The Art of Cigar Cutting
To gain aficionado status, you need to master the art of cutting Cuban cigars. Preparing your cigar to smoke is not as simple as pulling it out, sparking it up and puffing away. Pretty much every premium cigar has a closed head that needs to be cut before being lit. Deciding the best technique for this comes down to the individual doing the cutting. It comes down to a matter of personal preference, as well as what will suit the particular cigar. You should devote some quality time to your quality product, so that you can pick the best cut. We cannot express how vital it is that you get this right – it’s a matter of life or death… for your cigar that is! Here is what you need to know on the art of cutting.
“A MATTER OF ELEGANCE”
BACK TO BASICS – There is certainly a matter of elegance to cigar cutting. It requires thought, precision and care. You can wreck a cigar in a matter of seconds with a bad cut. You have to think about the objective of cutting: to create a plentiful and smooth opening without hurting the cigar’s structure. A sizeable, open surface area, with cleanly cut leaves – allowing for a more equal draw.
The Art of Cutting a Cigar.
“ONLY ONE RULE IN CIGAR CUTTING”
CHOOSING YOUR TECHNIQUE – For the majority of cigars, it’s best to make the cut around 2mm from the end/head of the cigar. Habanos legend: Zino Davidoff, claimed there is only one rule in cigar cutting – you need a small and proportionate hole. He also identified the 3 ways for you cigar connoisseurs to do so:
PINCHING – Back when dry cigars were somewhat of a trend, the pinching method tended to be aficionados go-to. After wetting the end of the cigar in your mouth – you delicately take the end between your thumb and your index finger and crumble the end away. It will then come off in one’s fingers.
CUTTING AID – When it comes to choosing a Cuban cigar cutter you should put some thought in the matter. Zino Davidoff recommends a large, direct and circular cut, as this not only allows a better draw but it also reduces tar accumulation. Some smokers choose to use sharp objects such as: a penknife or a lance. But these offer less precision – they create savage cuts which can lead to excess heat, tar-filled smoke and unpleasant flavours. You can find a selection of Cigar cutters on our Cuban Cigar Shop such as the S.T. Dupont Cigar Cutter or the Partagas Cutter.
TEETH TEARING – Here at EGM we would recommend steering clear of this method. It doesn’t offer any precision. However, we understand sometimes you may not have any other tools to hand. If your on-the-go and longing for a smoke, then this could work for you. Just put your teeth over the spot you would usually cut and bite down hard, then swiftly pull away. Just beware of the stray tobacco leaves that will escape in your mouth.
And The Preparation For a Smoke Begins.
WHAT COULD GO WRONG? – The most common problem that aficionados find after cutting their cigar, is the unravelling of the wrapper. Cutting off too much of the cigar encourages this to happen. Honestly, the only solution to this is: finding a suitable adhesive to bind it back together. Many use Pectin in the form of a powder, this is a natural substance. A last resort could be saliva, it’s convenient but considerably ineffective. It can be used as a temporary solution. Another common issue can be the tearing of the wrappers. You’re at risk of this occurring when the cigar faces extreme temperatures or if the cigar is too moist. The burning of the cigar creates steam, leading to it expanding – pushing the wrapper to crack. If you need to salvage a cracked cigar and have a loose band, then you’re in luck! Just place the band over the crack and it should hold the cigar together.
Now that you are clued up on the importance of cigar cutting, you should try a master the art yourself. Check out which Cuban cigars online we have to offer and get practicing. Then all you need to become an official aficionado is master the art of lighting cigar. Don’t worry we have a Cuban Cigar blog post coming this Friday, telling you all you need to know about this. Keep your eyes peeled!
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