Cigar Aging 101

How Cigars Age Over Time

Cigars change over time since they are made from plant material; however, not all changes improve the quality of the leaf. The majority of cigars are ready for consumption by the time they reach the retailers. Variants from countries like Honduras, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic typically reach stores in prime smoking condition. Top producers ferment, bale and age the leaves for a period ranging between two to three years. They are then rolled and placed in aging rooms for periods of up to three months before shipping. The cigars continue to morph and evolve gradually until they are smoked. The micro-fermentation that occurs during this period eliminates some by-products of the initial fermentation carried out at the factory. To age them further at home, it is necessary to keep the cigars in boxes.

Why Should I Store My Cigars In A Humidor?

Ammonia and other compounds have the capacity to make the flavor of tobacco unpleasant. The reduction of these chemicals through longer periods of aging ensures that they are mellow. As the cigars spend longer time in humidors, moisture and oleoresins is distributed more evenly across the leaves. The ‘marrying’ process allows the cigar to burn evenly and undergo subtle changes to the flavor. Mellowing and blending of flavor over very long periods tends to make it less distinct and harder to detect.

This makes the flavor smoother and eliminates the ‘off’ taste. The changes provide the essence of complexity to a product, which refers to the appearance of a blend of varied favors and layers. The Dutch Masters are arguably the slowest burning cigars on the market with a complex cigar production process. They come with a distinctive, mild aroma and smooth flavor. The products are machine-made and their leaves are imported from Puerto Rico. They are combined with Caribbean Basin Cuban seed. The slow burning Dutch Masters cigars are available in three variants, including palmas, coronas and cigarillos.

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