Wrapper: Mexican Maduro
Strength: Medium to Full Bodied
Size: No. 8- 5.5 x 50
Eddie Ortega, of 601 fame, broke off his relationship with Rocky Patel and formed his own company called Ortega Premium Cigars. Their first release was called the Serie D. It is made in the My Father factory and is comprised of fillers of viso and ligero from Esteli and Jalapa, a binder from Esteli and a San Andres Maduro wrapper.
It’s a good looking stick. Milk chocolate in color with a minimum of veins and a solid stick. A nice feature is that the sticks come without a cello. They get to breathe.
The pre light aroma is cocoa and hay.
I get the typical Garcia blast of spice on light up. With a whole bunch of flavor that includes oak and nuts. Plus a deep tobacco taste.
The burn line is perfect. Immediately, there is dark cocoa and espresso. The spiciness tickles the back of my throat. Meanwhile, the dominant flavor is dark chocolate. The body is heavy on the medium side.
Further in, I can taste the richness of dates. The body builds. It spews smoke like a coal plant’s chimneys.
If you go to Eddie’s web site: http://www.ortegacigars.com, you can see the names of the follow ups not yet in circulation: BROTHERHD and AFTERSHOCK. According to the web site, these sticks will only be available at B & M’s.
Halfway in, it gets very creamy. The spice dissipates and I’m left with a Milky Way. Yum.
My conclusions are that this has the potential of being a great smoke. Unlike the 601 La Bomba, made by Garcia, this stick needs some aging beyond the few weeks I gave it. But patience will bring rewards. I’m going to let the rest of my booty sleep for a while and see how some humi time affects them. But have no qualms, even at a month in the humi, I enjoyed the hell out of this fine blend.
And now for the superflous....
Carol Kaye (Bassist Extraordinaire)
Carol is the monster of studio bass players that made her name as part of the L.A. Wrecking Crew. This bunch of rotating musicians played on every single hit made in the 1960's.
Just a few of her credits:
"Good Vibrations" (The Beach Boys) [note - although she played on several sessions for this song, the released version didn't use any of them]
"Soul Reggae" (Charles Kynard)
"Homeward Bound" (Simon and Garfunkel)
"California Girls, Sloop John B, Help Me, Rhonda, Heroes and Villains" (The Beach Boys)
"Natural Man" (Lou Rawls)
"Feelin' Alright" (Joe Cocker)
"Games People Play" (Mel Tormé)
"Wait 'Til My Bobby Gets Home" (Darlene Love)
"Goin' Out Of My Head/Can't Take My Eyes Off You" (The Lettermen)
"Go Little Honda" (The Hondels)
"I'm a Believer" (The Monkees)
"Indian Reservation" (Paul Revere & the Raiders)
"In the Heat of the Night", "I Don't Need No Doctor", "America The Beautiful", "Understanding" (Ray Charles)
"It Must Be Him" (Vikki Carr)
"Little Green Apples" (O.C. Smith)
"Midnight Confessions" (The Grass Roots)
"Mission: Impossible Theme" (Lalo Schifrin)
"Out of This World" (Nancy Wilson)
"Wichita Lineman" and "Rhinestone Cowboy" (Glen Campbell)
"River Deep - Mountain High" (Ike & Tina Turner)
"Scarborough Fair/Canticle" (Simon and Garfunkel)
"Sixteen Tons" (Tennessee Ernie Ford)
"Something Stupid" (Frank and Nancy Sinatra)
"These Boots Are Made for Walkin'" (Nancy Sinatra)
"This Diamond Ring" (Gary Lewis & the Playboys)
"The Twelfth of Never" (Johnny Mathis)
"The Way We Were" (Barbra Streisand)
"Soul & Inspiration" bass, "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" guitar (The Righteous Brothers)
"Carry On" (JJ Cale) - JJ Cale Styles Book
In 1968, my famous sax playing cousin, Fred Selden, got me an intro to Carol and she allowed that I take lessons from her.
I shall never forget the first time we met. It was in her North Hollywood home in the hills. We sat on two straight back chairs in her living room of her modest home.
She kibitzed with me for a bit and then asked me to play something on my Beatles Hofner bass. I did... and felt pretty good for exhibiting some good chops.
Then she played.
I felt 1" tall.
OK. I was put in my place.
Her style was based on the pick method. She had her own set of music instructional books. And each note had a mark above it denoting whether you bring the pick up or down on the string with each note. Mind you....you could play the riff perfectly, but if your pick position was wrong, you got a nun's ruler to the knuckles.
Needless to say, I had lots of bruised knuckles. I stuck with it for about 6 months but the cost of the lesson, $15 for an hour, and the drive from Long Beach to Hollywood was killing my finances. I was 18 and working part time at Knott's Berry Farm while going to college full time.
And $15 was a lot of dough back then....so I had to bow out. But I'm very proud that I had this opportunity. Learning from a master.