Cigar Humidification Tip #1

March 30, 2011 · Posted in Cigar 101, Cigar Accessories, Humidors · 4 Comments 

The other night one of the gentlemen I was smoking cigars with asked me what he should do about this (Cuban) Cohiba he had. To my horror, the Cohiba has not been properly humidified in a couple of months. This, I told him, was a problem and it is a problem for many people who smoke cigars infrequently. Letting a cigar dry out leads to cracking of the leaves, the cigar smoking too quick, harsh flavors and an overall bad experience.

For his case, which is that he has this one cigar and it needs some TLC, I told him to:

  • Get a plastic sandwich bag (i.e. Ziploc)
  • Put the cigar in the bag
  • Put a Boveda Humidification pack with 69% relative humidity (RH) in bag with cigar because it is foolproof – it keeps the environment at that humidity level for as long as it still has juice left
  • Close bag and let rest for a month in a place that doesn’t have wild swings in temperature (like a desk drawer or in a closet – someplace safe) and it’s best to find a place that is around 70°F
  • Every few days check to see if the Boveda pack is completely spent (if you touch it and it’s hard then it’s no longer providing any humidity) and if it is spent put a fresh pack in the plastic bag
  • After a couple months of doing this the cigar should hopefully be ready to smoke again – feel the cigar to determine if it’s good to go; if it no longer feels dry to the touch and you cannot hear the tobacco leaves cracking when you roll the cigar with your fingers then it’s good to go

Is this the right advice? Should I have told him to start out with a Boveda pack that maintains a 65% humidity level and then go up to the one with the 69% humidity level as a way to ease the cigar back to health? Is there a better way to do this?

Obviously, my solution isn’t all that elegant but I think it should get the job done and the cigar will be saved.

My Humidor

March 25, 2010 · Posted in Featured, Humidors · 13 Comments 

Back during those halcyon days when I first took up cigar smoking as a serious endeavor I did not put too much energy into figuring out how I was going to store my extra stogies. And, in truth, there wasn’t much of a need for an elaborate humidor since I didn’t keep many cigars on hand.

Pompeii Humidor Pompeii Humidor Opened

Inevitably, my stock of cigars grew. A few years ago I purchased my first honest-to-goodness humidor. It was a cheap thing though, something that is really only good for protecting remote controls from the basic instincts of the adolescent Labrador. Fortunately that is the only function I can find for that humidor nowadays.

After a couple of months trying to regulate the humidity level in a substandard humidor I decided to bite the bullet and buy a cigar humidor; not a remote control humidor or an extraneous junk humidor, but a cigar humidor.

Setting out on the task of purchasing my first big guy humidor I had a couple of needs to fill.

  1. Storage Space: It had to be be big enough to hold about 100 cigars. This is enough to get me through a month with a couple of sticks to spare.
  2. Aesthetics: Pleasing to the eyes but not garish. Ideally, the humidor would have an elegantly simple design to it.
  3. Dividers: This could be in the form of a tray or one of those pressure fitting dividers or, ideally, both.
  4. Safety: Mainly to keep the prying hands of my young cousins out of my humidor.

I also thought it would be nice (and look good) if the lid was partially made out of glass. This way I could peek into my humidor without having to open it and disrupt the climate.

During my search I happened upon a number of stylish humidors but there was just something wrong with each of them. The color may have been a little light, no glass top, no shelf, or, what was really a sticking point for me, those humidors were just too expensive. Then I happened upon a great looking humidor with a fair price: the Pompeii Humidor at Famous Smoke, which you can see on the left side of this post.

As you can see it is a beautiful cigar humidor. It has a hygrometer installed in the front, a lock (with a tassel no less!), a tray and a divider. Plus it holds up to 100 cigars. Personally, I put my important (read: expensive) cigars on the tray so that whenever I peer through the glass I get excited about smoking another cigar.

I have had this cigar humidor for a while now and I have no complaints. It’s perfect for where I am at in my cigar smoking career and it is also a pretty good conversation piece. Even when the situation necessitates the purchase of another, much larger, humidor I will always have a place for this one.

Well, there you have it. You now know which humidor I use how about telling us which humidor you use.