Alcohols

The tasting of a cigar is often compared to the tasting of a good wine, to appreciate it well, it is necessary to take its time, to choose the good moment and to select well the good alcohols which will accompany it.

Which alcohols to choose for your cigar?

Six types of alcohol

As far as alcoholic beverages are concerned, five types are most often enjoyed with a cigar.

Beer

A strong beer goes perfectly with a subtle cigar. However, a good cigar requires certain types of beer, although everyone has their own taste. Indeed, some types of beer (first choice) do not give the desired result when accompanied by a cigar. However, both beer and cigars are enjoyed in the same way; their taste, colour and strength vary according to their composition and fermentation time. This is why it is not uncommon to pair dark beers with cigars or even amber beers.

The wines

Sweet wines are also a good accompaniment to cigar smoking. Natural sweet wines contain a certain amount of sugar and alcohol, which softens the bitterness of some cigars. In this way we speak of a complementary agreement. For example, some 15 year old Maury cigars have aromas of toast, roast, roasted and sometimes musk which are a perfect match for the similar aromas found in some rich and powerful Cuban cigars.

In addition to the natural sweet wines we can also mention the Ports which perfectly complement the aromas and flavours present in the greatest cigars.

In 2013, Fabrice Sommier, the winner of the Habanos Sommelier competition, also presented a Château Yquem with a cigar (Château d’Yquem 1998 and a Cohiba Behike 56), arguing that the 1998 vintage was powerful enough and had enough freshness to go with the Cohiba Behike 56.

The Rum

There is nothing like a good rum (white, amber or brown) to accompany a cigar, especially old rums. Rums are especially sought after, as they often belong to the same terroir as the cigar. Their sweet, sometimes subtle, vanilla taste blends wonderfully with the aroma of the cigar. All cigar lovers who have been on a trip to Cuba and found themselves sipping a Mojito with their best cigar reproduce this harmony once back home in the monotony of everyday life in order to project themselves into the sweetness of their holiday memories!

Cognac and Armagnac

Old cognacs, armagnac and cigars also form a very good alliance, especially if these two drinks have woody flavours. These eaux-de-vie go perfectly with a cigar, offering a subtle and refined flavour.

Whisky

Whisky should be pure and unoaked to best accompany the cigar. Bourbons and Scotch Malts are best with a mild cigar in moderate dosage. There is a remarkable alliance between peated Islay whiskies and strong cigars to better reveal the aromas.

Please also remember that the cold is a cover-up. That is to say, if you wish to drink a whisky “on the rocks” with several ice cubes, the cold will “break” the aromas of the whisky and it will not be able to express all its complexity if it comes from noble soils.

Gin

Gin is not immediately associated with cigars, but the two go together perfectly for a unique taste experience. A good Gin Tonic refreshes the palate and does not overpower a Habano in terms of taste. It is worth noting that Habanos and gin go together very well from a taste point of view. The taste of a cigar like gin can be described as spicy, aromatic, natural or with a touch of lemon, etc.

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