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Cigar Tip: How To Find Good New Smokes (Part II)

14 Nov 2011

In the previous segment last week, I laid out some ideas to help you increase the likelihood that you’ll enjoy the new smokes you try. Here are a few more thoughts to tuck in the back of your mind as you scan the humidor shelves and light up.

1. Price typically has meaning. Sure, some manufacturers tack a high price tag on a mediocre cigar hoping to convince potential customers it must be good. Conversely, the belief that smart people can find great bargains is also widely held. The truth is that good tobacco, talented workers, and proper production usually cost more and result in better cigars. Now, this doesn’t mean there aren’t fine bargain cigars to be had or that you‘ll necessarily like a high-priced smoke. But if you continually search in the low, low end you’ll find disappointment.

2. Remember that your tastes will change over time. A favorite cigar from a year ago may not now seem so good, just as one that didn’t quite hit the bull’s eye could prove a winner. When you smoke a cigar you don’t enjoy, ask yourself a few questions: Is it well-constructed? Was it too strong or too light? Were the flavors unpleasant or just not what you wanted? Depending on your answers, this could be a stick to revisit.

3. Pay attention to construction and burn. These can be key indicators of care and quality. Of course, one example isn’t enough to make a sweeping determination, but keeping track of how a manufacturer’s cigars perform is worthwhile.

4. Don’t rush to buy a box or a bundle. Sure, the cigars are individually cheaper that way, but you don’t want to be pennywise and pound foolish. Smoke a few sticks first, and try them with different beverages and at different times. Make sure you really want to smoke 20 or 25 of them.

5. When you find a cigar you like, try it in different lengths and ring gauges. Sometimes, you’ll find little or no difference. But sometimes you’ll discover a vitola that’s better.

Again, I hope you’ll add your tips and thoughts.

George E

photo credit: Flickr

7 Responses to “Cigar Tip: How To Find Good New Smokes (Part II)”

  1. dmjones1009 Monday, November 14, 2011 at 9:04 am #

    RE. #4: I look at buying a box of cigars as "entering a long-term relationship"…I might still be smoking through that box a year or two from now! Therefore, I try to limit my box purchases to cigars I'm less likely to grow tire of…and that is a short list, to be honest. I'd be more likely to split a box with someone and just have half of it to go through.

  2. George E Monday, November 14, 2011 at 11:04 am #

    Excellent suggestion! Splitting a box combines the lower price with a lower commitment.

  3. Patrick Semmens Monday, November 14, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

    Excellent tips George.

    Along the same lines as number #4, if you're unsure about whether you want an entire box, buying a 5-pack is a good way to get a discount off the single price without committing to 20 or 25 sticks.

  4. Tesa Fan 1 Monday, November 14, 2011 at 5:27 pm #

    I've enjoyed this two-article series… lot's of helpful stuff here. Thanks a lot, George.

  5. Tony Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at 10:49 am #

    This is why tasting notes are an important part of documenting how your tastes change over time (and remembering details of a stick that you smoked a long time ago).

  6. Kurt Saturday, November 26, 2011 at 10:56 pm #

    I often will get good prices by buying sampler packs. Generally I look for packs that have at least 2 of each cigar. And I look for samplers that have at least a few smokes I know and enjoy. That way if the new smokes are not enjoyable to me I at least have a few I enjoy.

Trackbacks and Pingbacks

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