Come on, get your head out your ash! Speaking of our favorite pastime, does the size of a cigar even matter? Is there even a difference in a cigar’s performance with the various sizes and ring gauges that are out there? Veteran smokers SHOULD know but newbies can still be in the dark about this whole subject! Ranging from Petit Coronas to Toros to Gordos and Rothschilds, it is said that the same blend in different sizes can make for vastly different experiences. But is it true? Is picking the right size cigar mean more than just waving a flashy stick and smoking for a few minutes more?
The Science Behind it…
A cigar’s smoke delivery and flavor are thanks to the construction of the stick and the ratio of the tobacco blend to the wrapper as well as the binder. With every stick rolled, a balancing act is played and how well the juggler does determines the quality of the smoke. To clarify, the juggler is the master blender and the balancing act is the tremendous task of making sure the flavor of the wrapper and the blends don’t overpower each other. But the central divider between these two components is the wildcard of the whole process, the binder. And the ratios used for all 3 factors are based on… you guessed it! The size of the cigar.
To clarify, an easy way to understand this concept is with a great lean piece of steak! The bigger the piece of meat, the more salt you add! So with a cigar, you must add the right amount of the binder to accommodate the ratio of tobacco blend to wrapper. In doing so, the binder and the blend inside the cigar will flawlessly compliment the wrapper and thus, a remarkable smoke is born! A cigar’s size and shape will dictate the ratio used for the wrapper, blend, and binder in a perfect trifecta of tobacco bliss. Going beyond the usual cigar sizes, there is also the consideration of coned or pointed cigars such as Torpedos and Figarados. With these kinds of cigars, the same tobacco balancing act is in play however due to the more pointed end of the stick, the delivery of the smoke will change, becoming an almost pressurized streamline instead of wide gaping circle changing the experience of the tobacco’s flavor into a whole other show.
Wrapping it up! (no pun intended)
You can see now why there is such a thing as a “master blender”. Not just anybody can roll and perfectly balance the 3 factors to a cigar. Those who do it better than the others, brands like Rocky Patel, Padron, My Father, and Casa Magna just to name a few, tend to stick out ahead of the pack. Every single cigar is a balancing act but thankfully you don’t have to be a master blender to know a good cigar.