Frequently Asked Questions - Cigars 101
Q: Does the size and shape of the cigar matter?
A: Due to the smoking qualities of a cigar, size and shape does matter. If two cigars differ in ring gage, even though they include similar tobaccos, their smoking qualities will differ. Smaller cigars generally have stronger flavor.
Q: What is a good cigar?
A: Whatever cigar(s) you enjoy is a good cigar. Sample many flavors and shapes to discover which is your favorite.
Q: How can I choose a cigar that is right for me?
A: Sample a few cigars from different brands and/or origins to determine what best suit your palate. Then ask questions about the cigars you like most to better familiarize yourself with that brand or origin.
Q: How far down should I smoke my cigar?
A: The simple answer is: do whatever is comfortable to you. Many people prefer to smoke their cigars two thirds of the way down, however some people like to smoke them to the very end. We personally think the best flavor is the first two thirds of the cigar.
Q: Should I leave the band on my cigar?
A: Taking the band off the cigar often tears or chips the wrapper, so it is considered proper to leave it on.
Q: Should I relight my cigar if it goes out?
A: Cigars have natural oils in them, which is why you heat a cigar before you actually light it. As long as these oils are fluid or soft, you can re-light the cigar. This would generally be fifteen or twenty minutes after the cigar fire goes out. Once these oils have crystallized or solidified, the cigar will no longer give you the same taste and smoothness. It will become bitter and pungent. It is also when these oils harden that the cigar becomes somewhat disturbing in the ashtray.
Q: What is the difference between short and long leaf filler?
A: Long leaf filler means that large pieces of the tobacco leaf run the entire length of the cigar. Short leaf filler mean that chopped tobacco is used. High quality cigars are always made with long leaf fillers, which are hand rolled together in accordion fashion that leads to a smooth draw. Short filler cigars are much like cigarettes and are held together by a generic binder.
Q: What is the optimum temperature and humidity to keep my cigars?
A: A general rule of thumb is 70/70, in other words 70% humidity at 70 degrees. In reality, unless storing for a very long period of time, temperature is of little consequence if the cigars are kept in a normal household environment. Humidity, on the other hand, is quite important. Here a range of 68% to 72% is an appropriate benchmark.
Q: How do you put out a cigar?
A: Do not snuff out the cigar. Leave it in the ashtray and it will gradually die out.