different

Hestia Tobacco: A Review

Good day Dapperites,

Now I know I have advocated against cigarette smoking in the past. And I will now come clean on the fact that I do enjoy an occasional cigarette (only when I get my hands on ones from the good old U.S of A), nothing beats a good unfiltered Lucky Strike or a Camel (hey Sinatra smoked em!). But this post today will be on a new kind of tobacco product on the market. I’m talking about Hestia Tobacco All-Natural Filtered Craft Cigars.

Do they look like cigarettes? Yes! Was it their intention to be a cigarette? As a matter of fact it was. I won’t blab on about it but you can check out their story here about the founder’s battle with the FDA and subsequent designation as a filtered cigar.

I came across their site one day and got curious so ordered a couple of packs. At $12 USD for 2 (plus shipping of course) I thought “why not” ? I’ve always enjoyed cigars and an occasional dart so let’s see what they got here.

Well I will tell you I was pretty impressed. With their only ingredients being tobacco (aged in cedar) and water, you know you’re getting a quality smoke with no BS additives in there. The fact that they come in an old school soft-pack with a cool design and logo was one thing that drew me to them. Secondly, they enclose a pretty cool card with a quote from Abe Lincoln himself, “Folks who have no vices have few virtues” along with their support for independent tobacco farmers (they give back 10% of the profits to them)….OK Time out for a second, I know this sounds like some hippy/hipster bullshit, but if you know me you know I’m far from it, I just like a quality smoke! Check out the back of the pack:

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My favorite part of the pack is their tagline, “we all know they are addictive” gotta love the brutal honesty.

As for the cigar itself, it’s long filter and tobacco wrapper really stand out. I would prefer a shorter filter for more flavor but that’s just me:

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How do they taste? Completely blew away my expectation, they taste exactly as they smell, like a high quality cigar (I’m sure it’s the aging in cedar that does it!), really get a clean tobacco taste with no nasty aftertaste. I’ve heard these are great with coffee but I’ve yet to try it as it’s currently -20C here in Ottawa. I will definitely try that combo come springtime. Anyways I highly recommend these, a great alternative to cigarette smokers and great for cigar lovers who want the taste of a cigar on the go!

Stay dapper my friends, and a Happy Valentine’s Day to All!  

-The Don 😉

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Coloured Shoes, A primer

So browsing around GQ lately, I see a lot of talk about brightly coloured shoes. Now, GQ and I sometimes have a love/hate relationship (see here). But this time they are spot and tout something I’ve always believed in. And that something is to be different, forget just having your standard black and brown dress shoes. Chuck all that stuff you been taught straight out the window and step up to big league Shoe Game!

After reading that list, you might think “Holy #^$#!” I can’t afford to spend money like that on shoes. It’s ok, neither can I! The point I will always make is that you can use GQ as a general guide and seek out economical alternatives. Check out Aldo, Town Shoes and other midrange shoe stores.

Just to add a further comment on that GQ list here are my favourites from it:

Forget what Wiz Khalifa said “Black and Yellow”…Blue and Yellow will always make the best pairing of colours to me!

Blue Suede Shoes? Step aside Elvis, here come the Green Suede Shoes

They say The Devil is in the Details, well the (obvious) detail here is an aqua blue sole on a brown loafer.

How could one wear these shoes you might ask? It’s quite easy, with just about everything, from a suit to chinos to my favourite, the white jeans 😉

So step up your shoe game gents!

Stay Dapper,

The Don

Death to the Skinny Tie!!!

Ok maybe not complete death to the skinny tie, but I believe they are on the way out. Browsing some pics of fashionable gents in Europe on Instagram such as this one, there is not a skinny tie in sight. Lately, I myself have been favoring a wider tie, anywhere from 3 to the oldschool 4 inch ones.

There have been many ‘rules’ when it comes to tie width, “match the width of your tie to the width of your lapels” is an ideal one, although not always practical, am I supposed to run out and buy a new suit every time I get a tie of a different width? Please. Another one, (which I agree makes sense) is the fact that certain widths look different on certain body types. If you’re a husky, or athletic muscular guy, a skinny tie will look kinda weird on you. There’s a reason why you see football players not wearing skinny ties, it would look ridiculous on them. Here’s a good example of Ray Lewis rocking an appropriate tie for his shape.

Now, I am not advocating taking all your skinny ties and throwing them all away, but rather encouraging you all to start integrating some wider ties in your repertoire. Especially if you work in a conservative office, you’ll want to go with something like a standard 3″ tie. And let me let you in on a secret, I myself feel a little more powerful and manly in a wider tie, try it! And if you need a bonus, there are so much more possible knots with wider ties than with skinny ties, where you are largely restricted to the simple Four in Hand knot.

Overall, I do feel like the whole skinny tie trend is becoming played out, as we all know, fashion is cyclical and always repeats itself in one way or another. By that line of thinking, we should start seeing wider ties become trendier again. In fact, some stores don’t even carry skinny ties and never really did, like my #1 favorite Brooks Brothers. In fact, an interesting line caught my eye in their book, Generations of Style“By ignoring trends, Brooks Brothers has gone on setting them”

Now to cap it off with a few ties from my own collection of varying widths:

Some of the collection

So here we have ties of varying widths, they are as follows (in order left to right): “2.25”, 3.25″, 3.75″, 3″. 1.75″, 2.5″ and the large gaudy 1970s tie acquired from a co-worker in a whopping 4.75″. That is probably where I draw the line, 4.75″ is extra wide, will probably take it to a tailor and have him narrow it to 3″ or 4″.

And my latest, most beautiful catch, a Brooks Brothers Golden Fleece handmade seven fold silk tie purchased at work for $13, languishing in the discount bin due to it’s 4″ width. For those unfamiliar with Brooks Brothers, the Golden Fleece line is the creme de la creme in terms of quality. If you are wondering what a seven fold silk tie is, look here. They are hard to find and usually retail upwards of $150!

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I will say this about seven fold ties, they are nice and thick and make for a beautiful knot as shown above.

That’s all for today dapperites, remember next time you’re out tie hunting, switch it up a bit and go for something a little wider. Don’t be scared, you’ll look great, just rock it with confidence 😉

The Don

(Layered) Look of the Day

Perfect example of layering in the frigid months right here:

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Colorful V-neck merino wool sweater to liven up a neutral grey suit and neutral colored tie. A little layering goes a long way in making a dapper impact!

Wedding Weekend

So I had the opportunity to head back to Montreal this past weekend to attend the wedding of a family friend. Granted, I only joined the reception at midnight but dang was I on my dapper game, and of course, the family was as well! What a great time we all had!

For the church, I did not go with the full out suit, instead went with some light grey trousers, black blazer, bright pink patterned shirt for a splash, and silk white pocket square.

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And for the reception I was rocking my custom Indochino suit that I already rocked to 2 previous weddings this summer. Normally I would wear the all-purpose white dress shirt but I forgot my cufflinks at home so I went with the purple gingham and navy tie with burgundy dots, very subtle and businesslike.

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Let me throw in a shout out to my younger bro who was looking quite dapper himself in a royal blue 3 piece suit with white shirt, bright red cotton tie and complementing square.

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And what did my parents wear? Well my pops had to borrow one of my pink checkered ties to accentuate his look, but he wore it well. And my mom, well my mom always looks good for these occasions!

the dapper parents!

the dapper parents!

Bonus pic: The happy newlyweds!

Congratulations Pietro & Lucinda

Congratulations Pietro & Lucinda

Indochino Suit Review

So about a month ago, I received my Indochino custom suit just in time for a wedding I had to attend. Finally, after weeks of you all waiting, here is my full review. So if ya wanna know where to get a custom suit at a great price, pull up a chair, grab a drink and settle in for one dapper ride!

Just as a bit of a quick run-down, I opted for the Essential Blue Suit (2 piece). With peak lapels (a touch of flair), pick stitching, ticket pocket, functional buttonholes and lapel hole, side tabs (no belt loops), red lining with monogram and pen pocket.

Upon arrival, the suit came in a neatly packaged square box:

 

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Once I opened the box, I saw that the suit had been neatly folded and fastened into place with straps.

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Then it was time for the fun stuff, opening it to check out the details and options I had added!

 

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Side tabs (sans belt loops!) to show that this was a custom fit

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Functional sleeve buttons, a sign of custom clothing

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Note the lapel flower, not possible without an open lapel hole, another sign of custom

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Custom red lining for a touch of pop with pen pocket and awesome monogram!

 

Just to show off the bright socks I opted to wear on that day!

Just to show off the bright socks I opted to wear on that day!

So how did it fit?

 

I will admit when I put it on for the first time it felt a bit weird, probably because I was not used to wearing a suit mace specifically for me, however by the time of the wedding I felt comfortable and like a million bucks in it. The pants required some tailoring below the knee to slim them which cost me about $30. But, Indochino reimbursed me the amount as they reimburse any alterations up to $75! My email was answered within minutes  The only things that felt a bit cheap on the suit were the buttons, but it is really not a deal breaker. The rest of the suit itself fit just right, meaning not baggy, yet not excessively slim, still allowing room to move while maintaing form conturing fit.

 

Bottom line, would I recommend this company to you dapperites? Absolutely! For the price I paid ($450) you cannot find a custom 100% wool suit with as many customization options included anywhere else. They also offer custom blazers, pants, and coats as well as a premium line of suits with finer wools. So of you got a big occasion coming up, consider custom. You will not regret it 😉

 

Stay Dapper my friends….

 

-The Don

 

Bonus Pic!

 

Ms Dapper by my side looking gorgeous as ever!

Ms Dapper by my side looking gorgeous as ever!