No matter how many stoners own a bowl, a pipe or some other kind of homemade device that’ll turn grass into gas, cigars are still very much in high demand on the blocks where I’m from (Brooklyn stand up!). Growing up, the cigar became our best friend and middleman whenever we wanted to hook up with Mary Jane. Yes, nowadays most of us have our own personal “peace pipes” and “sugar bowls” at home, but whenever we’re out and about, we constantly hit up bodegas to cop something to twist up that herbal essence in. The sale of cigars alone have kept struggling corner bodegas going strong around these parts. Well, that and Goya products. They may sell expired candy bars, week-old bread, and porno movies on VHS tapes that come in those unnecessarily big boxes, but they always carry the latest and freshest in cigars and blunt wraps… and Goya products. Even though there are tens of options to choose from right behind the counter, only a chosen few receive the honor of death by burning at the stake. Here’s a list of the pros and cons of the five most-used rolling tools we live by ‘round the way.
1. Dutch Masters Cigars
• Earthy flavor
• Burns slow
• Ideal for group ciphers
Overall: The rolling process can be tedious at times, and a veiny leaf can hamper a perfectly rolled L, but the end result is definitely worth it: A slow-burning branch of weed that can make it’s way around a cipher more than once (depending on how many heads hit the leaf of course). But please allow experienced rollers to twist these up because the last thing you want is to steam on is a broken deer leg and for the price these’ll run you nowadays, you better make that roll count!
2. Phillies Blunt
• Burns quicker
• Small size
Overall: Though they tend to burn a little faster than a Dutch, rolling a Phillies Blunt is convenient when you’re in a hurry, as all you have to do is break it down the middle, empty it out, and roll up the mind-altering essence. If you have any trouble following those instructions just watch the cult classic Kids and not only will you get the visual lesson, but you’ll also have something cool to watch while you’re burning it down. By the time it’s over you’ll end up asking yourself questions like, “How the hell did Telly’s no-game-having ass get all that coochie!?” Seriously, can anyone answer that?
3. White Owl Dutch
• Burns slow
• Bitter Taste
• Rolling (Leaf tends to stick to the cigar body)
Overall: White Owls can be rolled as simply as a Phillies or as lengthy as a Dutch. It really depends on your preference. Though they’re the same size and price as a Phillie and burn as slow as a Dutch, there are two big drawbacks to this particular cigar: 1. If you decide to roll it like a Dutch, more times than not the leaf will stick to the body and tear off horribly. And 2. The taste is pretty raw and I don’t mean Old Dirty Bastard “Oh, baby I like it raw” raw, I mean Verne “Mini-Me” Troyer sex tape with some chick that look like a dude raw. No es bueno!
Overall: Like the HBO series in the mid 2000s, Entourage is quickly becoming a fan favorite. No tobacco hassle to speak of and basically two wraps for the price of $1, cats are really starting to gravitate more and more to this product during these hard economic times. This isn’t that glorious Clinton era when we used to splurge on Garcia Vega cigars to roll skimpy dimes of Hydro in like Big Willies without a care in the world. It’s 2015, man. If I’m splurging a Garcia Vega cigar then best believe it’s because I’m about to get that Monica Lewinsky treatment from shorty.
5. Bambu Paper
• Ideal for a single toker
• Burns quickly
• Can burn unevenly
• Harsh taste
Overall: Even though Bambu paper can be crazy harsh on the nose and throat, it’s perfect for whenever you just wanna take a little something-something to the head and zone out. It can be tricky at times if you don’t know exactly what you’re doing. Too tight and it won’t pull right if it pulls at all. Too loose and the bud will fall out. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be rolling all kinds of joint creations. Practice makes perfect, and for $1 you get 33 chances to learn; if you can’t figure out how to roll a single joint by the time you get to that 33rd piece of Bible paper, then you need Jesus in your life.
Some of the choices at my corner bodega.
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