by Angela Tague
Cigars can be a lavish gift option. Presenting and storing cigars in a humidor will ensure you and gift recipients of a flavorful and moist smoking experience. Good cigar humidors are cases lined with cedar wood and are designed to keep cigars at a desirable humidity level. Maintaining moisture in a cigar prolongs its lifespan and quality, which is essential for all cigar collectors who want to make the most of their assortment. Aficionados allow their stock to age and ferment in a humidor, much like a fine wine. High-quality cigar humidors have a built-in humidification device, hygrometer and trays.
Humidification device and hygrometer: Cigars need to be kept in a humid environment to maintain their quality, and a humidor with a built-in humidification device maintains moisture. When the humidification device is filled with distilled water, a small, motor-controlled airflow device releases moisture into the air. This keeps the case in a 70 to 75 percent humidity range. Cigar enthusiasts use a hygrometer positioned inside the humidor to track the humidity levels inside the case. Digital hygrometers are more accurate than old-fashioned needle-and-dial analog meters.
Sealed cedar lining: A humidor with a sealed cedar lining in the cigar basin will maintain constant humidity levels. Always check for an interior lining of cedar wood when you are shopping for a new cigar humidor. The best option, Spanish cedar, absorbs and emits moisture. This enables the maturing and aging process of cigars. If glue or gaps in seams are visible in the humidor, the construction is weak. The exterior can be made from any type of wood or from glass, metal and a variety of materials. Choose a humidor with a heavy lid, but not an air-tight seal. If the case is completely airtight, the cigars will mold.
Humidor trays: High-end humidors are fitted with trays to organize cigars. Trays make it easier to rotate cigars for even moisture content. As new, dry cigars are introduced to the humidor, they should be placed farthest from the humidification device. This will ensure an even and slow humidifying process. If you find it difficult to keep track of the cigars in your humidor, consider keeping a log.