Meet the NGCS Team

They call me “Big Ashes”!
I smoke cigars because I like them. 
Does anything else really matter?

BIG ASHES - Head Bitch in Charge

A Monthly Take on Hot Industry Topics 

Hey Hey. I’m Brandon Oliver. Serial bottle hunter and opener. Good time creator and memory maker. My love of spirits and cigars started a little later in life for me. I remember visiting my grandparents as a young fella and my grandfather pouring himself a tall glass of brown liquid out of what I thought was a statue of a Turkey. I was given that old decanter later on. It was long empty but smelled amazing still. I was studying for a certification exam in 2012. I thought….I’m gonna have a pour. I owned one bottle of whiskey at that time. I grabbed an ice cube and let the whiskey flow. I sat back on my thrown like a king, took a sip and became the jester. It was hot. Soooo hot! After that I was hooked. I began seeking knowledge bottles, and friends. I love to pair whiskey and other spirits with cigars. I love to make connections and new friends over a drink. Cigar etiquette and culture is fascinating to say the least. It can be as simple or as elaborate as one wants. That’s the best part. Cigars and spirits bring people together. You can usually find me enjoying life to the fullest. Stop by my IG and say hey. -CHEERS-

Brandon Oliver

Cigars & Spirits

Greetings from Long Beach, NY! Home to Don Vito Corleone and Joan Jett, as well as setting to the world’s largest annual Polar Bear Swim (every Superbowl Sunday, raising between 500k and one million dollars annually for the Make a Wish Foundation, come join us in the frigid Atlantic in February!).   
I’m Dr. Bobby Newman, by profession a psychologist and BCBA, specializing primarily in providing support to people diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum, as well as people with anxiety and sexual issues. Affectionately (I hope) known as the Dark Overlord of my field, I am the first author on over a dozen books and have published over two dozen articles in professional journals, as well as some popular magazine articles and hosted two series of radio call-in shows. I also provide crisis intervention trainings and help first responders learn to safely interact with people who are having behavioral issues. While I grew up in very modest circumstance in my hometown of Rock Rock Rockaway Beach (for you Ramones fans), I have been lucky enough to travel the world doing this work, providing direct treatment, staff training and consultation, and have been honored for this work by several parents and professional groups. A fitness guy, I am an avid marathoner and obstacle course racer, and used to compete in amateur wrestling and what was supposed to be drug-free bodybuilding. I am dad to an awesome 21 year old young man and have been the poster boy for overachievement in marriage for the past 27 years.
Additional hobbies include Zippos (I have about 200 with very personal meanings in my collection), wristwatches, tattoos, Judeo-Christian and Indigenous beliefs, American founding era history, beer homebrewing, fundraiser events, and kayaking. I will be doing a regular feature on great books, but you’ll see these other interests poke through, and I will be happy to discuss them at length with minimal provocation.

Dr. Bobby Newman 



I’m Dani, an amateur writer sharing my wild stories with the world. I love integrating my fantasies and past experiences into each story, and creating Jordan has been an exciting new chapter in my life.  I love getting lost in a good book, and I hope to give others small moments to escape into.

Feel free to follow me on social media, I’d love to hear from you!


Jordan’s Adventures Sexy Short Stories by Dani

What’s Going on Everybody!!!
My name Is Mel Chmilar Jr or Darkside of the Grill! 
I’m a self-taught Pitmaster and live fire chef, born and raised in Edmonton, Alberta.
Im on the Pro Cook Team with Big Green Egg. I work directly with Alberta Beef and I am a KCBS bbq judge to boot! Cooking everything from True Texas style bbq, Argentinian live fire asados or some grilled seafood on the Big Green Egg to a bowl of traditional ramen or a scratch made tandoori chicken with garlic naan.
My passion is food. My love is people. And I play just as hard as I work! Shit man…. Im a Natural Born Griller!
At the tail end of my events or cooks you will catch me somewhere by the pit with a bourbon in one hand and a cigar in the other. It’s simply the perfect way to close out a cook!
I look forward to Meeting you all and showing you my style from the Dark Side Of The Grill

Mel Chmilar Jr.

Darkside of the Grill

I’m Ashley from Edmonton Alberta. Just a woman that loves to cook!
My passion for cooking really started when I decided to get into health and fitness over 10 years ago. I wanted to be able to still eat the foods I love but make them healthier and calorie wise. Now I have 3 cook books out and working on more exciting things! Follow me on Instagram and TikTok for recipes, videos, and everything upcoming!

Ashley Lacosse

Cooking WIth Lacosse

Howdy from the centre of the universe, also known as Toronto, Canada! The CN Tower is a world treasure, and I am 100% certain the Maple Leafs will win the Stanley Cup this year. Joking aside, though I currently make Toronto my home, my roots are in small town Western Canada and I have a particular fondness for Canola fields, the Rocky Mountains, and Ukrainian kubasa.
I admit that I have only smoked a cigar once: On my 21st birthday when my good ol’ pops slammed a stogie in my mouth and declared I was officially an adult. Being somewhat thick in the head at that age, I inhaled all the smoke at once, swallowed some ashes, and promptly got sick and threw up. Rookie mistake I’m told.
But no worries, because I’m primarily here to write about all things health and fitness and I’ll leave the cigars to the experts. As a personal trainer and coach, professional fitness model, bodybuilder, and former Team Canada athlete I have a wealth of experience to share regarding all things exercise and nutrition.
Fitness and healthy living is my vibe, so check in with me for the occasional health info or lifestyle living tips, or else shoot me a message or a “Yeahhhhhhh budday!” on social media.
Keep calm and smoke on folks.

Jon Kassian

Getting Fit With Jon K

I’m a serial hobbyist. I’ve always been chasing the beauty and creativity in life. In my mind, there is no better feeling than being inspired to create something beautiful. Cocktails are my latest obsession. It perfectly complements my other hobbies of collecting, decorating and entertaining. Over the pandemic, I became immersed in cocktail books where I learned the best techniques and concocted the best drinks to ever meet my lips. I enjoy working with the freshest of ingredients, dabbling in the chemistry and mastering the procedural nature of drink making. I love hosting a cocktail night and delighting my guests with gorgeously delicious drinks over great conversation. Seeing their faces light up as I set a drink in front of them and hearing their pleased exclamations after that first sip is just too addictive to ever stop. I’m looking forward to sharing that with all of you here at The NGCS. Cheers!

Stacey Nagy

Stace’s Libations

I’m Veronica from Louisville Kentucky! I have been smoking cigars for around 4 years now and tobacco pipes for 2 years. I am currently studying to be a Tobacconist to further advance my knowledge of something that I love. Though I live in the bourbon state, I don’t pair my cigars with it. In my opinion, nothing beats a dark aged rum or coffee with a stick. I love trying new cigars and giving my opinion, so if you have any you’d like me to try follow me on Instagram and  just send me a message.


Cigar Reviews

I’m Josh Bishop. #bishopapproved and #greatsticksandbetterviews. A random, funny accident started a fun trend online where I take photos with a good view of scenery, my better half and sometimes a friend. I’ve met so many good people in the industry and it’s been a blessing. We like to work hard and play harder. Grew up in Texas and made the move to New England about 3 years ago. I’m in the car business so if you ever need some buying/selling advice please always ask!

Josh Bishop

Cigar Reviews

My name is Des Hammond and I live in Redditch UK. I started smoking cigars in 2013 while I was on vacation in Ibiza. It was a beautiful evening and I was offered a Cohiba; this is what changed my life. Since then I have developed a great love for cigars. When I get to relax and smoke a cigar, I feel like I am tasting the history of generations. A cigar to me is like a motion picture with the most interesting script.
In 2020, I decided to start my own cigar reviews channel called The Cigar Cabin. I wanted to record and share my passion with the world. Reaching out to people with my experiences has become such a great part of my life; there is so much to enjoying a cigar, and often I feel it deep in my heart.
On my free time, I like to share moments with the best gift I could have ever asked for, my 3 1/2 year old son Teddy who is everything to me. As for “me” time… stress is always relieved on the golf course while enjoying a cigar with friends, along with a glass of a smooth amber whiskey.

Des Hammond

Cigar Reviews

My life has been a punctuated series of obsessions. So it goes with autism. I have always been fascinated by cigars. The way they look. The way they smell. The class. The distinction. It harkens to a different time…a better time. What started as an awkward hobby in college in the 90’s exploded into a full on geek-out. It was another label on my mantle, another degree on my wall. Mathematician, comedian, lawyer, philosopher, screenwriter, cigar nerd. Like the others, I didn’t choose it. It chose me.  
​When the world ended in 2020, there wasn’t much to do other than smoke cigars, so I turned my obsession up to 11 and had my first Cuban cigar. After that, there was no going back. There was so much more to cigars than I had any idea. So much to know. So much to share. This led me to create my show, ‘The Gentleman and The Scholar’, with my best bud, John Welsh. In that show we showcase not just cigars but the culture itself. Good people, better sticks, and the best time. We want to spread our love of the entirety of cigar culture with the world, and so far it seems like the world is pretty okay with that.
​Cigars are more than a hobby. Certainly more than a vice. They are a culture. They are a way of life. A cigar is a 90 minute vacation. A time to reflect. A time to relax. A time to live. And a time to love. Once properly understood, it makes sense why we spend what we do on them. There is nothing I love more than sitting on my patio with my wife while we smoke cigars. It is the new sexy. In a time where everything is a trigger, a cigar is the ultimate relaxant. Find your sexy. Grab a stick.

Dr. Alex Z Stanford AKA The Scholar

Cigar Reviews

Hi, my name is Just and I have been a lifelong film fan (especially but not limited to horror). I have been long-time musician that even dabbled in stage a little bit, I finally got into the film-making scene in 2020 and hope to continue my passion in any way that I can whether it’s writing, producing, directing, or acting. In 2020/2021 I am working with Cheevies Film Productions. As well, I have worked on one project for Breaking Fate Entertainment. I’m planning to further my education in 2021. During the summer months, I run a charity group called Mowing for Heroes that provides free basic lawn care to disabled veterans and first responders.  As far as cigars, I have been smoking for about 18 years now. I also have an extensive pipe collection, switching off between smoking tobacco and using them to smoke the last nub of my cigars (if you haven’t, try this). 
Interests include: anything outdoors (camping, bike riding, shooting etc.), drinking whiskey, sports, cooking, and collecting movies and memorabilia. Family is very important to me and I credit everything I have and give a huge thanks to my beautiful wife and our 5-year-old son.

Justin Bower

Cigars in Cinema

       In 1987 in the foothills of southern West Virginia, a fucking legend was born. I was raised on a steady diet of moonshine, pepperoni rolls, and real country music. Guys like Keith Whitley, Mark Chesnutt, Alan Jackson, and Tracy Lawrence were the soundtrack to my childhood. 

        I rebelled against that and at age 16 took up the guitar thanks to inspiration from Metallica’s James Hetfield. I spent years obsessed with all things metal and blues. Deep down that old lonesome, country sound always beckoned to me and I finally heeded its call.
        Now I’m a crusader for all things true country. If you’re looking for articles about the bedazzled skinny jean wearing douchebags who dominate country radio nowadays, best look elsewhere. If you wanna hear real artists who write about real life, I’m your guy. I hope you enjoy my articles and take time to check out the songs I suggest.

Matt Hatfield

Music Review Columnist

       Hi, I’m Josie. I was born and raised in Sunny California. I’m a Cigar Sommelier from The International Association of Cigar Sommeliers. You can find me hosting events from the West to the East Coast. I love pairing my cigars with refreshing libations. Check me out on Instagram @whiskeygirl_josie or my Site



        Josh Ward. Born of peat moss and tobacco smoke this troubadour turned heathen can be seen ravaging his way through the world of whisky, sharing stories told by golden spirits. His teachings often mistaken for the ramblings of a madman with a look to fit the part. Fuelled by the tears of his enemies he’s been known to gain sustenance by licking the salt from the cheeks of his adversaries. Perhaps more akin to the likes of a voodoo priest but this minister has a more menacing agenda, for his church welcomes the sinister and sinners alike. The Not Gentlemanly Cigar Smokers seemed like a fitting home for an apparition doomed to roam the earth as a Whisky Heathen, the curse only lifted after he’s tasted it all.

Josh Ward

Whiskey Expert

        Ty Brandt. The devilish comedian bound to the ghost of a samurai by ritualistic penance and hell bent on consuming the world’s tobacco stock. A pagan through and through with a stare able to force submission from even the most righteous of beings. Known to wander the fog and mist as a spectre searching for the smoke of the finest cigars. Spiritual in a sense, he can pass through you while your only proof of his existence is the chill in your breath. A masterless Ronin cursed to walk the earth as a Whisky Heathen, answering to no one and defiant to all who oppose.

Ty Brandt

Whiskey Expert

       In addition to his love of cigars, Indian motorcycles, and beautiful women, Rob Otterstatter owns and operates Octane Social House, an experience-based coffeehouse restaurant, which brings people together by sourcing the area’s best food, beverage, entertainment, and education together for the benefit of community improvement. He holds an Ed.D. in educational leadership from Argosy University and is currently working towards opening a new cigar shop, Octane’s Inferno, in central NewYork In addition to his love of cigars, Indian motorcycles, and beautiful women, Rob Otterstatter owns and operates Octane Social House, an experience-based coffeehouse restaurant, which brings people together by sourcing the area’s best food, beverage, entertainment, and education together for the benefit of community improvement. He holds an Ed.D. in educational leadership from Argosy University and is currently working towards opening a new cigar shop, Octane’s Inferno, in central New York. 

Robert Otterstatter

Smokin’ Celebrity Reviews

        I’m Steve, and since the age of 10 when a copy of Metallica’s classic 1988 album …And Justice For All blasted out of my parents cassette deck and changed my life, I’ve been extremely passionate about music. Between playing in bands in my teens and twenties and transitioning to becoming a family man, collector of vinyl and other physical media and an “amateur audiophile” in my 30’s, that passion has never wavered. In fact, it’s grown in different ways. As the years pass, I become more of a fan and a student of different genres and styles. I can’t wait to share my thoughts on music and some album reviews. If you enjoy what you read, check out my Instagram for more reviews on music and other stuff I’m passionate about.


Music Columnist