Last night was a very successful evening at Updown. For starters they had the La Nox so I can cross that one off the list of “must try.” To take home, I purchased one of the new Herrera Esteli TAA which they just got in. Big thanks to my buddy Izzy for reminding me to ask them about it.

Per Drew Estate: The blend features a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper, Brazilian Mata Fina binder, and Nicaraguan fillers and is blended by Drew Estate Master Blender Willy Herrera.

It’s currently tucked away in my humidor for a short slumber…how short remains to be seen…it’s going to be 70 degrees in Chicago this weekend. So…


Let’s talk La Nox:

The pictures you see of this stick online do it justice. Its very dark and the band looks like a miniature piece of art. The flavor of this cigar is complex, I couldn’t pin down the underlying flavor (maybe an espresso?), but at the same time it really didn’t transition on me, which was surprising. This cigar can be enjoyed by the most experienced BOTL or a newbie like my cousin who really enjoyed it. His comment was that it’s “very smooth” and I’ll second that. It’s not harsh or high in strength, but its definitely full bodied. Would I smoke this cigar again? My answer is yes I would, but I won’t go out of my way to buy any. If 2 of these didn’t cost me a total of $29.00 ($11.00 each plus tax) I would’ve purchased another 2 and thrown them in my humidor.

For a great full review of the La Nox, Click Here

Let’s talk Updown:

I’m a big fan of Old Town. It’s a 15 minute walk from River North and has some great restaurants. The famous Second City is located there along with my favorite Italian restaurant, Topo Gigio.

Updown is located in the heart of Old Town and it’s a neat little shop that stays busy. They have a beautiful collection of humidors…lots of Ellie Bleu’s. They have an impressive selection of cigars and a friendly staff.

Hanging out is a bit harder since there aren’t many seats. You can sit on stools at the counter, but there aren’t many and the place isn’t that big so it’s hit or miss. Last night we lucked out and got 2 seats. Air circulation is pretty good, much better than Biggs which is greatly appreciated. I enjoy my smoke but I don’t enjoy affixation by inhalation.

If you read my last post you’ll know I joked about them pushing the Oktoberfest cigar. I can sit here and proudly say that…unbelievably they’re still pushing that mediocre cigar. I’m at a loss of words. As I hung out there last night I saw a gentleman walk into the store who looked a bit lost and one of the Updown employees approached him and asked if he needed any recommendations. About 2 minutes later I saw the gentleman checking out with…the Oktoberfest. True Story. I don’t get it.



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