Happy Monday, Small Batchers!
As we’re a little past the midway point of winter, I wanted to revisit an idea we kicked around a while back.
I sent out a few feelers for winter smoking tips, and the response was overwhelmingly specific. In fact, we could sum up the sentiment in three words from what I would have considered winter pros: don’t do it.
There’s a man named Rich, though, that marches to the beat of a very cold drum. He's part Santa Claus, part polar bear, and 100% willing to sacrifice his body for a great cigar. Below is a very well thought out 10-point plan to, if you’re crazy enough, tackle the cold and enjoy your cigar.
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- Find a place to smoke inside. This is a good opportunity to get to know the folks at your local cigar lounge.
- If you can't smoke totally inside, find a place that's more inside-like than going outside. Think about converting some of your garage to your smoking space. Or maybe it's a good time to set up a smoking shed? I'm looking into getting an ice fishing shanty setup for my back yard for now. Seems like a couple hundred bucks would get that set up with a tent-style pop-up and a good heater.
- If you're going to be outside, get a heater. The big gas heaters that are slightly taller than a person are the way to go. They keep things toasty. (Note: I've been smoking outside for like a decade in winter and have never actually done any of the things above yet)
- Get warm clothes. Wear a heavy coat, snow pants, boots, gloves, a face mask - everything you'd wear for a day on the slopes, basically. It's going to get cold.
- Look into heating pack if it's really cold. Pop 'em in your boots or keep 'em around for your hands when you start to freeze. Those things are little miracles.
- Pick shorter cigars. I don't mean Tatuaje Needles or Cracker Crumbs or any of those other not-actually-good small versions of cigars. Pick real, good, and real good cigars, but pick smaller ones than you would normally pick.
- Don't pair with a cold drink. Drinking a cold drink when it's freezing is plain stupid. Speaking of drinking, be careful how much alcohol you drink in the cold. You'll feel warmer, but you'll actually be colder. Can get dangerous if your body temp gets too low.
- Be ready to give up on your cigar and go inside. Sometimes it's not worth it.
- It's usually smart to avoid smoking in the wind, but especially true in the winter. Winter wind is no joke - it's cold. Set up your smoking spot where there's a wind break if you can (good advice year-round).
- It gets dark early, so if you're planning to take any pics to share on social media or add to a cigar dossier, figure out lighting. Or better yet, don't. Adding more things to worry about in the cold is kind of crazy.
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