The Ultimate Guide to The Dominican Republic : Cigar News Articles
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The Cigar Times
Cigar News and Information From The Dominican Republic

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How to choose a fine cigar:
Information to help you select a cigar and find a brand or type that you like.
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In a world that is always in a hurry and full of mass produced goods, a cigar is truly something unique and individual.  Unlike many products we buy today, a fine cigar is hand made by someone with years of experience and training.  In addition, a fine cigar is something that can be enjoyed or savored.  With the prices of good cigars going through the roof, the difficulty of course is making a  good selection.
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Inside

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About Cigar Cutters
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Are all cigar cutters the  same ~ The great debate on which is best

About Humidors and Storing Your Cigars
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What is the best way to  keep cigars? A discussion about aging and storgage 
 
Turning The Corner
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A discussion about the
cigar industry in general and the Dominican Republic Problems with quality over the last few years 

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Take a Real Cigar Factory Tour Here

 

  
  
 
 
 
 
 
 

To be quite honest, there is no easy way to tell someone what to smoke.  What I mean is, selecting a fine cigar is like selecting a wine or anything else in life.  You are certainly going to try a few in order to find out what you like.  Certainly a magazine, such as Cigar Aficionado, can help  with some suggestions.  Ultimately though it is your money, your enjoyment and your time.  Smoke what you like.
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In order to help you find what you like, I am giving you some basic definitions so you can at least narrow down your choices and also be able to ask the right questions when speaking to your local cigar store.
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The Wrapper (nothing to do with music) - The wrapper is the outer binding that brings the whole cigar together.  The interesting thing about cigars is that a cigar can taste totally different just by changing the wrapper.  Remember that the wrapper is tobacco leaf, and along with the filler, gives each cigar its unique taste or appeal. There are a quite a few different types of wrappers.  Two of the more basic types are: 
  
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Connecticut Shade ~ This is a lighter leaf that has spent less time on the plant.  Normally this will offer a more mellow or blander taste to the palate. If you like a milder cigar, look for a wrapper that has the color of coffee with cream.
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Maduro - This is a leaf that has spent more time on the plant.  As a result, it has grown dark in color and has also retained more sugar due to the natural photosynthesis process.  A cigar with a maduro wrapper will tend to be sweeter on the palate.  Some people look at a dark wrapper and instantly think that they are looking at a “strong” cigar.  As they old cliche goes, do not judge a book by its cover.
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The darker maduro wrapper will often appeal to the smoker looking for a more flavorful, but sweeter cigar.
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The filler is the actual content of the cigar.  It is what makes up for the flavor and in part the strength.    There are two types of filler: long filler, which contains the whole leaf running from the head to the foot of the cigar, and short filler, comprised of scraps of tobacco.
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What determines the overall Cigar Experience and why do cigars taste differently?
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The cigar flavor is really determined from a combination of  wrapper, filler and binder.  Getting the propotions or combinations right is truly an art form.  Like the blending of whisky or other spirits, an experienced  master roller develops a sixth sense as to what proportions will work best or yield a desired result.  This is why, again as with an
an experienced whisky blender, a change in the master roller could mean a change in the taste or blend of a particular cigar line.
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Even with a particular cigar line, different sized cigars may have a different taste or blend.  Why is this so?  An experienced roller may use different proportions of the tobaccos in different sizes to allow for that size difference. In a smaller ring cigar, the binder and wrapper have a greater influence on the taste, for instance. The blender will allow for this difference by re-proportioning the filler blend.  So even with different cigar sizes of the same line
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