Everybody starts their cigar journey somewhere. But some cigar journeys last longer than others and that is why we are writing this article: we want yours to be as long and as healthy as possible. There are a lot of ways to kill a beginner’s experience right from the start and the following topics can do that in no-time. Here are some ways to kill a cigar beginner (figuratively, of course):
Recommend a full-body cigar
This is a classic one and we’ve seen it far too many times. If you want to kill a friend that wants to have his/her first experience with cigars, recommend a full-body cigar. His nicotine tolerance is going to be low, they will most probably inhale the first and second puffs and after that, they will start to cough, their face will start to turn very red, then very white and nausea will start kicking in. Congratulations, you ruined someone’s cigar experience forever.
On a more serious note, this is really what is going to happen and it is not fun at all. To avoid all of that mess, you should recommend a light-body cigar like the classic Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No 2. This way, all the strength of the tobacco will be much more mellow and you will give your friend the opportunity to relax and enjoy his first cigar with you. Be that friend.
Tell him/her to inhale
This one kills even the most aficionado of aficionados and it is something that everyone should avoid. Inhaling your cigar’s smoke is something that you will regret until the end of times. It is such a powerful kick in your throat that you will cough until you see your soul getting out of your body. True story. Cigar-tasting is a lot like wine-tasting: take a sip, coat your palate with the wine, and spit it out. That way, you will get all the essence of the wine, without the unwanted side-effects. In comparison, take a long puff on your cigar, coat your palate with the smoke, and let it out slowly.
Recommend a Double Corona
This is another way to kill a cigar beginner. Double Coronas typical size is 7.60"x49 and as you can imagine that is not a realistic size for someone who’s just starting. Double Coronas have a lot of tobacco inside and they may start very light in some cases, giving the idea that enjoying one is easy. It is not. The longer the size, the more the tobacco will become stronger as it evolves in the session. Also, the muscles on your mouth that are needed to enjoy a Double Corona are not yet trained and that can kill the experience too. Anything bigger than a Robusto size — 5.00"x50 — will be too much at this stage.
Smoke in a highly-populated indoor lounge
As cigar aficionados, we like to shout to the world that we do not inhale smoke when having a cigar, and it is true, we don’t. But that is only true if we are talking about our own cigars. When we are at a lounge we are not inhaling our own cigar but we are inhaling everyone else’s smoke and that counts as inhaling as well. The combustion waste of a cigar exists in two states: a solid-state, being the ash, and a gas-state, being the smoke particles. The ash is not a problem but the smoke counts as nicotine inhaling too. If you are a beginner, avoid closed places with saturated air with little air circulation. On the other hand, having your first cigar experience in a lounge with a friend is a beautiful experience, as long as the air is as clear as possible. That is very easy to spot when you enter a lounge: if it is cloudier inside than outside, stay outside.
Smoke a cigar in a high-pace
This one is a “Cigars 101” tip. Don’t rush your pace when smoking your first cigar. As a matter of fact, don’t ever rush it, even if you become an experienced aficionado. Remember, a cigar is supposed to be a very relaxing moment, not a nicotine shot. Take your time between every puff and don’t stress if your cigar fades out, relighting your cigar is normal. When you don’t take your time between your puffs it forces your cigar to overheat and that will make it a very unpleasant experience because you will not be able to taste the different flavor profiles that your cigar was built to offer. It can also make you breathe more heavily and increase your heart rate, transforming your body into a nicotine sponge. In some cases, it may force you to inhale and as we have explained earlier, that’s never a good thing.
Smoke a cigar on an empty stomach
As a cigar beginner, if you go with your friend for that morning session, please eat a nice breakfast. Remember, you came from a long night of sleep where your body essentially shut down everything but your nutrient absorption. When you wake up, if a cigar is the first thing you have, your body will suck up all it can get and you will rapidly feel nausea and you have a high chance of passing out. This is also valid for those times when you haven’t eaten in a while and your body is craving for something. If you give it a cigar, it will take it. Please eat well and hydrate yourself before and during your first cigar experience. If nausea comes kicking in, have a Coca-Cola or eat a small pack of sugar and it will eventually go away.
Cut after the caps
This one will not harm your body at all, but you will always be remembered as the guy that ended up with a mouth full of tobacco. If you cut your cigar too much, the wrapper will not have enough sustainability and it will start unraveling during the session. As the cigar head — where you put your mouth — becomes wet, the natural glue that holds the wrapper will dissolve, the leaves will separate, and the tobacco inside will gain a life of its own. What holds your cigar together is the wrapper, so take very good care of it.
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