One of the most crucial aspects of smoking a cigar and making it an enjoyable experience is lighting it. This includes both how you light it and what you light it with. A good light will allow the cigar to burn evenly and require fewer “touch ups “.
First lets tackle what you use the light your cigar. This matters because you want to use something that will not add any chemicals or additional taste to your cigar. Lighters like a Zippo that use lighter fluid can alter the flavor of your cigar from the burning of the lighter fluid.
Also matches from a match book that are constructed in a way that the match body contains chemicals and adhesives that affect the flavor of a cigar. The change in the flavor of the cigar will be most evident when the cigar is first lit, but will linger for the rest of the cigar. The two best options in my opinion are butane lighters and wooden (stick matches)
Butane Lighters Get the Job Done
My first choice to light a cigar is a butane lighter. Single, dual or triple flame doesn’t matter too much just as long as it is a butane fueled lighter. Butane lighters range from the simple single flame Ronson lighter that you can pick up for a couple of bucks to very elaborate triple and even quad flame lighters like this. They even make a butane flame insert for Zippos if you already have a Zippo that you like.
Matches are the Traditional Route
The Next best option is to use wooden matches. Nothing special here, just basic wooden stick matches. Before attempting to light your cigar with one though you need to let it burn for a second a lighting. This will allow the substances in the match head burn off so that don’t adversely affect the cigars flavor.
Some would claim the “best” way to light a cigar is with matches, but for me it is not always the most feasible. I tend to do the majority of my cigar smoking in the out of doors and matches are not always the affective when there is any sort of breeze.
If I happened to be smoking indoors and matches are available I will uses them. Most of the time though I just reach for my trusty single flame butane lighter I carry with me. It is simple, basic and just works… As long as I keep it filled with butane that is.
What is your preferred tool to light your cigars? Have you ever tried matches? Are you looking to upgrade your lighter?