Portmann Group : Nino’s Cigars – Ivan Justo Dinner

18 Mar


nfc capA few things I didn’t know beforehand :

First – My buddy Frank was supposed to be the Master of Cigar Ceremony at this tasting of a Partagas Lusitania Gran Reserva and relay a few comments to this gathering of friends from the Portmann Cigar group of which he was a part.

Well, he got up at 0200 hrs in Belgium, drove all the way to Frankfurt airport, checked in, got his boarding pass and when he arrived at passport control he was told, along with many others, that he wouldn’t be boarding the plane as security staff went on an unannounced strike. Some 19hrs later he was back home in Belgium losing valuable 3 1/2 days of his 7 day Cuba vacation.

Second – Little did I know that I was hosting a cigar party for an upcoming Hombre Habano or Habano Man of the year.
I was hosting my group of friends as always and, being out of the “official” loop, did not know that my friend Urs had been nominated for the award that he was ultimately be receiving at the Gala dinner of the Festival.

My best wishes once again – well deserved after the drama 4 years ago.

Being out of my partner Frank made things easier for me, as it is well known that I have neither any idea of nor any relation with cigars and therefore all I could do is be a good host.

I tried my best and seemed to have hit a soft spot as all were quite satisfied with my cigar, rum and coffee selection.

The cigars, both a 4 month old and a year old selection banded in my personal anillas were enjoyed by all and the Rum selection, a very perfect 10 yr old Cubay and an excellent 15 yr old Mulata also seemed to hit the mark.

I’d go for the 10 yr old Cubay any time again.

We milled around the garden smoking, chatting, drinking good Rum, good Serrano coffee and exchanging comments on the upcoming Festival all afternoon until dinnertime.

Yanet, my landladies staff, was quite happy serving coffee and enjoying the funny affair with her 3-year old daughter Lea, always smiling and having a good time with all the Yuma grand-pa’s. Loved that part.

We then received a call from friends out in old Havana as to where to have a good dinner in town and foolishly told them to come to Ivan Justo and join us, which they did – just not at 9 pm for their table but they were already occupying “Nino’s” table at this very popular spot when we arrived in force at 8.

No problem with good old Udo Lindenberg, the German singer, he very charmingly got up and took his glass up to the roof terrace to wait his turn for dinner. Love ya, Udo !!

Dinner at Ivan’s was just perfect – one of the best if not the best eateries in Havana, great service, great food, best suckling pig, we loved the dessert and best of all : my buddy Jorge re-found his best friend again, a waitress he repaired her car many moons ago. What else can you wish for ??

I even enjoyed the company of a “cigar official” – quite rare with me, but he was a very welcomed guest and I truly enjoyed his company in Havana. Saludos Yannick y hasta pronto en Alsacia o Suiza.

Happiness all round.

Especially after Ivan, a good friend of Hamlet the roller, brought some special rum bottles into play, Edmundo Dantes .. the evening got expanded.

A memorable day with great friends.
Having them around made me feel better about not having Frank along.

He had a tough time once he arrived packing those missing 3 1/2 days into the remaining time…but he survived it.

Thank you all and once again : Glückwunsch lieber Urs !!


First 7 pictures copyright : Horst Thome/Christof R. Sage

3 Responses to “Portmann Group : Nino’s Cigars – Ivan Justo Dinner”

  1. Turner 19/03/2014 at 10:11 #

    Nino, wegen der Guayabera könnte man meinen, als hättest Dir einen Spaß erlaubt und Olivas in Havanna verteilt 😉

    • Nino Munoz 19/03/2014 at 14:42 #


      der falsche Griff in den Kleiderschrank an dem Tag …

      Kannst Du mir mit Photoshop aushelfen …. 🙂

      Gruss / Nino

  2. Arild 21/03/2014 at 22:27 #

    Bad luck for Frank, but seems like you managed well on your own Nino – not that I am suprised by that:-)

    A great event, lovely pictures, thank you for sharing!