Whether you are new to cigar smoking or have a ten thousand dollar collection of Habanos (especially if you have a $10k collection of Habanos), you should be cigar journaling. Yes, you. You should have a cigar journal, and I will tell you why.
What is a cigar journal anyways? I hear ya. A cigar journal is a hallowed place where you detail your most intimate experiences…with cigars. You track when and whereyou bought each cigar(so you can track its age), how much it cost, when and where you smoked it, and it’s where you keep all your cigar bands.
But perhaps most importantly, your cigar journal has detailed notes on each and every cigar you’ve smoked (within reason, of course, you don’t want to whip it out on the golf course or at a wedding for chrissake!).
Think about it – after spending ten, twenty, fifty or a hundred bucks on a stick you just burned away, ideally with a full measure of relaxation and enjoyment (and perhaps good company), all you are left with is a band and a fleeting memory.
Think of cigar journaling as due diligence. If you appreciate (like we do) that cigar smoking is more than just a hobby and that each cigar is a piece of delicious, burnable art (crafted by experts akin to master chefs and artisans) then you owe it to the cigar gods to celebrate that experience and, most importantly, to remember it.
And the only way to remember bucketloads of cigars, as I’m sure you’ll accumulate many exquisite experiences over the years, is to document them. A cigar journal is a private place where you can re-live past flings with Fuente, Padron, Partagas, and Davidoff. Also, if you bought a box or a bundle then you can keep track of how your sticks have changed over time (as all cigars age differently, some better than others).
The process of cigar journaling will also help you grow in your knowledge, understanding and appreciation of cigars. It will enliven you to focus your senses throughout the session on the diversity of flavors, textures, and aromas as they change and play off each other in different ways. This is one of the reasons why our cigar reviews include detailed session notes and emphasize our experience with the cigar.
Anyhow, that’s probably enough rambling about that! If you are sold on this and are new to cigar journaling, then this cheat sheet will help you out immensely. You can measure the vitola (the pair of length and ring gauge measurements of the cigar), and identify the color category of the wrapper.
The cheat sheet also has a list of flavors and aromas most commonly associated with different types of premium cigars. If you are having trouble figuring out the complex set of flavors your stick is putting out during a session, this list should help you narrow down to a range of possible choices for journaling.
Just print this thing out and you’re good to go start journaling! If you find this cheat sheet helpful, be a good friend and share it with your cigar smoking fam.
Steven is a father of 3, a scientist by profession, and a cigar enthusiast by hobby. His first cigar was (regrettably) from a gas station at age 18, but his palate has grown over the years to appreciate the sophistication and crafted experience of premium cigars.