US smoking rates are dropping, meaning most people are not as familiar about tobacco as their parents would’ve been a generation ago. People are smoking less and less. But these numbers tend to represent people’s relationships with cigarettes, not other products like pipes and cigars. Cigars are a different beast entirely. Even though they contain much more tobacco than a typical cigarette, they are used in a different way. Cigarettes are meant to be smoked quickly, for a fast nicotine buzz. One might smoke one or dozens of them a day.
This isn’t how people usually US smoking rates cigars. For the average American, if cigars are smoked at all, they are used to mark special occasions like vacations. If you are planning to head out on a vacation any time in the next couple of months, find some time to do a little research on what you go on to buy. There is an incredible variety in the cigar world, but things aren’t as hard to understand as they might seem. Here are a few things to keep track of.
In general, the bigger and longer a cigar is, the longer it will take to smoke. This isn’t true in every case. Cigars are kept humid in humidors because otherwise they become very dry and smoke too quickly. The flavor and quality of the smoke is also adversely affected. A reputable dealer will have cared for your cigar well. Even if you don’t have a humidor of your own, your cigar will not dry much if smoked soon after purchase. Talk to your seller, if possible, about the smoking time you want. Many retailers, like Famous Smoke Shop offer smoke duration details right on their website. If no such information is available, let the size of the cigar dictate what you prepare for. Remember, many people who don’t smoke tobacco regularly can become ill if they smoke too much in a first session. Take this into account and pace yourself, especially if you will be drinking while you smoke.
Another factor is the color and cure of the tobacco in your cigar. In general, darker tobaccos will have a richer and more intense flavor. These cigars can be a challenge for a beginner, especially if smoked for an hour or more. But rich flavor is one of the great benefits of cigar smoking, so don’t settle for something too light unless you know that’s what you want. If you think that a cigar might be challenged dark, choose one that won’t burn that long. If you think your cigar will be easy to smoke, perhaps choose one which will last longer.
In the end, why not choose several cigars, one for each evening of your vacation. This will give you a chance to sample different types of cigars, and you’ll learn about your personal preferences. Like wine, good cigars often pair well with different foods, drinks, or experiences. Try things out, and don’t worry about making a mistake. With cigars, it’s all about fun and trying new things. We think you’ll have a good time.
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