Company CEOs, rock stars and celebrities descend on Canary Wharf for hedonistic celebration of the cigar supported by The Spectator
This week, Boisdale of Canary Wharf hosted an unprecedented celebration of the cigar, bringing cigar aficionados and celebrity cigar smokers from around the world to share in their passion for the exquisite tobacco product. The banquet and vintage cigar auction culminated with Simon Le Bön, Duran Duran’s lead singer, winning the award for The Spectator Cigar Smoker Of The Year 2013.
The event is indicative of the growth in popularity of cigars despite the smoking ban. Sales of premium cigars in the UK are up 15% on 2008, the year following the smoking ban. 5 million cigars are smoked each year in the UK, with tobacco duty providing £9 billion last year to the exchequer.
The hedonistic evening saw the great and the good from the world of film, music, business and politics descend on the lavish surroundings of Great British restaurant Boisdale. Guests included, Nancy Dell’Ollio, jazz musician Michael Lington, photographer Richard Young, film director Marc Sinden, ex England footballer Julian Dicks, film producer Alan Greenspan and host of the evening The Spectator’s Andrew Neil.
On receiving the award Simon Le Bön graciously accepted his win and reminded his fans “It’s the wild boys not the mild boys…” Simon also became the proud owner of a humidor of rare cigars, and a stunning JEANRICHARD wristwatch.
To begin the celebrations, Boisdale played host to one of the greatest cigar auctions ever seen, led by Mitch Orchant of C.Gars Ltd. Over half a million pounds of fine and rare cigars were purchased, with the top lot going for £15,000.
Guests enjoyed a sumptuous dinner of expertly sourced Hebridean shellfish and Aberdeenshire Beef Fillet that Boisdale is famed for. The dinner was finished with a tasting of Hennessey XO and Glenmorangie Lasanta with a Fuente cigar, to determine whether malt whisky or Cognac is the definitive digestif for this exquisite cigar.
The night took a raucous turn as the awards began with Andrew Neil having to quieten the hecklers, reminding them that he had a pressing television engagement in the morning and no one would be keeping him waiting. However it was Nancy Dell’Ollio’s glittering late entrance that finally settled the eager and eccentric attendees.
The event was sponsored by UK Havana cigar specialists C.Gars Ltd and Forest — Freedom Organisation for the Right to Enjoy Smoking Tobacco.
CIGAR SMOKER OF THE YEAR
Simon Le Bön
CIGAR PRODUCER OF THE YEAR
CIGAR WRITER OF THE YEAR
Nick Hammond & Will Lyons
CIGAR RETAILER OF THE YEAR
Davidoff of London
CIGAR TERRACE OF THE YEAR
The Garden Room at The Lanesborough & The Wellesley