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All About Cigar Ash

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Cigar ash and the correct techniques for ashing your cigar is a subject that isn’t really explored all that much. The following post will explore what the ash of your cigars means and the correct way to deal with it.

Ash Color

When it comes to cigar ash the desired or best color is considered white. Why? This reflects a large calcium content in the soil of where the tobacco was grown. It is generally associated with the soil from the Dominican. Some cigars will ash with light grey and white streaks – this is also optimal!

If the ash is black or really dark then the soil in which the tobacco was grown is lacking minerals. Your cigar will taste more acidic and almost burnt which no one really wants!

Ash Length

The ash from a cigar should extend roughly one inch from the burning cherry. If you think of this length of ash a a buffer around the end of the cigar which helps with airflow around the burning point. If you don’t have that one inch of ash then your cigar will burn too hot which is going to affect your smoking expereince negatively.

Cigar Ash and the Quality

When it comes to the cigar ash it is dependent on the type of tobacco used. The better wrapped and the filler the more consistent your smoke will be. The better rolled your cigar the better and more even burn and therefore ash. If you have low quality tobacco or rolling leaf you’ll end up with an uneven burn and your ash will be all over the place.

Correct Way to Ash you Cigar

There are a few misconceptions when it comes to ashing your cigar. Some think it should be tapped off regularly or burned until it falls off naturally but both of this are incorrect. By regularly tapping off the ash your cigar will burn far too hot and if you leave the ash to fall off on its own accord then it will burn too cool and potentially extinguish itself.

So what is the best way to ash a cigar? By gently rolling your cigar in a ashtray you can consistently maintain roughly one inch of ash in either a cone or a round shape. Don’t force a particular shape, let the cigar do the work and help it along into whatever shape forms naturally.

The key thing is to keep your cigar ash at the one inch length as accurately as possible. You will have a much more enjoyable smoking experience if you can do this!

Summary

Overall that’s basically the top things to think about with cigar ash. The color is a reflection of the soil the tobacco was grown in. White or grey with white streaks is a sign it was grown in Cuba or the Dominican Republic. Dark or black ash means the soil quality is poor and your cigar isn’t going to taste nor smell very good! The desired length of ash is one inch, any shorter and the cigar will burn too fast and any longer and the cigar will burn too cool and potentially extinguish itself. The correct way to ash your cigar is to control and taper the ash with an ashtray into either a cone or rounded shape but always roughly one inch more than the burning cherry. I hope this helps clear up your cigar ash thoughts and the proper way to address ashing your cigar!

 

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My Cigar Accessories

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Hey guys, Max here. Today I’m going to share with you my staple cigar accessories. I tend to change my accessories almost every 6months or so and have quite the collection at home. Although I have many cigar accessories there are a few key staples that I recommend every cigar enthusiast to have.

Cigar Lighter

Ok so first off your cigar lighter is one of the 3 crucial accessories you must have. Why so important? By using the incorrect lighter such as a bic lighter, a candle or god forbid a normal match you are going to taint the flavor and aroma of your cigar. The poor quality fuel, fumes from the candle or sulfur from the match transfers across to your cigar during the lighting process. I’m sure many naive cigar smokers have done this and noticed the awful taste while smoking. I couldn’t think of anything worse!

So what do I use? I always have a butane torch lighter. Always. It is the best and most efficient way to light cigars without compromising the quality, flavor and aroma. The article Best Cigar Lighter highlights key considerations for choosing your cigar lighter – it’s well worth the read. If I don’t have my butane lighter I won’t smoke a cigar. There are other methods such as cigar matches which are quite a traditional and stylish way to go but for me take too long. The most traditional way is through cedar spills. I’ve tried before but again it’s quite time consuming.

My staple butane torch cigar lighter? The XiKAR Allume Double Flame Cigar Lighter. Basically anything by Xikar. They are an incredibly reputable brand in the cigar accessory world and I have countless products by them. This lighter in particular looks good, feels good in my hand and lights my cigars with ease. The double flame and side trigger make it easy to use and of course like all Xikar products there is a lifetime warranty.

Cigar Cutter

Number two of the 3 most crucial items every cigar smoker needs. A cutter. There are basically two options when it comes to cigar cutters. A guillotine style cut or v cut. There are also punches and scissors but the most common are the first two. For a detailed explanation of the different cutters be sure to read up on the article Best Cigar Cutters. I have dabbled in all but my favourite method is with a guillotine cutter.

My favorite is yet another Xikar product – Xikar XI3 Titanium Black Cutter. Why do I prefer the guillotine style. Well everyone has different opinions and what works for them and the guillotine style has never let me down. A clean, precise cut every single time. The double blades are incredibly sharp and it fits well into my hand. I like it, it feels good, it looks good and it cuts like no other. 

Cigar Humidor

The final accessory that all cigar smokers must have. A place to store your cigars to preserve them and keep them fresh for as long as possible. There are many DIY options for storing cigars but if you are serious about it then investing in a humidor is key. From the Best Cigar Humidor article provided by Cigar Cigar Info, we know that the optimal conditions for storing cigars is as follows:

  • Humidity: 68-74%
  • Max Temperature: 73°F (23°C)
  • Ideal Conditions: 70°F  (21°C) and 70% humidity.

As the environment needs to be controlled so strictly, you’ll need to invest in a quality humidor that can monitor all this.

Which is my favorite humidor? I’m glad you asked. At the moment I’m enjoying my La Cubana Cherry Wooden Humidor. And the best part is it wasn’t overly expensive. It looks good and fits into my office well and most importantly functions well! With dried cedar wood on the inside it does nothing but enhance the flavor of my stogies.

I hope you enjoyed a very small insight to the accessory I use for my cigars. I am always trying new things, if you have a favorite or something to recommend drop me a comment below!