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Weekend Roundup – Smoke-Free Cruise Ships, Bloomberg vs. Nat Sherman, and Cigar Ice Cream

It’s been a pretty eventful week for cigars, as evidenced by our last few posts. Today is no exception, and there are just too many stories to pick one, so it’s time for yet another weekend roundup!

First off, Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America, and Princess Cruises have all announced that they will soon instate smoking bans on many areas of their ships, according to an article on MSNBC’s website. Included in Princess’ list are all cabins and balconies; Holland America’s includes cabins but not balconies; finally, Carnival’s includes list of smoke-free areas all guest staterooms and spa staterooms, but not balconies. According to a post by John Honeywell of Mirror.co.uk, Carnival’s list also includes the ship’s cigar bars, though I haven’t found any other articles to back that up. Regardless, good luck to all three of those companies—telling a bunch of drunk vacationers where they can and can’t light up probably won’t turn out very well.

Next up, we have a sparring match between New York City Mayor Bloomberg and the famous Nat Sherman tobacco store. According to an article in the Daily News, a bill authored specifically for Nat Sherman would provide the store with an exemption to the city’s existing ban on smoking in places where alcohol is served. This would allow Nat Sherman to serve alcohol to members of a private club, each of whom would be paying roughly $1,000 a year for the privilege. Jonathan Bing (D-Manhattan), a sponsor of the bill, explained its potential benefits. “It’s allowing a business to increase tax revenue and have more employees,” he told the Daily News.

According to the MSNBC article, Nat Sherman was changing locations while  NYC’s legislators were carving out exemptions for tobacco shops, so they missed the boat. Not surprisingly, Bloomberg is staunchly clinging to the ban, saying that the policy is there to protect employees who don’t want to be exposed to secondhand smoke. For a list of my reasons why prohibiting smoking in a tobacco shop is absurd, see my post about California’s attempt to do so. Anyway, good luck to Nat Sherman—thankfully Bloomberg can’t get elected for another term, that is, unless he makes another law that allows himself to do so.

Finally, and on a lighter note, I came across an interesting article this morning about an ice cream maker in Dubai, UAE. According to an article in The National, German-born Karl Heinz infuses his creations with atypical ingredients like wasabi, black pepper, dates, pineapple curry, and, you guessed it, cigars! For his cigar ice cream, Heinz finely chopped several (presumably Cuban) Cohibas, mixed them into the batch, and then strained it. The result is an aromatic treat with what has to be some of the richest flavor you can find in a dessert. Now, all I need is a way to get to Dubai…

Anyway, that’s it for the weekend roundup. Everybody have a safe, happy, and smoky Father’s Day!

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