Magazine: Cigar Press
Publisher: Thor Nielson
Editor: Thor Nielson
Subscription Price: $19.80 per year
News Stand Price: $4.95
Back in July of 2007 I came across a new cigar publication called Cigar Press. At the time I think they were on their very first issue and it seemed very interesting. The magazine was not available in the form of subscription and had to be picked up from a local tobacconist.
None of my local cigar shops currently carried the magazine so I contacted the editor/publisher about getting a sample to check out. I intended to read the magazine and work up a post here on Stogie Review about what I thought of it.
I got the green light from Cigar Press about a sample and penciled in the review on my list of things to do. A little time went by and Cigar Press began to grow fairly quickly. I wound up forgetting all about the sample and would assume Cigar Press did the same. Chalk it up to me not following up, or the magazine taking off and becoming incredibly busy. In either case it wasn’t a big deal and I simply waited for the subscription service to become available.
As my life tends to go, I wound up getting busy with a slew of things for the next several months and forgot all about the magazine and its newly available subscription option. When I did think of it, subscribing was never high enough up on the priority list to stop what I was doing to take care of it at the moment. As a result, I wound up forgetting about it time and time again.
A couple of months ago I received an email from Jim Cronin of Top Shelf Cigars about his new Pure Corojo house blend being in. Rather than calling him up and ordering them, I decided to head down to his shop and hang out for a few hours. While I was wondering around picking up cigars, I noticed a couple of Cigar Press magazines sitting off to the side with the word “free” written on the cover.
I picked up two issues and asked Jim what he thought of them. He told me he enjoyed the magazine and writing “free” on the cover was a sure fire way of getting people to pick them up and check them out. It worked on me so I am sure his busy shop went through several magazines. The two issues that I picked up were Winter 2007 and Spring 2008.
After a few hours of smoking cigars I headed back home. When I got back home I set the magazines aside for later reading. The plan was to wait until I had enough free time to read the entire magazine in one sitting. A couple of weeks later I was out in the yard grilling dinner while having a cigar and thought it was the perfect time to check out my pickups from Top Shelf.
I read through all of the cigar content in the earlier issue and headed straight in the house to grab the next. After reading all of the cigar content in that issue, subscribing suddenly became higher on my priority list. By the end of the week I was a proud subscriber of Cigar Press Magazine.
When my latest issue arrived a couple of weeks later, I read it in the same manner as I did the following two and enjoyed it just as much. In addition to cigar content, you will find a small portion of the magazine dedicated to beer and another section to wine. To be honest, I skipped right over those sections and went straight for the cigar content.
For a final price of $19.80 I am scheduled to receive four copies of the magazine over the next twelve months (published quarterly). In addition, my subscription came with a free desert cammo Tatuaje trucker hat.
The focus of the magazine seems to be on the industry as a whole. The material isn’t overly focused on the cigar itself. Each issue has had an interview with a person from the industry which provides a tremendous insight to their company. My current issues contain interviews with Jesus Fuego, Mike and Joe Chiusano (Cusano), and Jon Huber.
In addition to the interviews, each issue focuses on a cigar location and tells a story. My first two issues featured Tabadon Holdings (Davidoff Factory) and the La Aurora Factory. My latest issue features cigar clubs and how they are geared at provided a place for people to enjoy cigars while avoiding various smoking bans.
A section of the magazine is dedicated to cigar reviews. They are laid out in a standardized sort of form, listing some of the cigar information along with a picture of the stick. The review itself is a short paragraph and avoids using a number system. Just like we do here, the reviews are left open ended and the reader is forced to decide if the cigar sounds appealing to them.
There are a couple of other articles within the magazine, but the features listed above are what make this magazine shine. In addition to cigar content, you will find articles written by a lead cellar and sommelier to fill you in on the finer points of beer, wine, and liquor.
My one and only complaint comes courtesy of the latest magazine. My first two issues were “subscription card” free. The latest issue has a card applied to the center of the magazine to order a subscription. Just as you would expect, the magazine has a tendency to fall open to the this page and becomes a minor annoyance. I thought I finally found a magazine that didn’t stick the annoying card within its pages, but at least it is attached and doesn’t fall out in your lap while reading.
On a general note, there are a lot of advertisements in this magazine. As a result, it becomes a fairly quick read once you page past the ads and avoid the non-cigar content. According to an interesting article written by our good friend Doc Stogiefresh on magazine comparisons, Cigar Press Magazine contains 76 pages on average, of which 42% is cigar related.
For the price, I think that this is a fantastic magazine and appeals to my preferred style of wring. The featured articles are set in a story telling tone which keeps me interested from start to finish. If you are in the market for a cigar magazine that focuses on the industry a little more than the individual cigar, I’d definitely look into a subscription to Cigar Press.
And what did you think of it?