Summer smoking: How to get the best of our cigar?

June 25, 2014
Summer is the season when we can enjoy our cigars, without having to worry about whether we are bothering the person sitting next to us, and this makes it even more delightful.

In any case, that`s my personal take.  To be sure, there are also theories according to which open-air smoking is problematic due to the wind, and life-style colleagues have even issued directives condemning cigar smoking in areas such as beaches.  However, I shall insist, summer is the best time to enjoy a cigar. 

Of course, I wouldn`t go so far as to claim that on the beach with 30-40 knot winds and sand whipping your face you should go ahead and light a Double Corona, but just consider this: in cigar-producing countries it`s almost always summer and people smoke them predominantly outside. Never mind that with the ever increasing prohibitions here in Greece, the time is nearing when we will have very limited options, at least for indoor smoking. 

On the other hand, the Greek summer, with its hot and dry atmosphere, is a difficult season and cigars are easily worn down and you must take special care because just a few hours out of the humidor will suffice to completely dry your favourite Habano out.  Moreover, you need to look into lighters as well.  Even with the slightest wind, it is practically impossible to light a cigar.  As the flame trickles, the cigar will not light properly, if at all, and it will not burn smoothly. So invest in a torch-type lighter that keeps a steady flame.  Nevertheless, if the conditions are right, you can smoke whatever your heart desires out in the open. 

There are, of course, certain choices that traditionally fit the occasion better.  For example, cigars that are sold packed in an aluminium tube maintaining them in good shape, even if they stay outside the humidor for a few days.   But large cigars are also suitable for a summer`s evening.  If it`s not windy, that Double Corona that, as we said, you wouldn`t easily light in an indoor restaurant, is not going to bother too many people outside. The third category of choice are light cigars that go well with the cool summer drinks.  Try a Montecristo Open with a well-prepared Dry Martini Cocktail and you`ll see what I mean.

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