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Cigar 101

How to Ash a Cigar

Shane K. K's picture

Shane K.

Premium, handmade cigars are made of long-filler, or whole leaf tobacco, that runs the length of the cigar. As your cigar burns, its ash is much firmer than the flaky papery ash of a cigarette. There’s no need to constantly flick and fidget with your cigar to jar the ashes loose. You will only disturb the integrity of your cigar’s construction by playing around with it too much or even risk cracking the wrapper leaf.

Generally, wait for about an inch of ash to develop, set your cigar in the ashtray, and gently tap it. Or, you can gently roll the end of the ash off into the ash dish. Don’t bang your cigar against the side of the ashtray either. Being too aggressive when you’re ashing can cause the wrapper leaf to start unravelling.

Don’t ash too often either. When the ash is not given any time to develop, your cigar will burn too hot and too fast. The reverse is true if you leave the ash on for too long – your cigar will burn too cool and it can go out. You will also run the risk of dropping a huge pile of ashes all over your shirt or into your lap or on your buddy’s sofa. With roughly an inch or two of ash on the end of your cigar, the cherry is insulated just enough to maintain a consistent, even burn. Employ a bit of finesse when tapping the ash off your cigar.

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