The Rocky Mountain Cigar Festival, held at the Omni Resort/Golf Club just outside of Denver on August 22nd, set record attendance numbers. The festival has gone from 1100 to over 2100 attendees and 107 vendors in just three years. The RMCF is now the third largest cigar festival in the U.S.
Vendors and attendees came from 38 states and 27 foreign countries to sample cigars, adult beverages and lifestyle products. Attendees can talk to and interact with cigar makers and distillers, a big draw in the world of cigars to make that personal connection.
And for those participants staying at the Omni, the chance to play the Omni Interlocken Golf Club before and after the event.
The course features exciting golf in a breathtaking setting with 27-holes with stunning scenery and more than 400 feet of elevation change. The course consists of three individual regulation nine-hole courses – Eldorado, Vista and Sunshine.
Designed by Graham & Panks International, (a partnership between David Graham, 1981 U.S. Open Champion and PGA Senior Tour player, and Gary Panks), Omni Interlocken Golf Course was ranked third in the “Best Resort Courses of Colorado” survey. It is consistently one of the best courses to take business clients with the diversity of lodging, dining and libations at the Omni.
Cigars are the festival focal point, and each manufacturer has a different angle on the stogie to appeal to a market with varying tastes.
Drew Estate started with two cigar lovers making cigars and selling them direct to business people in NYC. Now they have one of the largest cigar factories in the world in Nicaragua, and multiple cigar brands with a similar theme of adding new life to the cigar industry. The Liga Privada T52 is meticulously blended over a period of two years. Hints of black pepper and spice, it is a good choice when desiring a stronger, more robust smoke.
La Flor Dominicana is a niche cigar company that controls all facets of the cigar from growing to packaging. Their goal is to make a premium cigar that is always consistent because they oversee the process. Their Coronado was the winner of the #2 spot in Cigar Aficionado’s Top 25 Cigars of the Year for 2006.
Beverages and lifestyle products that appeal to cigar lovers are also displayed and sampled at the RMCF. Mead, a honey wine, is making a resurgence as it tastes like part beer, wine combined with cider. Locally, Boulder’s Redstone Meadery just released a passion fruit mead. Like most local operations, they sell direct, but mostly through liquor stores. In a few short years, their taste has spread their distribution to 38 states.
Tequila consumption is on the rise, and nowhere was that better demonstrated at the festival than with Silvercoin Tequila. Silvercoin agave is grown and produced by Grupo Tequilero Mexico in Arandas, Mexico. Officially founded in 1987, with 150 years of passed down family traditional tequila making wisdom. Their new distillery, house-made distilled water and hand made bottles, make this a force in the agave spirits world.
The Guayabera is a shirt that is part casual, part dress and often called the Mexican wedding shirt. A Cuban take on this shirt are those produced by the Guayabera Lady, Berta Bravo. She came to the U.S. after working in her parents clothing store in Cuba, and then applied her craft for rich design variations in the U.S. The Torpedo is long-sleeve 100% linen Guayabera that is versatile from a.m. to p.m.
Coffee gets a tasty infusion with Whiskey Barrel Coffee. Age premium coffee beans in bourbon barrels, and you get a unique taste. Bourbon leaves about 20 pounds of residue/flavor in the barrel, and the green coffee beans absorb this during the aging process. Whiskey Barrel Coffee comes in a bottle that is hand-filled, hand-labeled, hand-marked with the batch and bottle number, and then hand-dipped in wax to seal in the flavor.
Beer goes as organic as you can get as the Vindication Brewing Company uses no chemicals, enzymes or stabilizers in their beers. American Bold Ale is a 7.5% alcohol beer. A bold beer featuring a wide spectrum of caramel malts balanced against a huge load of American Hops.
Possibly the most innovative cigar lighters come from Xikar. The versatile Forte is their newest single jet flame lighter design, probably durable enough to last a lifetime. The all-metal body features a built-in razor sharp 7 mm cigar punch and a wind-resistant flame for golf course performance.