How to Explore New Cigars & Grow Your Palate

Try new things. Be bold. There are many delicious cigars on the market so take the time to go exploring.

It’s easy to find cigars you like and smoke a small subset of brands and sizes in some sort of rotation. Some people even buy their sticks by the box, enjoying the exact same thing, over and over and over and over and over again.

But you know what? Cigars are like women — they come in all shapes and sizes, you really need to sample a wide variety to know what the market really looks like.

Jason’s cigar sampling tips:

  • If you try something new, don’t just buy one stick. Get three. Smoke them consecutively. This helps protect you against an errant bad stick that could affect your enjoyment. Pair each cigar with a different beverage. Give the cigar the chance to prove itself in several sittings, in different circumstances.
  • Don’t always be price conscious. One of my favorite cigars, the Fuente Fuente Opus X, costs me $40 each in Las Vegas. I also like the Flor Fina 8-5-8, which retails for roughly $5 in Grand Rapids. Price and quality are sometimes correlated, but sometimes not. Don’t let the sticker guide your choices.
  • See something you’ve never even heard of before? Grab it. Don’t be a pussy. Get out of your comfort zone.
  • If you prefer gentler stock, make a point of grabbing a maduro every once in a while. Push your limits. If you stick with just a single flavor profile, you will never learn to appreciate other types of cigars. Just like a good wine afficianado samples all sorts of vintages, so also should a cigar enthusiast enjoy a diversity of blends.
  • Keep a cigar journal. Track what you like and be honest about what you didn’t enjoy. In the long term, you will get a better picture of what gaps you have left to explore in your cigar knowledge.

Bottom line: Try new things. Be bold. There are many

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About jason

Jason is the principal of Gillikin Consulting, a business-media and ethics consultancy based in Grand Rapids, Mich.