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CNN SATURDAY MORNING NEWS

Interview With Maureen Petrovsky, Brian DeBold

Aired June 15, 2002 - 09:48   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: Well, you now have less than 24 hours to get Dad a Father's Day gift, so with some advice on two gifts that go hand in hand, literally, we turn to Brian DeBold, a cigar aficionado with the Tobacco Trading Company, and Maureen Petrovsky, a wine and spirits connoisseur.

So glad you guys are here.

It's not too early for a little Scotch and cigar, right?

(CROSSTALK)

PHILLIPS: All right, you're good.

All right, well, let's talk about, first of all, some of the Scotches you have, and we'll talk about some of the cigars and some of the do's and don'ts. But why don't we just get right down to it?

MAUREEN PETROVSKY, WINE AND SPIRITS CONNOISSEUR: OK.

PHILLIPS: How is this labeled the gentlemen's drink? You know, in all the old movies, all the (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

PETROVSKY: Right.

PHILLIPS: ... are drinking a Scotch.

PETROVSKY: Well, I guess it's an acquired taste. It's more of a mature taste. People really grow into their Scotch, and that's why there are different Scotches on the market. We've got the Glenlivet 12, you have the Aberlour (ph) 15, and the Edradour (ph), which is a super-premium 10.

Now, those numbers mean how long they've been aged, just like we age good red wine and wine is in oak, the casks that these are aged in, sherry casks and sometimes bourbon casks, lend the color and flavors to these.

PHILLIPS: OK, speaking of flavor, cigars go so nicely with Scotch. My husband's a pro, a few times I join in. But cigars, everyone talks about Cubans, but usually they're fakes, aren't they? You were saying about 90 percent?

BRIAN DEBOLD, CIGAR AFICIONADO: Ninety, probably about 90 percent of all Cuban cigars in the United States right now are probably fake. I've seen more fake cigars than I have real cigars from Cuba.

PHILLIPS: OK, so kind of what's -- and Cubans are kind of overrated, right? There are some other types of cigars that you say...

DEBOLD: Oh, yes.

PHILLIPS: ... are -- can be even better. OK, let's talk about that.

DEBOLD: These in particular here, all of these are from Arturo Fuente.

PHILLIPS: OK.

DEBOLD: These are three distinct differences here, the Hemingway series, the Don Carlos, and their flagship, the Opus X. This is the Fuente Fuente Opus X.

Flavors vary, little bit milder, little more mellow, little fuller body, little more complex, heavy body, heavy spice. This is the one most cigar smokers look for.

PHILLIPS: And what do the different wrappers mean?

DEBOLD: It's the actual individual wrapper, that single leaf that goes on the outside of the cigar after it's already rolled.

PHILLIPS: OK.

DEBOLD: These two here, Cameroon wrappers, African Cameroon wrappers, grown in Africa, here we have the Dominican Risotto wrapper, grown on the Chateau de la Fuente...

PHILLIPS: Wow!

DEBOLD: ... in the Dominican Republic.

PHILLIPS: Sounds so sophisticated, so cultural.

OK, let's team them up. Maureen, what Scotch, and then you can, Brian, tell us what cigar. How would you guys come together and pair these up?

PETROVSKY: Well, I think that the reason we put them together and a lot of people put them together is, Scotch and cigars share a lot of the same characteristics. People look for body, they look for spice, they look for flavor. And so we started at this end with the Glenlivet, which is our lightest-bodied Scotch.

PHILLIPS: OK.

PETROVSKY: And then...

PHILLIPS: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) light body.

DEBOLD: With the Hemingway Signature.

PHILLIPS: OK.

DEBOLD: Because if its additional 140 days of aging, it has a lot mellower flavor, kind of on the lighter side, mild to medium in body for cigars.

PHILLIPS: OK.

DEBOLD: Perfect with the Glenlivet.

PHILLIPS: All right, next?

PETROVSKY: Then we move to the Aberlour, and this is aged a little bit longer. We've got 15 years on this. And so that cask is going to lend some caramel flavors, some vanilla. It's in both bourbon casks and sherry casks. So we're getting this in more complex flavors, a little richer, fuller bodied, and so we paired it with the fuller-bodied cigar.

PHILLIPS: Which would be?

DEBOLD: Don Carlos, the Hemingway Don Carlos Presidente. More complex in flavors, the Cameroon wrapper gives it a little bit of a spice, true medium-bodied cigar.

PHILLIPS: OK, now the really good Scotch.

DEBOLD: Oh, yes.

PETROVSKY: The real expensive Scotch.

(CROSSTALK)

PHILLIPS: OK.

PETROVSKY: We have the Edradour here, and this is aged 10 years, but this is a super-premium. This is from the smallest distillery in Scotland, so it's a special, a specialty item. And because it is our super-premium, and it's a flagship, we paired it with the Perfection.

DEBOLD: The Fuente Fuente Opus X, their Perfection X. This cigar is probably the most sought-after cigar in the world because of its limited release and because you can only buy it here in the United States, you can't buy it outside the United States.

PHILLIPS: What makes a really sought-out cigar? What is so much better about this cigar than (UNINTELLIGIBLE)?

DEBOLD: This particular cigar is actually -- the quick little story about it is, Fuente Fuente, the father and the son, Carlos Fuente and Carlos Fuente, Jr., Opus X, Opus being a derivative from "opulent," the word "opulent," X is their Project X. This is their -- this is what they've been working for. This is something that the family has done to produce the best cigar in the world.

PHILLIPS: Now, when we talk about the Scotch, glasses are very important, right?

PETROVSKY: Very important.

PHILLIPS: OK, explain why and the type of glasses that we should be drinking.

PETROVSKY: There's a lot of glasses on the market. We brought this, it's a really nice gift set. It's a decanter and the two Scotch glasses. Now, you'll see the fluted lip. There's different, rounded bottoms, they're on stems. What you want to look for with a Scotch glass is the fluted lip. And these are personally engraved, and that's why it's a nice gift item, a company called Fantasy Glass Works does that, special orders, you can have your last name or your dad's name put on it.

But the lip there lets the Scotch cover the entire palate. And you don't want to direct it, like a brandy snifter would direct that alcohol right to the tip of your tongue and the center, whereas this is going to really go across the entire palate and let you enjoy the body and all the flavors and aroma. So that's what you want to look for with your glasses.

PHILLIPS: OK. And finally, my final question, do you start drinking the Scotch and then you fire up the cigar, or do you fire up the cigar and then you move into the Scotch?

DEBOLD: Well, you fire the cigar and make sure the glass is full at all times...

PETROVSKY: Right.

DEBOLD: ... (UNINTELLIGIBLE).

PETROVSKY: They go hand in hand, that's true, one and the same.

PHILLIPS: Brian DeBold, Maureen Petrovsky, you guys, thank you so much.

PETROVSKY: Thank you.

PHILLIPS: It's always a pleasure.

DEBOLD: Thank you.

PHILLIPS: All right, you going to hang, let these stick around for a while? We're all going to hang out and, you know, just sample the goods...

(CROSSTALK)

PHILLIPS: ... if you don't mind. (UNINTELLIGIBLE) a few hours of course, yes, noontime.

DEBOLD: Right, yes, good.

PHILLIPS: All right.

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