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Curing a Harsh Finish?

How do I keep my cigars from becoming harsh toward the end?
Posted: July 1, 2013

By taking your time.

As a cigar is smoked, a combination of moisture and tars build up near the head. While most cigars will eventually take on harsh taste characteristics, there are steps you can take to prevent this buildup from affecting the taste sooner than it should.

Following these guidelines won't guarantee a fresh smoke down to the fingertips—the quality of the tobacco and construction are the dominant factors in the lifespan of any cigar—but they can only prolong your smoking pleasure.

Start your preventive measures with the cut. Tar builds up quicker if the smoke is prevented from flowing freely from the clipped end of the cigar, so it's critical to create a wide aperture. A good rule of thumb is to cut the head at the "shoulder" of the cigar, or at the point where the curve of the end straightens out.

Next, be careful not to puff too hard or too often. The faster a cigar is smoked, the hotter the draw, and the quicker the tar buildup. Cigars need time to cool off between puffs. Puffing about once a minute will keep the cigar lit without overheating it.

And finally, while most cigars can be relit two or three times without taking on harsh flavors, a cigar that stays lit will generally retain its "fresh" quality longer than one that's been fired up over and over again.

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Comments   3 comment(s)

Jonathan "JoJo" Abuan July 1, 2013 8:20pm ET

Excellent tip. Thank you!


Scott Link — Wapakoneta, Ohio, USA,  —  July 5, 2013 7:31pm ET

Low n slow is what I always say. As in, keep the temperature low and smoke em slow. Cigars will stay lit for a lot longer than you think. Took me awhile to realize that, but once I did the flavors really started to pop and my sticks didn't get harsh on me as quickly.


Scott Link — Wapakoneta, Ohio, USA,  —  July 5, 2013 7:32pm ET

Low n slow is what I always say. As in, keep the temperature low and smoke em slow. Cigars will stay lit for a lot longer than you think. Took me awhile to realize that, but once I did the flavors really started to pop and my sticks didn't get harsh on me as quickly.


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