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Even aficionados need to brush up on their knowledge every once in a while!
Here is an extensive overview of just about every term you need to know when it comes to discussing cigars:
The smell of a burning cigar.
The paper placed around the cigar, usually near the head, originally used to protect white gloves from tobacco stains. Merchants jumped at the opportunity to use it as a place to print the name of their brand which ultimately allowed them to distinguish themselves from competitors.
The body of the cigar.
The leaf of tobacco wrapped around the filler tobacco which holds the cigar together.
The mixture of tobaccos used in the cigar that provides each cigar with its unique flavors.
BLOOM (also called “plume”)
A harmless white film or spots on the wrapper caused by oils in the tobacco rising to the surface. Indicates a stronger smoke.
The smell of an unlit cigar.
The container which holds the cigars. Traditional styles include:
Cabinet Selection: wood box with a sliding top, designed to hold 25 or 50 cigars.
8-9-8: a round-sided box designed to hold three rows of cigars with eight on the top, nine in the middle and eight on the bottom.
Flat Top (or 13-Topper): a flat rectangular container and the most commonly sold today, holds 13 cigars on the top and 12 on the bottom.
The mixture of tobacco which makes up the filler within the main body of the cigar.
An economic method of packaging consisting of a cellophane overwrap holding anywhere from 25 or 50 cigars.
BURROS (or “bulk”)
The carefully monitored piles of the tobacco as they undergo the fermentation process.
The circular piece of wrapper leaf affixed to the head of the cigar to secure the wrapper. Sometimes called a “flag.”
Professional cigar taster who determines the cigar's aromas and flavors.
The knife used in cigar factories to cut the wrapper leaf.
Named after Winston Churchill who preferred large cigars, a corona format cigar, usually measuring about 7 inches long with a 48 gauge.
Traditionally sized cigar measuring 5.5 to 6 inches with a 42 to 44 ring gauge.
Translates to "fat corona,” about 6 inches, very popular size.
An exotic cigar that is composed of three panatelas braided together to form one cigar.
The process of removing moisture from freshly harvested tobacco.
Filler tobacco made up of chopped-up pieces of tobacco, commonly found in machine-made cigars.
A device for clipping the end off a cigar.
A small cigar around 4 inches by a 30 ring gauge.
A cigar with dimensions of 7 1/2 to 8 inches by a large gauge of 49 to 52.
The flow of smoke from a cigar. It can be too easy (hot) or too tight (plugged)
The tobacco that makes up the center of the cigar. There are two main types of filler, short and long.
A Spanish term that refers to cigars with exotic sizes, such as torpedos, pyramids, perfect and Culebra's.
Also called the "tuck," it's the end of the cigar that is lit.
The room in which cigars are rolled at the factory.
A vegetable adhesive used to secure the head of the wrapper leaf around the finished bunch.
Individual leaves of tobacco that are hung together after harvest and tied at the top. These hands are piled together to make a bulk for fermentation.
A cigar that is bunched, bound and wrapped entirely by hand.
A cigar made entirely by hand with the high quality wrapper and long filler.
The end of the cigar that is placed in your mouth.
A cigar which has a quick, loose draw. This is caused by a lack in filler. It is usually accompanied by harsh flavors.
A wooden box which is fitted with options to control the temperature and humidity levels inside used to store or age cigars for long periods of time. The ideal environment should be 70F and 70% humidity.
One of three types of filler tobacco, taken from the center of the plant. Ligero means light in Spanish but these are the most flavorful leaves as well as the strongest.
Whole leaves selected and rolled by hand to create a smooth, easy draw of smoke.
A cigar typically 6 1/4 inches with a 42 or 44 ring gauge.
Cigars made entirely by machine. Heavier weight binders and wrappers are generally used and short filler is used in place of long filler.
The distinct oils and resins within the leaf, which gives the tobacco its particular characteristics.
A varying but typically long and thin cigar.
A cigar with a rounded head and a closed foot.
A short corona format usually 4 1/2 inches by a 40 ring gauge.
A tight spot or clog in a cigar that prevents a proper draw.
A high-grade cigar made by hand from 100% tobacco long leaf filler.
A cigar whose filler, binder, and wrapper come from the same country.
A cigar with an open foot and a tapered head.
The diameter of a cigar.
Shorter cigar, typically five to five and a half inches with a ring gauge of 50.
An aromatic, medium-bodied kind of filler tobacco. Seco is the Spanish word for "dry.”
Tobacco, usually used for the wrapper of a cigar, which has been grown under filtered sunlight using a tent, creating a more flexible leaf.
Chopped bits of leaves found mostly in machine-made cigars. Burns faster and hotter than long filler tobacco.
The amount of time it will take to smoke your cigar. This can take anywhere from twenty minutes to a couple of hours depending on the cigar.
Tobacco which has been grown in direct sunlight. This creates thicker veins and a thicker leaf.
Small bumps that add texture to wrapper.
The title earned by master cigar rollers.
A cigar with a slightly bulging middle, a closed foot and a pointy head.
A cigar that is placed in a tube to stay fresh. Tubes can be wood, aluminum, or glass.
A type of filler tobacco chosen for the quality of the burn.
The outermost leaf of tobacco holding the cigar together. The best are elastic without visible veins.
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