Cigar Aficionado’s Cigar of the Week for the week of June 26. Read the full tasting note:
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The Art of Smoking Cigars
Cigars are considered to be a more sophisticated and refined tobacco product than cigarettes. They are frequently smoked to mark important occasions and are often depicted in cartoons as symbols of wealth and power. Cigars can be a great addition to any meal or beverage and provide an excellent way to relax after a long day.
A cigar is a tube-shaped tobacco product made of tightly rolled, cured and fermented leaves in a wrapper. A cigar is lit on one end and smoked by inhaling the smoke through the mouth. Heavy cigar smoking can lead to nicotine addiction and increases the risk of diseases associated with tobacco use, including cancers of the mouth, larynx (voice box), esophagus, and lungs, as well as heart disease, bronchitis, and other respiratory conditions.
The cigar’s filler is comprised of a variety of different tobacco leaves or a single leaf. The cigar’s binder is a tobacco leaf that holds the filler leaves together. The cigar’s wrapper is the outermost tobacco leaf and it can be dark or light in color. The shade and color of the wrapper can affect the cigar’s flavor profile, adding notes of sweetness or dryness.
The process of making a cigar is time intensive and laborious. It takes patience to master the craft and an appreciation for the work that goes into producing a premium cigar. It can take between 30 minutes to 2 hours to smoke a cigar, which provides a unique opportunity for relaxation and reflection. Taking the time to enjoy a cigar allows a smoker to disconnect from stressful situations and engage in mindful awareness.