During the Holiday Season it’s so hard to keep from tripping over ads and articles on “Great Gift Ideas!” I figured I might as well get in on it too, with my own guide to finding the perfect cigar gift. So, I’ve kept it simple. Here are five great gift ideas in five respective categories and various price points, that you can hint at to your wife, girlfriend, best friend, business colleagues or, you can tie a string around your finger like Uncle Billy in It’s a Wonderful Life, so you can remember to buy them for yourself. These are just suggestions, there are plenty more great gift ideas and deals to be found as well. I left the prices out, because they are subject to change and may even be on sale or include offers.
A sampler always makes a great gift. Here’s a dynamite collection for the cigar smoker who’s just starting out or has been smoking cigars for decades. I like this sampler because it’s got lots of cigars (16 in all!), big brand variety, and the price is extremely reasonable. Plus, they’re all made by the best in the business like The Fuentes, Eiroas, Garcias, Ozgeners, Toraños, Padróns, Perdomos, and Plasencias. Ranging from mild to muscular, these are “must-smokes” no cigar smoker should be without.
Cutters: Xikar Xi2 Fiberglass Cigar Cutters
CLACK! That’s the sound of a Xikar Xi cutter opening. When it comes to cutters, I’ve seen more Xikars in the hands of cigar smokers than any other make. That’s because they’re cool-looking, ultra sharp, guaranteed for the life of the cutter, and most importantly, they work! The Xi2 fiberglass series is very affordable, and the tear-drop shape provides maximum grip strength for the cleanest cuts ever – even up to a 56 ring. Don’t fiddle with the cheapo cutters. Get yourself or your giftee something they’ll appreciate for years to come.
I recently purchased this Vector Heatran lighter for myself and I love it. IMO, Vector has proven to be one of the more reliable makers of cigar lighters, and this triple flame is especially good for toasting and lighting cigars from a 50 to 60 ring gauge. It comes in several colors, is very affordable, and it has a fuel viewing window, which I would suggest you look for in any cigar lighter you buy. It really comes in handy. This lighter also has a handy cigar punch on the bottom, in case you forget your regular cutter.
Here’s a humidor that says, “I love the leaf.” The tobacco leaf on this well-made, dark maple humidor is bordered by hand inlays, that add an attractive touch of class to this case. Features include Spanish cedar lining, brass hardware, quadrant hinges, a large rectangular oasis foam humidifier, brass/glass analog hygrometer, top tray, plus a lock & key with a yellow tassel. Its affordable price and 125 cigar capacity also make it a great value. Cigar smokers always need more room eventually, and this humidor will allow you or your giftee’s collection to grow without having to buy another humidor sooner than you wanted.
Cigar & Accessory Kits: Horn of Plenty Super Sampler
For the cigar smoker who wants it all, THIS is a very cool gift at a ridiculously low price. Perfect for the new cigar smoker, this item comes with just about everything but the kitchen sink. You get our bestselling Capri humidor plus 20 cigars chosen from among the world’s best-known brands such as Alec Bradley, CAO, E.P. Carrillo, Oliva, Macanudo, Romeo y Julieta, Tatuaje, Cohiba, and too many more to mention. But that’s not all! You also get a guillotine cutter, torch lighter, seasoning kit, humidifier, humidifying solution, and much more. This is a fantastic gift idea valued at over $296, for way less than you’d expect to pay.
So, check your list twice, take a look at these items, and browse around. There’s something for every cigar smoker at affordable prices, and you can do all your cigar gift shopping without having to deal with mall mania.
Note: Thanks for visiting our 2011 holiday gift guide – but you need to get with the times! Check out our cigar gifts guide for over 15 ideas perfect for any cigar smoker on your list!
Cigars are sold in a number of ways. You’ve got your boxes, bundles, singles, and your cigar samplers. The latter has become the most economical way to buy cigars because you don’t have to commit to a full box, and five cigars is a comfortable enough amount to determine whether the brand in question is worth investing in a box or bundle, whatever the case may be.
Famous Smoke Shop has had a successful cigar sampler program for a number of years. The bulk of the 5-Pack cigar samplers generally comprise same-size cigars from one particular brand, whereas Variety type cigar samplers offer a mix of brands that can range from as few as three to as many as 24 different cigars, and even more with some samplers.
Recently, Famous Smoke Shop introduced a new 6-Pack Samplers program that offers the best of both worlds at very budget-friendly prices. As the name conveys, each sampler includes six cigars in total, presented in three different pairs of nationally recognized brands. Among them, household names like Arturo Fuente, Macanudo, Cohiba, Montecristo, Rocky Patel, Perdomo, Romeo y Julieta, CAO, and many more. Created to appeal to the entire spectrum of cigar consumers, the samplers are categorized by leaf type, strength, and country of origin, plus a few coffee-flavored cigar samplers. Not only do they offer a variety of cigars, but many 6-Pack Samplers include cigars of different sizes and shapes.
For example, the “Cameroon 6-Pack #2” includes a pair of Nub Cameroon 464T’s, Cohiba Robustos and Hemingway Signatures. The “Full Body 6-Pack #1” includes Joya De Nicaragua Antaño 1970 Gran Consuls, Camacho Triple Maduro 50/4.5′s and Oliva Cain Serie F 550 Habanos. The “Dominican 6-Pack #3” includes Montecristo White No.2′s, La Flor Dominicana Mambises and Arturo Fuente Don Carlos Presidentes. The “Coffee 6-Pack #1” includes Tabak Especial Negra, Tatiana Mocha and Java cigars.
Those are just a few examples, but there are many other 6-Pack Sampler categories such as “Criollo,” “Mild,” “Mild Maduro,” “Brazilian,” “Corojo,” “Broadleaf,” “Nicaraguan,” and even a “Bestsellers” 6-Pack.
“We really went all-out in trying to match up the best cigars in each category,” said Famous Smoke Marketing Director, Mike Vandenstockt. “This new sampler program will not only satisfy the cigar smokers who are looking for the big name brands at reasonable prices, but they’ll also be able to sample them in a whole new way.”
The Famous 6-Pack Sampler program is sure to get a lot of attention from newer cigar smokers, who love experimenting, now that it’s so easy for them to find cigars in different wrappers, sizes, and strengths, as well as specific countries of origin.
I recently overheard a dubious piece of advice to a budding cigar smoker: “Pick a cigar that matches your body type,” the would-be advisor pontificated, “this way you won’t look silly. Big people should smoke big cigars, and small people should smoke small cigars.”
This is terrible advice. It’s nearly impossible to make every shape taste exactly alike, not that this would even be a good thing. Different shapes have different flavors; they feel different in your hand; they can even vary in strength. Don’t believe me? Head over to our Test Flights cigar samplers page and see for yourself!
If I heeded the aforementioned advice, I’d be stuck smoking Flor de Oliva Super Giants. But I LIKE that a Lancero generally produces more of the wrapper’s flavor in a stronger-tasting smoke, while a fat 60 ring Toro will burn cool with a more balanced, milder flavor. There’s a time and a place for every vitola available today.
As you buy more cigars, you’ll probably find yourself gravitating to a particular vitola, regardless the brand. For me, it’s Corona and Corona Gorda. Others appreciate the way a torpedo concentrates the flavor. Still others prefer the myraid transitions of a Double Perfecto.
Whatever your preference, it’s important to remember that each vitola has its own merits. Short on time? Try a Petite Corona. REALLY short on time? Go for something even smaller! Need an all-day burner for the golf course? Reach for a Double Corona or Presidente. After dinner drinks? A Churchill offers exceptional balance in hand and an inimitable elegance. Just closed a big deal? Try a fancy figurado like a Pyramid, Salomon, or Diadema.
Robustos have somehow come to dominate the American cigar-scape. And I know many a cigar smoker who will stick to Robusto, because they’re the default. But if you’re serious about enjoy cigars…and let’s be honest, you wouldn’t still be reading if that weren’t the case…branch out and try a new vitola or two – even in a blend you’re already familiar with. Odds are, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Cigars at Famous Smoke Shop come in so many different configurations that you could easily find yourself overwhelmed. That’s especially true of our sampler programs, each of which is driven by its own unique concept.
In this next series of blogs, I’ll explain how these sampler programs work, what the benefits are, and hopefully, make the case for you to give them a try.
Samplers by Strength is one of the coolest programs we’ve come up with recently. The idea is simple: cigar samplers are arranged by strength into an easy-to-use interface.
Start by deciding what suits you best: mild-bodied, medium-bodied, or full-bodied cigars. From there, you can scroll through until you find a sampler that suits you, and even sort them by popularity, price, and name.
Because our crack team of cigar-lovers created samplers with cigars that “make sense” together, the benefit of Samplers by Strength is twofold:
- You have a sense of what to expect, even from cigars you’ve never tried
- You can focus on trying cigars that are “right in your wheelhouse”
We’ve already heard a chorus of praise from our customers. Go ahead…check out the Samplers by Strength page, and let us know what you think in the comments section.