C.Gars Cuban Cigars

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Can the Shape of a Cigar Affect the Experience?

Walking into a Humidor can be very overwhelming, the different colours, shapes and indeed smells can sometimes be too much to take in. We at C.Gars are happy to help you and have experts to guide you around our humidors, however to prepare you I have created this guide to cigar shapes and if they make any difference to your cigar experience.

So why are cigars different shapes?

You will find all kinds of different shapes and sizes of cigars but finding the correct one for you will take time. There is the standard shape that everyone associates with cigars called Parejo. There are also irregular shapes that may have a pointy top or bottom or even both! These are classed as a Figurado. They will often appear fatter in the middle and skinnier on the ends but most importantly does it affect your smoking experience? Well the simple answer is yes! Different shaped cigars require different amounts of tobacco so this will affect the flavours.

A good example is a Torpedo shape, which has a pointy head. To create the Torpedo head, the roller has to roll the cigar a few more times with the wrapper leaf, which provides more wrapper leaf exposure in your mouth. So if you have an amazing wrapper this will make your cigar even more tasty however if you try a different vitola and realise its not the same it may be due to the roller not wrapping it as much as a Torpedo.

In rounded cigars or Parejo cigars you have fat ones and skinny ones. Some people prefer the bigger ring gauge which provide a cooler smoke. People who smoke fast or are smoking in a rush should smoke larger ring gauge cigars because it will keep the smoke a lot cooler so it acts like a safety net if you will. If you smoke small, slender cigars you will find the smoke is a lot hotter so if you smoke in a rush you may run the risk of missing the amazing flavours as the tobacco would of been too hot. This often happens with Panatelas or Lanceros. So these cigars are best enjoyed when you have more time.

I personally like a Lancero, it's a slim cigar which means it doesn’t have much filler so the wrapper takes over the flavour, not just in touching my pallet but the overall smoke. When you have a big ring gauge cigar, it is difficult for the wrapper flavours to compete with all of the other tobaccos in the cigar meaning the filler is the main flavour you taste. A middle of the range cigar can work out well for both filler and wrapper as they will both have the opportunity to show their qualities.

If you like complexity during your smoking experience you may try a cigar with a bulge either at the beginning, middle or end of the cigar. As the cigar increases with width, the complexity of the smoke changes. If you have a cigar that gets fatter as you smoke, the wrapper in the beginning of the cigar will have more flavour, when you get to the fatter part, the filler will take over which may give you different flavours and have more impact.

Why are some cigars square?

As you are looking around the humidor you see a square cigar, why is it square? This is called a Box-pressed cigar. Not to be mistaken for machine made cigars, these cigars are still hand rolled and start their life as round cigars but a process is used where the cigar roller takes wooden slats, lays the cigar on a tray and compresses it which transforms it into the square shape.

Almost all Box-pressed cigars are rolled differently than a Parejo. Box-pressed cigars must be rolled a bit looser so the wrapper doesnt crack during the box press process and the binder doesn’t get damaged. However don’t let that put you off as the process tends to correct the loose wrapping. Box pressed cigars tend to have a looser draw making it an easier smoke.

I hope this guide has helped you and we can't wait to see you on your next visit.

Written by Oliver Partington