The anatomy of a Cigar
Premium hand rolled cigars are all made essentially the same way. There is a Filler in the center, which is a mix of either bunched or rolled leaves of the Blender’s choice. These are wrapped in a Binder, a specific varietal chosen to hold the filler. And finally a wrapper – the most visually appealing of the available leaves to roll with, and chosen because much of the tasting notes comes from the wrapper.
Types of Cigars
There are many different types of cigars, and when you first walk into a Cigar shop, the names, words, sizes, blends can look like complete non-sensical jargon! Do not fear – we’ve all been there! Here are the major categories of cigars and what they mean:
· Long Filler – Cigars produced with the filler portion of the cigars made from full leaves (without the main vein) - bunched or rolled. Premium cigars are almost always Long Filler.
· Short Filler – Cigars produced with the filler portion made of partial leaves or leftover scraps of larger leaves – bunched.
· Mixed Filler – A combination of both short and long filler tobacco.
· Cuban/Habano/CC – Cuban Cigars are cigars produced on the island of Cuba for export. Often counterfeited and authentic Cuban cigars are sold/exported through the La Casa del Habanos official stores.
· Non-Cuban/NC – Any cigar produced outside of Cuba
· Flavored/Infused – Cigars whose tobacco leaves have been infused with flavor through various methods during the curing process including herbal/botanical infusion through air in curing dens, barrel-cured tobacco, and the spraying of pre-made syrups onto the binder. These cigars should not be stored with non-infused/flavored cigars as they will begin to infuse your other cigars.
· Machine Rolled – A Cigar which has not been produced by hand and was rolled by a machine. Typically not of high quality.
· Cigarillo – a smaller cigar with a significantly smaller ring gauge (thickness). Often machine made and can be found with flavored wrappers/tips. Typically not made from tobacco leaves but rather scraps and tobacco pulp pressed into rolling sheets (hence why you won’t see veins of the leaf.)
Not sure which is for you? Check out the beginner cigar buying guide!