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Stogie Tips: Begin at the End

2 Mar 2009

Passing along pointers to novice cigar smokers is one of our major goals at So, with that in mind, here are a few more tips to help you enjoy this beloved hobby even more.

stubNo stubbing! Absolutely, positively, do not put your premium cigar out as you would a cigarette. It will release a mass of foul odors and unpleasant smoke. Always, repeat, always, let cigars die peacefully on their own. Premium cigars are pure tobacco and, unlike cigarettes or most machine-made cigars, will not burn on their own.

Carrying a torch. Some torch lighters are incredibly hot, particularly multi-jet and tabletop models. Occasionally, I’ll fire one up and think I should be wearing a welder’s helmet. Ponder for a moment what all that heat is doing to the cigar. It’s burning it nearly like the surface of the sun. Now, there’s nothing wrong with torch lighters. Just be careful and use the farthest reaches of the flame to ignite your cigar. You just want to light it, not charbroil it.

White ash. You’ll undoubtedly hear it said that a white ash is the sign of a good cigar. Well, tobacco people tell me that isn’t true. The color of the ash, they say, is mainly just a reflection of the minerals, salts, and chemical compounds absorbed by the tobacco from its soil. Some Cuban cigars, though by no means all, have very white ashes and that may be the origin of this belief.

George E

photo credit: Flickr

7 Responses to “Stogie Tips: Begin at the End”

  1. Jon Monday, March 2, 2009 at 6:11 am #

    I see that the wraper is cracking on that cigar. Is that from improper storage? I have some of mine that have done that too and I was just wondering if that was natural or not. If not, how do I stop it?

  2. George E. Monday, March 2, 2009 at 9:15 am #

    Wrapper cracks can occur for a number of reasons. Probably the most common causes are 1) too much humidity leads the tobacco to swell swell and split the wrapper 2) too little humidity can dry out the tobacco and lead to a split 3) improper rolling can cause the wrapper to unravel (an experience I had recently that I'll mention in an upcoming review)

  3. keith Monday, March 2, 2009 at 10:02 am #

    And a 4th cause: stubbing your cigar out instead of letting it die a dignified death.

    BTW, that looks like a LGC corona gorda to me. Do I win any prize for correctly identifying?

  4. Patrick S Monday, March 2, 2009 at 10:29 am #

    Truth be told, that is just a stock photo. I picked it because it looks like someone stubbed it out and cracked the wrapper.

    So why it is that way and what it is will remain a mystery. (Although it does look like a LGC to me.)

  5. CWS Tuesday, March 3, 2009 at 5:35 am #

    Smoking in the f$#%ing freezing cold can crack the wrapper also – I tried smoking while shoveling snow yesterday.

  6. George E. Tuesday, March 3, 2009 at 8:29 am #

    Yes, I think the heat from smoking, low temperatures with the general lack of humidity in cold air and the higher degree of humidity in the tobacco all clash and play havoc with the wrapper.

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