What Makes a Good Cigar?

Welcome » What Makes a Good Cigar? A great cigar is based on its magical blend of the wrapper, binder, and filler.

How do these parts work together? Let's find out more, from Art of Manliness.com.

Anatomy of a Cigar
The head: This is the end you put in your mouth. It’s sealed off and will require cutting; a guillotine is preferred to reduce the chance of smashing the cigar; however, a sharp knife will do. But for the love of God, do not use your teeth!

The foot: This is the side that you light.

The filler: A nice, consistent blend of dried and fermented tobacco.

The wrapper: The outside of the cigar. It varies in color from light to dark. A lot of the cigar’s flavor comes from this outer layer.

Choosing a Cigar
Now that you know your head from your foot, we can move onto choosing a cigar. Check out a local cigar club [like The Cigar Lounge]. They’ll likely have a well-stocked humidor and a knowledgeable tobacconist who will guide you through the selection.

When you arrive at the cigar club, you’ll walk into a humidor full of cigars. Humidors help maintain an optimal level of moisture inside the tobacco. If it’s too humid, the tobacco will rot. If it’s not humid enough, the cigars will dry out and lose their flavor and aroma.

If this is your first time smoking a cigar, stay away from the higher-priced ones since, at this point, you won’t be able to truly savor the distinguishing elements of an expensive cigar. Besides, price isn’t the most most important factor in choosing a cigar. There are plenty of cheaper cigars out there that hold top ratings from major cigar publications.

While price isn’t that important when selecting a cigar, cigar construction and tobacco quality are. The cigar’s construction determines how smooth and even the draw is when you smoke it.

You can test the construction of a cigar by rolling it between the thumb and index finger of your hand. As you do this, make sure the cigar’s outside doesn’t have any lumps. Also check that the body is not too soft or void of filling. You want the cigar to have a nice even consistency and fill. A rough texture or any other mark of bad construction means a less smooth draw when you inhale. With a well constructed cigar, the ash will maintain the shape of the cigar as it is smoked.

The second important factor when buying a cigar is the tobacco’s quality. You typically can’t determine tobacco quality simply by looking at the outside of the cigar. So how do you know which brands use good quality tobacco? It’s mainly based on reputation.

Ask the tobacconist or your friends for recommendations on cigars that use quality tobacco. It’s usually a safe bet to go with larger brands. The big cigar brands tend to use higher quality tobacco in their cigars because they usually have first dibs on the quality stuff.

In your quest to find cigars that use quality tobacco, just remember to purchase one cigar at a time instead of buying boxes. You don’t want to be left with a box of crummy cigars you’ll never smoke.

Visit The Cigar Lounge and test your new-found knowledge, today!


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Sunday: 11:00 am–7:00 pm
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