How to Tell if a Cigar is Fresh or Not

The pinch test is one of the most reliable ways to determine if a cigar is fresh or not. To do this, simply hold the cigar between your thumb and forefinger and squeeze it slightly. If it's firm but pliable, then it's likely fresh. On the other hand, if it feels stiff, dry and has little or no give, then it's not fresh.

You can also look at the cigar and identify any discoloration, stains, or spots. If you see any of these signs, avoid that cigar. Additionally, you can pick up the cigar and twist it around your fingers, but only if it is still in its cellophane wrapper. Doing this with a cigar taken out of the cellophane can damage the wrapper. If you smoke a stale cigar, you will likely taste a rancid flavor.

Other times, cigars can also have an aftertaste similar to that of earth or soil. If this is the case, then your cigar has definitely gone bad. The reason cigars go rancid is improper storage. Inadequate storage of cigars causes them to dry out and therefore lose their flavor and nicotine content. To avoid a situation where cigars will go rancid due to improper storage, always make sure to store them in a humidifier. If you find that your cigars have soft spots when turning them gently with your fingers, this is another sign that they are not fresh.

Cigars should always feel good in the mouth. If you notice fruity or floral notes when smoking a cigar, this is usually a good sign that it is fresh. However, if the cigar tastes sour or simply tastes bad to you, it's probably spoiled. To prevent cigars from being damaged due to excessive dryness, always make sure to store them at the right humidity. If the hygrometer shows a relative humidity of 70%, but you have a handful of cigars that can't pass the pinch test, you may need to recalibrate the hygrometer. With others, you can simply place a hygrometer inside with your cigarettes to get an accurate measurement every time you open it. As with the previous odor test to determine if the cigarette has been damaged, this test will do the opposite. If a cigar isn't full enough, it will also contract like a sponge, but it may not fully recover its original shape when you pinch it.

If the cigarette wrapper is simply broken in one place or seems to be falling apart in one even piece, there's a good chance you can fix it. In conclusion, some of the best ways to tell if a cigar has gone bad are associated with testing its dryness and inspecting its flavor and aroma.

Ernie Leduke
Ernie Leduke

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