A Cut Above

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s the strange and overused saying goes: “There’s more than one way to skin a cat.”  I don’t care to know the origin, but it no doubt applies to cigars.  Before lighting, a large majority of cigars need to first be cut.  Or punched.  Or poked, lanced, bitten, peeled… the list goes on.  And though some some cigar shapes and sizes work better with certain cutting tools, the choice is usually determined by personal preference.

The most common approach is the Guillotine.  Available in single blade for value and convenience, and double blade for style and durability, guillotine cutters ensure a clean cut a good draw.  They’re good on the go and are generally easy to sharpen when the blades start to dull.  But be careful: if you take too much off the top, the leaf can begin to unravel, resulting in the potential loss a fine smoke.

Fortunately, there are options that help avoid ruining the wrapper.  One tool favored by many is the Punch.  The tool does exactly what it sounds like.  A sharp, round blade punches a circle in the cap on the head of the cigar.  Prized for it’s fool-proof ease of use, this method can sometimes result in smoke that is too hot and flavors that are too intense.  My personal preference for most smokes is the V-Cut.  It has the same convenience as a guillotine, except the single blade is shaped like a V, resulting in a perfect notch that both draws well and distributes smoke.

Spears are a more modern device that are growing in popularity.  Usually about half the size of a pen, its sharp point pierces multiple tiny holes in the cap.  It takes a little more time and care than the other methods, but the result is a great draw with cool smoke, and zero chance of the cigar falling apart.

All of these cutters, spears, and punches are available upstairs at 2 Union.  Come find your favorite!

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