On my frequent trips to 7-Eleven I have often noticed the inexpensive cigars behind the counter. Yesterday I decided to check them out at Cruft Labs.
Above (l-r), we are looking at Black & Mild, Black & Mild Wine, Swisher Sweet, Swisher Sweet Strawberry, Swisher Sweet Grape, Optimo Peach
There are plenty of other types of cigars at 7-Eleven, included the interesting Backwoods and Blunts, but I figured I'd start small and move on from there.
The range of flavors available is amazing, from Cherry to Chocolate to Icy Hot. Obviously, I have more research to do.
To test, I went onto my back porch and tried them one after another, drinking beer to cleanse my palette. Obviously, I didn't smoke the whole cigar, but I did smoke enough until I had a good feel for each one.
Black & Mild - Very light, hint of cigar. Very much of a cigarette taste. I enjoyed the plastic tip. Made it easy to hold while I wrote.
Black & Mild Wine - Smells like a strawberry fruit roll-up. Cool draw due to plastic tip. Almost a fresh grape flavor while smoking, like the smell of grapes in the store.
Swisher Sweet - Light tobacco smell, no deep aroma. Slight hint of sugar on lips. Most like a regular cigar, better than the flavored ones.
Swisher Sweet Strawberry - Strong fake strawberry smell, like a car deodorizer. Subtle strawberry taste, strong artificial flavor. A bit irritating with harsh notes. Worst of the lot.
Swisher Sweet Grape - Strong grape smell on outside. Easy, light draw. More cigar that cigarette. Light grape taste on my lips.
Optimo Peach - Overwhelming fake peach smell. Very artificial. No cigar flavor, just bland smoke. Slight peach taste on my lips.
I can see why people smoke these. They are inexpensive and quick to smoke. If you find a flavor you like, you can stick with it and find it pretty much everywhere. I was surprised how much I liked the plastic tip. It made smoking very easy. Much more straight forward than the delicate balance of holding a regular cigar in your teeth.
I think that Hunter S. Thompson was onto something with his cigarette holder. If only there was one for cigars...
Thanks to my daughter Zoe, who took photos and quizzed me while testing the cigars.