Last updated on April 15th, 2017 at 11:00 am
General Cigar Information
- Ring Size – The cigar is measured across it’s diameter in 64ths of an inch, therefore if a cigar is said to have a ring size of 64 it would measure 1 inch. If it had a ring size of 48 it would measure 3/4 of an inch in diameter, etc.
- Wrapper – A thin tobacco specially grown to be very elastic, that is stretched around a finished cigar to give it a finished look.
- Binder – A heavy piece of tobacco that is just under the wrapper. This strong layer of tobacco is used to bind the cigar together and give it it’s shape.
- Filler – The filler is a blend of different tobaccos that are rolled together and then wrapped in the binder.
Standard Cigar Sizes
(These are general sizes. There aren’t any hard and fast rules to sizes. Each manufacturer has their own sizes for the different names listed below. But these sizes can be used as a general guideline.)
Cigar Wrapper Types
Claro: Light tan in color and it’s usually grown in shade. Neutral in taste.
Colorado Claro: Light brown to medium brown. Mostly sun grown. May have a slightly sweet taste.
Colorado Maduro: A brown to reddish brown color. Mostly shade grown, with a rich flavor and a subtle aroma.
Double Claro: Light green, it is sometimes called candela. It can be sweet.
Maduro: A dark brown wrapper with a slightly sweet taste.
Oscuro: Very Dark, almost black. It is sometimes called black or negro.
Trying A New Cigar
There are two things to keep in mind when trying a new cigar for the first time.
- Try two of the same size cigars of the same brand.
- The reason for this, is that you may just have had a meal or a drink that will react with the delicate flavors of the cigar. Here’s an example: You may have just had a great steak off the grill, and the tastes of the charcoal or the spices are lingering on your taste buds. These flavors will react and sometimes kill that taste of an otherwise good cigar. Now if you take two of the same cigars and try it again at another time you may find that you really like that cigar, a cigar that you might have passed up, may be your new favorite.
- Try two cigars of the same brand in different sizes.
- The reason for trying two cigars of different sizes is that a smaller ring size, like 42 or 44 may have two or three different blends of tobacco, were as a cigar with a ring size of 48 or 50 may have 5 or even 6 blends of tobacco. The more different blends of tobacco that the cigar maker uses, the more refined and controlled the taste will be.
- Also a longer a cigar keeps the heat of the burning end further from your mouth, giving a less harsh taste.
- There are several styles of cutters, for cutting a cigar. The one you feel most comfortable with is the one you should use. Examples: Bullet or Plug Cutters, Single Blade, Double Blade or V cutter.
- Which ever method you use, take care not to take off too much in the process.
- The goal is to cut enough off to expose the filler leaves, but leave enough to keep the wrapper on the cigar.
- A cut about 1/16″ is about normal.
- If you are using a bullet or plug cutter to put a hole in the center of the cigars head, by turning the cutter into the cigar, be sure not to cut to deep. This will cause the air to concentrate as you draw and it will burn harsh.
- Always use a sharp cutter, no matter which type you use. A dull cutter will tear and crush the delicate tobacco of your fine cigar. To know more information about cigar cutting, see our another article- how to cut a cigar properly.
- Whether you are using a lighter, a match or a strip of cedar to light your cigar, you should follow this simple procedure.
- Hold the cigar with the foot or open end down, so as to keep the cigar at a 45 degree angle.
- The flame should be positioned so that it just barely touches the cigar.
- Roll the cigar gently between your fingers, until a ring is lit around the outer edge of the cigar.
- When it is lit, gently blow out through the cigar once, and then begin to draw in. Blowing out will help to release the residue from the match or lighter. (Try blowing out through the cigar as you smoke it (about every fourth puff) this will help to release the build up of bitter tasting elements that accumulate as you smoke.
- This is really quite simple. No matter how or where you store your cigars you should follow this easy rule.
- Cigars should be keep at a constant humidity level of 70% and a temperature of 70 degrees.
- If you are using a distilled water filled humidifier, Charging solution should be used to recondition the humidification device at least once every six months. Every four months in very dry climates. Just fill your humidification device with the solution instead of distilled water.
- Don’t keep cigars stored near the shower. The constantly changing level of humidity will cause the outside and inside of the cigar to dry at a different rate, causing the cigars to split.
- Never refrigerate cigars, this to will cause the cigars to split open.
- A cigar humidor will make this task easy.