Pray Silence for the weekly announcement from our Dear Proprietor.
As I sit looking out over the heat of a Spanish Island smoking a Joya de Nicaragua (yes, you read correctly) - I am reminded of what a fabulous and diverse planet the cigar world is. I have scoured the nearby shops and found a very limited supply of Cubans but a not bad supply of New World cigars and am delighted at the prospect of the necessary experimentation I am forced to employ.
This Joyo for example is well made, cheap and frankly excellent. But rather like the reliability of Bordeaux wine, I still yearn for the hit and miss, higher highs but lower lows world of Cuba. The Romeo y Julieta Nobles that I enjoyed yesterday is frankly far more interesting. It developed as I enjoyed it. It even looked nicer - better dressed and more dapper! But it should be since it costs four times as much - it can, frankly, afford a plusher dress, nicer shoes and a Hermès handbag!
At cigar-keep.com we have now instigated a pricing mechanism which will allow you to track how your cigars have performed. Putting aside our strongly held view that cigars are to be enjoyed and not traded as an asset class - this feature will allow you to see where value lies both in the market and in your humidor. It is actually a peculiarly pleasurable experience - reviewing how some boxes have done versus others.
Surveying my own keep I am delighted to see how my Vigias have done. Up 30%! What else has done that since April this year? Shares, art, property? But I am also greatly reassured that my breakfast cigar collection of Quai d'Orsays have increased by a paltry sub-inflationary 3%. It seems they are actually getting cheaper (In real terms) by the day, whilst the Trinidad's are leaping ahead. The fact is that this resource, will, as data points build, be a fascinating and useful guide to how prices have evolved and this should hopefully allow us all to better manage our collections and humidors. Maybe cigars will become a fully-fledged financial instrument and a second set of warnings will be plastered all over the wooden cabinets - ‘prices of your Topes may go down as well as up’ etc.
Someone has already commented on the site that cigars might become like watches - where the primary market subsumes itself into the secondary market. We also worry about that too. The good news is that far more cigars are made than high end watches AND with good people like Hunters and Frankau managing supply and distribution in countries like the U.K., I am confident that whilst prices will continue to rise - in reality the market dynamics are just not there to kill the primary market. This may not be the case with the LEs and special editions though. Let's see...
In any event, thanks to all of you posting your photos. Let's see some more videos please too. I am sure some of you are on a well-earned holiday somewhere so please let us know what the cigar conditions are like and send in your holiday cigar snaps!
Have a great weekend and see you in the smoking room soon.