How to Smoke a Cigar
To an outsider, the world of cigar smoking might seem like an exclusive club because those who enjoy it seem to have knowledge that you don’t. Perhaps you already do enjoy smoking cigars, but aren’t confident that you’re doing it right. Here are some of the basics of cigar smoking to get you started, or help you along the journey you’ve already begun.
You don’t (generally) inhale a cigar. That’s the answer to the first question most people have. Cigars are smoked for the flavor, and you draw the smoke into your mouth and then exhale it without inhaling it down in the lungs. Some thin cigars are more frequently inhaled.
Price isn’t always the best indicator of quality. If you’re new to cigars, it’s wiser to buy a few reasonably priced cigars in a few sizes to see what you like, than to sink a bunch of money into just one.
Cut your cigar properly. Unlike the movies, biting the end off of a cigar is the worst way to open it for a smoke. If you don’t own a cutter or aren’t sure how to use it, a cigar shop can cut the cigar for you.
Light the cigar properly. Avoid fluid lighters like Zippos, and if you do use a lighter, use butane. If you use a match, let the chemical tip burn away. Let the heat of the lighter or match light the cigar, and not the flame. Think of it like toasting a marshmallow without setting it on fire.
Enjoy it! Cigar smoking is a luxury activity. Enjoy your cigar and relax with it. You can just kick back in a chair with a fine cigar and enjoy the company of friends or just yourself. And some cigars can take quite some time to smoke, so give yourself that window.
Avoid ashing if possible. Unlike a cigarette, try to let a cigar ash naturally when you set it in an ashtray. This will prevent you losing the insulating ash that keeps the cigar from burning too hot. A quality cigar will have a very dense ash that keeps its shape very well.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help! Cigar shops specialize in cigars, and any shop worth its sticks will be more than happy to assist a new customer. A cigar shop should not only be knowledgeable so that they can answer your questions and make recommendations, but they should also be friendly and accommodating. If you get a weird attitude from a shop, it’s probably best to try another one. Like ours!