I reckon this was something like the 16th or 17th IPCPR (previously RTDA) trade show I have attended in the USA and this is the second time I have been to the show in New Orleans. The show was HUGE!!! and I love seeing all the manufacturers of cigars and accessories, as well as trade colleagues not to mention learn about all the new cigars and other products coming to the market. In fact the show is so huge, despite being there for 5 days I still didn’t manage to meet up with everyone I had planned (sorree).
There used to be a trade association in the UK that put on a rather miserable looking annual trade show. I’m not sure if they do it any more as I gave up going out of sheer boredom some years ago and prefer to attend International trade shows instead.
I only spotted two other cigar specialists at the show from the UK- Paresh Patel from Regal Cigars and Simon Jackson from My Smoking Shop, both thoroughly professional merchants and top chaps! No one else from the UK?! Excellent, that leaves it pretty clear for me to keep importing new stock lines and passing all the savings over to our customers – job done 🙂
There were many new brands of cigars that I have to wonder will they actually be around in a years’ time? they look like branding exercises rather than actually cigar making businesses. We shall see.
The first stand I stopped at was Daniel Marshall humidors. I think I made Daniel’s day as I gave him his first order of the show! Awesome boxes, store in style 🙂
Click here to see our full range of Daniel Marshall humidors! More designs coming soon.
Great to see the Xikar range growing year on year and looking forward to an even larger range online very soon – see our Xikar range here!
We’re excited about the possibility of introducing La Palina cigars to the UK market and we plan to add to our existing Nat Sherman range, as I found a cracker of a smoke that I will be importing to the UK very soon. I love Nat Sherman and it’s my favourite shop to visit when I’m in NYC.
I bumped into Daniel who used to work at Turmeaus Mayfair and was very happy to see how well he’s doing at Mombacho Cigars. I even found a cracking little cigar in their range that I fancy bringing in to the UK in the next few weeks.
Turmeaus shops and customers will be very happy to hear I bought zillions of new pipes that can’t normally be found in the UK so their ranges are about to have some delightful quality and value additions. Our pipe tobacco business has been going ballistic over the last two years. Best value in the UK guaranteed- if I’m wrong I will gladly price match.
As most of C.Gars blog readers know, I love Alec Bradley Cigars! We have started a project to have a special release for the UK market only which is very cool and will be very exclusive to two or three cigar specialist only 🙂 Oh and thanks to the Boys at A.B. (George, Alan, Mike, Ralph et al) for the delightful dinner in New Orleans.
Check out our current Alec Bradley range here
I’m equally fond of the Oliva cigars who had a beautiful exhibition stand and we voted ‘the most comfortable armchairs’! Orchant Seleccion by Oliva remain our best-selling new cigar this year:
I was working hard for Regius cigars at the show being a sort of brand ambassador for the limited edition Orchant seleccion cigars that Akhil and I have blended. Seemed to go well as I think we sold them all out on the first day. Check out my UK Regius range here – ridiculous good value, no wonder we sell zillions of them all year round 🙂
I probably don’t need to bang on about the success of the Inka – Secret Blend cigars I created for the UK market but I can now confirm that our Inca- Secret Blend created for the US and International market seem to be selling out faster than we could ever have dreamed. I’m now finalizing the blend on my Inca Robusto, which will roll out in a few months’ time. We are adding retailers daily and some are listed on our Inca website.
The Davidoff stand was as breath taking as usual and it was good to see Avo holding court as usual. The Davidoff range is stunning and I love this brand, especially the new Winston Churchill cigars.
My business partners; Ron Morrison and Guy Hancock celebrated the successful business with colleagues including Chris Morrison , Gennaro Lettieri , Gary Hyams and Clay Wilson with a fabulous dinner at the Commanders Place in New Orleans! Highly recommended.
So all in all another successful trade show and now I’m looking forward to doing it all over again at the Dortmund trade show in September and then back to Las Vegas next Summer 🙂
Righto – 1 day off before I get back to my serious cigar dinner talking routine… tough life but clearly I’m the man for the job.
Peaceful puffing and long ashes from sunny L.A.