Q. Why is the “Perfecto” shape so-called?
– Jim D.
A. Most “Perfecto” cigars are identified by the nipple-like extension found at the end (or “foot”) of the cigar. Perhaps the best-known example of this shape are the famed and often hard to find Arturo Fuente Hemingway cigars.
The idea is this: Instead of toasting and lighting the entire foot of the cigar as you normally would, no toasting is required. You simply light the little extension (nipple, stem, whatever), and as the stem turns to ash, the tobacco burns outward toward the edges of the foot. If the cigar is made well, the foot will light “perfectly,” hence the term/name “Perfecto.”
Note, that not all perfectos have stems. Many are rolled to an evenly tapered foot, but again, if well made, will achieve the same effect and burn perfectly, too.
I’m partial to the classic “double perfecto” shape like the La Aurora Preferidos cigars (shown).