Podcast 170: Local vs. Destination Casino Trips; FDA Cigar Proposed Rule; White Wines

Podcast 170, 5/18/14 … Jason and Tony debate the relative merits of saving up for one or two annual destination casino trips, versus more frequent local casino trips. After that, your Czars of Cigars review the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s proposed rules governing the regulation of premium cigars. Then we “whine” about a pair of white wines we didn’t really enjoy.

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12 thoughts on “Podcast 170: Local vs. Destination Casino Trips; FDA Cigar Proposed Rule; White Wines

  1. Sean Blair Reply

    We have several Indian casinos here in SoCal, but I get my Vegas on every couple months, so I wait till then. Better comps.

    Uncle Sam… leave my sticks alone!

    Not a white wine drinker normally, but I do enjoy a nice Riesling.

    • Mike Reply

      Do the Indian casinos allow you to smoke cigars indoors? The California Indian casinos I have visited have not been friendly to cigars even if cigarettes were allowed everywhere.

      • Sean Blair Reply

        Probably not, but being California I would be surprised if they did. But I’ve ran in to anti-cigar attitudes even in Vegas. I was told by security at the Venetian that I couldn’t smoke my stogie on the floor, and was verbally accosted by a woman downtown on Fremont for smoking, even though I was outside and 10 feet away from a cigar vendor.

        • Mike Reply

          It must be your fellow Californians complaining about your cigars. 🙂

          Even with weak anti-smoking laws now in Nevada and stronger ones almost everywhere else, I rarely get much grief about cigars in Vegas. I do avoid smoking at most tables and try to pick a VP machine either away from others or already well saturated with secondhand smoke.

          I am surprised about the Venetian. They have 2 Davidoff cigar stores there, if I recall. Were you on the gaming floor? Where?

          Anyone who complains outside, especially on Fremont is drunk (but not drunk enough to ask for a smoke), crazy or both.

          • Sean Blair

            I was walking and smoking at the Venetian, just in the zone. I believe I was on the gaming floor.

          • Mike

            Weird. I have smoked walking through the gaming floor many times there. Maybe it was the nonsmoking section.

      • Jason Gillikin Reply

        Gun Lake (Allegan County) permits cigars. In fact, if you sit at the bar in the center of the gaming floor, you can see your smoke get whisked up into the HVAC system – pretty powerful blower motors. I’ve never had anyone say anything about cigars, although I’m not there much despite being about 20 minutes away.

        • Mike Reply

          I have had cigars in almost every Native American casino in the Lower Peninsula (have not visited Gun Lake, though). In California, however, I have never been at a casino that welcomed or even tolerated cigars. Most have “No cigar or pipe smoking” signs around the gaming floor.

          And don’t forget that as sovereign nations, California’s smoking laws do not apply in the Indian-owned casinos. Cigarettes are everywhere.

          Have you ever seen “California Craps”? It’s a craps game played there without dice. Weird.

  2. Mike Reply

    I live within 30 minutes of the Detroit casinos, but due to the table minimums and lack of even easy comps for low-limit players, I generally prefer to save most of my money for Vegas trips (where, I must add, my company sends me fairly regularly for work).

    Regarding the FDA proposal, also note that the FDA exemption suggestion would be on a cigar with a $10 MSRP (before taxes). With taxes and depending on what local tobacco/sales taxes are, the “$10 exempt cigar” would have a shelf price much, much higher in most of the country.

    I am not sure what will happen with the FDA, but don’t expect cigars to suddenly all cost more than $10 a stick. I am not sure the exemption will make it into law, but it makes more sense for most cigar makers to submit less expensive cigars to regulation than lose tons of sales by pricing themselves out of the market.

    My guess is the FDA may take a long time to issue regs on cigars, if any eventually land. Like menthol cigarettes, they can sit on a proposal indefinitely.

    • Jason Gillikin Reply

      Good points, Mike. I remain cautiously optimistic that the FDA’s approach may be influenced by the elections in 2014 and 2016.

      • Mike Reply

        Congress is on record as opposing FDA regulation of cigars, for whatever that’s worth.

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