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Video:How to Smoke a Cigar

with Jon Stewart

Want to learn how to properly smoke a cigar? Here, see tips for looking like a pro when smoking a cigar.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Smoke a Cigar

Ever pass by one of those cigar shops with the circle of folks hunkered down in those big overstuffed leather chairs, puffing away? You wanted to go in but you were kind of scared that they would laugh at the newbie cigar smoker? Well, if you're new to cigar smoking and want to join the gang over a Monte Cristo, it's helpful to know things like which end to light and which end to smoke.

Information About Smoking a Cigar

Christopher Columbus is not only credited with discovering America; he was also that cool guy who introduced us to the cigar. And the rest is history. Here's how to get your puff on like an experienced aficionado and start savoring those aromas, instead of choking on them.

Tips for Smoking a Cigar

The first thing you need to do is cut the closed end of the cigar. This will be the end you smoke. Cut about 1/16 to 1/8 of an inch off the tip. Guillotine cutters are generally the best tool for the job. Be sure not to cut into the body of your cigar unless you want the wrapper to unravel or you want to dissect it for a school science project.

If you don't have the means to cut your cigar, you can use your teeth to bite off the tip. However, this should only be done as a last resort. Whatever you do, don't try this with a premium cigar. It's likely to just fall apart, and that sizable chunk of change you plunked down will "not" be going up in a puff of smoke. Hold the cigar in one hand and your lighter in the other. With the cigar in your mouth, roll the end around above the flame. Be careful not to actually touch the end of the cigar directly to the fire. Continue to puff on the cigar while rolling it over the flame until you get an even burn and a good draw.

Always use a butane lighter or a wooden match rather than gas. The gas adversely affects the taste of the cigar - that is, unless you like the taste of petroleum. If you're feeling especially snooty, use a long, thin strip of Spanish cedar called a cedar spill to light your cigar. If you do, just be sure to get out your smoking jacket and slippers.The only hard and fast rule of cigar smoking is to do like Bill Clinton, and do not inhale. Simply draw the smoke into your mouth and enjoy the flavor. Allow plenty of time to smoke your cigar, taking a puff about every minute or so. Any faster and you'll risk ruining its flavor. Give yourself at least half an hour to an hour in which to finish your cigar.Just remember, cigar smoking is meant to be a languid, sensual experience. Slow down and enjoy with a glass of your favorite port, whiskey or brandy with the guys and gals at the cigar shop.

I'm Jonathon Stewart with About.com.
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