Most people are familiar with cigars and where to find them. And when bought, most cigars come in a branded box. However, these are not where a cigar aficionado keeps them. The packaging is simply a carrying vehicle for purchased cigars until they are stored at home. As one will figure out very quickly, cigars are not smoked in multiple amounts. They are enjoyed in a singular fashion after a big meal, at the end of the day, on a relaxing afternoon, or while enjoying a trip where someone else is doing all the driving. Cigars are the epitome of the laid back enjoyer of the scenery taking place around him. As a result, anyone who has more than one cigar is going to need a proper place to store them at home. This is where the humidor comes into play.
A humidor is a specially designed container crafted with multiple purposes. The first and most obvious role is to provide a place to keep cigars so that they stay protected and won’t be accidentally crushed. The second function is to keep the cigars from losing too much moisture the surrounding air. If they dry out, the unique flavor of the tobacco is then lost, and the cigar will then burn through far too quickly, similar to a cigarette.
Quality cigars are not cheap. They cost a pretty penny and the best cost even more, being hand-rolled and prepared by practice and training going decades back. Why then would a person take such valuable consumables and stick them in an ordinary box? And yet that’s exactly what happens when a person doesn’t put his cigar stock in a proper humidor.
Keep in mind, most cigar tobacco is grown in regions that are humid, warm, and tropical. The average cigar-smoker typically lives in a non-tropical climate where the air is far drier and probably far colder or hotter, depending on the time of year and season. None of those factors bode well for the long-lasting life of a good cigar without protection. Ideally, a quality cigar should be kept at about 70 degrees with a 70 percent level of humidity. And they should be stored separate from different cigar types as well. Cigars are notorious for picking up the flavor and smells of things around them. So putting different cigars in the same box is likely to produce an odd-tasting cigar very quickly.
The best place to start when looking for a proper humidor is to go to a qualified cigar shop. They will stock all types of quality cigars, tools and, of course, quality humidors. They will also be quite willing to take on new customers and teach them how to care for, stock and prepare a cigar humidor so that the results are consistent with every use. It’s a valuable lesson in protecting cigar stock if one plans to have a varied supply on hand for a while.