Both of these things are strong, elegant, and timeless. But, there are no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to combining them. The trick is to find a balance that works for you. That being said, tinker around with different permutations until you find what works best for you. But before you get started, here are some tips to help you find the perfect combination.
There is no limit to the number of delicious combinations that may be made with whisky and cigars. The experience can be improved by adhering to a few simple guidelines, even though you might find it enjoyable to sample each one (or none of them, if cigars aren't your thing).
Whisky and Cigars are a Match Made in High-Brow Heaven
To fully understand why whisky and cigars have been paired, we must once again compare it to another classic pairing — wine and cheese.
While wine now has the reputation of an upper class drink, it wasn’t always that way. Sure, some rare vintages were prized among the elites, but for many farmers it was a family-made drink, cheap to grow and ferment and relatively easy to store.
With this cheaper beverage came the appropriate snacks. Dairy farmers in France would always have a ready supply of cheeses which would naturally accompany the wine. It quickly became apparent how well they went together.
In the same vein, whisky and cigars were both part of the trappings of the upper-class. A traditional after dinner indulgence, whisky was often consumed in the smoking rooms frequently found in homes of the wealthy.
Whisky and cigars, like wine and cheese, have grown popular because of the desirable combinations they make.
It's important that the cigar and whisky complement each other in flavor without competing. Lighter, softer cigars are best paired with whiskeys that share comparable characteristics.
Cigars with a milder body, such as a beginner's Romeo y Julietta, pair well with whiskeys and blended scotches like Johnny Walker Black or Blue. Milder cigars pair well with lowland malt whiskies like Auchentoshan.
Peatier scotches, like as Talisker 10, are a suitable match for medium-bodied cigars, as are Elijah Craig 12 and Makers Mark bourbon.
A full-bodied cigar like a Liga Privada may stand up to a high-proof, peaty scotch like Lagavulin 16 or Laphroaig. A robust cigar can also be complemented with a spicy rye, such as Rittenhouse Straight Rye.
It's best if the scotch and cigar are of similar strength so as not to compete with one another.
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The idea is to try out several combinations until you find the one that works best for you. Whiskey and cigars are a classic flavor combination, with its origins in the after-dinner smoking rooms of the upper class.
How about some whiskey and a cigar? Here are some suggestions.
- Weigh the cigar's strength against the whiskey's: Cigars with a gentler body and flavor profile are recommended with a whisky of a similar profile. On the other hand, robust cigars and whiskies are a great match.
- When mixing whiskey and a cigar, it's important to find tastes that go well together. Cigars with a creamy texture or a sweet flavor, for instance, might complement a bourbon with vanilla undertones.
- Don't be afraid to try new things; there are endless possible combinations of cigars and whiskies, so don't stop trying new things until you find the one that's just right for you. Bear in mind that you may not share someone else's appreciation for a certain flavor combination.
- Take a few sips of the whiskey and a few puffs of the cigar for the full experience. This will prevent your taste buds from becoming overwhelmed and will allow you to enjoy the unique characteristics of each.
- Take into account the context: It's true that some cigars and whiskey go well with particular events. A daytime event may call for a milder cigar and whiskey combo, while a nighttime celebration may merit a more robust combination.
- Enjoy yourself and figure out what works best for you; that's what really matters. To a beautiful union!