Bloomin’ Havanas

Q. I’m in Geneva, and went into a cigar merchant here today � got a lot of good deals. Unfortunately, the one item I was looking for was disappointing � the Bolivar Royal Coronas. They had them, but the cigars at the edge of each box had a light sprinkling of some sort of white mold on parts that touched the side of the box.

The merchant just dusted them off and assured me they were OK (he actually had a paintbrush handy for just this!). However, as they are on the expensive side (about $200/box USD) and obviously can�t be returned, I didn�t want to take the chance.

I have never seen this before. Should I be concerned, or should I just go ahead and get them anyway?

– Dan G.

A. That “white mold” is also called “bloom.” It usually appears when the humidity and temperature become excessive. The leaf starts emitting oils and a milky-looking white substance begins to form on the wrapper.

He was right in telling you they’re OK. It’s not all that uncommon an occurance, and generally speaking, pretty harmless. You can just as easily brush it off with your finger and you’re good to go. When you get them home, they should be fine. If not, be sure to brush them all off before you put them in your humidor.

Gary Korb

Gary Korb

Executive Editor at

Gary Korb has been writing and editing content for since its debut in 2008. An avid cigar smoker for over 30 years, during the past 12 years he has worked on the marketing side of the premium cigar business as a Sr. Copywriter, blogger, and cigar reviewer. A graduate of the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, prior to his career in the cigar business, Gary worked in the music and video industry as a marketer and a publicist.

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