Surely you have heard that to enjoy a good cigar it is essential to choose it well, prepare it before lighting and, of course, know the secrets of a good lighting, which can become quite a ritual. Three themes that tend to become a challenge that worries many of those who want to smoke their first cigar.
The first thing is the choice of the cigar.
The immense number of shapes, sizes, colors and brands is in itself a challenge to overcome. For many experts, those who are new to the world of tobacco should choose small and smooth cigars because they can offer a more satisfactory first experience. For some, you should definitely start with a premium cigar. Although they tend to be somewhat more expensive, a lower quality smoke is likely to produce less enjoyment.
Soft cigars will give you pleasure without risking that the force of a full-bodied cigar will produce a clash of very strong flavors and substances capable of discouraging you. If they are small, you will have to spend less time smoking it, although it is good to know that small cigars are not always smooth.
Then the cigar must be prepared.
One of the keys for making that the cigar burns evenly, which will allow few variations in the flavor, is to remove the lid (a small piece of wrapper at the end of the cigar) with a special cutter for this purpose.
A wide variety of cutters are available on the market, but to ensure a clean cut it is important to use a quality one, with a sharp blade, because using a dull or poor-quality cutter can damage the casing. The tip should never be cut with your teeth to avoid tearing the cigar and nor should a toothpick or any other fine element be inserted to pierce it.
Some experts say that it is best for new smokers to use a double-bladed guillotine cutter because making a good cut is not an aesthetic issue. It will be decisive for the correct combustion of the cigar, which will allow to properly appreciate all its flavor.
Another task involved in preparing the cigar is deciding whether or not to leave the ring or band. As in everything that refers to cigars, on this issue there is also controversy. There are those who believe that it should be removed, arguing that if it is not done, it will burn and produce a burnt paper taste. Those who think otherwise say that as the band tends to adhere to the cigar with a small amount of glue, removing it could detach a small amount from the wrapper, which can affect the structure of the cigar; therefore, it would be best to start smoking for a few minutes and let the heat of the cigar soften the glue, allowing you to easily undo the band. In any case, if you decide to remove it, you must be careful not to damage the layer of the cigar.
After a good choice of the cigar and a perfect cut, it remains to make a good lighting that allows you to enjoy its flavor and aroma to the fullest. This point involves a whole ceremony which we will talk about in the next article.