The Fox 749 Cigar Cutter is a favorite amongst the halfwheel office. It’s thin, well-made, interesting and delivers cuts as good as any cutter on the market. It also can recut a cigar better than just about any cutter. There’s one problem: it’s large. While thin and has rounded edges, the amount of space it takes up in a pocket is substantial. Fox Knives seems to have taken note of this and has introduced a number of smaller cutters that try to replicate the same magic as the 749.
The Fox Knives 746 Otello ($75/$85) is the latest, a unique hybrid that combines a cutting action similar to scissors with a unique lever system and a main blade that looks like a cleaver. Our hope was that it would cut like the 749, but fit better in a pocket.
How Cigars Are Made
How Cigars Are Made
Cigars are made with a fermentation process that gives them their distinct flavor and aroma. To make a fine cigar, tobacco leaves are fermented until they reach 80-95% fermentation. This process is critical to creating a delicious and aromatic cigar. Cigars are also made with different tobacco fillers and primes. Each stage is responsible for the cigar’s shape, taste, and aroma. Once the tobacco leaves reach a certain level of fermentation, they are ready for rolling.
To make a high-quality full-bodied cigar, the tobacco must be rich and powerful. Because the tobacco is grown directly in the sun, the leaves are dark, oily, and flavorful. A lower-priming tobacco, on the other hand, has a rich flavor but is not as potent. It burns more smoothly and has more complexity.
Once the leaves are prepared, they are wrapped in bales. Sometimes they are shipped to another location for final production. The finished cigars undergo various quality-control steps. Some cigars are hand-rolled, which requires expertise. Another method of production involves fermenting the tobacco in enormous piles. Tobacco leaves are then steamed to bring back their original humidity. Some companies also use pressure or water to remove the bitterness.
Cigars were traditionally made by hand, but this changed as cigar manufacturing became mechanized. In the United States, there are more than 6,000 cigar factories. The mechanized factories were able to produce more cigars than the hand-made factories could. However, some of the finest cigars are still made by hand.