What Are The Cigar Basics That You Need To Know?
As mentioned above, our guides will help you learn and improve on how to smoke, light and cut cigars. We also offer a short overview on the different places where you can buy cigars with all their pros and cons.
Furthermore, you’ll be able to learn about the many different types of cigar shapes, sizes and colours with our extensive vitola and anatomy guides. Reading about these will give you a firm foundation to choosing your first smokes or exploring new options.
Despite what some people may tell you, you don’t actually need to know much about cigars to get started. Like wine or Champagne, enjoying a cigar doesn’t require a fountain of knowledge.
After all, how many of your friends love wine yet couldn’t name more than just a few of their favourite grapes?
In the following quick guide, we’ll just brief you on the basics that you can learn to improve your enjoyment. Once you’ve perused just a few of our guides, you’ll realise that it’s just as easy as uncorking a bottle of red!
- Where To Buy Your Cigars
- Choosing Your Cigars
- How To Cut A Cigar
- Lighting A Cigar
- Smoking The Cigar!
1. Where To Buy Your Cigars
Before you even begin to start puffing away, you’ll need to get hold of a few so-called stogies. So, where to begin? Firstly, there are two fudamental things to bear in mind when purchasing cigars:
- Pricing & Budget
- Storage Conditions
If pricing isn’t a concern for you, congratulations on being successful! However, just remember that like with any consumer product, the cigar’s price doesn’t necessarily equate to its quality.
Nevertheless, wine again serves as a basis of comparison as the most prestigious options may often come at a premium. There’s no harm in shopping around if you know where to look, of course.
However, we’d argue that the most important factor relates to the cigar’s storage conditions, which is why we prefer shops. It’s paramount that the cigars were carefully stored in humidity and temperature controlled environments.
If they’re too humid or too dry, their flavour can be drastically compromised.
If you want to learn about the various places to get cigars, head to our cigar buying guide. However, if you want to learn more about cigar quality control, we cover this in our smoking guide.
2. Choosing Your Cigars
Finding the right cigar for you can be a daunting task. This is especially the case when you’re a complete newcomer. However, help is at hand! Although we can’t accompany you in your quest, there are other people you can trust.
This more-or-less relates to the above point. When buying cigars, you can confide in a tobacconist or cigar shop keeper.
Most professionals will be delighted to offer assistance and find the best cigar according to both your taste and budget.
However, you can also learn more about the different cigar varieties beforehand, which will give you a solid foundation.
For instance, reading our guides to the different cigar shapes and sizes, which are known as vitolas, will give you an idea of what’s available. Furthermore, learning about cigar anatomy as well as the different wrapper colours will brief you on a what a cigar’s appearance may hint regarding its aromas.
When the time comes to stepping into the shop, our cigar smoking guide will give you a brief overview of what to look out for in a good cigar.
3. Cutting Your Cigar
Once you’ve got your hands on a few sticks, you’ll need to crack them open like a bottle of vino! Cutting a cigar may seem like a simple affair. However, it can make or break your overall experience.
Anything from cutting too high or too low on the cigar can have certain consequences such as unravelling cigars or tight draws. Meanwhile, cutting too slow can actually damage the cigar.
There are also various tools that you can use for cutting different types of cigar, which is also quite confusing. Fortunately, our dedicated cigar cutting guide will feed you all of that necessary information!
4. Lighting Your Cigar
Similarly, lighting a cigar isn’t just a question of dowsing it in a flame and hoping for the best. Unlike a cigarette, which basically lights itself, cigars are delicate creatures.
Therefore, a little care should be taken in your approach. For example, not all types of fire are good for cigars. Certain matches and lighters contain chemicals, which greatly affect the taste!
Also, if you light it at a funny angle or too quickly, it may burn in an odd direction.
So if you need to learn about the technique or want a quick refresher, just head to our detailed cigar lighting guide!
5. Smoking Your Cigar
Let’s say that you’ve managed to choose, cut and light a wonderful cigar. How are you going to smoke it? You could always try sucking it down like a cigarette but you’ll be coughing up your mother’s spaghetti if you try.
It sounds silly, but there are loads of different types of etiquette and techniques when it comes to smoking cigars. At first, this can sound scary. However, when you get into it, it’s really fun!
You can use our cigar smoking guide to accompany you every step of the way. There, we’ll cover how to go about drawing on the cigar to weird techniques such as retrohaling. Furthermore, we’ll talk about what to do with the band and how to put it out afterwards.
Now that you’ve learned the basics, feel free to jump in anywhere you fancy using the menu above. We’ve tailored our cigar guides to be easy to navigate so you can jump around to your heart’s content without getting lost.
Like any wonderful vice, just remember to enjoy responsibly as cigars can be harmful to your health!