RTDA Houston 2007 In Pictures

And… I’m back. I wish I wasn’t, but all good things must come to an end. Otherwise those good things would become average things. Since I’m already getting search hits for RTDA pictures, now seems like a good time to put up mine. Hopefully they’re up before everyone has lost interest! Once I have a decent night’s sleep under my belt, expect a more thorough write up of the event. (Yeah, yeah, I know, I’ll be the last one to write up my impressions. But like a good cigar, it’s important not to rush these things. And that’s as good an excuse as you’re gonna get.)

In the meantime, I forgot to mention my first review on the Stogie Review. Head over and check out my thoughts on the Rocky Patel Vintage 1992. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I keep talking about writing up. Well, my friends, procrastination has paid off. When I was asked to fill in for Jerry on Fridays, I had a review all ready to go. Now I just gotta figure out what I’m doing for this week! πŸ™‚

But back to the pictures. Here’s my RTDA experience, in pictures, roughly in the order it happened. Enjoy!

Downtown Houston

Downtown Houston, as seen from 3rd floor deck of convention center.

Cigar People!

Yours truly, Daniel “Stogie” Lopez, Colin Ganley, Dogwatch Dale “Marzipan” Roush

Gentlemen Revelers

Some gentleman revelers at the Hilton Ballroom

Don Francisco

Don Francisco

Blue Havana II

Jim “Blue Havana II” Luftman (Atlanta-based retailer)

Fumee World Heather

Fumee World Heather Waibel and entourage with Yours truly at Slainte Irish Pub

CAO Booth Babes

The CAO Flavorettes

Graycliff Cigar Roller

Graycliff cigar roller

Rocky Patel

Rocky Patel

Carlos Torano

Carlos ToraΓ±o

Tim Ozgener

Tim Ozgener and possibly his biggest fan. πŸ™‚

Red Rooster Chick

I dunno, but she was colorful…

Gene Arganese

Gene Arganese

Bert and Nathan

Bert and Nathan, my favorite Oliva reps

Kinky Friedman

Yours truly and Kinky Friedman, musician and maverick Texas politician

Cano A. Ozgener

Mr. CAO himself, Cano A. Ozgener at the Escape With CAO event

Sondra Hankamer

Sondra Hankamer of Atlanta-based Ash Cigar Co.

Jesse β€œCigar Jack” and Denise Nachtigal

Jesse “Cigar Jack” and Denise Nachtigal overlooking the dance floor

Wow, 18 pictures, and the crazy thing is that I missed so many great photo-ops!

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  1. Cigar Jack said,

    August 9, 2007 at 2:07 pm

    Was I the only one freaked out about the Red Headed Flavorette?

  2. JoeDrinker said,

    August 9, 2007 at 2:35 pm

    Cigars, women, alcohol, general debauchery…man I gotta get into that hobby!

    Great pics!

  3. Brian said,

    August 9, 2007 at 6:14 pm

    Hey Cigar Jack,
    I think everybody was equally ga-ga. I have two black eyes from getting too close… πŸ˜‰

    Seriously JD. It’s an awesome hobby. The people are great, and they know a thing or two about the good life!

  4. Denise said,

    August 9, 2007 at 8:32 pm

    See that last pic? I’m actually looking at ‘Jack’. That’s the face I make right before I smack him in the back of the head for staring at the red head. πŸ˜‰

    All in all, was an awesome time. Meeting at the pub was a blast! Brian, tell your wife I said hi. πŸ™‚

  5. August 9, 2007 at 10:03 pm

    […] My favorite story from RTDA is the one I was telling. On the first day as we were making the rounds, my wife kept grabbing the camera and getting up close and personal with the big names of the cigar houses for a picture. (If you met my wife at the RTDA, you know that one thing she isn’t is shy.) I definitely have her to thank for many of the great pictures I put up in the previous post. […]

  6. Brian said,

    August 10, 2007 at 12:10 am

    Hi Denise,

    It was awesome, start to finish. I’ll pass your greetings along to my wife!

    Yeah, Cigar Jack probably had that coming. But if you smacked everyone at RTDA who ogled the redhead, you’d still be smacking! (At least a few of us would have to keep getting back in line…) πŸ˜‰

  7. stinkie said,

    August 10, 2007 at 8:01 pm

    Looks like you all had a kick ass time! I expect a lot of reviews!

    The redhead in the picture? I must have bad taste but then again I have a redhead at home that keeps me in line.

  8. August 10, 2007 at 11:08 pm

    […] learn, I’m just a big liar. OK, I’m kidding, I was actually busy schmoozing at RTDA (I have proof!), and still have every intention of getting that […]

  9. August 11, 2007 at 1:49 pm

    […] in to have a look at the contest. (Of course, a good helping of that traffic also when to the RTDA picture post. Be sure to check that out if you haven’t […]

  10. Brian said,

    August 11, 2007 at 2:54 pm

    Stinkie, it was great! Heck, I think the lighter attendance actually made it more fun for a free-loader like myself! I had more of a chance to talk to people and pick up sample cigars for future reviews because of it!

    I’m just glad my wife took that picture. It means I can ogle it to my hearts content and not get into trouble. πŸ˜‰

  11. Sondra said,

    August 13, 2007 at 7:25 pm

    Well well….I BARELY remember that picture from the CAO ‘gala’. But atleast you got my best side! It was awsome meeting you guys and hopfully it won’t be the last time. Remember, if you are ever in Gawja, come on by, always a place for you. Take care!

  12. Brian said,

    August 13, 2007 at 7:40 pm

    Hey Sondra,

    Yeah, it was a pretty crazy night!

    I’m actually based in Jaw-ja (not too far from Ash) and stopped in this past weekend and bought a Camacho Triple Maduro! Dave even gave me one of his mini Hoyo cigarillos to try out. One of these days, I’m going to get over there when you’re actually around!

  13. Sondra said,

    August 14, 2007 at 3:06 pm

    πŸ™‚ HAHAHA…..When Im actually around? Good luck there! Next time ask if Im hiding, Ive been known to do that. Wait, Dave gave you something? Whoa! He doesn’t give anyone his cigars lol.

  14. Brian said,

    August 14, 2007 at 3:33 pm

    That’s what I’m starting to think. But hey, that’s my kind of business: it keeps working, even when you’re not around! I’m usually in there on a Saturday or a Sunday, and I believe Dave when he says you’re not there. They wouldn’t be talking about you like that if you were! πŸ˜‰

    Yeah, he said that when people ask him about the little cigarillos, he gives ’em one, because they usually come back and buy a tin. Talk about a company man! Anyway, I owe him one of my Sancho Panza Matadors. Well, not really owe him, but I told him I’d hook him up with one to thank him for giving me the Hoyo.

  15. B Casanova said,

    August 15, 2007 at 10:11 am

    Did you geet an Indian Tabac 10th anniversary cigar?

  16. Brian said,

    August 15, 2007 at 10:42 am

    Hi B Casanova,

    Nope, unfortunately, I didn’t. At least I don’t think I did. I did bring back quite a few cigars, and there’s a giant ziplock baggie acting as a temporary humidor I haven’t looked through since I’ve been back!

    It’s funny, with all the booths I visited, and all the cigars I tried, I still missed a bunch! I guess this just means I have to be better prepared next year!

    Which band carving are you working on now? (I love ’em!) Inquiring minds want to know… πŸ™‚

  17. Chris said,

    August 15, 2007 at 11:38 pm

    It was a wonderful show!
    Chamuco Cigars attended the RTDA (Retail Tobacco Dealer Association) 2007 Houston Texas August 4-8th 2007. You can learn more about Chamuco and their boutique cigars at http://www.chamucocigars.com and see images from the event at http://www.chamucocigars.com/news.html CHECK OUT THE CHAMUCO GIRL!!!

  18. Brian said,

    August 15, 2007 at 11:43 pm

    Hi Chris,

    Yes it was! I had a great time, I hope you guys did well at the show. I’m sorry I didn’t stop by your booth. (#2624, I checked!) How on earth did I miss the Chamuco girl?! πŸ™‚

  19. Uncle Lew's favorite nephew said,

    September 4, 2007 at 9:37 am

    wow the infamous DonFrancisco, his cigars are top notch, his rollers are artisans in thier field

  20. Brian said,

    September 4, 2007 at 10:24 am

    Hi Uncle Lew’s favorite nephew,

    So he told me, though I haven’t yet tried any of his cigars! πŸ™‚ I think he’s one of many people I still need to get in touch with from RTDA.

  21. Uncle Lew's favorite nephew said,

    September 4, 2007 at 12:30 pm

    easiset way to get in contact with him in my book is http://www.theherfhut.com

  22. Brian said,

    September 4, 2007 at 6:51 pm

    I’ll check that out… once they approve my registration! πŸ™‚

    Did I meet you at RTDA, ULFN?

  23. Sam said,

    September 6, 2007 at 6:58 pm

    Brian, great pics mate. Thanks for visiting Inlumino Cigar News Australia.

    nice blog by the way!



  24. Brian said,

    September 7, 2007 at 10:25 am

    Thanks Sam!

    I’ve added your blog to my Google Reader, you have been assimilated! (Don’t worry, the procedure is mostly painless. After the rivets are in place…) πŸ™‚

  25. November 19, 2007 at 12:04 am

    […] Tobacco World was awesome. Definitely the biggest thing I’ve been to since RTDA in Houston (pictures, write up), and likely the biggest cigar event in Georgia this year. I’m not sure if […]

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