As a big fan of Speyside Single Malts the Balvenie Doublewood expressions are a must to try! The 12 Year Doublewood acquires its complex rich smooth taste from its maturation in two different types of oak casks. One of the classic after-dinner malts, Balvenie Doublewood’s is a result of being aged in ex-bourbon casks before being finished in sherry casks.

Double Wood is an excellent example of what the Balvenie distillery can craft, even at 12 years.

Nose: Gristy with a subtle nuttiness to it and slightly grapey.

Palate: Sweet with a good body. The bourbon characters quickly develop and as they do, a gentle spice and the slightest hint of vanilla appear. A balancing peat.

Finish: Dry and spicy.

Overall: Beautifully warming.

For something richer and with more complexity I would definitely recommend the Balvenie 17 Year Doublewood also having maturation in two different types of oak casks!

First cask: Traditional whisky oak maturation mellows the maturing spirit and imparts warming layers of vanilla spiciness.

Second cask: Further maturation in original European Sherry casks increases complexity bringing fruity, honeyed depths to the resulting single malt.

Colour: Deep amber.
Nose: Honey, malt and vanilla. Fruity with unripe bananas and green apples.
Body: Creamy.
Palate: Dried fruits, malt, vanilla, cinnamon and cloves.
Finish: Lengthy with softly spiced oak.

Hope these double delights have inspired you to enjoy and try also more great drams from this legendary distillery!




Happy New Year to all our customers and we hope you all enjoyed some fantastic tipples over the holiday season! One whisky that always stands out for being a firm favourite and all-rounder are the Highland Park Single Malts!

Highland Park 18 Years is a stunning expression to appeal to most palates.

Considered by many whisky writers across the globe as the ‘industry’s favourite whisky’, Highland Park 18 year old is a masterclass of balance, complexity and refinement.

Lingering layers of sweet honeyed malt meet characterful dried fruit notes, marzipan and golden syrup, all wrapped up in swathes of distinctive, subtle floral peat smoke.

A whisky, which reveals more layers with every glass you enjoy.

Colour: Natural colour, burnished gold, clear and bright.
Nose: Rich, mature oak, top note of aromatic smoke.
Palate:Rich, full flavour, honey and peat.
Finish: Soft, round and long.

Now if you really want to push the boat out and indulge in sheer luxury I could not think of anything better than the Highland Park 30 Years! A real legend from Orkney rarely tasted apart from the privileged few! So here’s your opportunity before these older bottlings become even harder to find!

Released at the beginning of 2013, this 30 year old Highland Park is the second oldest expression in the Highland Park range.

After spending 30 years maturing, this stunning single malt whisky has been bottled at a lower strength than previous editions, 45.7% ABV.

This Highland Park 30 Year Old is an outstanding whisky, with rich flavours which we have come to expect from older Highland Park bottlings.
Nose: Sweet and floral, with some fruits such as unripe peaches and mango, and lime zest. Sweet buttery pastry, marzipan, sticky cherries and a touch of plum jam also come to light.

Palate: Marzipan and sherry fruit firstly dominate, with sour spices and wood. There is also Cinnamon, maraschino cherries with a big woody spice.

Finish: Spicy, with nutmeg, ginger, soft brown sugar and dark unfinished wood.



Holiday and Festive Drams

Even though Christmas might have just ended it is still the fabulous holiday season and the right time to be relaxing and enjoying great drinks! We have two fantastic GORDON Castle Gin Halcyon Days Festive gift sets that not only look stunning but beautifully crafted with exquisite botanicals.

Limited Edition Gin Gift Pack, each set comprises 1 x 70cl award winning Gordon Castle Botanical Gin along with one Halycon Days Fine Bone China Christmas bauble.

gordon_castle_gingleCoated in the shade of evergreen and decorated with a deer inspired by the statue in the garden at Gordon Castle. Woodland themed, a bauble that complements the Christmas tree beautifully.

Premium gin by the fire and a gorgeous bauble on the tree; what could possibly be better?
Crisp, elegant and refreshing with a lovely and clean palate with subtle notes of lavender linger at the back of the nose and within the mouth.

Garden mint soon comes into focus on the nose and in the mouth helping to promote the clean refreshing character. Adding to the richness and complexity of the gin is warming herb notes. Ideally served as a classic martini with a sprig of mint or with tonic with lemon,lime and mint garnish.

The second stunning Gordon Castle Gift Set comes with a unique Herb Garden Scented Candle! Each set comprises 1 x70cl award winning Gordon Castle Botanical Gin along with500x500_gordon_castle_evening_begin Herb Garden scented candle.

Highland herbs from the walled garden at Gordon Castle are carefully blended and patiently distilled to tease out the botanicals from the castle’s restored Walled Garden to make this stunning Gordon Castle Gin whilst the candle combines rosemary and thyme essential oils from the very same garden.Crisp, elegant and refreshing with a lovely and clean palate with subtle notes of lavender linger at the back of the nose and within the mouth.

Garden mint soon comes into focus on the nose and in the mouth helping to promote the clean refreshing character. Adding to the richness and complexity of the gin is warming herb notes.

Ideally served as a classic martini with a sprig of mint or with tonic with lemon,lime and mint garnish.

We would like to wish all our customers a very Happy New Year!


Happy New Year!

Bad year for celebs to say the least. I was so sad to hear about George Michael. I think that was the first concert Karyn and I went to together many years ago.

Fortunately it’s been a good year for cigars and specifically for C.Gars :) In fact, the best year we have ever known with fairly meteoric sales growth and expansion.

We’re up to 52 staff now in our retail and sales teams, employing more apprentices than ever before, opening more shops, expanding our range of cigars, tobacco and whisky beyond our dreams and having great fun doing all of this! So, BIG thanks to all my team as well as all of our lovely customers for making this possible.

I don’t think Laura and I ever dreamed we would build such a gigantic business when we started out all those years ago! But we did :) … and we ain’t finished yet, in fact we are just getting ‘warmed up’, we have further expansion plans for 2017 that extend way beyond our current Liverpool project. Watch this space… the best is yet to come!

The four day holiday weekend was brilliant, loads of down time and a lot of herfing with family and friends. I’m currently going through Trinidad Topes like they are candy sticks and went through a cab over the weekend washed down with a few bottles of Pol Roger Winston Churchill ( 1996 and 2000). The Topes is such a rich and bold blend and so far construction has been perfect on all that I have tried. I still can’t get enough of the UK Regional Juan Lopez Seleccion Superba – they’re flying off the shelves at record speed. Big smoke and a bit of a time commitment but during a long day at the office, I just love this cigar.

Our first auction of 2017 will be on the 26th February. I had to bring the date forward as the catalogue is almost full already, still time to get a few more Lots in but likely to close mid-January. I expect to offer a wonderful catalogue of aged, rare and unusual cigars as ever.

2017 will mark 20 years of C.Gars Ltd being in business on the internet and 200 years of Turmeaus cigar shops (Est. 1817) which is quite a milestone for any business let alone a cigar business! I have commissioned some very special limited edition humidors to mark the occasion and expect to release them late March. We have certainly come a long way since we took over the last surviving Turmeaus shop in Liverpool (it was a bit of a dump) and I think I can safely say I have restored Turmeaus to its former glory.

We will be celebrating the anniversary with a number of special events throughout the year at our various locations and spoiling our customers more than ever!

Still waiting for a lot of cigars to be released including the Cohiba Majestuosos Humidor (limited edition of 1966), the Hoyo Coleccion Habanos Book, the Partagas 170th Anniversary Replica Serie Humidor… and Romeo Wide Churchills Gran Reserva (yes… whatever happened to that one?!). Hopefully we may see some of the ‘good stuff’ early in 2017.

If my warehouse managers are right we’ve managed a 99.99% successful on time delivery service for our clients this month which can’t be bad. Even with the odd cigar going out of stock from suppliers, fortunately most of the time we have been able to iron out the rough spots with our cast cigar reserves and we intend to continue releasing cigars from our reserves next year.

I’m planning to celebrate New Year’s Eve with some Bilecart Salmon Rose 1989 and a Dunhill Estupendos 1989, may as well see the new year in with style :)

My warmest wishes (from bloody cold London!) for a peaceful and very happy new year.



Merry Christmas!

CzfyCU3XUAA4JOPThe 4th annual  Snow Queen Cigar Smoker of The Year Awards event at Boisdale Canary Wharf was possibly the best one we have ever been involved in. I don’t know how Ranald and the Boisdale Team can possibly make this event better every year but somehow they do.

C.Gars are proud to be co-sponsors and we had a rather huge table of friends who enjoyed the best food, wine, (cigars of course!) and entertainment possible. Kelsey Grammer won the cigars smoker of the year award with Charlie Sheen as runner up and Andrew Neil was the winner of the lifetime achievement award. The award winners all made splendid thank you speeches but Charlie Sheen’s can only be described as hysterically funny.

The full list of nominees and award winners.

The Snow Queen Cigar Smoker of the Year 2016 Nominees15390650_1167709423349362_2754392487116356766_n

Winner: Kelsey Grammer

  1. Charlie Sheen
  2. Boris Becker
  3. Jeremy Irons
  4. Sir Terence Conran
  5. Calum Best

The Snow Queen Cigar Writer of the Year Nominees

Winner: Nic Wing

The Cigar Terrace or Cigar Lounge of the Year Nominees

Winner: The Churchill at Hyatt Regency London

  1. The Edward Sahakian Cigar Lounge at The Bulgari
  2. Cigars at No. Ten at Ten Manchester Street
  3. The Garden Lounge at Corinthia

The Cigar Retailer of the Year Nominees

Winner: My Smoking Shop

  1. Davidoff of London
  2. Birley Cigars
  3. Sautter Cigars
  4. Turmeaus, Chester

The Cigar Producer of the Year Nominees

Winner: Habanos S.A

  1. Inka – Secret Blend
  2. Arturo Fuente
  3. Padrón
  4. Alec Bradley
  5. Davidoff
  6. Dunhill

The Snow Queen Cigar of the Year Nominees

Winner: Joya De Nicaragua Cuatro Cinco Reserva Especial Doble Robusto

  1. Macanudo Inspirado Robusto
  2. Partagas Serie D No. 6, Habanos

15400519_1167709440016027_283247713483995059_nThe Snow Queen Cigar Lifetime Achievement Award Nominees

Winner: Andrew Neil

  1. Stephen Evans
  2. Alan Greenspan
  3. Sir Terence Conran

Continuing on the Boisdale theme and wrapping up my pre-Christmas herfing, Karyn and I popped into The Lanesborough for a pre supper herf (Montecristo 80th anniversary/very nice indeed) and then checked out the new and very very cool Boisdale in Mayfair. At least as good as all the other fabulous Boisdale restaurants!… and cigar friendly of course :) Highly recommended.

I had a brilliant week up North at La Casa del Habano – Chester and Turmeaus cigar and whisky shops in Liverpool, Knutsford and Chester. My assistant Roy and I zoomed between the 3 locations in our rather loudly liveried C.Gars vehicle. Call me bias but I honestly think we have the best cigar shops in the UK. All licenced for alcohol sales both on and off the premises and all featuring super comfortable cigar sampling lounges. Did I mention that we have the largest range of premium cigars in the country? :)

I’m wrapping up the week working at Turmeaus- Mayfair and looking forward to a few days kicking back with friends and family this weekend. I have a baggie stuffed with:

Davidoff Chateau Haut Brion – My favourite Cuban Davidoff cigar!

Trinidad Topes – My favourite limited edition cigar in years.

Montecristo 80th Anniversary – Just WOW!

Juan Lopez Seleccion Superba – Another winner for the UK market.

Oliva Orchant Seleccion Chubby – My favourite Nicaraguan cigar.

Inka – Secret Blend Robusto – With some of our NEW Secret Blend Peruvian chocolate!

… and a bottle each of Dom Perignon and Pol Roger Sir Winston kindly gifted by friends.

Last minute holiday gifts available from all of my shops today and tomorrow :) and C.Gars is of course online throughout the holiday weekend for any queries or advice

Wishing all of our customers, suppliers and of course my fabulous C.Gars and Turmeaus Team a very merry Christmas/Happy Chanukah!

Peaceful puffing,