I watched a movie where a cigar smoker wet the head of his cigar with his mouth before clipping and lighting it. Is this necessary or correct?
It's not really necessary, but it's not incorrect, either.
Cigar smoking is a multisensory experience with a healthy dose of ritual and anticipation. Some people like to moisten the tip prior to clipping in order to taste the wrapper leaf by itself. It's just one more piece of information about the cigar.
For instance, if your tongue tingles after moistening the tip, you can probably expect a spicy smoke; if the wrapper tastes neutral, the cigar is likely to be mild.
There's also a more practical reason to moisten the tip. If a cigar is slightly dry, moistening the tip lessens the chance of cracking the wrapper when the cigar is cut. However, if a cigar is very dry, no amount of moistening will prevent wrapper breakage.
Click here for our tutorial video on cigar cutters.
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