Walking into a cigar shop without a personal guide can be a slightly overwhelming experience for some. While the cigar has a rich history that dates back to the days of Columbus and most guys have had their share of stogies, few of us claim to be aficionados.
To gain a little more knowledge in this area, we recently created a visual guide to better understand the names and categories of some of the main cigars, based on their size and shape (if you missed it, click here). To follow up on that designed graphic, we spoke with the experts at Neptune cigar shop in Miami for a more in-depth description of some common varieties and what makes each of them distinct.
Known for being the shortest of all cigar types, the Robusto measures about 5 inches long. Due to its size, it doesn’t take as much time to smoke through. On average you will get about 45 minutes of smoke from this type of cigar. It’s the ideal choice for the smoker who has only a little bit of time, but still wants a good smoke.
The Corona is a big seller due to the large amounts of flavors and aromas that are typically associated with the variety. The smoke from a Corona is also very light, making it a great choice for the novice cigar smoker. This type of cigar measures about five and a half inches with a 42-ring gauge (a ring gauge is the diameter of the cigar measured in 64ths of an inch).
The Belicoso is about five and a half inches and a 52-ring gauge. You’ll want to commit about an hour to smoking these bad boys. Be prepared though, the Belicoso will smoke fast and hard, so it’s not for the faint of heart. The head of these cigars is conical in design which gives them a nice aroma amplifier and really concentrates the flavors.
The Panatela variety is known for being one of the longer cigar varieties, which means you will usually have a much longer burn time than a cigar like the Robusto (about two and a half hours). Panatelas are also known for having a few different phases to the smoke, so be on the lookout for changes in texture and aroma.
If you are in the mood for a nice, subtle smoking experience, Neptune recommends the Lonsdale. These cigars are typically just a little over six inches and have a relatively low ring gauge (42). The Lonsdale will have a light smoke and will set you back about an hour, if you are looking to smoke it in one sitting.
The Churchill gets its name from none other than the famous Winston Churchill himself. Cigars that come with this label measure about seven inches long and have a ring gauge of 47. Churchills are usually a good bet for those who have had a little more cigar experience, as the smoke and texture are a little heavier.
Photo by ProtoplasmaKid