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Cigar Sense Podcast

Author: Franca Comparetto

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Cigar Sense Podcast is your spot to listen in on sensory and cultural aspects of the premium cigars. You'll have insights on how to better recognize and articulate the sensory experience of fine cigars. A variety of inner-views and interviews will be on hand to empower you as a cigar consumer and inspire you, as well as your regular host, Franca Comparetto.
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We discuss the cigar consumer in Greater China with Eric Piras. Eric Piras has an incredible experience of over 25 years in the cigar industry. He is based in Hong Kong, where he manages his import-export cigar trading Cigraal Ltd, the agent for brands such as Arturo Fuente, Ashton, Joya de Nicaragua, Mombacho, Gerard and Maya Selva.  In Hong Kong, he also operates Bertie Cigar Lounge, setting the mark for a new era of cigar smoking, with the largest selection of New World cigars in Hong Kong, patronized by a younger and more feminine crowd. Eric has also created the Cigraal Academy, to promote the cigar knowledge and discovery. He also recently launched his line of accessories: Totem. Episode quick summary Some criteria for choosing cigars for import/distribution Attracting young and female consumers Paying attention to customers needs in order to best advise them The Cigraal Academy The importance of the tobacco processing to deliver great flavors Blind tasting ideas that reveal another angle of the consumer behavior How consistent cigars need to be to be able to define their core profile Defect of the cigar or fault of the smoker? References mentioned in the episode: Bertie cigar lounge and Totem accessories: https://www.bertiecigars.com/ Cigraal Ltd: http://www.cigraal.com/ Cigar Sense aroma wheel: https://www.cigarsense.com/the-cigar-sense-aromas-wheel/ 
Blind tests or open tests? Are blind tests worth the effort? People have all sorts of opinions about this because there are different purposes for doing tests. Episode summary Purposes for blind tests: 1. guide consumers to buy the best cigars for them 2. leisure (hedonic type of tests) Purposes for open tests: 1. persuade consumers to buy cigars based on symbols 2. decide whether to import/distribute/resell a cigar 3. assess brand or line specificity Single taster or panel, is there any difference? The imperative of focus Advantages of blind tests Panelists comments: Alban Cordier Zsolt Aranyos Reinhard Pohorec Biases and tips on how to reduce the effects of an important one A few fun exercises References mentioned in the episode: Predictive confirmation bias: https://www.cigarsense.com/predictive-confirmation-bias-whats-that/ Priming guidelines: https://youtu.be/zaaIZz9ge4E Learn how to break down the tasting components: https://www.cigarsense.com/courses/a-cigar-tasting-course/  
We recently spoke about how unique is our taste with Aniello Buonincontro, who wrote the book, “Degustazione Razionale”, which means rational tasting. He researched anthropology, sociology, neuroscience and psychology. He also studied the issues concerning the characteristics of the premium cigar in relation to marketing and consumption.  Aniello is a certified sommelier and a Cigar Journal panelist. He has been in charge of the most renowned cigar courses in Italy (Catadores courses by the Cigar Club Association). He actually is an aeronautical engineer. Nine years ago, he left his job as production manager in a multinational company and became sales manager at Cigars and Tobacco, one of the biggest, if not the biggest, Italian importer and distributor of new word cigars. Among his role’s activities, he provides training and guidance for events and manages the relationships with many producers, retailers and enthusiasts. You can find Aniello's articles and videos (mostly in Italian) here: https://sigarietempo.com/   Today we want to deep dive into some important aspects that relate to the behavior of the premium cigar consumer.   Episode summary The cigar can have many different meanings, as cigar lovers have many different interests, needs and desires. A cigar can be many different things: a bunch of tobacco leaves that are rolled up to be smoked an agricultural product, hard to regulate like industrialized tobacco products  an artisanal product an economic power for most producing countries a gourmet product an experience product, as each of us may have a different experience when smoking it a sample an analysis object a commodity And it can also be: a cultural heritage an object for social media consumption an obsession for serial smokers a leisure companion a relaxation accessory a wealth show off tool a symbol the catalyst of emotions ... How can this take shape for a cigar importer/distributor? For professionals the cigar is a commercial product. When talking with consumers, they need to talk about quality, which is a very important characteristic of the cigar. A professional doesn't talk about his/her own emotion connected to the cigar. In theory you can sell cigars by emotion to consumers, but this is not possible to do when you deal with other professionals. S/he will rather treat the cigar as a commercial product, and provide information by strength, price, consistency, flavor, ... In fact, talking about the aromas that a cigar displays can be enlightening, provided they are accurately described. The "anilla" or band The other characteristic is a bit stronger, it's the symbol that the cigar represents. We cannot forget that the cigar is made of tobacco, but also of the "anilla", the band, which takes along the information on the family, the factory, the field,  the country, ... If you take two samples of the same cigar, one with the band and one without band, and you ask someone to choose, that person will most likely choose the cigar with the anilla. There is another pleasure when smoking a cigar with the band. Many people will deny this, but Some people will say no, but they lie in this case, because the band gives an additional pleasure the the smoke. We cannot say this is wrong, never say this is right or this is wrong, there's maybe only one case in which it is. Else, it's just a different way to look at the world around us. The must-have status symbol There are sensory qualities, very important, but there are many other attributes that you can associate with a cigar. For example, there are people who always look for the best deals. Why does that happen and why are cigars in this case not chosen based on specific qualities? When we start smoking cigars, we know very little, a lot is about our imagination. And for quite some time, perceiving aromas, tastes and so on is something difficult. Beginners typically can sense one aroma, maybe two. Maybe they sense something they cannot name. In the beginning people generally start smoking cigars for the symbol, not for their organoleptic qualities. This is normal, the issue is maybe that you may stick to the symbol and not go and discover the senses world that is linked to the cigar. This depends a lot on the type of people that are around you, how they influence you. Influencers on social media today are not able to help, as they are usually interested in something different from the sensory experience. The cigar arrived in Europe as symbol for people that had a commercial interest with America. It was interesting to show people "I smoke cigars because they come from my colonies in America". This was the beginning. The cigar can be a way to show people something: I am rich, I have power, I am a member of a famous club, and so on. The cigar can be used as an accessory, like a tie, to be elegant. This is a way to communicate. There is nothing wrong in this, it's just a choice. Sometimes this choice is done in a conscious way, sometimes you follow someone you like and do the same thing. The relational control Everybody has a role when we're dealing with a cigar, just like when we're dealing with anything else in life. One of the 3 types of relational control is the one referred to as "one level up" relationship. When somebody talks about a cigar and we see that person as an "expert", that person could tell us anything. If we don't have our own awareness, our own views on the cigar, our own experiences, if we are just learning, it's very easy to just follow and imitate. We see very easily how that happens in social media: people like or even love something just because an "expert" is posting. Followers don't even look at what that person is writing or sharing. If they did, they might be in total disagreement, but just follow the flow. There is a difference between people that see the cigar as a sensory experience and people who see the cigar as a status symbol. The latter use the same language, the same words, but for everyone that word has a different meaning. If you ask what is quality to someone who sees the cigar as a status symbol, the term has a certain meaning. What is an "expert"? Quality vs. quantity, here again, play a big role. Most people that are considered as "experts" have been smoking for a long time, they smoke expensive cigar. They smoke a lot of cigars. They go to a lot of events. If you consider this, all this is something you can measure. But quality is hard to measure. An "expert" might have learnt by heart all the shapes and dimensions of cigars, all the history of brands. Today you can easily find many "experts" and all shapes and dimensions of cigars on the internet. And it is important to expect experts to only talk about the measurable characteristics of the cigar, which include flavor. The rest, whether you like or do not like the cigar, is something you need to learn, so you can make your choices without imitating others. The most difficult aspect here is probably the understanding of the relationship between you and the cigar. Most "experts", when they talk about cigars, don't understand that they are not talking about cigars, rather about themselves and what is in their mind. You can find pleasure in a cigar even if you see the cigar as a status symbol. It's normal. What is important is not being right or wrong, but being aware of how this works. Developing a status symbol brand The status symbol concept drives sales. If a producer has a good quality cigar, but people do not recognize it as a status symbol, it takes a lot of efforts to sell. You need to create a story, a tradition. And this takes time. If you work through an influencer, you can start to grow the brand as connected to a status symbol. When a producer becomes a status symbol, s/he can start to focus more on marketing than on quality production. The risk is to start selling more and fermenting and aging less. Good marketing is less expensive that a good fermentation. The market gives its answer after years. What can happen is that the market understands that quality is in decline and it's then difficult for a brand to go back and focus on quality again. In fact, when judging a cigar and we have a bad first impression, it's very hard to revisit and gain a good second impression. Maybe the best producers are the ones who don't show up too often on social media. Because they are in the factory and focus on tobacco and quality aspects, they often don't speak English very well. Younger consumers or beginners Younger cigar smokers who prefer quality over quantity and branding are increasing. They enroll in courses to understand the qualities of cigars. They seek pleasure. Sometimes they are not able to express their liking through sensory terms. However, they are able to identify the difference between a good quality and a bad quality cigar. Smoking for a long time can be important, but there needs to be attention and focus. And interest in quality definitely helps the latter. This explains the difference between and alcoholist and a sommelier: maybe an alcoholist drinks more than a sommelier, but does not necessarily understand the product. Equally, smoking a lot is not a guarantee that we understand the product. Having a good method is what counts. It's not easy, it's not just about filling in a sheet. Another benefit for younger smokers or beginners is that a lot of misconceptions have not been ingrained (yet) in their behavior and thinking. This allows them to much more easily focus on what they really are interested into. And they have a lot of opportunities for education and learning so they can look at things in a different way rather than repeating misconceptions. They want to be aware of what they do. Women Unfortunately the cigar world seems to still be a world for men, even if many women work in the industry and/or smoke cigars. Women tend to respectfully play by the rules and rules are still made by men. When you divide, then you have to work harder to make it stick. It's probably better to talk about quality than about men vs. women, Cuban vs. non Cuban cigars, and so on. My taste is the best Everybody believes to have the best taste in the world.  And when there are some people that start to be looked at as "experts", their taste becomes recognized. The error people frequently do in our society is imitating somebody else's taste just because that person is perceived as an expert. This is a very bad approach to learning: pretending that someone blindly follows us is like training a dog rather than a human.  Followers are not about education and culture.   Feedback and promotion on the show You can ask your questions, make comments and be featured on the show! Let your voice be heard. Email Franca Comparetto [franca@cigarsense.com]. We have no external investors, nor cigars or ads sale revenue. Just like for the Cigar Sense membership [https://www.cigarsense.com/] and our educational resources, we strive to provide independent information.
We regularly get questions from our followers and also members about the technology we use at Cigar Sense. David Wells, vice-president, co-founder and technologist at Cigar Sense, explains how Cigar Sense works, why our technology is not AI and gives us insights on many more connected aspects. Quick episode summary How does Cigar Sense work? Knowing how to name an aroma A solution: Profile Advisor Helping the industry with a standardized language Is this AI? Data privacy Why isn't there an app? References On correlation vs. causation: https://www.cigarsense.com/correlation-or-causality/ On accuracy in recommender systems: https://www.cigarsense.com/accuracy-in-cigar-recommender-systems/ On personalization in recommender systems: https://www.cigarsense.com/personalization-in-cigar-recommender-systems/ On transparency in recommender systems: https://www.cigarsense.com/transparency-in-cigar-recommender-systems/ On user control in recommender systems: https://www.cigarsense.com/user-control-in-cigar-recommender-systems/ Feedback and promotion on the show You can ask your questions, make comments and be featured on the show! Let your voice be heard. Email Franca Comparetto [franca@cigarsense.com]. We have no external investors, nor cigars or ads sale revenue. The people we accept/invite on our podcast are not paying us for the exposure we offer them. Just like for the Cigar Sense membership and our educational resources, we strive to provide independent information.
The Cigar Sense panel is a key instrument that allows consumers to know what a cigar actually delivers to the senses. On top of to consumers, the trained sensory panel work is dedicated to anyone who wants to know and market the cigar for what it is. Quick episode summary Benefits vs. mainstream marketing or promotional copy Difference between consumers (or untrained tasters) and trained tasters within a sensory panel The purpose of the trained sensory panel How many panelists (aka analysts) should there be? The sensory analysis system The selection of panelists The training The samples procurement The samples preparation The descriptive test The product specification The analysis submission The blind data consolidation References On sensory analysis and its misconceptions: https://www.cigarsense.com/a-new-profession-in-the-cigar-industry/ On cigar reviews usefulness and standards: https://www.cigarsense.com/on-cigar-reviews-usefulness-and-standards/ On sensory analysis vs. tastings: https://www.cigarsense.com/sensory-analysis-or-tastings/ On the science of cigar tasting: https://www.cigarsense.com/the-science-of-cigar-tasting/ On sensory evaluations: https://www.cigarsense.com/005-on-sensory-evaluations/ On sensory analysis: https://www.cigarsense.com/004-on-sensory-analysis/ Feedback and promotion on the show You can ask your questions, make comments and be featured on the show! Let your voice be heard. Email Franca Comparetto [franca@cigarsense.com]. We have no external investors, nor ads revenue. Just like for the Cigar Sense membership and our educational resources, we strive to provide independent information.
Is more cigar choice better? Today we have a plethora of choices of premium cigars. We discuss what are the possible motivations for people to choose from many cigars or from less and identify one solution to fill the gap between many choices and "good enough for me", in respect of our individual taste. Quick episode summary Is having more cigar choice a better way to satisfy our needs? Choosing between the best or “good enough for me” Why do some people always want to try all cigars? How do we know what is the best for us? What about consumers who want what is familiar? Imitate or preserve our individuality? How can we fill the gap between a wide choice and preserve our taste? References Barry Schwartz https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barry_Schwartz_(psychologist) Cigar Sense free membership https://www.cigarsense.com/
If you had an idea of what your unique personal taste is about, after listening to this episode you may look at some things differently. Aniello Buonincontro wrote a book, "Degustazione Razionale", which means rational tasting. He researched anthropology, sociology, neuroscience and psychology. He also studied the issues concerning the characteristics of the premium cigar in relation to marketing and consumption. Aniello is a certified sommelier and a Cigar Journal panelist. He has been in charge of the most renowned cigar courses in Italy (Catadores by the Cigar Club Association). He actually is an aeronautical engineer. Nine years ago, he left his job as production manager in a multinational company and became sales manager at Cigars and Tobacco, one of the biggest, if not the biggest, importer and distributor for Italy of new word cigars. Among his role's activities, he provides training and guidance for events and manages the relationships with many producers, retailers and enthusiasts. Quick episode summary What is personal taste? How do genetic, sensory and mental factors play a role when we talk about our personal taste? Why should consumers and marketers care about personal taste? Symbology and art in the cigar world's marketing. New or boring cigars? What is good taste? Should we smoke what we really like or conform to others? Why can't producers anticipate what consumers like (unless they have relevant data)? What is the real pleasure? Who is to blame for our conformism, our following others' tastes? What's the difference between good and pleasant? What is the role of emotions when we talk about "pleasant"? What is the difference between an off-flavor and an unpleasant aroma? How can we protect our authentic taste? What is the challenge when doing this? What is the difference between tasting and judging? When judging, do a long-time experience and quantity of cigars smoked count?   Resources: Aniello Buonincontro's blog: https://sigarietempo.com/  Get your free personalized recommendations powered by technology and sensory analysis:  https://www.cigarsense.com/   HELP US SPREAD THE WORD! If you like this episode, give us an honest review, subscribe and share with your friends! You can also follow us on: https://twitter.com/CigarSense  https://www.facebook.com/cigarsense/ https://www.linkedin.com/company/cigar-sense-inc-/ https://www.pinterest.com/CigarSense/ https://www.instagram.com/cigarsense/ https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsrQpv6q5CusJ51-6_aK_qg   Feedback and promotion on the show You can ask your questions, make comments and be featured on the show! Let your voice be heard. Email Franca Comparetto [franca@cigarsense.com]. We have no external investors nor ads revenue. The people we accept/invite on our podcast are not paying us for the exposure we offer them. Just like for the Cigar Sense membership and our educational resources, what we strive to provide is independent information.
We all have our individual needs and values. Often so many of them are combined together. Even if it might not be a priority for us to consider premium cigars as luxury products, at least consciously, we may recognize some patterns discussed in this episode.   Quick episode summary What needs lead us to buy premium cigars as luxury products? Among the wide variety of cigars, which ones do we tend to choose based on such needs? Where does knowledge fit in the luxury picture? Some challenges for cigar companies. A solution for consumers (and companies).   References Stamatogiannakis, Antonios; Calderón, Susan; Gonçalves, Dilney - 2017/09/08 - Spoiling Ourselves: Consumers’ Choice of Luxury Products Cigar Sense free membership https://www.cigarsense.com/    HELP US SPREAD THE WORD! If you like this episode, give us an honest review, subscribe and share with your friends! You can also follow us on: https://twitter.com/CigarSense  https://www.facebook.com/cigarsense/Facebook https://www.linkedin.com/company/cigar-sense-inc-/LinkedIn https://www.pinterest.com/CigarSense/Pinterest https://www.instagram.com/cigarsense/Instagram   Feedback and promotion on the show You can ask your questions, make comments and be featured on the show! Let your voice be heard. Email Franca Comparetto [franca@cigarsense.com]. We have no external investors nor ads revenue. The people we accept/invite on our podcast are not paying us for the exposure we offer them. Just like for the Cigar Sense membership and our educational resources, what we strive to provide is independent information.
The history of the Dunhill Cuban cigars was presented at the III International Symposium "Habana/Habanos"2009, an event gathering historians, museum workers, researchers of different branches, journalists, collectors, artists, trader, sommeliers with the propose of, a.o., sharing researches and accumulated experiences on the Habanos economy and analyze the links between the tobacco industry and the Cuban national history, culture and identity. You can read the full transcript of the lecture at https://www.cigarsense.com/the-history-of-the-dunhill-cuban-cigars/ Alex Iapichino is General Counsel and Group Company Secretary of Naked Wines plc, the leading direct to consumer online wine retailer, with operations in UK, USA and Australia. Alex lives in London and is an avid smoker, passionate about Cuban cigars. Join Cigar Sense for free [https://www.cigarsense.com/] and get your personalized recommendations powered by technology and sensory analysis! Resources mentioned during this episode About Smoke - An Encyclopaedia of Smoking, Alfred Dunhill Ltd., c 1932. An Illustrated Encyclopaedia of post Revolution Havana Cigars, Min Ron Nee, Interpro Business Corporation, First Edition, January 2003, page 125.   HELP US SPREAD THE WORD! We’d love it if you could please share Cigar Sense Podcast with your followers. If you like this episode, head over to Apple Podcast, Podchaser or your favorite player app and kindly leave us a review and follow the show! Feedback and promotion on the show You can ask your questions, make comments and be featured on the show! Let your voice be heard. Email Franca Comparetto [franca@cigarsense.com]. We have no external investors nor ads revenue. The people we accept/invite on our podcast are not paying us for the exposure we offer them. Just like for the Cigar Sense membership and our educational resources, what we strive to provide is independent information.
Many doubts, reactions, engagements and questions indicate the interest that the cigar industry is showing in sensory analysis. We welcome them all. Join Cigar Sense for free [https://www.cigarsense.com/] and get your personalized recommendations powered by technology and sensory analysis!   Quick episode summary What is the meaning of "tasting"? What is different from food & beverage products when applying sensory analysis to cigars? Can the results drive products adrift? Is the individual drowned in the average? Does the individual become data to be mediated? Do only mechanical/industrial cigars justify the application of sensory analysis? How do you resolve for the product variability? How about variability of cigars through storage and aging? The molecular orientation of the smoke can change the sensory perceptions. How do you cope with this? How can humans work like machines, with no influence from the external world? How far can only subjective expressions be taken into account?   Resources mentioned during this episode Cigar Sense article Sensory analysis, a misunderstood discipline Cigar Sense article Sensory analysis, questions and reactions Cigar Sense Podcast episode 51 A new profession in the cigar industry Aniello Buonincontro's book Degustazione Razionale   HELP US SPREAD THE WORD! We’d love it if you could please share Cigar Sense Podcast with your Twitter followers: [bctt tweet="Just listened to #CigarSensePodcast's awesome #podcast about #sensoryanalysis with @cigarsense! It's worth a listen. Check it out" username=""] If you like this episode, head over to Podchaser and kindly leave us a review and follow the show! You can also follow us on: Facebook LinkedIn Pinterest Instagram   Feedback and promotion on the show You can ask your questions, make comments and be featured on the show! Let your voice be heard. Email Franca Comparetto [franca@cigarsense.com]. We have no external investors nor ads revenue. The people we accept/invite on our podcast are not paying us for the exposure we offer them. Just like for the Cigar Sense membership and our educational resources, what we strive to provide is independent information.
This episode is based on our article Sensory analysis, a misunderstood discipline. Franca explains some key factors that drive misconceptions when it is about sensory analysis: it deals with subjective data sensory science is a young research area anyone can evaluate cigars many expert tasters many obsolete tasting guides a lot of academic literature, little sharing of benefits among non-academic communities companies like to tell consumers what to sense, even if it's wrong why should marketing teams believe results from sensory tests that are inconsistent with their own evaluations? why, on the contrary, is there trust on influencers, who also publish totally different results (but help sell)? There are certainly more points and we will update our article where appropriate. If you have any comments to the episode or to the article, please email Franca, your comments might be included in our next episode. --- Log-in or sign-up for free at cigarsense.com to download your free ebook "Our senses in action when enjoying a premium cigar". 
Franca interviewed Scott Haugh, Director of The Haugh Family Foundation and co-founder of Cayman Cigar Company. Cayman Cigar Company has a unique story in that they are the world's first and only premium cigar company to give 100% of all net profits to charity. They are helping Caymanians in addiction recovery in Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands through their nonprofit The Bridge Foundation (www.thebridgefoundationcayman.org) and growing tobacco at their nonprofit Beacon Farms (www.beaconfarmscayman.org). Beacon Farms employs graduates of The Bridge Foundation and teaches sustainable farming practices while providing stable careers for deserving local residents who are continuing their sobriety and improving their lives. Cayman Cigar Company will soon make the world's first cigar for international export using 100% grown tobaccos from Beacon Farms. This will be the first super-premium, very limited production cigar from a brand-new tobacco growing region. Visit the Cayman Cigar Company and the Haugh Family Foundation. The foundation supports inclusive learning programs for special needs children, educational and entrepreneurial opportunities for U.S. Veterans and specialized agricultural opportunities and training for Caymanians in addiction recovery in the Cayman Islands. --- Log-in or sign-up for free at cigarsense.com to download your free ebook "Our senses in action when enjoying a premium cigar". 
Ana Lopez started working in the tobacco industry in 1984. She is a former operational marketing director of Habanos and participated in the creation of more than a hundred of new lines and products and of concepts, such as the Habanos limited editions, Colección Habanos, and even Habanosommelier. She is also founder of the Habanos festival. Ana is currently a sales advisor at the company Hunters & Frankau in the UK. She is Master in Havana cigars. Together with her husband, Ana has recently started venturing into YouTube and created the Cigar Ritual Channel [https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqbE0uuVGjJdQZpbdUDALTg] where you can find great educational content. This interview covers many different aspects of the theme we approached: the influence of the wrapper on the Cuban cigar's flavor the different types of tastings in Cuba - tasting commission in the factories, national commission of tasters measuring flavor intensity and importance of creating objective cigar profiles using a common sensory language; why is this not so important in Cuba? the enigma of origin of the believe "the darker the color, the stronger the taste" what should women smoke? the role that consumers deserve and more. --- Log-in or sign-up for free at cigarsense.com to download your free ebook "Our senses in action when enjoying a premium cigar". 
Bongani Cigars is the first African Cigar brand. Their premium cigars are made in Mozambique and they are growing their presence across Africa, Europe and the US. Kamal Moukheiber discusses with Franca about: the African cigar tobacco tradition the young open-minded African consumer: as they become more mature and wealthier, they shift from international to what talks to their identity the scent of Ghana cedar wood the Mozambican production team with a Dominican undertone culture and more. --- Log-in or sign-up for free at cigarsense.com to download your free ebook "Our senses in action when enjoying a premium cigar". 
047: Nicholas Syris

047: Nicholas Syris

2021-03-1401:16:39

From Greece to the USA to Saudi Arabia to Cuba, the principles and international mindset of Nicholas Syris convey that the road less traveled, when choosing, enjoying and marketing premium cigars, is not always easy, but provide the highest satisfaction. Nicholas has a deep experience in tobacco, blending, understanding consumers and a lot more. Lots to learn from him. He is the LH (Lavida Habana) Premium Cigars brand owner and  blender, as well as a Cuba "expert". --- Log-in or sign-up for free at cigarsense.com to download your free ebook "Our senses in action when enjoying a premium cigar". 
Angelika Bauer has been working for Messe Dortmund and since 2006 and is the Project Director of InterTabac and InterSupply. In this episode, we discuss the trade show mission and goals, how visitors can access the show, the forthcoming activities and more. Visit their LinkedIn page at https://www.linkedin.com/company/intertabac/ for more updates. 
In this episode, industrial engineer Radhames Rodriguez discusses the benefits of Tabacalera El Artista vertical integration from farms to factory to distribution. He is a young innovator, always thinking outside of the box, while respecting the family tradition. We also discussed: the use of the sensory language in marketing; the challenge of determining the characterizing flavors of cigars produced with a particular tobacco in a particular terroir; the objectivity of cigar analyses based on statistics; the premium cigar on its way to become an intangible cultural heritage in the Dominican Republic and more. Radhames Rodriguez is one of the youngest cigar executives in the industry, an industrial engineer by trade, applying his knowledge to his 3rd generation family owned cigar factory, which has been in operation in Tamboril, DR since 1956. Tabacalera El Artista is one of the few boutique brands to be vertically integrated from farms to factory to distribution, owning the supply chain. As he says: "This means really good tobacco at a very sharp price!" — This podcast is brought to you by Cigar Sense founders and paid members. With the free Cigar Sense membership, you can obtain personalized recommendations of cigars that best suit your unique individual tastes.  In a few simple steps, you can see what your top cigar picks are from the thousands of cigars available on the market.  You can also explore sensory and other cigar attributes as Cigar Sense helps you better understand what you like and dislike in a cigar. — Be sure to subscribe to Cigar Sense Podcast so that you don’t miss a single episode, and while you’re at it, won’t you take a moment to write a short review and rate the show? It would be greatly appreciated!
In this episode, Randy Griggs and Franca discuss about cigar reviews, their usefulness and whether some standards might help increase it. Randy Griggs has worked in the craft beer industry for 19 years, establishing himself as a flavor sensory specialist. After becoming a beer judge at age 21, Randy followed up with a BBQ judge certification and is studying to become a beverage and spirits specialist, as well as a cigar sommelier. Randy has worked with event production teams to develop beer educational events throughout the country, including the Great American Beer Festival as well as a speaker at the National Craft Beer Wholesalers conference. Randy hosts alongside Rob Rasmussen for Cigar Dojo's pairing-focused cigar show, A Flavor Odyssey. When not smoking cigars and drinking craft beer, Randy is also very passionate about food, coffee, BBQ, cheese, and all things craft. — This podcast is brought to you by Cigar Sense founders and paid members. With the free Cigar Sense membership, you can obtain personalized recommendations of cigars that best suit your unique individual tastes.  In a few simple steps, you can see what your top cigar picks are from the thousands of cigars available on the market.  You can also explore sensory and other cigar attributes as Cigar Sense helps you better understand what you like and dislike in a cigar. — Be sure to subscribe to Cigar Sense Podcast so that you don’t miss a single episode, and while you’re at it, won’t you take a moment to write a short review and rate the show? It would be greatly appreciated!
In this episode Franca discusses the sensory world of Room 101 Cigars with Matt Booth. Learn about the key principles that drive Matt's personal and business activities. He has a special way to describe his cigars using emotions. However, Matt also pays attention to the sensory language and to the way it affects branding, as well as, inversely, to how branding affects sensory. We also talk about his top priorities when creating a new blend, reviews ethics and intangible cultural heritage. Matt says "I maintain a steadfast resolve to both explore my personal interest and connection to tobacco - specifically in cigar form - as well as introduce fans and potential fans of our culture and community to my personal approach and reflection of what it is that we do. I also prefer high thread count bedding materials and am an ongoing fan of interpretive dance as well as many other forms of artistic expression." Visit www.room101brand.com to discover his world. — This podcast is brought to you by Cigar Sense founders and paid members. With the free Cigar Sense membership, you can obtain personalized recommendations of cigars that best suit your unique individual tastes.  In a few simple steps, you can see what your top cigar picks are from the thousands of cigars available on the market.  You can also explore sensory and other cigar attributes as Cigar Sense helps you better understand what you like and dislike in a cigar. — Be sure to subscribe to Cigar Sense Podcast so that you don’t miss a single episode, and while you’re at it, won’t you take a moment to write a short review and rate the show? It would be greatly appreciated!
In episode "Correlation or causality?" David Wells, VP and co-founder of Cigar Sense, explains the key principles that drive the accuracy of our cigar recommendations. He also talks about the differences between online recommendations based on data correlation, aka big data analytics,  as opposed to recommendations based on data causality, aka deep data analytics. In statistics, "correlation does not prove causality" refers to the inability to legitimately deduce a cause-and-effect relationship between two variables solely on the basis of an observed association or correlation between them. Bottom line, on one hand you can invest virtually all you can on marketing, get millions of consumer data for and through correlation based recommendations, and hope you will make at least 50% of those millions happy with what they buy next. On the other hand, you can invest in a sensory panel, in samples, in training, in curing the data, in continuously monitoring the algorithm performance over thousands of consumers and make 90%+ of them happy. We believe that, belonging to the second example, we are ready to scale up. On another note, correlation and causality are obviously also referred to when science attempts to demonstrate flavor precursors from different terroirs. Are they managing to find causation? More on this, and on a lot more, in our online tasting course. Stay tuned.
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