The experience when a person smokes a cigar for the first time can be amazing or horrific if they don’t know what they’re doing. People often wonder how to smoke a cigar because it is intimidating. Even if you’ve smoked cigarettes, smoking a cigar is completely different.
A great cigar smoking experience can lead to a lifelong love or dislike. The last thing a person wants to do is hack and cough in front of their friends because they don’t know how to smoke a cigar. Learn the ropes before taking your first draw from a great cigar and have a memorable experience.
How to Smoke a Cigar 101: Choose the Right Cigar
Your first cigar shouldn’t be a bargain-basement one you grabbed at a gas station on your way home from work. Mass-produced cheap cigars don’t have good flavor, tend to be bitter, and are not the best smoking experience.
Instead, visit your local smoke shop or cigar lounge to find a mid-range cigar. Why a mid-range and not the ultimate premium cigar? As a beginner, you’ll likely not appreciate the flavors and richness of a premium cigar and it can be too much for you.
If you start with something mid-range, it gives you a pleasurable smoking experience because it’s quality tobacco. There are many different flavors of cigar, and some can be more irritating to you than others. Ask the cigar shop for a milder cigar such as an Ashton Classic or Montecristo.
It’s your first time, so you don’t need to spend an arm and a leg on a cigar. Start mid-range and then work your way up to the more premium selections.
Cut a Cigar Like a Pro
When you receive the cigar, don’t try and light it. Most quality cigars have a cap that you need to cut before lighting the cigar. A cigar is thick, and the cap covers the end that goes into your mouth. There should be a wrapper that covers this end and has a perforated line that tells you where to cut.
You’ll need a cigar cutter, which you can get at the cigar shop or lounge you frequent. If you buy the cigars online, then make sure to purchase a cutter as well. Many people don’t know how to cut and smoke a cigar properly.
If you cut the cigar too deep, you risk getting loose tobacco in your mouth, have bad smoke and you waste part of the cigar. It’s possible the whole wrapper can unravel too.
There are three types of cuts: straight cut, V-cut, and punch cut. A straight cut is the most common and you can just cut the cigar at the perforated line. A straight cut is the best choice for beginners because it provides the easiest draw.
V-cut and punch cut provide a more intense flavor, which can be overwhelming for a beginner cigar smoker.
How Do I Light a Cigar?
The first thing to understand is a cigar is not a cigarette. You can’t just flick your Bic and start puffing away with abandon. Don’t try and light the cigar with a standard cigarette lighter. It’s not very hot and doesn’t provide an even burn on the cigar.
Choose a torch cigar that has a high-temperature concentrated flame. Take a few cold draws from the cigar first and then ignite the cigar by rotating it over the flame. Don’t get the torch too close to the cigar or it can char the leaf.
Quality cigars can take a little while to light because they’re stored in humidors, which naturally keep moisture in. Rotate the cigar until you see smoke rise and then take a few draws and continue to rotate the cigar.
The light should be even across the entire end of the cigar. You’re now ready for the smoking experience.
How Do I Smoke a Cigar?
Congratulations, you’ve mastered everything and are ready to smoke your first cigar…properly. A cigar is like wine in that everyone has different flavors. Draw the smoke into your mouth and taste the various flavors of the tobacco.
Enjoy and savor it. There may be hints of almond or black pepper and many others as well. Try different cigars throughout your cigar smoking journey to find the one that you love the most.
It’s important to not inhale the smoke from the cigar. It’s not meant to venture into your lungs like cigarette smoke. If you inhale, you’ll likely end up coughing.
Don’t just enjoy the taste of the cigar, but the aroma as well. Every now and then, push the smoke out through your nose and enjoy the aroma.
You don’t need to hurry to smoke a cigar either. It’s a flavor and sensory experience best enjoyed over time. Smoking a cigar too fast can give you a nicotine buzz and make you feel dizzy. If this happens, put the cigar down and wait until the feeling subsides.
Ash Your Cigar Properly
The ash on a cigar is sturdy, so you don’t need to constantly remove the ash as you would from a cigarette. When the ash gets about an inch or so long, slowly roll it against the ashtray to remove it.
If you wait too long, then the ash falls off all over you and makes a mess. That’s not fun to clean up and it’s embarrassing. Also, don’t knock the cigar on the ashtray like you would a cigarette. The role of a cigar is tight and hitting it against the tray can damage the outer leaf.
You don’t want it to start unraveling because of a broken leaf. That’s another rookie mistake.
The End of the Line
When you’re done smoking, don’t put out the cigar like you would a cigarette. It doesn’t look good and can create a bad odor. Instead, just set the cigar down in the ashtray and let it go out on its own.
If you’re interested in learning more about how to smoke a cigar or the many different cigars available, then please contact our experts today.