Lighting a cigar is not like lighting the tip of a cigarette or the wick of a candle-it takes longer. In other words, patience is important, especially when you are starting.
A properly lit cigar is important because it means all the ingredients (wrapper, binder and filler) will be constantly lit, thus imparting the flavours of the mix as the maker intended them to be experienced.
Also, you won’t be fighting an uneven burn while you’re smoking, which can add trouble to a time that should be relaxing.
But before you can light up, you’ll want to cut your cigar so air can pass through it.
To light a cigar, follow these 3 steps :
- Light your cigar the same way you would toast a marshmallow over a campfire—keep the cigar above and near the flame, but don’t allow them to touch. If you do unintentionally nick the cigar with the flame, don’t worry! You haven’t destroyed the cigar. Instead, calmly, but fast, move your smoke back out of the flame.
- Be patient and keep at it until there’s a glowing ring around the cigar’s tip and the edges are thinly blackened.
- Raise the unlit end of the cigar to your mouth and take the first puff. The ember should burn evenly while drawing; If it doesn’t, take the cigar out of your mouth and go ahead and touch up the end with the flame. You can also try to lightly blow on the embers to generate a smooth, completely rounded ash.
Remember, it’s better to avoid lighting a cigar with a flame from a source that will alter the essence of your cigar. Examples include a candle, Zippo and oil-fueled lighters, and standard sulfur matches. These lighting implements can add odd flavours to your smoke.
If you’re the only option is a Zippo or oil-based lighter, let the flame burn for a second before lighting your cigar.
The best way to get the ideal light is to use a lighter created specifically for cigars, with butane for fuel and a flame wide enough to simply light a cigar. There are a lot of different cigar lighters on the market, and which one is best for you is a matter of personal choice. The most important condition is performance-a lighter should fit comfortably in your hand, and work without fail every time.