How To Smoke A Cigar Properly

Lighting the cigar correctly is a vital part of the process, not only from the view of ensuring it burns smoothly and evenly, but the ritualistic element is part of the pleasure of cigar smoking.

Handmade cigars need to be cut before lighting. Using a sharp knife, scissors or ideally a cigar cutter, remove the closed end of the cigar, leaving about one eighth of an inch (3mm) of the cap remaining. Make the cut quick and clean; to avoid damaging the wrapper leaves. The real trick is to be decisive, once you have lined up the cut, do it in one quick motion; a tentative, squeezed cut will tear the leaves.

To light the cigar, hold the cigar horizontally and bring the flame up to meet the end, (remember to use an odourless light, not a petrol lighter) revolving the cigar so the end is uniformly charred, blowing on the charred end will create a slight glow, which aids the smooth burning of the cigar shop
Now draw slowly on the cigar, whilst holding the flame almost but not quite, touching the cigar. Slowly rotate the cigar in the flame to ensure an even burn. Blowing gently on the lit end also helps evenness.

Once the cigar is lit, allow the smoke to waft around your mouth, enjoying the flavour. Do not puff too hard and cause overheating nor inhale like a cigarette. A good cigar will create an ash that can get as long as an inch (2.4cm.) Don’t flick this too often, unlike a cigarette, or risk the cigar going out or burning unevenly. Should the cigar go out, simply knock any burnt ash from the end and start the lighting process from the beginning.

When the cigar is about an inch (2.5cm) from the middle of the band, it is time to give it up. Lay the cigar in an ashtray and it will soon extinguish itself. Remember to dispose of the butt as soon as possible. The old saying goes that, “The only time a Havana resembles a cheap cigar is in the ashtray.”

Leave a Reply