The key to proper cigar storage is using a method to maintain optimal flavor, while controlling moisture content. Storage is important, to prevent a range of problems, like uneven burn, torn wrappers, bitter taste, mold, and worst of all, tobacco beetle. You will know you have tobacco beetle by the small pinholes all over the outer leaf wrapper.
To star, you need to find a dry, dark place to keep the humidor. This can be a drawer, closet, enclosed book shelf, or any other place relatively safe from reach of children. The area should have a temperature maintained at around 70 degrees F, at 70-75% humidity In many instances, a humidor can help by adding necessary moisture.
Avoid storing cigars in places that get very hot from the sun, as this can lead to higher humidity, fungus, and possibly the development of tiny worms that turn into tiny beetles. The refrigerator or freezer is not a good place to store cigars, as the air becomes very dry.
The only time freezing is recommended, is if small holes in wrappers have been discovered and beetles or worms are suspected. Any cigars showing outward signs of these tiny pests should be discarded, before putting the unharmed ones in the freezer.
Most cigar enthusiasts use a humidor for storage. A humidor allows for greater moisture control and helps keep unwanted pests out. It can also be a source of pride, if the wooden box has ornate carving or is highly decorated in some other fashion.
The humidor is usually lined with cedar, which helps maintain proper moisture. Humidors come in all sizes. So, it’s best to find one that will hold all cigars, with plenty of extra space for additional gift cigars or those given on special occasions.
Humidors come in a variety of styles, to accommodate all kinds of cigar enthusiasts. While the basic humidor is nothing more than a climate-controlled, tightly sealed wooden box, there are more extravagant models. Some versions come with glass lids, to view the contents. Travel versions look like small, plastic lock boxes and hold no more than 15 cigars.
To store cigars in a humidor properly, the humidor must first be seasoned. This involves getting the inside to the right humidity. First, fill a small plastic cup or dish with water, then place it on the bottom of the empty humidor. Let the water set for a day, then check the humidity with a hygrometer.
The humidity should reach between 65 and 70%, but it can take up to 2 weeks. If the humidor comes with a humidifier, it should be removed from its slot on the lid and activated with the solution supplied. The cigar humidifier should then be placed on a towel, to let any excess solution drip out.
When the humidity reaches the proper level, cigars can be placed inside. Take care to avoid stacking cigars in such a manner to block the humidifier, if one is in place. Check the hygrometer periodically, to make sure the humidity stays in the correct range. Always make sure the humidor closes and seals properly.
If no humidor is available, a food storage bag can be used Place no more than twenty five cigars in one bag, adding a damp sponge or paper towel to each bag bags of cigars should then be placed in a dry area, such as a cabinet or enclosed shelf.
Keeping and enjoying your favorite cigars is easy, with a bit of advanced planning, proper care, and maintaining proper moisture. Keep in mind that storing at high temperatures increases the risk of mold and tobacco beetles Storing at colder temperatures requires additional moisture.