Cigars 101

Why do cigar boxes and humidors use Spanish Cedar?

It’s always great diving into your humidor when you want to reach in for a flavorful and relaxing cigar. Something about opening the lid and getting that big whiff of cigars and cedar almost instantaneously soothes you for the inevitable cigar that is to come. Each time we open the humidor we also take a look at the hygrometer to make sure everything is on point, and most of the time, it’s perfect each time you open the lid. It’s no wonder that it is always on point however. After all, your humidor is lined with Spanish cedar, and if it’s not, it certainly should be. Due to its outstanding qualities, Spanish cedar is the naturally superior wood to use in a humidor.


So why Spanish cedar? It almost seems that any wood will do. Just keep the cigars safe and humid and we’re good to go, right? Well, it’s a bit more complicated than that. Let’s take oak for example. Oak is an extremely dense and hard wood. Not surprisingly, oak isn’t porous at all so it would never absorb humidity. Spanish cedar on the other hand is perfect for absorbing and releasing humidity as needed naturally. This comes in handy when seasoning a humidor since many beginners most likely over season their humidors. By this, I simply mean they put too much water in the humidor. It’s bound to happen, especially if we use a clean rag and wipe down the inside once or twice. That’s a lot of water! But fear not - Spanish cedar’s porous quality is perfect for absorbing all that extra water and releasing it when the humidity drops in your humidor so time between seasonings is greatly extended. This aids in aging cigars as well by creating a naturally stable environment inside your humidor.


Spanish cedar is also a perfect complement to the cigars you are storing in your humidor. If you’ve ever wondered why most Arturo Fuente cigars and many other cigar companies wrapp their cigars in a thin cedar tube, the answer is simply - to add flavor and to enhance the aroma of the cigar. One of the tastes that is used to describe a cigar naturally is “woody.” Spanish cedar greatly enhances any of these woody notes or even brings out this new element in a cigar that does not naturally possess this flavor, adding an extra layer of complexity.


There are many reasons why Spanish cedar is the primary wood you should use for your humidor. From retaining humidity to adding flavor and aroma to your smoke, it has been tested time and time again as the best wood to use. Of course, while other woods such as American red cedar and Mahogany are not bad alternatives, they never really fill the void left by the absence of Spanish cedar. Most other woods simply do not hold their humidity and they can give a foul taste or aroma to your cigars. This can ultimately ruin your smoking experience. So next time you’re searching for a humidor, make sure it’s lined with Spanish cedar.

Jonathan DeTore


My job here is pretty simple - I write stuff, I post stuff to Facebook, and I take it to the house consistently at the weekly slam drunk contest. I do it all while sipping on a fine glass of cognac at my desk (don’t tell my boss), and wearing cashmere slippers. Let’s just say "The Hef" has nothing on me.

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