New to Cigars? Start Here!

Brandon:
So today I'd like to talk a little bit about first time cigar smokers or somebody that's a little bit new to the cigar smoking culture. One of the biggest misconceptions is that mild cigars are for new cigar smokers and strong cigars are for experienced cigar smokers. While there may be a little bit of truth to that, I think it's much more complicated than that. For example, I've been smoking cigars for many, many years and I've smoked several cigars a day. And I find myself really enjoying very flavorful, medium-strength cigars. I very rarely like a really strong cigar, and if I do smoke a mild cigar, it's typically in the morning and it's one that's got a lot of flavor to it. So I always recommend that somebody try a few different cigars, not necessarily in the same setting, but over the course of a few days and then bring that information back to me or any other good retailer, and they can really help direct you to what maybe would be a nice follow-up to your first selection.

Brandon:
Let me give you some recommendations that have served my customers very well. One is the Perdomo Champagne. This is a mild cigar. It's got a Connecticut wrapper on it. It's a Nicaraguan cigar, but it's got a lot of body to it. It's got a lot of flavor. And what I've found is people that like the flavor of it, they just don't want the strength, really enjoy this cigar. Some mild cigars, for somebody who eats rich foods, who has peaty Scotches, that likes spicy food, sometimes the really mild cigars that don't have a lot of flavors just get a little bit boring. So I'd like to give this to them to see if they like the flavor of this, or they like the strength of this. That kind of helps me take them to their next cigar.

Brandon:
Another one that I like to recommend is the Flor de las Antillas. This is a former Number One Cigar of The Year. It's a very approachable price point. Most sizes in the cigar under $10, but it is going to use a Habana wrapper Nicaraguan tobacco. And it's going to be more of a full flavor, medium strength cigar. And typically when somebody comes back to me and they say, "I really like the Flor de las Antillas," that allows me to open up the door to a lot of medium-strength cigars to them, medium flavored cigars, and really kind of helps me guide them to their next purchase.

Brandon:
And then I want to talk about my number one selling mild cigar, which is the Rocky Patel 1999. I sell these cigars by the box to people who have been smoking cigars for 20 years, 30 years. I sell them to new cigar smokers, but it's a great price point on a Honduran cigar by a great manufacturer. So a lot of times people will buy these to introduce new cigar smokers, because it's an easy cigar to find. Rocky Patel's a brand they've probably heard of. It's a brand that somebody buying it as a gift can trust. And I sell these cigars like crazy. The Rocky Patel 1999 is another good, mild cigar. Connecticut wrapper, going to be a little bit more on the creamy side, going to have a decent amount of flavor, a decent amount of body, but very low on the nicotine. So it's not going to bother a new cigar smoker.

Brandon:
I don't often recommend full-bodied cigars to new cigar smokers. Not because they won't enjoy it, but I just don't want to take a risk of it being too strong and kind of ruining their first-time experience. So I think that it's a complicated proposition to find the perfect cigar for a new cigar smoker, not knowing exactly what they like, what they like to eat, what they like to drink. But I think if we take two or three different cigars from different countries, different strengths, different kind of flavor intensities. Let them try all three of them, kind of rank those cigars, bring them back to us. Tell us what they liked and didn't like about each of the three. I think we can do a really good job on the second visit making the perfect cigar recommendation.






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