Written by Kevin Godbee

Friday, 31 July 2009

User Rating: / 3

how to get the most out of your cigartips and tricks
tobacco faqs

Ok so you’ve just gone out and spent a heap of money on your first fine hand-rolled cigars. Now, even though you may not realize it, you’re at the point where you start preparing to get the most out of your cigars or you damage them to the point where you’ve really just wasted your money.



Store Cigars Correctly

When you get your cigars home you’re going to want to look at them - touch them and smell them - and that’s quite natural. Every experienced cigar smoker has wanted to do that with their first major purchase but now’s not the time to do anything other than store your new purchases carefully.


Maybe we’ll let you keep one of them out to touch, feel and smell but only one, all the other cigars should be stored in a humidor to ensure that they stay fresh and remain in good condition till it’s time to smoke them.


We’ve talked about humidors before and you can certainly spend a lot of money on a good quality humidor but, if you’ve blown it all on the cigars then it’s possible to put together a perfectly acceptable humidor that you can assemble from items you have around the house.


The important thing to remember here is that you should never let the cigar dry out and never let the temperature in the storage container rise above 75 degrees.


Even when you store your cigars correctly you can still damage them or reduce the pleasure that they might give in plenty of other ways.



Don’t for a moment think that you can cut the end of a cigar with anything but a specialized cigar cutter. I know that it’s tempting to save your money for the cigars and look for a cheap cutting alternative but a cigar cutter is an ideal investment and it’s going to save your cigars from ruin.


I’m sure you will come across cigar smokers who will tell you that they always cut their cigars with household scissors, a craft knife or even a kitchen knife … and I’m sure that they do use those implements … but they’re not going to tell you how many fine cigars they’ve ruined by using something other than a cigar cutter.


Kitchen tools, scissors and craft knives were never designed to cut cigars and cigars were never designed to be cut by such rough implements. You can do some serious damage to the structure of a cigar if you use one of these implements and there’s nothing worse that watching a hand-made cigar unravel in your hands because you used the wrong tool and made a mess of the cut that should have been swift and surgical.


Don’t be in a rush to cut the end of your cigar either. Wait until you’re actually ready to light up before cutting the end. I know that sometimes having quite a gap between cutting and lighting can be unavoidable but avoid it if at all possible. A cigar that’s cut just before lighting it will be a much better smoke than one that has been cut and left unlit for some time.



Lighting a cigar is much more of an art than lighting a cigarette so, even if you already smoke cigarettes take some time to learn the art of lighting a good cigar.


It’s important to light a cigar evenly and you will have to apply more heat to it than a single match can provide and the time between striking a fresh match after the previous one has gone out is enough to spoil a good cigar. So be prepared to go looking for a lighter that will provide a flame across the end of the cigar for as long as it takes to get the cigar lit.


Rotate the cigar at the same time as you’re applying the flame from the lighter to the end of the cigar. Turning the cigar while the end is exposed to the lighter flame will ensure that it lights and begins to burn evenly and that really is vital if you want the best experience from your expensive cigar.



Sip Rather Than Puff

Once the cigar is burning well sit back and be prepared to spend anything up to an hour … or even longer if you’re smoking a Presidente. You want the smoke to be relatively cool as it enters your mouth so don’t puff furiously on the cigar.


Now you might have seen cigar smokers puffing heavily on their cigars in the movies but that’s not the way to do it. If you puff heavily on your cigar the smoke will become hot and it will be unpleasant and some people even describe hot smoke as biting your tongue.


Instead of puffing mightily on your cigar smoke it gently. The best way to smoke a big cigar is to do what some people describe as “sipping”. Think of it as drinking a fine wine; you’re not going to want to pour that down your throat in several huge gulps. Instead you will sip at it and savor every drop that crosses your palate and that’s what you want to achieve with your cigar too.


Be Prepared to Put Your Cigar Down

You should never try to hold a large cigar for the whole time you’re smoking it. Remember, we’re talking about smoking a cigar for an hour or more and holding a cigar that has a large ring size can become a burden rather than a pleasure.


So have an ashtray handy that’s suitable for cigars and be prepared to allow your cigar to rest in the ashtray from time to time.


There are just a few suggestions that will help you to get the most out of your cigars. As time goes on you will discover other things that you can do that will enhance your cigar-smoking experience and I hope you will share those with us.



0 # Lighting a CigarCourtship1 2009-08-14 22:54
~I stopped reading the article after I read how Mr. Godbee advises one to light a cigar. I knew then that this article was missing a lot of important points that a "true, knowledegeable cigar smoker would know". To begin with: Before one decides to light a expensive hand rolled cigar. One should heat up the front of the cigar. By heating up, I mean hold a flame just far enough away as not to light the tip. When the tip is heated to a point of satisfaction, only then do you Puff on the cigar and rotate in your hand until you get a full light. This is the most critical part of your beginning the smoke. This has a lot to do with how the cigar burns, length of ash, etc. Another item not discussed was the type of "fire" you use. Do not use paper matches, or a BIC or similar type lighter. If you do not have a premium fuel cigar lighter, then by all means use a long wooden match. Again, this has a lot to do with the flavor of the cigar reaching your lips~ This my friends is the correct way and only way to light a premium cigar~

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0 # lighting a good Hand Rolled CigarRon1369 2009-09-08 09:46
After reading this guys review and input ( Courtship1 ) on how to light a cigar I have to say that I agree with every part of his methods , I even agree with him about getting the end hot first, I guess in a way I do that almost the same way he does it.
For sure you need a really well made butane lighter to use to light your cigar and if you do not have a good butane lighter than I agree to use a big wooden match to light it up.
To try any other method is just a waste of time and matches or a bic lighter. If you do not have the lighter that can burn a lot of butane then you need a wooden match large enough to do the job, if you use a regular Zippo lighter with lighter fluid you are just going to ruin the flavor of your cigar and we all know that is not something any of us want to do at any time.
Especially these days, that have our cigars costing us so much of our pay checks.
Thanks to the greedy people we have in office that think the tax payer is a pay check to them and a means of money to spend at their will. (That is another story all together though ;-) )
If any of you have tried lighting a cigar with an old fashioned lighter fluid filled lighter than you know the lasting taste it leaves with you while smoking your cigar and it is not one that is so easily enjoyed.
So it is my opinion that using a well made butane lighter would be the best equipment to have with you when smoking your favorite hand rolled cigar or having a box of wooden farmers matches would be the next best thing to have with you even though a big box of matches would not be the most practical thing to carry around in your pocket.
Having a box of them at home with you would actually be better than a butane lighter in my opinion.
Anyone that has any knowledge of smoking cigars should already know that though.

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