Cigar Cutter Advice

What is a Premium Cigar & Advice To Buy Well

What is a Premium Cigar & Three Key Elements
Premium Cigar Tobacco Filler & Finished Products

Three Key Parts of a Premium Cigar & What To Look For

In this post we look at what makes up a premium cigar; and the three key parts which explain how important the cigar’s structure is to our smoking pleasure. Lastly, we outline what to look for and ask when considering making a purchase.

Naturally, it is important that the quality of the cigar is carefully maintained by a reputable cigar shop or online cigar store you purchased it from. A cigar is typically made with a certain level of dedication and specialist care we expect for such a luxury product. The three parts which make up a cigar’s structure include:


The outer part of the cigar uses a large tobacco leaf to wrap around it, resulting in a finished product. This is the part we make contact with, as it serves to protect the premium inner ‘filler’ tobacco leaves. The ‘wrapper’ holds the inner leaves in place and uses the ‘binder’ to give the cigar its shape. The larger leaves used for the ‘wrapper’ are those normally found at the lower part of the tobacco plant. When picked, these outer leaves need to be without any significant blemishes or discolouration; no holes or signs of insects; and without mould or tears/cuts. The outer leaves should feel slightly spongy with a light squeeze and not hard or brittle.


These premium tobacco leaves are found inside the ‘wrapper’. The ‘filler’ leaves account for a significant part of the price we pay for a premium cigar. These high quality tobacco leaves are meticulously grown and selected to create the small bunches used to roll a cigar. The ‘filler’ leaves really are the secret source of a premium cigar. Their complex, profound aromas and in-depth flavours make a cigar aficionado relish their smoking experience. ‘Filler’ leaves inside a cigar which become dry and brittle due to poor storage conditions (cigar humidor is strongly advised), will ultimately result in a poor smoking experience.


Made from the same or very similar leaves as those used to make the cigar’s ‘wrapper’, but usually contain some imperfections such as naturally-occurring perforations (tiny holes) and/or discolouration. As the name implies, the ‘binder’ brings together and holds the premium ‘filler’ leaves in place, making it easier to apply by rolling the ‘wrapper’.

Best Cigar Advice Ever Received

When I first started out I had no idea about cigars…like most of us. I read about the best Dominican and Cuban cigars, sticking to cigar brands like Partagas, MonteCristo, Romeo y Julieta, Cohiba, Monterrey and so on. These were all recommended in cigar magazines and suggested by cigar-smoking friends. I joined cigar clubs and meetups to expand my knowledge. Recently, I’ve visited cigar lounges, which I really enjoy.

My advice is the same to you. Half the fun of purchasing and looking forward to that meditative experience of cigar smoking, are the discussions to be had with experienced cigar aficionados. You can even have great exchanges with cigar shops or online clubs/forums you become a member of. So why not share with them your level of smoking experience and/or what you enjoy or are looking for – you’ll find many suggestions forthcoming!

Another bit of good advice is to use a simple rating system from 1 to 5 (5 being the strongest), when explaining to cigar shops the intensity of the aroma and flavour of a cigar you are seeking.

Size of Premium Cigars Does Matter

If you are a beginner, you might prefer starting with a smaller cigar (look for the words ‘petit’ or ‘mini’ on the packaging). Not only is a smaller cigar easier to smoke and takes less time, but could be smoother. A flavour intensity rating of 3 or less, is a good start. When you’re ready and willing, you can work your way up to a Corona or Double Corona!

Nevertheless, if you do have a preference for a strong, full-bodied cigar from the get-go, then I’d recommend you start there.

Final Words Concerning Quality

Last but not least, regarding the freshness and quality of a cigar. When purchasing it is recommended that you try to view the product if possible – unless it is a sealed wrapper or cigar box of course (you can view the packing date on the underside). Pay particular attention to the quality finish of the wrapper and cap (closed end) of the cigar. The cigar should be well-made with a smooth finish, without any tears, pin holes, discolouration or other obvious/severe imperfections.

And always use the best cigar cutter available, to ensure a clean, precise cut of the cap end. This will avoid compacting or tearing the filler leaves, and unraveling the cigar. Enjoy!

Read more…

How to Cut a Cigar

Cigar Cutter vs Punch Hole

cigar cutter vs punch hole

The Cigar Cutter vs Punch Hole Cutter

Due to the difference in the structure of each cigar cutting device, this article examines and compares the cigar cutter vs punch hole cutter. We’re often asked by our community, ‘which is better, the cigar cutter or the punch hole cutter?’. After all, the punch cutter is still being made despite the fact the cigar cutter is generally accepted by cigar aficionados.

Our focus is on the technical differences between the two. As to which is better, is a matter of personal choice, because every cigar aficionado has a different character and taste when it comes to their cigar.

The Cigar Cutter

The most popular method of precisely cutting a cigar is using a cigar cutter. There are many kinds of cigar cutters and their function is to cleanly cut the end cap of a cigar, to allow air to pass through while smoking.

There are precautions that need to be taken in cutting a cigar. Care must be exercised when cutting the cap, as there is only a certain amount of space where the cap should be cut and each cigar type is different. This should be observed to avoid unraveling and ruining the structure of the cigar, which may lead to an unpleasant smoking experience. Thus, a cigar smoker is advised not to cut off too much of the cigar’s cap (a few millimetres will do the trick for a flat end cigar).

Cutting too much from the cigar will only lead to the frustration of loosely drawing air or too much air. When this happens, the quality of the cigar smoking experience will be dramatically affected, as the cigar will overheat and yield a bitter taste.

One of the advantages of a cigar cutter is its ability to cut the cigar neatly to avert loose tobacco leaf flakes from accumulating in the mouth of the smoker. Another is its versatility; it can be used on all kinds of cigars, including the figurado cigar. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why most cigar smokers prefer a cigar cutter over a punch cutter.

The Cigar Punch Hole Cutter

The cigar punch, on the other hand, is a tool used by many cigar smokers as it doesn’t cut the way a cigar cutter does; instead it cleanly punches out a circular hole in the cap of the cigar where the air will be drawn by the smoker.

Some cigar smokers comment that this kind of cut produces less smoke because it only makes a hole where the air will be drawn in, unlike the cigar cutter, which makes a full cut. As some smokers observe, because of the limitation of the hole, the cigar often goes out periodically and the smoker has to light the cigar again.The cigar punch is also not as versatile compared to the cigar cutter, as it cannot be used for non-torpedo or figurado-shaped cigars.

However, some cigar smokers see the use of the cigar punch in a positive light. The punch made on the cap of cigar greatly prevents unraveling during smoking, as it keeps the cap intact. Because the cap is left more intact, even fewer tobacco leaf flakes accumulate in the mouth of the smoker.

As to the question of insufficiency of drawn air, because only a hole is made by a cigar punch, some users put two holes on the cigar’s head. This strategy allows the smoker to sufficiently draw air while smoking. Cigar users also notice that cigar punch makes a cigar fuller-bodied. This wonderful effect is assumed by cigar aficionados to be caused by a higher build-up of tars in the cap of the cigar. The cigar punch may also be convenient to carry, if it is smaller in size compared to a cigar cutter; and they are often used as a key chain by some cigar smokers making them more accessible.

Conclusion: The Cigar Cutter vs Punch Hole Cutter

The difference between a cigar cutter and a cigar punch is clear. A cigar cutter is preferred by some cigar smokers because it can completely cut off the head cap and draw sufficient air during smoking, while a cigar punch is chosen by others because of its unique way of cutting a cigar, which has its own advantages like making the cigar fuller-bodied, and leading to less tobacco leaf flakes accumulating in the mouth.  Either way, these two cigar cutters reliably serve smokers, which is why they are favoured by so many.

How to Cut a Cigar

How to Cut a Cigar

How to cut a cigar correctly is a very popular question for good reason, as it is a must-know considering  every tobacco leaf is at a premium. Just imagine the process that a cigar goes through while being prepared for ardent smokers—the picking, fermenting, and rolling, just to make the perfect cigar. Incorrect cutting will ruin an otherwise excellent cigar, resulting in it unraveling, which will lead to an unpleasant smoking experience.

Cutting a cigar is basically creating an opening so that the smoke and air can pass through it. Hollywood has added to the image of cigar cutting: some actors in old movies portray the correct way of cutting the head of a cigar using a cigar cutter like the guillotine cutter. However, some actors, like those portraying rough characters, are seen just biting off the head off the cigar.

Cutting a cigar is a matter of personal choice, and eventually you will settle on your preferred method of cutting a cigar. For now, it is important to know the basic way of cutting a cigar.

Know the basic parts of the cigar

There are two ends to a cigar; one end is called the head, and can be easily determined because it is closer to the logo label that is wrapped around the cigar. In addition, the head can easily be seen because it has a cap covering it. The cap, which is made of tobacco, is to keep the wrapper of the cigar intact. The opposite end is called the foot.

Invest in the best cigar cutter as quality matters

It is customary that every cigar smoker should have a cigar cutter that they find comfortable to use when cutting a cigar’s cap. A quality cigar cutter makes a tidy cut; therefore it is very important to have a reliable cigar cutter to produce this effect. There are many kinds of cigar cutters that can produce a decent cut, such as the following:

Guillotine or Straight cutter

A single blade guillotine is basically a straight cutter. Many cigar aficionados love this cutter because of its ability to make a very clean cut. The double-blade type is most preferable among guillotine cutters – it makes the cleanest cut, as it cuts from both sides. A known advantage of the guillotine cutter is its precision cutting; it easily cuts the cigar without any chance of tearing the cigar wrapper.

Wedge cutter

A wedge cutter makes an entirely different cut from a straight cutter. Instead of cutting the cigar straight, it makes a notched hole resembling a V-cut. It slices from one side at the same depth. Its innovative design allows it to control the depth of its cut and creates a generous amount of surface area.

The Hole Punch cutter

Just like the wedge cutter, the hole punch cutter does not cut straight; instead it makes a hole through the cap by using a circular blade to make an opening. The smoker should, however, pay attention to the hole that will be made to the cigar, as it will determine the quality of draw and smoke.

Cigar scissors

This kind of cutter is different from regular scissors used at home, as they are specifically created for cutting a cigar. Special cigar scissors are made of stainless steel and are guaranteed to make clean cuts. It is important to buy high-quality cigar scissors to avoid any tearing or damage to the cigar’s wrap.

Making the correct cut

First find the cap and estimate a distance of 3-4mm from the tip, which will be the mark for the cut. Remember that the cap holds the cigar wrap, so it is sufficient to cut just enough to expose the filler.

Use any reliable cutter and cut the cigar in one strong and quick movement. For figurado cigars, cut so you can just see the filler. For a bullet punch cutter, insert the punch through the head of the cigar to create a preferred hole size. Unfortunately, bullet punch cutters cannot be used for figurado cigars.

Then simply light and draw on your cigar to create a nice burn and enjoy puffing.

Preparing to smoke a cigar is an exciting endeavor, which will provide a warm and relaxing experience. You will enjoy the pleasure of a wonderful cigar and think about the effort that went into making it. A cigar, unlike a cigarette, requires a ceremony that you will enjoy undertaking—cutting the cigar’s cap with style.