Cigar Tobacco: The Best Types You Should Know
Cigar tobacco is more complex than you might expect. Not many people know that not all tobacco is made the same. In fact, the type of cigar tobacco used for cigars is very important. This is because some are much stronger or milder than others, much like types of fine wine.
But what are the different types of cigar tobacco exactly? What is the difference between them? Keep reading more below to find out.
Volado Cigar Tobacco
The first type of tobacco you should know about is volado tobacco. This type of tobacco comes from the very bottom of the tobacco plant. For that reason, it gets the least amount of sunlight compared to any other type of tobacco leaf.
Sun exposure imparts a great deal of flavor to the tobacco leaves. Because volado tobacco leaves don’t get much sun, they are typically quite mild and don’t taste like much. However, that doesn’t mean that this type of tobacco should be avoided.
In fact, volado tobacco is very combustible and very good to have inside a cigar. Including volado tobacco in your cigar will ensure that the cigar burns evenly and at the right pace. If you ever smoke a cigar with a high quantity of volado leaves, you will find the overall flavor and aroma of the cigar to be quite mild and light.
Seco tobacco leaves are found in the very middle of the tobacco plant. So, it doesn’t get too much sun but not too much shade either. The leaves at this part of the tobacco plant are slightly thicker compared to the volado leaves.
This changes the texture and flavor of the leaves. The seco part of the tobacco plant is quite large and for that reason, it is often segregated into subsections. For example, there is the centro fino part of the seco tobacco which is a very fine section of leaves. These leaves are quite flavorful but not overly so.
There is also the centro ligero which is what most seco tobacco leaves are. Similar to volado leaves, seco leaves are not very flavorful. However, these leaves are oily and have a very distinct smell. Many people find seco leaves to be very smooth and enjoyable.
You will find ligero tobacco at the very top of the tobacco plant. These leaves obviously get the most sun exposure and are quite different than volado leaves. Instead of thin and mild, they are thick and strong.
Ligero tobacco is by far the strongest and most flavorful type of tobacco from the entire tobacco plant. Many tobacco cultivators leave the ligero leaves on the tobacco plant until the last minute. This will allow the leaves to become overripe and very strong. The ligero section, like the seco section, is also quite large and is separated in to several different areas.
For example, the medio tiempo section consists of a few leaves that are extremely strong and thick. Beneath those leaves are the corona leaves which are similar but not quite as potent. Almost all the ligero leaves are used for cigars.
However, some medio tiempo leaves may occasionally go to waste because they are too strong to go in most types of high-quality cigars. While these leaves are great for cigars that really pack a punch, they don’t contain the subtle and delicious flavors that other tobacco leaves do.
The downside of ligero leaves is that, since they are so thick, they don’t burn very well compared to other tobacco leaves. For that reason, there is only a small selection of ligero leaves in most cigars. Most cigars mix seco and ligero leaves. That way, you can enjoy the smells of the seco leaves and the flavors of the ligero.
When you mix all three leaves together, you will certainly have a premium cigar to enjoy.