seat. At least there are some smaller folks next to me. I cant tell you the number of times they have filled my row with all 250 pounders. They are closing the door. Will update from Managua if I can get an internet connection.
    from someone who is 6'4 285lbs, I can completely understand how uncomfortable and cramped it is. lot's of fun for sure
  • firetruckguyfiretruckguy Greeley, ColoradoPosts: 2,529 ✭✭✭
    dennisking:
    Alex Svenson:
    Just got on the plane in Miami for Managua. Man this is the busiest travel day of the year and it shows, this plane is stacked up. Sometimes american hooks me up with a comp upgrade to first class if they have extra seats... not this time. My big 6'5" 300 pound frame is snuggled in nicely in the middle seat. At least there are some smaller folks next to me. I cant tell you the number of times they have filled my row with all 250 pounders. They are closing the door. Will update from Managua if I can get an internet connection.
    from someone who is 6'4 285lbs, I can completely understand how uncomfortable and cramped it is. lot's of fun for sure

    333 pounder here and I only fly if I can get a aisle seat so I can lean out into the aisle. Have fun Alex.
  • ShotgunJohnShotgunJohn Lakewood WAPosts: 1,545 ✭✭
    Alex Svenson:
    Headed down south again. I just got to the Chicago airport and my flightt boards in about an hour or so. If all goes as planned I will arrive in Managua about 9pm this evening. Staying at Hotel Camino Real across the street to avoid driving on the roads at night then making the 90 minute stretch to Esteli in the morning. Tuesday I am going to head over the boarder to honduras for a quick overnight trip. It has been several years since I have been to Honduras so I am pretty excited. Not visiting has not been due to a lack of desire, but rather a safety issue. Honduras has become much more dangerous over the last 24 months. Still, I am excited to visit some of my favorite factorries and see what has changed. With any luck, Hondurras will be back on my radar as a regular place to start visitinng again!!

    Awesome Alex, have a great trip and be safe. Hopefully everything goes smoothly in Honduras.
  • Sandman1amSandman1am Posts: 2,567
    I always feel like the child that was left home when his parents went on vacation. OK be safe, have fun, take lots of pics, and make sure you bring me back a T-Shirt (cigars). LOL Hope you enjoy your trip for real Alex.
  • docbp87docbp87 Posts: 3,521
    dennisking:
    Alex Svenson:
    Just got on the plane in Miami for Managua. Man this is the busiest travel day of the year and it shows, this plane is stacked up. Sometimes american hooks me up with a comp upgrade to first class if they have extra seats... not this time. My big 6'5" 300 pound frame is snuggled in nicely in the middle seat. At least there are some smaller folks next to me. I cant tell you the number of times they have filled my row with all 250 pounders. They are closing the door. Will update from Managua if I can get an internet connection.
    from someone who is 6'4 285lbs, I can completely understand how uncomfortable and cramped it is. lot's of fun for sure
    As a big ol' fat boy, +1 to this.

    Love reading these. Hope your internet connection is good so we can get pics and what not.
  • Alex_SvensonAlex_Svenson Posts: 1,224Moderator admin
    Woke up and realized I am coming down with a cold.... Nnnooooooooooo!!! Being sick kills my palate so I started a regiment of medicine and hope to feel better by the time I get to Esteli. On the road now. Hotel was great, woke up early and hit the steam room at the fitness center in hopes it would help clear up my cold symptoms which it did. Omelete and bacon with some fruit for breakfast. A day of smoking awaits (assuming I can kick this cold). Should have brought one of you guys with me. You could be my proxy cigar taster until I start feeling better. Not a bad job.
  • sightunseensightunseen Posts: 2,130
    Alex Svenson:
    Woke up and realized I am coming down with a cold.... Nnnooooooooooo!!! Being sick kills my palate so I started a regiment of medicine and hope to feel better by the time I get to Esteli. On the road now. Hotel was great, woke up early and hit the steam room at the fitness center in hopes it would help clear up my cold symptoms which it did. Omelete and bacon with some fruit for breakfast. A day of smoking awaits (assuming I can kick this cold). Should have brought one of you guys with me. You could be my proxy cigar taster until I start feeling better. Not a bad job.
    Bad timing with the cold, sucks to hear that. Where do I sign up to be your proxy cigar taster?
  • KriegKrieg Posts: 5,092 ✭✭✭
    you're right, not a bad job at all!
  • denniskingdennisking Posts: 3,703 ✭✭✭
    i'm on my way.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    what honduran factories are you going to visit?
  • ENFIDLENFIDL Posts: 5,836
    Alex Svenson:
    Woke up and realized I am coming down with a cold.... Nnnooooooooooo!!! Being sick kills my palate so I started a regiment of medicine and hope to feel better by the time I get to Esteli. On the road now. Hotel was great, woke up early and hit the steam room at the fitness center in hopes it would help clear up my cold symptoms which it did. Omelete and bacon with some fruit for breakfast. A day of smoking awaits (assuming I can kick this cold). Should have brought one of you guys with me. You could be my proxy cigar taster until I start feeling better. Not a bad job.
    Booking my ticket now! lol
  • YankeeManYankeeMan Posts: 2,187 ✭✭✭✭
    Alex Svenson:
    Just got on the plane in Miami for Managua. Man this is the busiest travel day of the year and it shows, this plane is stacked up. Sometimes american hooks me up with a comp upgrade to first class if they have extra seats... not this time. My big 6'5" 300 pound frame is snuggled in nicely in the middle seat. At least there are some smaller folks next to me. I cant tell you the number of times they have filled my row with all 250 pounders. They are closing the door. Will update from Managua if I can get an internet connection.
    Seeing I'm no slim jim, they way I make room from the center seat is to ask the person on either side if they are going to use their vomit bag, because I usually use two or three. For some reason, they always ask for another seat and I can enjoy my flight!

  • Alex_SvensonAlex_Svenson Posts: 1,224Moderator admin
    Just arrived esteli, smoke the pelo de oro from the spring harvest.... yummy. Kuzi, will let you know about honduras and post it here after I visit. Due to safety issues there at the moment I don't want to disclose any of my itinerary in advance. Will be sure to share all the details with you guys though after I make my visits. Man this pelo de oro is great.
  • Sandman1amSandman1am Posts: 2,567
    Alex Svenson:
    Just arrived esteli, smoke the pelo de oro from the spring harvest.... yummy. Kuzi, will let you know about honduras and post it here after I visit. Due to safety issues there at the moment I don't want to disclose any of my itinerary in advance. Will be sure to share all the details with you guys though after I make my visits. Man this pelo de oro is great.
    That's a smart traveller there, and be sure not to talk to strangers ;). I've got some time off work right now Alex if you really wanted me to come down you might be able to twist my arm and help you smoke a few of those pelo de oro's or anything else for that matter. My going rate is just room, board, & of course cigars.
  • docbp87docbp87 Posts: 3,521
    Alex Svenson:
    Just arrived esteli, smoke the pelo de oro from the spring harvest.... yummy. Kuzi, will let you know about honduras and post it here after I visit. Due to safety issues there at the moment I don't want to disclose any of my itinerary in advance. Will be sure to share all the details with you guys though after I make my visits. Man this pelo de oro is great.
    God I wish there was more Pelo D'oro around. It is the one tobacco that makes me really salivate. Even the name is f'ing first class.
  • Alex_SvensonAlex_Svenson Posts: 1,224Moderator admin
    Great first day. Pelo de oro smoked great but won't be ready to really start blending with for a few months. Bi did find some bails of some very dark wrapper from cuban seeds grown in brazil. The habano brazil is rare stuff and this high priming wrapper had a great look. Only enough wrapper for 20,000 cigars and probably 15,000 a year after that. Gears have been turning ever since I smoked it after lunch. Smoked lots of good stuff but I could not appreciate it as much as I wanted to with this damn cold. Hit the box factory to check some new designs I have been working on which came out great. One I am sure will be coming soon. Looking forward to bringing back the samples and unveiling them for Josh and tim. Ended the day at a leather goods factory looking at some exotic materials for cases and packaging and grabbed a purse for the wife (a peace offering lol). Just got back from dinner with Ricardo Pintor who has a small cigar and box factory. His wife us an amazing cook. I love when he calls and invites me for food!! Signing off.
  • KriegKrieg Posts: 5,092 ✭✭✭
    Alex Svenson:
    Great first day. Pelo de oro smoked great but won't be ready to really start blending with for a few months. Bi did find some bails of some very dark wrapper from cuban seeds grown in brazil. The habano brazil is rare stuff and this high priming wrapper had a great look. Only enough wrapper for 20,000 cigars and probably 15,000 a year after that. Gears have been turning ever since I smoked it after lunch. Smoked lots of good stuff but I could not appreciate it as much as I wanted to with this damn cold. Hit the box factory to check some new designs I have been working on which came out great. One I am sure will be coming soon. Looking forward to bringing back the samples and unveiling them for Josh and tim. Ended the day at a leather goods factory looking at some exotic materials for cases and packaging and grabbed a purse for the wife (a peace offering lol). Just got back from dinner with Ricardo Pintor who has a small cigar and box factory. His wife us an amazing cook. I love when he calls and invites me for food!! Signing off.
    Sounds like a great trip so far, except for the cold that is. Good idea in getting the purse for the wife, a happy wife is a happy life I always say :)
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    nice.
    I heart Honduran Tobacco.
    i cant wait to read all about it.
  • Alex_SvensonAlex_Svenson Posts: 1,224Moderator admin
    well i just landed back in miami and internet was pretty much out the window after monday. i went to honduras tuesday and spent the night there. much different place and a lot has changed in the two or so years it has been since my last visit. people are a lot more cautious and it appears the crime has become a real problem, but fortunately for me I had no trouble. I had a chance to visit with nestor plasencia jr and sr in honduras at their san macros facility and also met with racies cubanas. smoked some great stuff alec bradley is doing. racies cubanas is an interesting spot. they have some great materials and take qc very seriously. also while in honduras I spent some time with george and guillermo rico (owners of the gran habano brand) both over dinner and at their factory in danli. great guys and george is an extremely talented blender. he unveiled a new style off cigar making i have never seen before. at first i thought it was kind of gimicky but after smoking some, i see how innovative it is. the guy has a lot of creativity. i drove back over the boarder on wednesday and met with my friends oscar and fidel olivas who are still growing like crazy in Ocotal Nicaragua. They gave me a nice new sample of a cigar made with a dark and oily german wrapper that was delicious. Thursday I spent the day with nestor plasencia in their blending room in esteli and worked with some new stalk cut jamastran fillers. it is an experimental first crop we have been working on. we planted it in the spring last year and the leaves are just now ripe enough to start blending. last night i drove back to managua and had an excellent dinner with a good friend. more to come on that experience in a separate post. lots of good brazilian habano wrapper out there. I think we are going to see more of this tobacco surface out there but it appears pretty expensive. time will tell!!
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    Alex Svenson:
    also while in honduras I spent some time with george and guillermo rico (owners of the gran habano brand) both over dinner and at their factory in danli. great guys and george is an extremely talented blender. he unveiled a new style off cigar making i have never seen before. at first i thought it was kind of gimicky but after smoking some, i see how innovative it is. the guy has a lot of creativity.
    new style of making a cigar as in blending or in how it is rolled? or both?
  • cabinetmakercabinetmaker Posts: 2,561
    kuzi16:
    Alex Svenson:
    also while in honduras I spent some time with george and guillermo rico (owners of the gran habano brand) both over dinner and at their factory in danli. great guys and george is an extremely talented blender. he unveiled a new style off cigar making i have never seen before. at first i thought it was kind of gimicky but after smoking some, i see how innovative it is. the guy has a lot of creativity.
    new style of making a cigar as in blending or in how it is rolled? or both?
    +?
  • stephen_hannibalstephen_hannibal Posts: 4,317
    Alex Svenson:
    well i just landed back in miami and internet was pretty much out the window after monday. i went to honduras tuesday and spent the night there. much different place and a lot has changed in the two or so years it has been since my last visit. people are a lot more cautious and it appears the crime has become a real problem, but fortunately for me I had no trouble. I had a chance to visit with nestor plasencia jr and sr in honduras at their san macros facility and also met with racies cubanas. smoked some great stuff alec bradley is doing. racies cubanas is an interesting spot. they have some great materials and take qc very seriously. also while in honduras I spent some time with george and guillermo rico (owners of the gran habano brand) both over dinner and at their factory in danli. great guys and george is an extremely talented blender. he unveiled a new style off cigar making i have never seen before. at first i thought it was kind of gimicky but after smoking some, i see how innovative it is. the guy has a lot of creativity. i drove back over the boarder on wednesday and met with my friends oscar and fidel olivas who are still growing like crazy in Ocotal Nicaragua. They gave me a nice new sample of a cigar made with a dark and oily german wrapper that was delicious. Thursday I spent the day with nestor plasencia in their blending room in esteli and worked with some new stalk cut jamastran fillers. it is an experimental first crop we have been working on. we planted it in the spring last year and the leaves are just now ripe enough to start blending. last night i drove back to managua and had an excellent dinner with a good friend. more to come on that experience in a separate post. lots of good brazilian habano wrapper out there. I think we are going to see more of this tobacco surface out there but it appears pretty expensive. time will tell!!
    Speaking of Gran Habano where are the freaking AZTECA!!!!!!!!

  • docbp87docbp87 Posts: 3,521
    stephen_hannibal:
    Alex Svenson:
    well i just landed back in miami and internet was pretty much out the window after monday. i went to honduras tuesday and spent the night there. much different place and a lot has changed in the two or so years it has been since my last visit. people are a lot more cautious and it appears the crime has become a real problem, but fortunately for me I had no trouble. I had a chance to visit with nestor plasencia jr and sr in honduras at their san macros facility and also met with racies cubanas. smoked some great stuff alec bradley is doing. racies cubanas is an interesting spot. they have some great materials and take qc very seriously. also while in honduras I spent some time with george and guillermo rico (owners of the gran habano brand) both over dinner and at their factory in danli. great guys and george is an extremely talented blender. he unveiled a new style off cigar making i have never seen before. at first i thought it was kind of gimicky but after smoking some, i see how innovative it is. the guy has a lot of creativity. i drove back over the boarder on wednesday and met with my friends oscar and fidel olivas who are still growing like crazy in Ocotal Nicaragua. They gave me a nice new sample of a cigar made with a dark and oily german wrapper that was delicious. Thursday I spent the day with nestor plasencia in their blending room in esteli and worked with some new stalk cut jamastran fillers. it is an experimental first crop we have been working on. we planted it in the spring last year and the leaves are just now ripe enough to start blending. last night i drove back to managua and had an excellent dinner with a good friend. more to come on that experience in a separate post. lots of good brazilian habano wrapper out there. I think we are going to see more of this tobacco surface out there but it appears pretty expensive. time will tell!!
    Speaking of Gran Habano where are the freaking AZTECA!!!!!!!!

    In tacky plastic boxes, being tacky.
  • Alex_SvensonAlex_Svenson Posts: 1,224Moderator admin
    cabinetmaker:
    kuzi16:
    Alex Svenson:
    also while in honduras I spent some time with george and guillermo rico (owners of the gran habano brand) both over dinner and at their factory in danli. great guys and george is an extremely talented blender. he unveiled a new style off cigar making i have never seen before. at first i thought it was kind of gimicky but after smoking some, i see how innovative it is. the guy has a lot of creativity.
    new style of making a cigar as in blending or in how it is rolled? or both?
    +?
    Both. Wish I could share more but they asked mento keep it under my lid for a fee months until they get it far enough along. People have a tendency to steal/copy ideas in this biz
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