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Why are there tobacco leaf stems in my premium cigars?

Updated: Jun 26

A cross section of premium cigars.

Finding the stem of a tobacco leaf in your cigar is not a mistake but serves a valuable purpose. Some argue that cigars should not contain tobacco leaf stems as they indicate poor craftsmanship. However, after learning about cigar rolling, I understand that a stem does not adversely affect the cigar's quality. Conversely, I discovered that it can serve a valuable purpose.


There are good reasons why you might find stems in your cigar. They can play an essential role in the cigar’s construction and smoking experience:


Why is there a stem in my cigar?


● Stems are a natural component of the tobacco leaf.


● Premium, handcrafted cigars are crafted from whole tobacco leaves, which have a thick midrib or stem in the middle.


● While the stem is taken out from wrapper leaves, around 2/3rds of the stem is retained on filler leaves when rolled into a cigar.


● The thicker the tobacco leaf, the thicker the remaining stem portion in the filler.


How does it affect my smoking experience?


● Stems establish air passages within the filler for proper aeration and combustion, ensuring a uniform burn and draw.


● Stems can introduce distinctive flavors such as earthy, woody, or spicy notes, adding to the complexity of a cigar’s flavor profile.


● They impact the cigar’s strength and body, with a higher stem content leading to a more intense, full-bodied smoke.


● Stems help uphold the structural integrity of the cigar during rolling and aging.


In premium cigars, stems are like the quirky sidekicks that bring out the best in the main character - the cigar! They may look like tiny twigs, but these tobacco leaf stems are an essential ingredient that enhances a cigar's structure, burn, flavor, and strength.


So, if you ever come across a stem in your cigar, just remember - it's not a flaw, it's a feature! Keep those stems intact and let them work their magic because who knows, maybe that little stem is the real MVP of your next smoke!

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