After the selection of the cigar itself, one of the next most important choices is how you cut, or open up the end cap to smoke it. While the choice of cutting device is mostly personal preference, there are some pros and cons to be considered in order to have the best cigar experience.
Cigar cutting devices are divided into three main categories: guillotine cutters, wedge cutters, and punches.
Guillotine cutters use a sharp straight blade (or multiple blades) to cut the thin cap off of the cigar. It is generally the most preferred as its sharp, straight blade removes just the right amount of the cap when used properly. The scissor cutter (also very popular) is considered to be a member of this category.
Wedge cutters, by contrast, have a small V-shaped blade that makes a deep cut into the end cap. For many people, this type of cut removes far too much of the end and can make too large a hole. Also, if an inexpensive, low quality wedge, or V cutter is used it can damage the cigar.
Punches have a small, circular metal blade that makes a round hole in the end of the cigar. These are convenient to carry as some come ready to hang on a keychain, but too small a hole can make for a difficult draw, too large a hole can cause the cigar to unwrap, and too deep a hole can create a hotter draw.
Oh, and contrary to old movies, biting the end off of a cigar is never acceptable in polite company.
With skill, practice, and quality equipment, all of these types can be used successfully. Which one do you prefer?
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