via Manny Iriarte Enterprises.
How Cigars Are Made
A hand-rolled cigar, whether a premium or a value brand, is made from a single, all natural substance: tobacco. Buzzwords like “natural” and “artisanal” are overused and abused in today’s parlance, but these premium cigars can truly earn these credentials. They’re a massive labor of love that requires expert hands at every level, from seed to smoke.
Cigars offer a sophisticated sensory experience. In addition to their inherent qualities, they’re free of dyes and ripening accelerants that are common in cigarettes and machine-made cigars. This allows them to develop a range of alluring shades of brown through an organic process that’s free of preservatives and chemicals.
Once the tobacco is harvested, it’s arranged in enormous piles (pilones) for fermentation and aging. Aging helps rid the leaves of undesirable properties such as bitterness. This is a key factor in ensuring that a cigar tastes good and has a consistent, balanced flavor. If a cigar has vegetal or green notes, it’s not properly aged.
Once the cigars are ready to be sold, they’re sorted for color consistency and then banded and boxed up. They’re then sent out to be smoked by cigar lovers around the world. Many smokers will enjoy a cigar with friends or as a rare treat to commemorate special events, like the birth of a child or graduation. Others may pair a cigar with a glass of wine or other spirit. This creates an association between happy times and a pleasant pastime, which is why cigar smoking is often associated with celebratory occasions.