We picked up the Silvio recently on our visit to Perdomo in Miami.  I really loved the story behind the cigar – the perseverance, the passion and the respect that this stick shows for its namesake as well as in its manufacturing.  I wanted to find a drink that deserved respect as well, that would pair well with its flavour profile but also had a rich history.  This is how I came upon Bowen.

About Bowen XO Cognac

The story of the Bowen cognac is one of romance.  Louis Olivier Chabasse, the successor of Jean-Baptiste Chabasse, founder of Chabasse cognac, live in the early 1900s.  He was a lover of travel and the exotic.  His passions were for French colonial Africa and Indo-China but would also enjoy trips to the British areas of Asia and the Pacific.

On one of his journeys to India he met, and fell in love with, Elizabeth Bowen, the daughter of a British farmer.  It was for her that he put his passion into creating this cognac just for her.  This cognac is subtle, delicate and aromatic.

The tastes we detected were of cherry syrup, strong dark fruits and bitter chocolate.  It has a long finish – super warm in the mouth.  There are tastes of orange brandy and orange rind on the swallow.

About the Perdomo Edicion De Silvio

Silvio Perdomo worked in several of the great Cuban cigar factories in the early to mid 1900s.  He worked for everyone from Cuesta y Cia to H. Upmann to Partagas.  However following the Cuban revolution Silvio was arrested by revolutionaries and imprisoned for speaking negatively against Castro.  His son Nick Perdomo Sr. followed in his steps also working at many of the great factories.  When Nick also became the target of revolutionaries and even fought against them!  Soon they were forced to move to the United States.  The short version is that Nick Jr also followed in his father and grandfather’s footsteps.  Sadly, Silvio didn’t live long enough to appreciate the tribute that was made for him.  But his memory will live on every time one of these fantastic sticks are smoked.

This top of the line Perdomo is beautiful in every sense.  The wrapper is delicate, smooth, spotless and without vein.  One the top five toreadors are allowed to roll this high end stick.  The Cuban-seed, Nicaraguan puro contains tobaccos that have been aging since before 1997.  Exclusively fermented in Spanish cedar bins and 50-year old vintage oak casks, these sticks have a rich and luxurious taste and look to them.

The draw is “just-right-firm” and has tons of smoke.  The first 3/4″ there was spice on the tongues and in the throat. There were beautiful delicate flavours including a few types of nuts.

About the Pair

After sipping the cognac the spice from the cigar was brought under control – not sure if this is something the drink did or if the spice would naturally have gone away.  The pair was super smooth and a theme of chocolate-orange came through.  It was a great combination in which the cigar tamed the finish of the cognac, and the cognac tamed the spice of the cigar.  We got somewhat lost in the ambiance with the candle light and light rain falling on a canvas shelter as we sat outside late at night.

This pair really is about the romance of it all.  Take the time to enjoy it properly.  Don’t rush.  Sip slowly.  Imagine the hardships and the passion that went into this combination.


Drink pairing for Perdomo Edicion de Silvio