Today we celebrate at Cut The Cap… for today is our resident guest writer, Andrzej Krok-Paszkowski’s, birthday (Happy Birthday Andrzej)! But in a flip of tradition he has deliver us a present… all we can say is read on and enjoy, we certainly did!
Have you ever wondered how toothpaste comes out of the tube with red stripes? I’ve spent years wondering and only recently discovered how it works: it’s annoyingly simple! Or why HP Sauce (until quite recently) had the description on its label in both English and French – “Cette sauce de haute qualite est un melange des espice orientaux…” Has there ever been a self respecting Frenchman who has used HP Sauce? What about the rules and legality of successive moves when panelists from BBC’s radio programme “I’m sorry, I haven’t a clue” play Mornington Crescent? Well, the answer to that is straight forward; the game is designed to simply confound our American cousins – eh?
One of the other conundrums I’ve also always wondered about is how is it that Cuba, a communist country committed to the Proletariat, should earn most of its foreign currency by producing a product that serves the bourgeoisie, capitalist class. Isn’t there a contradiction somewhere? Okay, I know that Che Guevara and Fidel Castro were devotes of Rolex watches, each having several of the very expensive time pieces. Indeed, Castro made a point of wearing two at a time – see Castro below sporting a Day-Date Oyster Perpetual and a Submariner when meeting with Khruschev.
Alright, forgive me; I know you all want me to get to the point, what has all of this to do with the price of bread? Here goes…
Whilst in Spain recently, I discovered something quite remarkable. Apparently, the Spanish authorities have long held the view that cigars should not only be the privilege of the fat cats. Through the state control of tobacco pricing (set every year by edict) they have ensured that some cigars should be priced at a level which could be broadly affordable, even for the unclean and lower orders, like you and me. I was introduced to two Havana cigars, both handmade in the El Rey del Mundo factory. They go under the brand name of La Flor de Cano, packaged in rather dull brown cardboard boxes. I bought two to sample: the Selectos, a medium sized cigar 150 mm long with a ring gauge of 41 and the Petit Corona, a little smaller with a length of 123 mm and a ring gauge of 40.
The Selectos was a full peasant’s smoke, rather harsh for me and reminded me a bit of a larger Partagas which I have to admit are not my favourite brand. It lasted a full hour and left a strong legacy that held up in my pallet to about mid morning on the following day. Although memorable (possibly for the wrong reasons) one can’t take away the honest and completeness of the smoke, very much a real cigar that will put hairs on your chest. The Petit Corona was all together different. Each one of these cigars is covered by a cedar wrapper, held on to the cigar by the band, ensuring it is always fresh. This was almost a revelation and reminded me of the very noble Hoyo de Monterrey Le Hoyo du Prince. The sweet woody flavours were perfectly balanced and I have no hesitation in recommending the Petit Coronas to Cut-the-Caps discerning readers.
And the price of these two cigars in Spain? A box of 25 Selectos retails for €62.50 and 25 of the cedar wrapped Petit Coronas for only €57.50. That’s only €2.30 or £2.00 per cigar according to Queensberry Rules. That’s revolutionary and puts the Cuban missile crisis into perspective! Power to the People!
Back to toothpaste: I have a new problem. I just bought a tube of Aquafresh multilayered toothpaste. Now how do they do that?!?! ARH&*%!