Cigars 101

Is smoking cigars too often, too much?

After convincing the customer I’m not the enemy in this situation, we started talking about our favorite cigars. I told him a few of my favorite such as the Xikar HC Series Habano Colorado, the CLE Corojo, and the Montecristo Platinum, all of which I rotate through and smoke on the weekend or during special occasions. He then told me he could never afford to smoke such cigars every day since they are expensive premiums, especially the Montecristo. This struck a chord with me because, respectfully, I think of cigars differently than this customer. I think of cigars not as an everyday habit, but as a luxury item for special occasions. Of course, I’ll enjoy a smoke at lunch every once in a while, but smoking one or more cigars every day takes the nostalgia and excitement away from smoking.

I used to keep my humidor on my desk here at work, so almost every day I could rummage through my stash and pick out a cigar that I would enjoy during my lunch break. I really developed my palate doing this and I learned a lot about what each wrapper type can offer me. Through this, I found my favorite and least favorite wrapper types. Then, over the past two to three months, something happened that discouraged me from having a cigar so often. I found the flavors in each cigar were sort of running together. None really tasted different than the others, and the complexity of great cigars, such as the Oliva 3 Master Blends, became one-dimensional in my mind. That is NOT supposed to happen, so I made a change. As my loyal readers know, a few articles back I wrote that I was taking a month off from smoking cigars to cleanse my palate. I took my humidor home so my stash was not at my fingertips to tempt me all day long, and since we just started entering the cold months, I knew I wasn’t going to be smoking outside at all at home.

After my month of abstinence, the effect of not smoking was huge. I once again found the complexity that I had lost from smoking almost every day. Smoking cigars was no longer a mundane chore that I habitually succumbed to in order to kill time during the day.

There is a reason we give cigars out for the birth of a child or at weddings. They help us enjoy special moments together and allow us to bond. In my opinion, cigars are a luxury item to be cherished, not to be smoked daily. For me, it takes the meaning out of why we picked-up our first cigars, and it can put up a road block in our journey to experience the mingling of flavors in premium cigars. Some of us cigar smokers may become complacent with our “regulars,” because smoking cigars becomes commonplace instead of picking up a new stick to be enjoyed and analyzed with a clean palate.

There are many cigars out there to be enjoyed. In my mind I would not want to see a cigar smoker pick out a regular for the sake of finding an every day smoke at a cheap price point, rather than picking up a few upmarket premiums and smoking them on a fresh palate over a longer period of time.

The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of CigarAdvisor.com or its affiliates.

Gary Korb

Gary Korb

Executive Editor

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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