Had you told me that one day, amongst all the breweries and distillers that have popped up, pretty much every where, that Muskegon would be home to a cigar shop....with it's own line of hand rolled cigars, I would have laughed at you. Steven and Rachel Thomas however didn't blink when they had the opportunity to expand their business "up the coast" a little and found a sweet little spot in Lakeside to put down some roots and open Stogies!
Steven found his passion for fine cigars early in life, and took the passion and put it to work for him. He worked with another cigar expert as a mentor for a long time learning the differences and nuances to the different kinds of leaves from different regions of the planet that when blended together, make an enjoyable and relaxing treat for those who enjoy a cigar. No, smoking isn't for everyone and this isn't any kind of endorsement to send you out to buy a carton of cigarettes or stop you in your tracks of being a former smoker if you've put it behind you. As Steven's expertise grew, so did his desire to create his own line and feature those among some of the other fine brands you'll find in the shop.
One of the things Steven is quick to point out, there's more to a cigar than smoking. Sitting down to enjoy a cigar generally means gathering. Sparking up a conversation. Meeting friends new and old, and the nice thing....they take a while so, no one has to be in a rush. With the location of Stogies too, it's in the heart of the social district in Lakeside so that means you can enjoy a delicious Wonderland cocktail or grab a beer at the Marie Tap and take a stroll. Stogies has outdoor seating, patio tables and umbrellas and since fall is here....they even bring the big screens out on the sidewalk for weekend football enjoyment.
Working from the shop in Saugatuck to begin, then finding ways to bring a smaller version of themselves to events where people might find a cigar enjoyable has been a part of their success. The pair have worked very hard and with a lot of dedication to bring a premium experience with a premium product. To welcome them to Muskegon is the very least we can do. Well.....there is one more thing.
Being a bit of a cigar maven myself, as we wrapped up, I bought 2 of the house hand made cigars and let Steven be the guide. My first impression was that it wasn't rolled quite as tight as I am accustomed to, and I expected a quick burn. I was wrong. A nice slow and even burn complimented with delicious flavors and a great finish. Steven named off all that I would experience, but I can tell I have a lot of education to get my arms around about cigars....and I know where to go now!