Our advices


It is often compared to that of the cigar tasting wine, but "know smoking" is far more easy to master. By following a few basic rules the cigar smoker may withdraw the delight of discovering a vitola.

We will lay the groundwork that will allow you to enjoy a cigar in the state of the art. Many variations can be made, but the following steps outline a simple method to control.

1) Let's proceed first with the first step that involve touch and look.

Palpate the cigar

The first step in the tasting begins by touch. This first contact between your fingers bare and the cigar is a caress can become familiar with the cigar and begin to appreciate its qualities and defects. First, it is the degree of humidification you enjoy your module by feeling along the entire length. It should be absolutely forbidden cigar too dry, as dry tobacco does not promote the mixing of flavors (the cigar will be aggressive) and the cape will make the cigar dries extremely fragile (the cigar will tear during combustion). After a few cigars, you'll quickly appreciate the degree of flexibility required.

Something that Cubans practice when they are in the presence of a cigar is too dry dive head of the cigar (the head is the part that is put in the mouth) in a glass of rum. Allow the moisture to spread along the length of the cigar for a few minutes and then proceed to the ignition. This method is a bit radical, but very effective.

The grease of Havanas

In cigars from Cuba, the best indicator of quality is to judge the oily and fatty side of the cape. Cuban cigars fresh and quality is always a beautiful cape "oily" which announces that you are dealing with a vitola you can expect some wonderful flavors. Observe and gently touch the cloak of a Havana to appreciate the freshness.

The fill

Then it should judge the filling of a cigar. Palpate the module gently over its entire length to find the empty, logs or knots. A cigar should be well filled for smokable and this criterion is essential for judging the quality of a cigar. It was during the probing one can guess the proper conduct of tasting ahead.

Aesthetic criteria

Some cigar enthusiasts prefer to avoid too large veins on the wrapper or light colors. Some cigars may also have green spots on the cape that suggests a young cigar. The "grain" is also an important aesthetic criterion for fans.

These criteria do not affect the eating quality of a cigar, but some smokers are much importance to the aspect of the cigar. This suggests that the cigar is an experience of which 5 senses touch and the look are a key component.

2) Then, feel the cigar.

After looking and palpating the cigar begins to gently tame. He returned gradually in mind the expectations for the tasting. By feeling the cape on his cigar and fell in love with exotic scents and familiar at once. On Havanas, this is when we think of the tobacco leaves and to those who have cultivated it for our delight.

3) Cutting

The lighting of a cigar begins with a seemingly barbaric practice that requires skill and subtlety: the beheading.
Be careful with this important step, the cut should be clean, straight and clean otherwise the taste will be partly wasted because the cut end will be in contact with your lips that will detect any flaws. For this purpose, the tool should be perfectly appropriate. Do not hesitate to invest in a quality cigar blow as it will last longer and give perfect cuts. No need for premium brands, or precious materials, but if you pay less than 25 € your cigar cutter, it is likely that it not the case. We recommend the dual blades and essential metal. As for the scissors, they are elegant and effective, but too bulky to carry around. They are to be reserved to the side of the humidor. For some time, the cutter made ??a guest appearance. It thrives in keychain and can be very convenient when traveling. By cons, on the large diameter cigars draw may be impaired.

Each has a cutting method of its own. We still recommend to aim for the head of the cigar where the leaves are rolled horizontally.

It is also worth mentioning that the hand-rolled cigars are still closed and the cup is an essential step to control for any cigar lover. However, no stress because if we are well equipped with everything going on normally without problems. Of course we must avoid cutting off the head of the cigar with a knife or teeth. The match planted in the severed head of the cigar is also a myth that must be eradicated because it disrupts the circulation and causes tar plugs.

4) Believed smoking

We surprise ourselves sometimes skip this step, perhaps too eager to turn the cigar, but it is nevertheless a part of the ritual and brings its share of happiness.

Smoking means to pull the vintage cigar cut without it illuminates. This is the final step which whets the appetite for more. It is also in the draw to receive a first thought we aromatic breath. Most often we receive on the palate flavors of spice, underbrush or cut hay. When smoked in a vitola believed it is also a fleeting moment that will soon be smothered by the lighting, but will remain engraved in the memory as one of the best moments spent with the cigar.

5) Lighting

The weapon of choice for ignition is still great debate. Between lovers long match or fans of the torch lighter gas, there is a whole world between the two clans. We will not push the debate further on the tool that will fill in any event its primary function. The only advice given will prevent the wick lighter, spark plug and car cigarette lighter. By cons, we will focus on the ignition operation itself.

The purpose of this step is to make glowing tobacco, without the trauma. It should lead to good temperature tobacco softly, without violence, because the fire is benevolent but can also be destructive.

So you take your vitola between thumb and forefinger, without putting it in the mouth. The cigar slightly inclined downwards with the foot close to the flame. You drive slowly on the cigar itself with the foot above the flame, without ever touching it. To find out when the cigar is ready, it should be noted that the foot should be glowing over the entire diameter. Insist on a few seconds the black dots in the middle of the fire with your flame.

That's it you can wear the head of the cigar in your mouth. Pull a few short bursts quiet and watch if the burning starts on the entire surface of the foot.

If necessary, you can draw a breath while turning the foot with your flame, but remember to take a deep whiff while salivating to properly develop the flavors.

6) Tasting

When you taste a cigar, it is essential to delve into a timeless space. To actually get into a symbiosis with its module do not hurry. It is therefore important to choose a time of day when you can give a Zen moment.

Generally, tasting the cigar obeys the rules of thirds. The first third is sweet without developing any flavors or then downright aggressive with acrid flavors and acids. After those first puffs, sometimes surprising, savored very quickly in quality cigars, which come in multiple flavors hang buds. The second third is supposed to deliver the fullness of the cigar. It is the balance point of the great cigars that take you gently to the apotheosis. This is the last third that shows a renewed power to complete the tasting smoke in a turbulent and haunting. Of course, every cigar adopts a rhythm all its own and how you shoot will change the situation. If you pull on your vitola continuously, it is likely to heat up a bit and develop more powerful flavors. If, against, you let the cigar go out it may not be able to give everything he has in his heart.



It becomes increasingly difficult to distinguish true and false boxes of Havanas. So, how can we recognize these fake cigars?

Let's start with the most frequent errors noticed:
- The rings are misaligned
- There is no cellophane around boxes that are normally fitted
- The color of capes is not uniform in the box
- Bleed the cedar leaf

It is also possible to avoid scams:
- Not buying cigars on the street in Cuba
- Attending civets known for their reliability
- Always being open the box you want to buy
- Ensuring that the boxes purchased in Cuba are equipped with the new holographic seal created in 2009 and needed when going through customs

sceau holographique

- Checking whether the box is filled regularly and includes all cedar dividers and paper, and the information leaflet Habanos
- Taking a cigar and the press. Forgeries are generally lighter, less full than the real.
- Checking whether, in France, the box contains all official seals: seal of guarantee (wide blade greenback), Habanos label guaranteeing the designation of origin (corner of box), local importers seal (it includes the number of the distributor).

sceau garantie
aoc habanos

The left "cigar" is false: ring diameter and doubtful any smooth
faux cigares

The rings of these cigars are puzzling
source: havanajournal.com



The diameter and length of the cigar will directly affect the taste of the cigar. One essential thing to know is that large cigars are smoked generally more easily than small ones. Apart from the cylindrical body found in the majority, there are a variety of shapes. Among the original form the best known include the figurados that are bullet-shaped.

Every moment of the day can promote selection of a different module. By cons, one should know that cigar lovers who take the plunge of large modules such as Churchill, robusto or double corona will struggle to go back to the smaller modules. It was then within the brands of selection is to enjoy different powers of the time of tasting.
Cellophane tube

Some low-end cigars to hide their defects in a luxurious dressing, but this is not the rule. For example, Davidoff and Romeo y Julieta are known for their hits and yet the quality is at the rendezvous. Generally it is better to spend on a brand that is unknown to you if the module is presented in a tube, but if the brand recognition you can try.

The cellophane (which is actually polypropylene) is very convenient for the Conservation of cigars, but it is imperative to remove this protective envelope before placing your valuable modules in a humidor.
The color

There are many nuances of cigars, but it is wrong to believe that color is directly related to the quality of the cigar. It's simply the nature of the leaf and its fermentation that determines the color. By cons, we know that each cigar is unique, but do not judge its quality according to the color as you would pass next to Wonderland. Similarly, it is wrong to believe that cigars are dark stronger than clear.



Large cigar lovers are still waiting impatiently for their next tasting cigar. It is a time of fun, relaxation, whose time and place must be chosen carefully.

Indeed, to enjoy a cigar in the best conditions, it takes time, ½ hour for a corona and a good hour for larger cigars. It is better for cigar lovers who are new cigars to start with rather small, their flavor will be milder and they will burn faster. The larger sizes of cigars will burn more slowly. But, whatever the chosen cigar, always respect the time it is necessary to burn.

The cigar can be smoked at any time of day. Often a cigarette lighter will be appreciated early in the day. After lunch, if it was light, a mild cigar will be preferred. Conversely after a copious lunch, cigars consumed must be more vigorous. For fans rarer cigars in the afternoon, choosing a cigar lighter seems appropriate.

The ideal time to smoke a cigar after dinner, when you can take the time to enjoy it for a long time by offering a well deserved break that lets relax and meditate.

There are, besides these private moments, friendly places to smoke cigars. Thus the "nights of smokers" are organized in some restaurants that can sample delicacies, drinks and high-quality collection of cigar lovers, happy to be back. There are also many clubs of cigar smokers who have an educational and cultural organizing thematic meetings that are great moments of conviviality.

Whether in private or with friends, when and where you prefer smoking is primarily a personal choice, just as the mark of his favorite cigar.