Congratulations! You’re engaged and now you’ve begun planning what will hopefully be the best day of your lives! We’re sure you’ve been to a few weddings, or, at the very least, have been doing massive research to make sure your day is not only the best day for you, but the best day for your guests as well. Every newlywed wants their wedding and wedding reception to be special, unique, and unforgettable; however, it’s getting harder and harder to reach that goal. Nowadays you can’t get away with just only having a DJ, amazing food, and an open bar; you have to give your guests an interesting, interactive, and memorable experience that will make them say, “Nicole and Anthony’s wedding was probably the best I’ve ever been to,” and what better way to guarantee that, than with a cigar station. A cigar station at your wedding reception shows your guests that you are creative, strong, and, above all, unique. We’ve compiled a basic and thorough guide on how to make sure that when you do decide to implement a cigar station at your wedding reception, it is the easiest, most personalized, and affordable process you will have throughout your wedding planning.
You’ll want to start first with designing the band that goes around your cigar– this then allows your cigar station to fall in to the form of party favor! Designing the band allows you to tie in themes and colors of your wedding in a unique way that will allow your guests to remember the incredible time that was your wedding and wedding reception. To start, you will need to have a design in mind for the band; something that matches your overall wedding aesthetic – classic, unique, romantic, etc. Some websites (our favorite is www.customtobacco.com) will have bands that you can choose from to start your design process. The text we would suggest on the band would obviously be something along the lines of “Smith Wedding” and then the date. To add a more fun, personalized touch to your cigars we also suggest adding a quote. Something intimate and close to you and your partner like song lyrics, a bible verse, a clever hashtag, or a poem or small block of prose you both feel resonate the love and passion you share for one another would work best.
Now is the time to start building the actual cigar. First, you need to decide what type of blend and wrapper you would prefer. The blend refers to the type of flavor you would like your cigar to have. Again, we would suggest something you and your partner prefer that represents the overall theme and aesthetic of your wedding and wedding reception. We suggest one of these two flavors that are available on customtobacco.com:
1. Briarmont Classic: This is a very hot seller because it is a very smooth, very light tasting cigar. The Briarmont Classic contains Dominican tobacco, and should be wrapped in a premium Connecticut wrapper to give it a very smooth and non-spicy taste; it has all the flavor complexity mixed with a creamy taste without it being too overpowering for the smoker. The main reason we suggest this blend for your cigar station, is because this type of blend is perfect for first-time or beginner cigar smokers, and it is an excellent choice for both cocktail hour and after dinner.
2. Briarmont Reserve: We like the Briarmont Reserve the most out of all the options available; however, we do suggest this cigar for those that find themselves smoking cigars quite often – a connoisseur, if you will. It has the taste, feel, and texture of a Cuban cigar without it being a Cuban cigar. We suggest wrapping it in the Habano as it accentuates that Cuban taste and flavor complexity. As we stated, this is not the best cigar for those that have never smoked cigars before; the Reserve has a very, very strong flavor that is a mixture of chocolate and spicy.
3. The Variety Pack: This is our top suggestion for making your cigar station the absolute best it can be. By choosing the Variety Pack, you allow an expert to choose the best, premium cigars for your wedding reception and give your guests the ability to choose which type of cigar they would most enjoy. This then also allows your non-smoking and regular smoking guests the option to smoke something that would suit their smoking personality the best. customtobacco.com has a unique variety pack that ranges in several different types of cigars that range in flavor profiles and wrappers.
Your next step in your custom cigar planning process should be the length of the cigars you wish to have available for your wedding reception. The length of the cigar is important because it not only defines the duration your guests will be smoking their cigar, but it also contributes into the flavor profiling of your custom cigars. Listed below are the options that we find the most complementary to your cigar of choice:
– If you choose the Briarmont Classic: Even though the Churchill length is a best seller, we suggest going with the Robusto length. The Robusto length is shorter in length, but thicker in size which allows the flavors to really accentuate while the cigar is being smoked. Since you have chosen a blend that is for, essentially, beginning cigar smokers, this allows the cigar smoker to really get a feel for what it is like to smoke a cigar. The Robusto allows the cigar to smoke stronger, and since you have chosen a blend that isn’t as overpowering as other blends, this really lets the beginning cigar smoker a chance to savor the cigar in general, and the complexity of flavors your particular blend contains.
– If you choose the Briarmont Reserve: You have chosen a cigar for the cigar connoisseur, we highly, highly recommend going with the Churchill size. The Briarmont Reserve has an extremely high flavor profile that begs to be appreciated and relished which the Churchill easily allows smokers to do. The Churchill is both long, and thick, and needs the smoker to be patient as it takes quite a while to smoke an entire Churchill cigar. Since your guests are aware of the quality of your cigars, being connoisseurs, they would be able to acknowledge the character of your custom cigar and be willing to enjoy a taste of it at your wedding reception, and then be able to save the rest for a later date which will remind them of your wedding.
-If you choose the Variety Pack: it is most common for the pack to come with, obviously, a variety of different lengths for your wedding guests.
-There is one more option in length that we do recommend should our recommendations not suit your guests to your specific needs; the Torpedo: The torpedo is, literally, shaped like a torpedo; it has a thicker end, and the mouth piece is thinner. The Torpedo length isn’t a bad choice for your custom cigars, it actually serves as a perfect medium between Churchill and Robusto. We would still suggest this length for someone who is well versed in cigar smoking; however it would still suffice for a new cigar smoker as well.
You’ve now finished designing your cigar! The final step in the cigar process is optional; however we highly recommend this as a signature final touch. This finishing touch on your custom cigars truly takes this and makes it more than a party favor; it makes it a gift that your guests will appreciate and treasure well after they have left your wedding. While many options are available for your custom cigars, our favorites are listed below.
1. Foot Ribbon: Adding a foot ribbon to your custom cigars really adds a festive and celebratory touch. Choose a color that best ties together with your cigar banding, or a color that adds more aesthetic that matches your wedding style. There’s nothing special about the ribbon itself that adds to the overall taste, texture, or experience of smoking the cigar, however it does add a sophistication that will aid in the enjoyment of your wedding reception and also helps to make the cigar feel appropriate at a function such as a wedding reception.
2. Cedar Wrap: This is a really cool feature you can add to your custom cigars that actually does in fact enhance the flavor profile of your cigars. The cedar wrap adds a little extra spice to your cigars, so we would highly suggest it for your guests if you pick the Briarmont Classic or the Variety Pack. It allows then for your beginning cigar smokers to have a little extra kick in spice to get the full high quality experience of what it is like to smoke one of these premium cigars.
Now that you’ve completed the process in creating your custom cigar, it’s time for the fifth and final step of your perfect cigar station.
You can’t have a high quality cigar without some high quality alcohol to pair with it. Pairing your premium custom cigar with the perfect alcohol will enhance the flavor of the cigar, and enhance the enjoyment of your wedding reception. There are lots of different options to choose from for alcohol, obviously, however, we have developed an array of options based on the blends listed above:
1. Briarmont Classic: The Briarmont Classic blend has a creamy flavor, it’s not an overpowering taste, and it’s a very smooth smoking experience. Therefore, you’ll want to pair your cigar with an alcohol that will enhance and bring out the flavor a little more, something with earthy and fruity tones. With that being known, the best types of alcohol to pair with this would be a red wine or a craft beer.
-Red Wine: A red wine would complement the smooth, and non-overpowering taste of the Briarmont Classic. Since it isn’t as overpowering and has more of a creamy taste, you’ll want a wine that helps to bring out and enhance those flavors a bit more. Something like the 2007 Grenache-Syrah from Montage Vineyards would be a perfect choice for this cigar. The Grenache-Syrah is a full bodied wine that has the aroma of black cherry jam, mocha, and earthy floral undertones and gives off the taste of dark fruits, red raspberry, and just a little hint of vanilla. With these aromas and flavors of the wine coupling with the Briarmont Classic, your guests are sure to fully taste and enjoy the flavors of both the cigar and wine.
-Craft Beer: Now, when we say beer as a pairing for your cigar, we do not mean Budweiser or Heineken; you want something more premium, something that has a fruity and earthy taste like the wine listed above, something like the American IPA. This craft beer has a gold color, and is complemented with citrus and pine flavors to help with the bitterness of the hop. Just like above with the red wine, the bitterness of this craft beer mixed with the fruity undertones will also bring out and highlight the flavors of the cigar helping your beginner smokers to fully enjoy their smoking experience.
2. Briarmont Reserve: Since this is more of a full bodied cigar with a very high and complex flavor profile, you’re going to want to pair it with an alcohol that is also of a very high and complex flavor profile. We suggest a great scotch or rum to go with the Briarmont Reserve so that your guests will revel in the chocolate and spicy flavors of your cigar choice.
-Scotch: There are many scotches available for you to pair with your cigars, however you want a scotch that is going to balance and reciprocate the flavors of your premium cigar. Since the Briarmont Reserve has a complex chocolate and spicy flavor, we suggest the Springbank 18 year old scotch. This scotch envelops all the experience of smoking a cigar starting with the smell of the scotch; the Springbank begins by releasing sweet flavors of marzipan, almonds, vanilla, and ripe fruits. The scotch then moves on to pair beautifully with the taste on your guest’s tongues by having a fruity and mellow taste with a hint of licorice, with the aftertaste of the scotch transforming to chocolate with a little hint of coconut which meshes beautifully with the spicy chocolate taste of the Briarmont Reserve.
-Rum: Since the Briarmont Reserve has all the essence of a Cuban cigar without it actually being a Cuban cigar, there’s no better rum to pair it with than with a Cuban Rum. Our number one choice would be the Havana Anejo Especial. What makes this rum so special is the aging process — they let the rum age to perfection in white oak barrels to make sure the earthy, wooden smell can easily come through. Along with the woody smell, the Anejo Especial has floral and orange tastes with notes of caramel, vanilla, tobacco, and cinnamon; all of the perfect pairings for a chocolate and spicy tasting cigar. This rum will perfectly highlight and accentuate the complex flavors of the Briarmont Reserve.
3. Should you choose to go the Variety Pack route, any one of these alcohols is going to also pair perfectly with the mixture of premium cigars you are going to have offered. We would suggest offering a red wine, a craft beer, and either a rum or a scotch that we have suggested, or something similar, for your guests to pair with their choice of cigar. Not only do all of these alcohols pair perfectly with your cigars, but they are great to drink by themselves for your non-cigar smoking guests as well.
Once you have completed all five of these steps, your perfect cigar station will finally be complete and your wedding reception will be the talk and highlight of the party. We wish you every happiness in your marriage, and hope that the rest of your wedding planning process goes as smooth and easy as it will be to create your perfect cigar station!
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