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Cigar 101

From choosing the perfect cigar to enjoying your smoke to the fullest, there is a lot that goes into being a cigar aficionado. Consider this page your go-to resource for instant expertise.

How to Pick a Cigar

Choosing a cigar you will enjoy is dependent upon getting to know your own preferences. A cigar’s body, shape and size will help inform your decision. From fuller-bodied to lighter and more mild, a cigar’s body determines its flavor, and you will likely need to try a few before you know what you like. Choose a size and shape based on how long you would like to enjoy your cigar. A bigger cigar will deliver a longer experience, while smaller cigars will provide a quicker indulgence.

The Importance of A Cigar Wrapper

A cigar wrapper is not only the first part of a cigar that you can see and assess, it also plays an important part in creating a well-balanced blend. A cigar wrapper is crafted from large, imperfection-free tobacco leaves that range in color and flavor due to the aging process.

How to Smoke a Cigar

You will need a sharp cutter that can remove only the part of the cap that’s necessary to smoke properly. When it comes to preparing your cigar, a bad cut can result in a completely ruined cigar so proceed with care. The goal is to create a smooth, ample opening to smoke from, so you will need something sharp to cut with.

Rotate your cigar slowly at an angle over your lighter, never touching the flame to the cigar itself. Have patience. The goal is not to get embers instantly, but to achieve a slow, even light that will create a smooth, enjoyable smoke.

Before you puff in, gently blow the old smoke out to set yourself up for a supremely enjoyable first draw.

Slowly pull the smoke from the cigar into your mouth, not your lungs, so you can savor the complex intricacies of the flavor.

Allow the ash to build up and fall off naturally, without tapping it off, to prevent overheating.

Smoking a cigar is an indulgence, so take time to fully appreciate it. A puff per minute ensures your cigar will burn at a consistent pace without any accompanying discomfort.

Identifying the Tasting Notes of A Cigar

When you start smoking cigars, it is important to take time to notice everything from flavor to fullness using taste and smell as a guide. You might recognize familiar notes, like the perfect balance of coffee and leather, or if you taste too much of something, like bitterness or spice. Finally, the cigar’s finish determines how long the flavor will stay with you—a cigar with a long finish might linger, while a short finish won’t leave much of an aftertaste.

Common Cigar Mistakes To Avoid

When shopping for a cigar, you won’t be able to smell it through the cellophane. Rather, you’ll need to gently slide it out of the package to assess the aroma. Once you are ready to smoke, do your best to avoid cutting too much off the head as you run the risk of ruining your cigar. Avoid regular lighters which will impart an unwanted chemical taste to your smoke. Once your cigar is properly prepared and lit, keep in mind that smoking a cigar is different from anything else you may have smoked before. Avoid inhaling the smoke into your lungs as the heavy nicotine content can cause discomfort.