Italians on Italians
Beyond Toscano

What’s in a cigar? The purity of perfection

All tobacco products are not created equal. While cigarettes...
Il Sigaro della Sera
All tobacco products are not created equal. While cigarettes have a multitude of ingredients, including chemicals, filters and paper to create the finished item, a cigar is all natural. The best way to demonstrate what goes into a cigar is to peel pack the layers and take a closer look.

The Toscano cigar has two key parts – the filler and the wrapper. Unlike a cigarette, with a cigar, each of these is made from the leaves of tobacco plant itself, helping ensure as little of the plant is wasted as possible.

The filler – This is where much of the flavor comes from. Unlike cigarettes or loose tobacco, the leaves are often left whole and folded together.

Leaves in the filler are layered in the same direction, with their tips closest to the head of the cigar (the part that goes in your mouth). This is because the flavor intensifies in the leaf the closer it gets to the stem, giving the smoker something to look forward to as the burn progresses.

The wrapper – The most important part of a cigar, the wrapper is usually a single, carefully chosen leaf that is as perfect as possible. Smooth, slightly oily and with a distinctive toasty aroma, it is responsible for much of the cigar’s aesthetic appeal. Because it plays such a vital role, and has to be so perfect, the wrapper is usually the most expensive part of the cigar.

So now you know the basic elements of the Toscano cigar, you’ll have more fun exploring the wide range of tastes that can be created, simply by decisions the cigar maker has made about which leaves to use for each element. Or avoid the risk of a bad cigar and stick to the quality Italian cigars you know and love.