How long can you leave an unfinished cigar in the ashtray before relighting?

Q. When smoking a big, long-lasting cigar, how long is it usuallyOK to leave it unattended in the ashtray and come back to it later on? Is a couple of hours too much? – Jack inAtlanta, GA

A.  Actually, there are some cigar smokers who leave their unfinished cigars out over night, then continue smoking them the next day. (I read somewhere that Arnold Schwarzenegger used to do this with his cigars). Normally, the longer an unfinished cigar sits around, the more stale and even bitter-tasting it can become.

If, depending on the circumstances, you have no other choice but to return to your cigar later, my advice would be to clip the cigar back about a half-inch behind the foot to remove the ashen part and most of the tarry residue. This will at least give you a somewhat cleaner smoke when you relight. Just remember that the longer the cigar is left out, the more likely it will not taste as good as the first go-round, but some cigars may surprise you.

Gary Korb

Gary Korb

Executive Editor at cigaradvisor.com

Gary Korb has been writing and editing content for CigarAdvisor.com 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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