Every year for the past 3 years, on the Saturday before Thanksgiving, Corona Cigars in Orlando, FL hosts their annual Cigars and Cars event where you can indulge in a judgement free smoking experience. For the second year now they have held it at the Shrine Auditorium in Lake Mary, FL. I like this venue as you don’t have to worry about it getting rained out as you can smoke inside. This year there was representation from over 30 cigar manufacturers not mention the local restaurant samplings and liquor tastings. I have always gotten the VIP ticket for $150 as it gets you some additional ultra premium cigars and an intimate whisky tasting. Macallan sponsored this years whiskey tasting and as you will see it was a well worth the extra few bucks for the VIP ticket.
We got there about 30 minutes after the official VIP opening (30 minutes before general admission). The entry moved quickly and shortly after getting our collection bag we entered the main room and worked our way around the tables like kids in a candy shop. To see their wide eyes was like watching your kids on Christmas day.I explained the first mission was to get through all the tables before the general admission crowd fills the hall and then indulge in the food and beverage. So following my lead off we went.
Though there were about 33 manufactures there were some that stood out. Miami Cigar Co, brought one of their rollers with them and instead of getting an existing cigar you got a freshly rolled one, of course that was going to go right into my humidor for a few months before I smoke it.
La Flor Dominicana had a nice table and running a special on their special Corona Cigars vitola for 69.99 for a box of 10. I could not turn that down as they are based off the LFD 654 double ligero blend. You can read the review of that soon.
A. Flores had wonderful table with the always animated PDR folks. The good folks at Drew Estate were kind enough to provide the VIP attendees with the Liga Privada Unicos Series “A” , another cigar that will be saved for a special moment to smoke.
Once we completed our rounds we gathered up some of the fine gastronomic delicacies being offered at the food tables and sat down listening to the sounds of the Orlando Big Band orchestra that was providing the entertainment for the evening, They were quite good. As we enjoyed our food we occasionally got up to sample a bourbon, scotch, wine and port and even tequila and vodka. OK, not full shots always but the tastings were enough to light us up a tad. Hey; we are here for fun and cigar smoking – as was the rest of the crowd.
Ok, so it not just about cigars drinks and food. There are also Cars involved. Not quite the selection they had for the inaugural event 3 years ago but fun just the same. There was a Jaguar display and of course as you entered there was a gorgeous street rod.
Even my associate Big Al found his next new machine.
Just reduce your cigar budget and you may be able to afford the monthly nut on this.
So now that we have smoked, ate, and drank; it was getting close to the last hour or so and we had the last entry for the Macallan whisky tasting, That is the benefit of being one of the last VIP entrants. I love this part of the event and being the last sitting there is always a few empty tables with extra tastings, just in case you like what is being served up, and yes indeed we did enjoy.
Now for most that may be the end but such an event is not complete without an after party which was hosted by Drew Estate at the Dr. Phillips Corona Cigars shop. We spent a couple of hours smoking some Liga 9’s and drinking wine before we had to depart.