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Handcrafting the Gallatin Cigar Experience

Smokers Abbey shares four cigar choices for aficionados and beginners alike to help identify the perfect enjoyment

Article by Scott Bell

Photography by Amber G Photography

Originally published in Gallatin Lifestyle

Walk into any humidor and you'll immediately be met by sweet aromas, rekindled nostalgia and a bit of enticement. However, if you're not sure how to select a great cigar or know what you're looking for, it may be a bit of an overwhelming moment, as well.  Smokers Abbey, Gallatin's full service cigar lounge, shares with us how to select the perfect smoke and gives four recommendations for the everyday cigar aficionado and novice alike.

“Look for proper humidification; cigars should be kept around 68-72% humidity. The cigar should not be too soft or squishy, not dry or brittle," says Josh Evans, General Manager of Smokers Abbey. "Darker cigars are typically more full bodied with a higher nicotine concentration, while cigars with a lighter wrapper are typically lighter in body with a lower nicotine concentration. Sweet cigars are also an option when choosing a cigar,” explains Josh.

Josh also points out that there are a few other factors to consider when selecting a cigar and the associated experience you’ll enjoy from it. Things like medium or full body, dark, light or sweet, shape, size and how much time you’d like to spend with that cigar all factor into the unique experience you will have from a specific cigar.

A few recommendations from Smokers Abbey:

  • Crowned Heads Court Serie E - full bodied Nicaraguan cigar with an Ecuadorian Habano-Oscuro wrapper with a dynamic blend of spice, pepper and earthy rich, sweet notes.

  • Roma Craft Aquitaine - medium bodied Nicaraguan cigar with an Ecuadorian wrapper, with natural tobacco tastes and notes of coffee and caramel, and a woody/cedar taste as the cigar progresses.

  • Aganorsa Leaf Connecticut - light-medium body Nicaraguan cigar with an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper. This is a creamy tasting cigar with some spice and pepper and notes of earthiness and chocolate.

  • Deadwood Leather Rose by Drew Estate - an infused cigar with a Maduro wrapper with a sugar cane cap, boasting flavors of vanilla, cream and chocolate syrup along with notes of cedar and sweetened black coffee.

Cigar selection is not without opinion or critique from others. Much like wine, bourbon and other fine spirit tasting, there is no right or wrong way to describe a like or dislike about a specific cigar. Multiple notes, flavors and tastes meld together to create an individualized experience. Even that experience may have different variations and changes throughout the entirety and enjoyment of a specific cigar. What matters is what you enjoy and your experience.

While identifying the type of cigar to enjoy is a matter of trial, error, identification and repetition, likewise so is identifying which settings and surroundings add to your enjoyment. For some, it may be a back porch, paired with your favorite Tennessee Whiskey. For others, it may be while watching a classic movie or new release. And, for others, it may be with  conversation and interacting with others in your local cigar lounge, like Smokers Abbey. Just like identifying the cigars you like, knowing how to enjoy it plays an important part. Find what (and where) works for you, try new settings, new pairings and continue to evolve your experiences. The right way to enjoy any cigar is to enjoy it in the way that you want.

Smokers Abbey is located at 240 W. Broadway in Gallatin and is in the original Sumner Bank and Trust building. The original bank vault now serves as Smokers Abbey's main humidor for their selection of premium cigars and is an attraction in its own right. Smokers Abbey also features multiple lounge/seating areas, a theater room, rotational selection of craft beers, a state of the art ventilation system and helpful, knowledgeable, local tobacconists on staff who will answer any questions you have to help find (and craft) your perfect cigar experience.

  • Crowned Heads Court Serie E
  • Roma Craft Aquitaine
  • Aganorsa Leaf Connecticut
  • Deadwood Leather Rose by Drew Estate
  • Josh Evans uses a cedar spill to light his cigar. Using a cedar spill adds a touch of cedar notes and eliminates contaminates from other methods
  • Smokers Abbey's humidor is housed in an original bank vault
  • Perfecting the cigar cut provides a way for the cigar to "breathe" and adds to enjoyment and experience
  • Smokers Abbey is Gallatin's full-service cigar lounge and is home to a number of unique pieces and experiences