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Cigar 101

Infusing Cigars with Alcohol

Shane K. K's picture

Shane K.

Infused cigars have long stirred debate among purists. Although plenty of tried-and-true connoisseurs dismiss infused cigars, a number of newbies start off with a flavored blend before graduating to premium, non-infused smokes. We also know a lot of aficionados who like to dip the end of their cigar in a glass of bourbon or brandy before they fire up. We’re not here to pass judgment. Whether you simply enjoy a little extra taste on your lips from the tip of your cigar or you’re officially devoted to a flavored brand like Acid, CAO Flavours, Java, or Tatiana, we’re shedding some light on how to flavor your own cigars.

What You’ll Need:

  • Cigars
  • 2 oz. Shot Glass
  • Plastic Tupperware
  • Spirits (Cognac, Brandy, Rum, Whiskey, etc.) or Liqueur/Flavoring Extract of Choice (Vanilla, Chocolate, Hazelnut, Amaretto, etc.)

Choose Your Cigars

We recommend beginning with cheaper cigars. We’re not convinced you’re going to improve the taste of top-shelf smokes like a Padron 1926 Series or an Ashton VSG by flavoring them. Pick out one of our bestselling affordable bundles from Bella Cuba, Rocky Patel, Don Lino, Villiger, and more. Or, buy a premium box from our clearance section. Start with a cigar you’re familiar with or smoke one right out of the box before you’ve infused any of them, so you can taste the difference before and after the flavors take effect.

Cigars are like sponges. They absorb what is around them, especially in a closed-in environment like a humidor or Tupperware container. If your cigars come wrapped in cellophane, we recommend removing it. Your cigars will soak up the flavors you choose much more thoroughly during the infusion process.

Choose a Flavor

When it comes to deciding on a flavor, the sky’s the limit. You can infuse cigars with virtually any spirits. The most common options include whiskey, cognac, brandy, and rum. Liqueurs and cooking extracts are also very common like vanilla, chocolate, cinnamon, hazelnut, coconut, amaretto, anise, almond, Bailys Irish Cream, and more. Some even prefer fruity varietals like strawberry, orange, or cherry. Botanical oils and herbs have also been experimented with to infuse cigars. You can also use non-liquid sources like actual coffee beans or pipe tobacco. 

Seal Flavoring and Cigars in Tupperware

Fill a 2 oz. shot glass half to three-quarters of the way full with your spirit or extract. Place the shot glass inside a clean, unused Tupperware container with your cigars and seal them up. Make sure the seal is tight or your cigars can dry out. It’s best to start with a smaller quantity like 5 or 6 cigars. The more cigars you try to infuse at once, the longer the process will take. Also, it’s wise to taste the results before you infuse an entire box to ensure you enjoy your cigars after they’ve been infused.

The infusion process takes roughly 6 to 8 weeks. Store the Tupperware container at room temperature or 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, and not in direct sunlight. Feel free to sample one of your cigars after 3 or 4 weeks. If you’re satisfied with the flavor, then enough time has passed to adequately flavor them. For longer periods of time, you should include a humidification source inside the Tupperware with your cigars. A temporary humidity source such as a Boveda pouch is recommended, not something you will return to your primary humidor for use with your non-infused cigars.

As time passes, check the level of spirits or extract in your shot glass. The cigars will naturally absorb the liquor or extract. After a week or two goes by, you may need to refill the shot glass. For non-liquid flavoring sources like coffee beans, definitely include a humidification source

Can I Use a Humidor to Infuse Cigars?

In lieu of a Tupperware container, you can use a humidor to infuse your cigars. However, you will be sacrificing it, so we don’t recommend using your primary humidor, especially if you plan to continue storing non-infused cigars. Your humidor will itself absorb any flavoring or extract that you’re using to infuse your cigars.

Also, after you have infused a batch of cigars, do not store them in your main humidor – they will pass their flavors onto all the other non-infused cigars in your box as well as the box itself. Always keep flavored or infused cigars separate from any non-infused cigars in your collection.

After you’ve infused a handful of cigars, smoke them and pass them out to some buddies. See if they dig what you’ve done.

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