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    A Flaming Palate @ Nagaland’s Kitchen

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    The “Oh” Factor: Prepare yourself for a “trial-by-fire” as Nagaland’s Kitchen takes you on a piquant and spicy journey through Naga cuisine.

    COST: Rs. 1,500 for two people (Approx)

    ADDRESS: S-2, Uphaar Cinema Complex, Green Park Extension Market, Green Park, New Delhi

    \\CONTENT1\Content 1\NAGALAND PICS\Images\Images\2.jpgPHONE: 011-46088968; 011-26515058

    Walking into Nagaland’s Kitchen is like walking into a Naga cultural hub amalgamated with fine dining. The small area gives a very cozy feel and one would be just as comfortable on any table. On weekends, it is suggested to angle towards the entrance side in the evenings as Himalayan Dream performs ambient music as well as classic hits with a touch of their own taste.

    Looking around the appropriately lit room one can easily find hints of Naga culture adding to the theme of the restaurant. From traditional Naga wearables to collages of various local tribes adorn the walls and the decor simulates a Naga village feel.

    So the unique facet about the cuisine has to be the liberal use of spice, in particular, a chili well known as Bhut Jolokia or Raja Mircha. One of the spiciest chillies in the world, it is quite central to Naga cuisine here at Nagaland’s Kitchen. Though of course, it is completely optional in some cases.

    In fact, the chili is central to even one of their signature beverages. A refreshing take on the traditional cocktail, Bloody Mary, the Raja Mircha Mary is a must try for the spice-minded. What sets it apart from the traditional is the vodka which has been infused with Bhut Jolokia. The spicy vodka goes well with the tomato juice and the garnish of pepper and salt at the rim gives the drink a tangy zest. Another signature which is available as both a cocktail and a mocktail is NK 11. 10. 10. A combination of fruit beer and Red Bull, it is named after the opening date of Nagaland’s Kitchen.

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    Coming to starters, the smoked chicken with Naga chili is a good palate teaser. The woody flavor of the moist and succulent chicken jumps out at you and the Naga chili is a great spicy jab to the overall smoky overtones. Texture wise, the sautéed onions add a crunch flavor to the dish. In the vegetarian alter ego, the Bamboo Shoot Chili is a substantial option. Cooked with bell peppers the bamboo shoot is a worthy competitor delving well into authentic Naga cuisine.

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    Saving the ultimate spice of life for the entrée, the Pork Raja Mircha is fire. Paired with rice, the gravy is spicy, nourishing and swimming with pork flavor. The pork meat chunks are thick and luscious. And the Naga herbs and spices give a great authenticity to the taste. The Naga basil with Tofu Mersuon, a fusion take at Naga cuisine with Chinese influences, does not lag behind either and packs a punch to the palate. On the side is an assortment of chutneys the best of which have to be the Akhuni chutney and the dry fish chutney. The Akhuni chutney is biting and zesty due to the tomato and onion base with an assortment of herbs. The dry fish chutney as the name suggests is a bona fide mixture of fermented fish and Naga spices well paired with any main course.

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    It is well said that there is always space for dessert as it doesn’t go to the stomach but to the heart. A highlight of any good meal is the end and although Naga cuisine does not entail any desserts as such, going here the Chocolate Mud Pie is well recommended. A warm slice of which, goes contrastingly well with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and leaves a grin at the conclusion.

     

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    The Charming Chirmi Palace Hotel

    The ‘Oh’ Factor

    The Chirmi Palace Hotel is a century and a half-year old residence that now serves as a hotel. Thakur Vikram Singhji, the heir of the Chomu clan runs the place with pride and passion. His illustrious ancestors were responsible for bringing in uncountable booty from the Afghanistan conquest, which was then channelized into building the Pink City.

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    Steeped in Tradition

    This quaint and charming hotel is situated at Bhuleshwar Bagh, just 12 kms from the Jaipur Airport and 1.5 kms from the Jaipur Railway Station. It is like an island of peace in the city and even the pickiest well-heeled Jaipur folk will head for this comfort zone when they want a spot of relaxation and change. Every nook of this attractive hotel speaks of history and the aura of tradition hangs over every space.

    A Taste of Rajasthan

    The 24 guest rooms are furnished tastefully in Rajputana themes. The 6 Royal Suites are luxury personified and you will feel like nothing less than royalty. The 15 Deluxe rooms and 3 Junior- deluxe rooms are equally appealing and no matter which one you choose to stay in, the décor is impeccable and the service friendly. All rooms are air-conditioned and equipped with a television and internet access. The en suite bathrooms are outfitted with the most modern fittings and every amenity is made to pamper you.

    Local Flavor

    You can dine in splendor in the spacious dining room. Every wall and the ceiling are adorned with detailed hand-paintings and you can bask in the tantalizing aromas that waft from the open-tandoor kebab corner. As you sip on your refreshing drink, relish the mouth-watering fare on offer and glance around at the well-preserved frescoed walls, you know that this is what true luxury is all about. You can also opt to be served a unique Rajasthani dinner on the well-maintained expansive lawns.

    The Only Way to Relax

    On those lazy afternoons when you are not inclined to step outdoors, relax by the poolside, take a cool dip or simply enjoy a favorite book in a quiet corner of the lush gardens. And when the adventurous spirit overtakes you, the courteous hotel staff can organize transport to take you to the famous tourist spots in and around Jaipur.

    Its proximity to all tourist places makes it an ideal place to live in and you will never feel inconvenienced or restricted in terms of getting around the place. And when you have had your fill of beautifully alive city, head back to the Chirmi Palace Hotel and know that luxury awaits you at every step.

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    On The House- The European Bistro

    The ‘Oh’ Factor

    If you are a foodie and are accustomed to pangs of hunger at odd hours of the day, then I am sure you must have experienced the lack of variety of breakfast joints in Jaipur. Tackled by a similar situation, I discovered a new place in C-Scheme, and was delighted by my decision.

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    While searching for a breakfast joint on Zomato, I stumbled upon quite an interesting piece of elucidation, that read-

    An uptown ambiance of a European bistro in store, offering baked delights along with a wide range of healthy bites, hot and cold beverages.

    Intrigued by such an eloquent description, I geared up to try this café set up in C-Scheme. On entering the place, I was allured by the bakery section. It showcased the most scrumptious array of desserts including- cupcakes, tarts, brownies, cheesecakes, puddings and pies. The spacious and comfortable seating was a plus point and added to the charm of the place. I took a seat on the comfortable couch and was instantly greeted by the staff. The service was quick and within no time I was provided with a menu and a water bottle along with a tumbler.

    I was pleasantly surprised by the variety of their menu, as most places in Jaipur have a very limited breakfast menu. I ordered Chicken Lebanese platter and a Lemon iced tea to go with it. I also tried their Nutella cheesecake and was more than satisfied by the quality, quantity and the infusion of flavors in all the food items. The staff was courteous and quick. The café also offered outdoor seating.

    This European bistro was a memorable and delectable experience for me and I would surely visit this place frequently.

    Location- C-Scheme

    Cost for two- INR 1,300 (approx.)

    Cuisine- Italian, Continental, Mexican, Café, Bakery

    Sources-

    www.zomato.com

    www.ixigo.com

    www.tripadvisor.in

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    Exquisite Cheesecakes

    The ‘OH’ Factor

    If you are one of the numerous people with sweeter dispositions and crave for sugar coated delicacies round the clock, then this article is a must-read. Here is a list of patisserie in our very own Pink City, which offers scrumptious variety of cheesecakes.

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    Sinking your teeth in the decadent cheesecake, with creamy layer of cream cheese and a smooth layer of chocolate topped with a pop of strawberry is sure to send you in fits of foodgasm. This delicacy comes in a wide array of flavors- ranging from classic flavors like chocolate and blueberry to the new innovative flavors like mango and pumpkin. If you haven’t savored a piece of it yet, you should surely do it now. Here, presenting you with a number of patisserie and cafés to satisfy your sweet tooth-

    • Anokhi Café- Located in the quiet vicinity of C Scheme, this boutique café combines the essence of Jaipur and international flavors, healthy cuisine and some enticing choice of desserts. Cost for two- INR 750 (approx.)
    • Miss Baker’s- A small outlet offering an array of desserts including some mind boggling nutella and red velvet cheesecakes. Cost for two- INR 200 (approx.)
    • Dzurt Patisserie and café- My personal favorite , this café has an amazing ambience and offers the most delicious variety of cheesecakes to choose from- nutella, oreo, mango, red velvet, blueberry and so on. Cost for two- INR 600 (approx.)

    • On the House- With an elaborate menu, this place offers an extravaganza of dishes including some tantalizing cheesecakes. Cost for two- INR 1,300 (approx.)
    • Home café by Mr. Beans- One of the first café in Jaipur to introduce the coffee culture, this place has a lot to offer. From the charming alfresco ambience to the mouth-watering delicacies, I am sure you won’t be disappointed. Cost for two- INR 1,000 (approx.)

    • Café Bae- Located in Bais Godam, as a part of Hotel Las Vegas, Café Bae stands out as the perfect selfie point with its humongous sign board. Apart from the tantalizing food items in the menu, its bakery section is loaded with a variety of cheesecakes which are sure to satisfy your taste buds. Cost for two- INR 1,200 (approx.)
    • Oven The Bakery and Café- A medium sized café with French Rococo style, located in central Jaipur, offers a bountiful of desserts which are sure to take you on a gastronomic journey. Their Choco Blueberry cheesecake will leave myriad flavors bursting in your mouth. Cost for two- INR 800 (approx.)

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    Sources-

    www.bakedbyanintrovert.com

    www.food.ndtv.com

    www.lifeloveandsugar.com

    www.foodnetwork.com

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    Rustic, yet so Majestic! Aura of Chawri Bazaar though lens!

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    Mama's Buoi – Review

    As soon as you get off from the GTB Nagar Metro Station, you step into the world of a place filled with different Cafes around you. This is where you reach the verge of the road where the Cafes end and there you find a tree fully laden and embellished with different shapes and sizes of cages of different colours which lights up during the evening time. The setting sets up a beautiful environment that leads you upstairs to the last floor where the whole area is dipped into the solid tunes of the rock music bringing out the inner dancer in everyone!

    And, finally, you find a table to sit with as many people as you want. Also, there are surprises hidden when you reach the main floor of the Cafe. The very first awestruck moment would be the engrossed beer bottles in the wall that leads you to the terrace seating of the restaurant. This place is basically reserved for the events; Sufi Nights or any other band that comes up then they have a proper seating arrangement. A breezy evening at Mama’s Buoi would definitely sway you  from within. Let the breeze flow with a full swing!

    When asked about the concept of naming a restaurant as “Mama’s Buoi”, Mr. Sahil (the owner of the Cafe) exclaimed, “ a college-going “boy” is a MAMA’S BUOI and after that, he is a clumsy “Man of ladies”. Therefore, I named it as MAMA’s BUOI.” Well, not just this but the illustration of a Mama’s Buoi as a goggle wearing tiger and the Man of the ladies as a monkey weighed down with an apron of a kitchen was really interesting to note in the Cafe!

    Ordering food, sitting at the table watching the menu, wasn’t really a cake walk! Therefore, after some time we decided to order the Mama’s Signature Pizza topped with Goat Cheese, Sundried Tomatoes, Basil Pesto and other Vegetables. It was brought in such a presentable manner on a circular wooden block which made it look more inviting! The crust was of the medium thickness but the different roasted vegetables, sprinkled flakes of oregano and chilly and melting cheese in the mouth brought the taste to a different level. The crackling of the plates while having the food couldn’t be even heard because of the music that covered the whole premises with its beats. To beat the heat of the scorching sun over our heads, there was a Summer Special drinks menu from which we ordered a drink called Orange and Peach Sparkle that was again really pleasing to hear or even read. Hence, the chopped slices of the tangy orange and their succulent juice with the pinch by pinch flavour of the luscious peach in every sip created a summation of a heavenly mocktail. The next we ordered was a different mocktail called Laughing Melon that perfectly blended the taste of the melon, sweetening sugar, Basil leaves and drops of lemon and any other ingredients that made it another blissful drink to savour from their drinks menu. After this, we ordered a normal Arrabiata pasta garnished with a garlic bread, pretty appropriately greasy with the chopped and perfectly fried tomatoes with pasta equally soft and easily chewable dish. Such a pasta could have been easily expected out of a place like Mama’s Buoi!

    As we approach the end of the tasting session of the Cafe, it can be nicely concluded that this place is a must visit for all those who move to the beats of every song and are good explorers of the upcoming drinks in this foodie world. Above all, this is a casual hanging out place for all the University Students!  

    Address: 2624, Hudson Lane, GTB Nager, Delhi, 110009

    Directions and Details – https://goo.gl/maps/CixWfVjMf522

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    The Vault Cafe – Review

    The tinges of imperialism of The East India Company, the nooks of freedom, the vintage walls, the lighted corners, the might of the security and the secrecy of the Vaults sums up to a mighty corner of Connaught Place, F block, 2nd Floor, known as The Vault Cafe. As soon as the lift takes you to the second floor and you keep a step inside the Cafe, it doesn’t seem that you are in Connaught Place, you are transmitted to a third level as is expressed by Mr. Jack Finney who has written the state of an unconscious mind through his story of “The Third Level”! The window panes are loaded with chains, there are deep big Vaults (A secure room in a bank in which valuables are stored) or chambers with a dome-shaped entrance. These Vaults are a perfect destination for parties or get together wherein 10-15 people can be accommodated and cherish their privacy. The background music, intact leather sofas or chairs, a big stage with a screen, and the sunlight filtering through the windows turns the whole atmosphere of the place in a mixture of red, brown and orange hues. Therefore, dining here during the daylight beside the window, in private corners, celebrating in the vaults or two people sitting in the epicentre of the Cafe, you have a free hand to select your cosy one.

    Coming to the menu that they serve, there is a myriad of cuisines to choose from starters to the Main Course and Desserts. The place also serves some delectable breakfast options. And a whole different three-four pages dedicated to Mocktails, Cocktails, Teas, Coffee, Shakes and Smoothies. The signature starters had Tandoori Soya Chaap, Dahi ke Kebab

    and other sumptuous dishes to select from. We ordered Dahi ke Kebab that was served on a sizzler plate with green chutney having salad sides. As we took the round shaped kebabs roasted in an accurate manner with a perfectly blended mixture of a creamy, sour and smooth taste of hung yoghurt and chopped onions, ginger, green chillies and coriander leaves deep fried to a golden finish with the cornflour layer leaving behind a mouth-watering taste of the Kebabs. The Dahi ke Kebabs were followed with a Vault Fruit Bull and Banana and Vanilla shake. The Mocktail was an accurate summation of all the succulent and seasonal fruits inside the fruity and fizzy drink with drops of sourness of a lemon. The drink was garnished with equally chopped pear, apple and dripping & juicy red watermelon. This was a worth try for all those who want to try something different from the chocolaty flavours. And, the banana and Vanilla shake were the appropriate confluence of the mashed bananas and milk stirred with core essence of Vanilla which was so filling and delicious that one would definitely have one more glass of the same. After that, we ordered the signature platter called Vault Special Munchies platter that again arrived in a black sizzler tray having four different varieties placed onto it. A bowl of cone-shaped roasted masala papad placed one into another, followed by deep fried french fries tossed in salt giving it an exuberant taste accompanied with two bowls of Masala Chickpea and masala peanuts filled with chopped squeezed with lemon drops to garnish the taste. All of this was a great package full of different ingredients that serves a tummy full and a feeling of satiation is what you take after you leave with the promise of coming back to try the other items from The Vault Cafe menu!

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    New horizons, Revamped KINBUCK 2

    Kinbuck 2, a casual Dining Cafe for friends and family has now been redone! Redone with a new zeal in the team of KINBUCK 2! As exclaimed by the owner (Mr. Gaurav Arora), “Redoing the Cafe is the necessity of the time because people want something new, every now and then.”Therefore, Kinbuck 2 starts off with a big and heavy entry gate that renders you entry into a different world that exists in Connaught Place! The walls have now been revamped with a Romanian tinge with bricks moulded in the form of two domes that are noticed as and when you gaze at the ceiling! The cafe comforts you within the environment which is not like the cafes which are too dingy to even see each other! The lights are accurately spread across the premises. When it comes to the sitting area, the places are well laid, now, for sitting with different kinds of chairs, sofas, bar chairs, stairs and other places where you can come in a group of 2, 3, 4, 5 and counting!

    The bar, during revamping, has been shifted to a diametrically opposite side of the place to create more sitting space. They have added a sumptuous variety of cuisines for the people to have accompanying the new place. The significant speciality of the chefs that prepare the food is the usage of healthy garnishing over the food consisting of different types of chopped salads which make the food delectable, presentable and healthy at the same time. One of the features that Mr. Gaurav Arora is very proud of is the sunshine that gets filtered from the windows while having certain warm talking sessions with your dear ones combined with Sparkling cocktails, mocktails and flavoursome food in front of you. During winters, it feels on top of the world when the sun shining also spreads its filtered light into the premises of KINBUCK 2!

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    Espress-o-ville, SatyaNiketan (Review)

    Espress-o-ville is among the handful of fine eateries in Delhi that offers both a tasty tummy treat as well as excellent eating ecstasy that comes from the elegant Parisian café style set-up and classic wood décor. However, there’s a nice cosy spot adjacent to an impressively done bookshelf that I’m absolutely besotted with, but yet to try.

    At the prime location in Satya Niketan; right on Benito Juarez Marg, welcoming with a bright blue glass-paned door Espress-o-ville can be conveniently spotted without the need for screening through any tight lanes or bustling alleys.

    My staple at Espress-o-ville is the English breakfast buffet; decked with 3 eggs which I usually choose in the royal golden-hard-boiled style along with potato rosti, tangy grilled tomatoes and sautéed mushrooms tossed in boiled beans, served with bread and a hot beverage which can either be a coffee to taste or English tea. One can also order an Indian breakfast buffet which comes in both veg and non-veg variety. An ideal destination for any Sunday brunch!

    The snack bar offers a vast array of veg or non-veg sandwiches, pizza, burger, wraps, and nachos for the munch-on binge. Plus, at Espress-o-ville you get some exotic non-alcoholic beverages other than the regular cold coffee, iced tea or soda-based drinks to beat the scorching summer heat. The shakes and smoothies are perfect sips for children to be overjoyed with. A mexicano pizza with nachos along with blue-curasso slush is my most preferred alternative. Further, pancakes or waffles make a nice dessert to quench everyone’s sweet-tooth cravings, no matter the age.

    A special mention to the Espress-o-Spritzer, it looks like a drink made for photography, but taste doesn’t disappoint either. (Do try)

    Note: I visited this place once as a guest and once as a regular customer.

    Some of the Food and Interior Pics of the restaurant!

    burger with fries coffee-with-latte-art English-breakfast Espress-o-Spritzer

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    Rajputana Collective: A bi-annual publication by Urvashi Singh of Khimsar (Launch) at FIO Cookhouse

    Royal Fables and  FIO Cookhouse & Bar hosted the formal launch of the Rajputana Collective, a bi-annual publication lead by Urvashi Singh of Khimsar. A glossy that presents the gen next of royal India, Rajputana Collective profiles many of them who are making their mark in different walks of life. At the launch in FIO Cookhouse & Bar on April 19th, 2017 was a culinary jugalbandi between Arogo, Niyati Rathore’s pop-up and FIO Cookhouse & Bar. The event also showcased regal art and craft from the Royal Fables Atelier.

    Curated by Royal Fables to celebrate regal, royal India, the evening juxtaposed past with the present through cuisine and craft. While Fio presented some of their fine Italian creations like Cherry tomato bruschettas, Scilla chilli lime fish, Spit- Fire Chicken Rosettes , Arogo served on the table Rajput classics like Chote sarkar, Jodhpur Mirch Bada and Koyla Kaleji in an interesting aperitif style.

    Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Vineet Wadhwa, CMD& CEO, FIO Cookhouse & Bar, said “Fio holds a contemporary ideology in its cuisines primarily Italian. Juxtapositioned with Pan Indian, we imbibe the rich heritage of India’s royal fares and plate it with great élan.”

    The other highlight of the evening was an art and costume installation by the Palace Ateliers of Kishangarh, Mandawa, Pratapgarh, Padrauna, Jhabua, Kayaspada and Seohara. Pure gold woven sari by Sri Tana Bana, a statement piece from Shikaarbagh, and a hand painted sari from Princess Alkarani of Pratapgarh and formal attire by Rosetree celebrated summer. Also on display was art by Princess Vaishnavi Kumari’s revivalist endeavor Studio Kishangarh and Princess Nandini Singh of Jhabua.

    Conceptualized as a periodic feature publication, Rajputana Collective strives to highlight the Rajput community in its contemporary facets with a deliberate disjoint from superficial regality.

    Urvashi Singh of Khimsar, Editor and publisher of Rajputana Collective said, “Rajputana Collective encompasses my personal tribute to what I perceive as one of (if not) India’s most diverse, vibrant and virtuous communities.”

    Saluting her work, Anshu Khanna, Founder, Royal Fables said, “For both Urvashi and us at Royal Fables, the goal is the same: To present scions of princely states  as impactful Indians who are taking their legacy forward and presenting it in a contemporary format. We salute young talent like her for showcasing  regal, royal world in a modern format.”

    Launch Pics:

    DSC_8742 DSC_8749 DSC_8912 Urvashi Singh of Khimsar

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    Bon Barbecue – (Rajouri Garden)

    Located in Rajouri Garden, unlike most grungy yet branded eat-outs it stands out boldly just opposite to the TDI Paragon Mall; convenient to spot and friendly on the pocket with exclusive parking space and valet parking.

    The ambience is lively and decent at the same time; pleasant for both family dinners as well as quick catch-up with friends. The perfect presentation of food and deluxe treatment can also suit casual date night impeccably.

    Indulging in the tummy treats of Bon Barbecue; kebabs and grilled pineapple are one of a kind. I can vouch the taste is incomparable, a must try for anyone who intends to coddle their taste-buds with something exquisite. The Palak chaat is served along with gol-gappas on an eye-catchy tray, great choice for snacks. The taste is equally impressive; me being a chaat fanatic and having tried it from everywhere in Delhi when it didn’t disappoint me, it won’t fail to grab compliments from any other chaat lovers either.

    The buffet spread consists of few healthy yet tasteful salads, couple of seasonal fruits and main course of Biryani along with many  delicious dishes from both veg and non-veg varieties. My usual pick is paneer or dal makhani. Oh! Bon Barbecue offers some delicious desserts; the best lip-smacking scoop. From Indian staples like moong dal ka halwa, gulab jamuns to global favourite of mango mousse as well as several flavours of ice creams and cakes. All of it at around 600 for each person; sounds quite reasonable a price.

    Bon Barbecue guarantee an ultimate foodgasm.

    Here are some of the Pictures and Videos of the Place (Mobile Shots) !

    WhatsApp Image 2017-03-29 at 3.02.20 PM

    Palak Patta Chaat
    Palak Patta Chaat

    WhatsApp Image 2017-03-29 at 3.02.05 PM

    Cigar Rolls
    Cigar Rolls