Adam Tihany, 49
Day Job: Designer of such three-star restaurants as Monte’s in London, Spago in Chicago, and the soon-to-open Le Cirque at the New York Palace.
Play Job: Poses as the Cigar Adviser in Cigar Aficionado.
House Rules: Strong cigars not allowed in the office (employees’ rules).
Favorite Brands: Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No. 2 (Cuba), Partagas Series No. 4 (Cuba), Avo (Dominican Rep.).
Best Bonehead Advice: When Cigar Aficionado Publisher Marvin Shanken revealed his original plan for the magazine, Tihany told him, “Don’t do it, Marvin, you’ll lose your ass.”
Drew Nieporent, 41
Day Job: “The best restaurateur in America” (New York Times). Restaurants include Nobu, Tribeca Grill, Montrachet, and San Francisco’s Rubicon; partners include Robert DeNiro, Robin Williams, and Francis Ford Coppola.
Play Job: Washboard player in the Fabulous Pinballs, a New York band of chef/musicians.
House Rules: Cigars banned in the house (wife’s rule); not allowed in the backyard, either (smoke gets in the house).
Favorite Brands: Onyx No. 852 (Dominican Rep.). “I love it. Don’t you think it smells like manure?”
Advice: “It doesn’t have to be Cuban to be a good cigar. A well-made cigar is a pleasure, no matter where it comes from.”
Jeanette Bronée, 34
Day Job: “Retail Concepts Consultant.” Translation: she creates high-concept designer stores like Emanuel/ Emanuel Ungaro and BCBG.
Play Jobs: Feng Shui consultant; licensed dive master; rides a Harley with a sidecar for Scout, her chocolate Lab.
House Rules: No problem. She smokes with her Cuban-born husband.
Favorite Brands: Don Lino (Honduras), Por Larranaga (Cuba).
Advice to Women: “When figuring out what you like, trust your smoke shop instead of your guy friends. They’ll just want you to smoke their brand.”
Steve Crawford, 32
Day Job: Investment Banker.
Play Jobs: Fly-fishing; cycling; dad stuff.
House Rules: No smoking at home (his rule — he hates the dry-cleaning bills).
Favorite Brands: Paul Garmirian Double Corona, Griffin’s Robusto, A. Fuente OpusX (all Dominican Rep.).
Advice: “When it comes to cigars, I always avoid dispensing advice.”
Ken Aretsky, 55
Day Job: Restaurateur of New York’s Patroon, Butterfield 81, Arcadia.
Play Job: Fly-fishing for trout on classic Catskill streams.
House Rules: Not an issue. Smokes two cigars a week at work.
Favorite Brands: Cohiba Robusto (Cuba), La Gloria Wavell (U.S.).
Advice: “If you enjoy it, it’s a good cigar.”
Mark Reiter, 44
Day Job: Executive Editor at International Management Group, a sports and literary mega-agency. Clients include John Madden, Martina Navratilova, Pat Conroy.
Play Job: “I run seven miles every other day — it makes me feel better about smoking.”
House Rules: Low WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) for smoking in-house. Solution: he walks around the block with his wife while smoking. “It’s brought us closer together.”
Favorite Brand: Double Chateau Fuente (Dominican Rep.).
Advice: “Set a price limit before you go cigar shopping.”
Michel Roux, 56
Day Job: Marketing Genius. Created the image for Absolut Vodka. As president of Carillon Importers Ltd., he now handles Stolichnaya.
Play Job: Mushroom hunting in the South of France.
House Rules: No smoking at home (self-imposed).
Favorite Brands: “Whatever my friends give me.”
Advice: “Give the best cigars you can afford — you’ll be doubly repaid for them.”
Bob Kaminsky, 47
Day Job: Producer/director of TV specials starring Jerry Seinfeld, Bob Newhart, Martin Mull, Bette Midler.
Other Occupation: Brother of author.
Play Job: Golf, guitar.
House Rules: N/A — smokes only rarely. He was visiting from L.A., so the author had to invite him.
Favorite Brand: “A good old Macanudo.”
Advice: “Get invited to dinners like this one.”