Week In Smoke – The Art of Craft

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Week In Smoke – The Art of Craft


Disclaimer: For full disclosure, the cigars and beer provided for this edition of Week in Smoke were samples provided by CAO Cigars and Flying Dog. Who doesn’t like free beer and cigars? CAO is also a paid advertiser with us.

A new format for the Week in Smoke series. Hopefully the video clips instead of images from my Instagram feed will be well received.

I’m not very knowledgable with beer, the brewing process, components, ingredients or even the lingo so please excuse the amateur language I may use when describing any of the Flying Dog beers. I’m not going to rehash the press release about this CAO Cigars and Flying Dog project so for more details visit our friends over at Nice Tight Ash.

All four pairing are the recommended pairings that CAO and Flying Dog came up with. Stay tuned for a future post this week with some of my own personally purchased CAO and Flying Dog pairings and a contest (no beer; just cigars). Each of the videos below run 2-3 minutes. It was a lot fun to experience the new flavor combinations that these pairings provided. It was truly a lot of fun to produce and I hope they inspire you to expose your palate to new experiences.

CAO OSA Sol & Flying Dog Snake Dog IPA – If you ever wanted a beer that would remind you of the OSA Sol you have found it in the Snake Dog IPA. The flavor profiles are mirror images of each other. Plenty of citrus notes throughout to bridge everything together. Worked well for me on a hot humid evening to keep me feeling cool.

CAO Brazilia & Flying Dog Gonzo Imperial Porter – Probably my favorite pairing of the four! Turns out the Gonzo has the highest ABV of the bunch. I didn’t know that at the time but I sure did feel it. I felt good! Spicy full bodied cigar, gritty heavy beer. I knew I liked that kind of cigar but it was awesome to find out how much I enjoyed the grittiness of the Gonzo. Like I said, the pairing is tits and who doesn’t like tits? Really, who doesn’t like tits?

CAO Gold & Flying Dog Raging Bitch Belgian Style IPA – On paper and when I started, I didn’t have high hopes for this pairing. I figured any beverage would over power the light, clean profile of the CAO Gold. I then realized that throughout this whole process, I have been thinking of how the beer would compliment the cigar and not how the cigar would compliment the beer. That was the case with this pairing. The smokiness of the CAO Gold added a layer of flavor to the bitter fruity profile of the Raging Bitch creating a unique grilled grapefruit type flavor. This is one time a Raging Bitch is a good thing.

CAO MX2 & Flying Dog Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout – A roasted, chary bakers chocolate profile throughout this pairing. During the tasting event at the Flying Dog Brewery, the Oyster Stout was my favorite. After that, I spoke to a few people about the Oyster Stout and they swear that there is some salty/briny notes to it but I didn’t get any of that. When it comes to flavor, this was probably the pairing where the flavors were the richest by doubling down on those bittersweet chocolate notes.


22 thoughts on “Week In Smoke – The Art of Craft

  1. Jerry, I am so glad that you are pairing good beer and good cigars!! How
    long have you been doing this? I got into cigars about 8 years ago and into
    craft beer 5 years ago. One thing I will tell you is that there are a ton
    of great craft beers out there and they can get pretty expensive. Nothing
    like pairing a good cigar with a good beer tho!!

  2. I remember the first time I had a Gonzo Porter. It blew my mind and changed
    my life. I am poorer for it now because now I often buy bottled beer that
    cost anywhere from $5.00 – $30.00 per 22.OZ bottle. There is so much
    awesomeness out there tho, I recommend you trying more craft stuff, you
    might get addicted!!

  3. Most excellent! I for one love this new format of Week in Smoke although knowing your workflow it must take a lot more time in post?

    The Gonzo and Brazilia pairing sounds like it would be the most enjoyable for me. The Gold and Raging Bitch sounds like the most interesting to try (could love it/could hate it).

    Looking forward to your own personal paitings to see what you came up with!

    1. It takes more time to setup my gear than to edit and encode but I like the results and am glad you like it too.

      My pairings will be very interesting as I’m really not sure how to go about this pairing thing other than by trial and error.

  4. Jerry we met briefly at the CAO/Flying Dog event at their brewery a few weeks back at the bar. Really enjoyed the above videos a lot. With your palate being tuned into cigars it was interesting to hear the flavors you got from an unfamiliar product.

    Bloodline is my favorite from Flying Dog…would be interesting to see what cigar you paid that with. Good times!

    1. It was nice meeting your Felix and thanks for remembering to visit Stogie Review.

      I had the Bloodline during the event. I think it was my first drink of the night and enjoyed it.

  5. Woot! Welcome to the world of craft beer Jerry! Oh man, I hope this becomes something regular. Lots of great craft beer. I was able to try some of the Fly Dog stuff on a trip to Colorado awhile back (not available in Canada) and it was great. I think it was the Horn Dog or something like that. Amazing!

    Great job and looking forward to the next newly rebooted Week in Smoke!

  6. Orioles fan, cigar smoker and Flying Dog drinker? I’m not sure how often you get out to The Yard for an O’s game but Flying Dog has Firkin Fridays. Next one is July 11th but there are bunch in August. Would be cool to meet up!

    That Gonzo will take you for a ride and it looks like you didn’t even see it coming.

  7. Man I love thus new format of week in smoke myself. I hope you all start doing it this way. I thonk personally the MX2 and flying dog sound like the best pairing for sure but I no longer drink but does sound amazing. That stick us awesome after a big steak dinner.

  8. Thanks for making it easy for me to comment. Nothing wants to access my FB profile or authorize Twitter. I like simple!

    Living in Scranton PA it is a bit difficult to get just a six pack even though Flying Dog is here. I can’t just run down to the WaWa. LOL. Luckily I have family in NJ who stock me up when they visit so I’ve had the Gonzo plenty of time and the word you use “gritty” is spot on! A lot of craft beer tries to be all fancy and frou frou but not the Gonzo. Its dirty and gritty just like beer and woman should be!

  9. Great videos Jerry. I like the format a lot. I know it takes more effort to produce video than a photo but from my perspective it is worth it. Thanks for going the extra mile for us Jerry.

  10. Obviously CAO is sponsoring all these with the big ad and stuff so how much
    did you make for all these? Any more coming from them or other companies?
    Will you do a separate video not paid for with any different opinions as a
    real review later?

    1. First there is the disclaimer. Its like the first thing you read. Second, I doubt Jerry made any money off this and even if he did, so what? More power to Jerry if he and the guys can make some scratch after doing this for a very long time. Third, if you bothered to read, more pairings to come using his own money.

      Jerry – ignore the haters! Great new format of Week in Smoke. The videos work so much better than instagram. Always appreciate your work.

  11. Okay Asian Kimbo Slice…tracked down some Gonzo this weekend and paired it with the CAO Brazillia and just as you advertised. Gritty! Not a pairing you should enjoy in the middle of day, sun and heat bearing down on you as you man the grill. You should be sitting down and under some shade. LOL

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