If you are not an experienced cigar smoker, you may be wondering why cigar aficionados use humidors. Humidors are used to store and protect cigars so that they are kept at their peak flavor. A humidor works by keeping a cigar at a constant temperature, somewhere between 68 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit, and about 70-72% humidity.
Many cigar aficionados claim that the ideal temperature for storing cigars is 70 degree F. Any lower will tend to age the cigar, rather than keep it at a constant level. Humidors are not meant to age, but rather to preserve the integrity, flavor, and color of the cigar.
A good humidor should close completely, with a tight fitting lid that will keep the cigars well kept from the elements, preventing any exchange of moisture. The seams should be smooth and well-fitted for cigars. Cedar, especially Spanish cedar is ideal for the interior of the humidor. Of course, make certain your brand of cigars fits well into any humidor you are considering to purchase.
Aging a cigar is a matter of personal taste. Some prefer fresh cigars, those rolled within the last six months – others will age their cigars a full five to six years before smoking them. Whatever you decide, be it 20 years or more, cigars should be kept in a controlled environment, between 70 to 72 degrees with 70 percent humidity.
If different types of cigars are stored together in the same humidor, they may take on each others’ flavors. It can get expensive to purchase humidors for each of your favorite brands/types, so make sure your humidor has dividers.
If you find that you’ve purchased more cigars than your humidor can handle, store them in your freezer in a plastic bag or container with a lid. Two to three days before the planned smoke move them to your refrigerator’s crisper bin. An additional day in a humidor will be best.
A dry cigar will burn too hot and ruin its flavor. To re-moisturize, place your cigars in a humidor that hasn’t been charged in the last week for two or three days. Fill the humidification system half way and let them lay for a week before fully charging the humidity regulator; this will prevent them from getting too moist too quickly.