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Train your palate

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You have to train your palate! You can smoke hundreds of cigars and slowly pick things up or you can spend a couple hours and $30 and really learn to enjoy every stick that much more. If you've ever spent $20+ bucks on a good stick and haven't trained your palate you just wasted your dough. There are some crazy complex cigars on the market in this blessed boutique world we live in. Some are incredibly cheap in comparison to the complexity they offer such as the Aging Room, My Father, Liga Privada, illusione Epernay or MJ12, Pepin la Reloba, Natural by Drew Estates, AVO Domaine, Viaje Holiday Blend, LFD 2000 series or Air Bender, La Sirena, especially the Ariel if you are lucky enough to find one. Once you start to pick up the flavors in sticks, it will make it much easier for you to find cigars you like. Learn the leafs in the ones you enjoy and look for other cigars with a similar blend!


For those that feel they have no palate, this will train you more than you can imagine. Again, what is a $30 investment into something that will literally DOUBLE OR TRIPLE your smoking pleasure for the rest of your life! Once you have your footing on flavors, splurge and get yourself a highly complex stick like the ESG, Opus X, Liga Privada Unico Series, Padron Family Reserve, etc. You've likely had one before but try it again and realize how much you missed out on before!


What you will need:

  1. Water, preferably bottled spring water at room temperature or slightly cool. Not freezing cold ice water that will numb your taste buds.
  2. 3 sticks of the same size and with the same main profile, ie: 3 Full, 3 medium or 3 mild cigars. For full flavored fans, I really enjoyed using the VSG, Mi Amor and San Cristobal. For something more mild I recommend the Xicar Colorado Habano, the DE La Vieje Habanna, and the AKA Solace.
  3. Raw, unsalted or lightly salted Almonds


Once you have your sticks get started!


  1. Light up the VSG first, smoke it as you normally would until you are an inch into it. Smoke slow and try to pick up the flavors you are tasting. Rinse with water occasionally to refresh your mouth. Remember to focus on the taste!
  2. Clean your mouth/palate with room temp to cool water (not freezing cold that will numb your mouth) and chew up a couple of plain almonds. Water and Almonds help neutralize the flavors left in your mouth.
  3. Light the Mi Amor and smoke it about 1/2" to 3/4" in. Again, focus on the flavors. Compare it to what you were tasting with the VSG. You can even smoke them right after one another without the cleanse if it helps you; I know it did me!
  4. Repeat step 2
  5. Repeat Step 3 with the final cigar. This will be the San Cristobal if you are using the three I recommended, and light the third all while keeping the other two going. Retrohale (Exhale through your nose) to get more flavor. As you continue, you can smoke without the cleansing but you will REALLY START TO NOTICE the subtle flavor changes. The Mi Amor will seem like a chocolate bar with bits of black cherry coming through occassionally and other flavors but I don;t want to give it all away, the VSG will be cedary, leathery and spicy (try to pick out the different spices) while the SC will bring on a wealth of new flavors, earth, coffee, etc. This is a lesson I recommend to EVERY CIGAR SMOKER!!!


So hopefully you take this advice if you're serious about cigars what is a $25-30 investment into your smoking hobby in the grand scheme of things? Do This! You will thank me for the rest of your cigar smoking life, I promise!


Please note that this is not an original work by me, but a fantastic guide I read from a friend on Facebook. I have done this though and personally it changed everything.

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I will add that once you can pick up on flavors and you can pair that with flavors you've picked up on in wines or bourbons (or whatever your drink is), it will blow your mind. If you can pair the perfect cigar with the perfect bourbon, it's an orgasmic experience.

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Hey all,


So I had a little bit of time before the wife and baby came home last night and I decided to see how well this tactic will work. As stated before, been smoking for a while and love a different variety of Cigars but when it came to (tasting) I never really could pick things out but what hits the tongue (sweet, bitter, sour etc).


On my mission I was firing up the BBQ as well so I had some really nice NY strip bone-ins cooking along the way. Need to take advantage of the weather while we can.


Below is the selection I put together based on my limited stock in the HUMI. Althought the cigars are differnt lengths and gauges they had the experts "overall" same type of flavor level so I decided not to wait for my new shippment to DIVE INTO THE NEW WORLD OF CIGARS!!!!


Quintero - Brevas 40 gauge 5 1/2 inches in length



Monty - NO. 5 40 gauge 4 inches in length



RyJ - Julieta No. 6 33 guage 4 7/10 Inches in Length



I have to say this was quite the experience for me and I decided to write a review of all three cigars so I will be posting that shortly. For anyone who has been trying to get the hang of this it is well worth it but please keep in mind smoking three cigars at once, if not already acclimated, can give you quite a staggering BUZZ!!!!!!! :wacko:


It was tought after first because when you think taste you expect to be overwhelmed so my only real suggestion is to be patient and try to really give your senses a focus on subtleties. The flavors are there but you have to be "TRAINED" to catch them.


Smoking side by side really helped...one cigar to the next gave the different flavors so I, as MGS Frank Suggested, AGREE!!!!.


HAVE FUN! For me it was a blast until my wife called and I had a mouth full of smoke. Not wanting to waste it I was waiting for her to start talking as she normally does but she was waiting for me to say hello. Well just in case noone knows when you say hello you kind of inhale a little and needless to say some chocking ensured from inhaling to much smoke..LMAO!!!!!!!!

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Love this plan of attack and I totally agree, don't buy pricey cigars til you've figured out your own palate thoroughly.


And maybe the BEST video ever on training your palate:



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