Complete Guide to Choosing the Best Cigar for You

Complete Guide to Choosing the Best Cigar for You

Complete Guide to Choosing the Best Cigar for You.

One might think that cigars are making a comeback, but nothing could be farther from the truth. They never went away in the first place. Cigars are cool and always have been, in a timeless way that can’t quite be explained, but doesn’t need to be. They represent the way things used to be, when quality craftsmanship, good conversation, and tradition were things that mattered. They represent the good life, in whatever way that means to you. It could be a celebratory occasion like a wedding or a graduation, or you might be using a cigar to help you keep your cool during a poker game, or you might be having a satisfying smoke after dinner, or possibly your cigar is just something to make the moment longer when you are sharing a conversation with your best friends. No matter what the occasion, smoking a cigar just makes things better and more memorable. Complete Guide to Choosing the Best Cigar for You.-

But you know what isn’t cool, and isn’t where it is at? Not having any idea what kind of cigar to buy. Think about it, do you want to be that guy? Just as with any other product in this world, if you are going to buy a cigar, or even smoke one, it would be a good thing to have some knowledge of the subject at hand.

It isn’t just appearance and ritual; to the uninitiated, a cigar might just be a cigar, but once you get some knowledge, you learn just how good a cigar can be. Of course, what the best cigar is has a lot to do with your own choice and taste, and not just what someone else tells you is good. There are lots of cigars out there, and what you like is what matters, not what someone else tells you to like. With that said there are certain qualities that all good cigars share, and while once you learn what you are looking for in a cigar the whole thing is easy, before you do it can be a tad intimidating.

So, what do you need to know about cigars to pick one out for yourself and what are some of the best cigars on the market today? I thought you would never ask. Read on to find out. Complete Guide to Choosing the Best Cigar for You.

The Body

When someone is describing the body of the cigar to you, they are not talking about its shape or how long it is. Body refers to how strong and intense your smoke is. As I said before, no one can tell you what kind of cigar you like to smoke, it is your preference, but veteran smokers usually want something that is full-bodied, while rookies and those new to the cigar game often choose a cigar with a gentler body. Again, this is your choice, so don’t get punked out into choosing a cigar that you don’t want just to impress someone. You might need to work your way up to stronger cigars, or you might never choose to do so. No matter if you are trying a cigar that is mild, medium, or full, the taste of your cigar should be pleasing to you, but should not be overwhelming.

The Size

While the size of the cigar might have some effect on your cigar’s body or flavor, a larger factor in what size of a cigar to choose is how much time you have to enjoy your smoke — how big a part of your day are you actually going to invest in your cigar? If you are involved in an all-night poker game in which you plan on staying up until the wee hours of the night, then you would want a longer cigar, while if you just wanted to have a quick after-dinner smoke on the deck with a good buddy, then a short one would be all that you need. In both the United States and in England, length is measured by inches, but in most other countries you are going to be looking at centimeters.

The Shape

When you hear people talking the shape of the cigar, what they really are talking about is “ring gauge,” which is a cigar’s diameter broken into 64ths of an inch. So, if you have a cigar with a 50-ring gauge it means it is 50/64th of an inch in diameter.

You might think that the fatter your cigar the more powerful the taste of it is, but you would be wrong. It is all about the type of tobacco that is used and not how big the cigar is. A thin cigar made with strong tobacco will be full-bodied, while a fat cigar made with mild tobacco will be mellow on your palate, although the thicker a cigar is the longer it will smolder. Also remember that each brand is different. One brand’s Churchill cigar could be much stronger than one of their competitors.

How to Pick Out a Cigar in Person

So, you might be saying to yourself, okay, all that sounds cool, but how do I pick out a cigar in person? How do I know what to do without looking like a total idiot? Read on to find out.

Once you have picked out a cigar that looks like it matches the body and shape that you feel comfortable with, there are a few things you need to do to make sure you have a good cigar. The first thing you want to do is check out the wrapper. Give it a good eye check. Are there any gap or tears that you can see? What about the color? Does it look uniform throughout, or can you see spots?

Avoid cigars that feel dry, or that flake or crumble when touched. This probably means they have not been kept in the proper humidity, which will affect the taste and flavor. Feel the cigar and make sure it is firm throughout, without any weak spots. Finally, smell the cigar: if you like the smell, there is good chance that you will like how it tastes too.

The Best Cigars Today

Okay, so now you have all that down and are ready to start smoking with impunity but you still aren’t sure what cigar to buy. Fear not, what follows is a list of cigars that won’t let you down no matter what your personal style or palate is. As previously discussed, your favorite cigar is up to you — no one else can tell you what you like the best. With that said, these cigars are all excellent, and won’t let anyone down that has a discerning palate.

Parejos vs. Figurados

There are two basic cigar types. The most common and most well known is a parejo, which has a straight edge and is smooth, and is thought of as the standard cigar shape. It has a round end that needs to be clipped before you smoke. The other type is a figurado, which has an irregular shape of some sort, such as a torpedo, or perfecto, which have points on the end. The following is a basic rundown of the different Parejos that you might encounter. As you can see they are quite varied and the only thing they truly have in common is the basic shape.

This is a true old school cigar shape, and is very popular. Coronas never go out of style. They run around 5-1/2 to 6 inches with a ring gauge of 42 to 44.

Petit Corona
You probably could have guessed by the name, but this is a corona, except smaller. It usually measures about 4-1/2 inches, with a ring gauge of 40 to 42.

This cigar is short and fat in style. It is very popular in America; when you think of a gangster chewing on a cigar in your mind it is probably this one. It should be 4-3/4 to 5-1/2 inches by 48 to 52 ring gauge.

These are large coronas and named after the man himself, Winston Churchill, who is one of the most famous cigar smokers of all time. They should be around 7 inches by 47 ring gauge.

Double Corona

You guessed it. This is a big version of the corona and should be roughly 7-1/2 to 8-1/2 inches by a 49 to 52 ring gauge.

Corona Gorda
This cigar is becoming more popular, and is also known as a toro. They should be around 5-5/8 inches by 46 ring gauge.

This is a very elegant cigar, and is long and thin. It is not quite as popular as it used to be back in the day and will run 5 to 7-1/2 inches with a ring gauge of 34 to 38.

Most cigars are Parejo’s, but with all the competition out there, some cigar companies are making cigars that are shaped differently to grab people’s attention and get a bigger share of the market. A figurado is any cigar that is not straight shaped. There are many different varieties, but some of the more popular are pyramid cigars, which have heads tapered to a point; belicosos, which are in essence shorter pyramids; torpedos, which have one end closed, a bulge in the middle, and a point at the other end; and perfectos, which are similar to the torpedo except the pointed end is open like a parejo.

The Wrapper

The wrapper not only is something used as a marketing technique, but also has a lot to do with the way a cigar tastes. Some smokers collect them and save them, and many manufacturers put a lot of thought into their design. There are 7 basic colors of wrappers; the most popular are black, yellow and green. The basic colors all vary depending on the manufacturer as they are affected by the different ways that tobacco is processed and the different types of tobacco used.

Countries of Origin

Cuban cigars were once legendary, and the standard in the market and with good reason, but they are no longer the big dog when it comes to cigars. There are 7 countries that are the main players in the cigar industry — a brief summation of what they bring to the table follows.

When it comes to exports, Mexico gets no respect at all for the most part. This is not true when it comes to cigars, as their reputation is growing all the time, and nowadays one is not looked down on for smoking a Mexican cigar. A popular cigar brand is Aroma De San Andreas.

Ecuador has long been known for being a country that is good at producing excellent cigar wrappers; in fact, many popular brands from other countries have long used them. Ecuador is now also producing some quality cigars to go along with their wrappers, and one of the best is Ecuapuros.

Brazil has long been known as a place for fabulous vacations and gorgeous women, but now they are also known as being a very high volume cigar producer in South America. One of their signature brands is Aquarius.

A lot of the best manufacturers of Cuban cigars went to Honduras back in the 60’s. They are one of the top exporters of cigars to the United States and are known for making them very strong. A good example of this is the brand Hoyo de Monterrey.

Ah Cuba, how they mighty have fallen. Back in the 60’s Cuba nationalized the cigar industry, which meant many of the best cigar makers went to other countries to ply their trade, and the United States embargo just made things worse. Don’t get me wrong, there are still some excellent cigars coming out of Cuba, and a lot of people in the know say that Cuban tobacco is the best in the world. The most well known brand out of Cuba right now is Partagas.

Nicaragua was one of the main beneficiaries of the Cuban cigar exodus. They have great soil for tobacco and it wasn’t long before it was put to use. Cigars are now one of the biggest exports this country has, and one of their best brands is Padrón.

Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic is the current big boy when it comes to cigars and is the largest exporter in the world to the United States. This is also in large part thanks to the Cuban exodus. An excellent brand from this country is Arturo Fuente.

Complete Guide to Choosing the Best Cigar for You.

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