This past weekend me and my family took a quick family vacation and drove down the California coast and stayed in San Luis Obispo. Very relaxing and it was awesome to get away for a few days to visit some good friends.

While I was down there, me and some of the guys partook in an uncommon luxury, that I haven’t done in quite a while – have an authentic Cuban cigar – shhh don’t tell anyone.

Regardless, that experience has me thinking of indulging in that former pas-time of mine, but wanting to do it the right way, with proper storage for my cigars.

Over on thelifeofluxury.com, I found an article talking about just that…

The key to storing cigars is to place them in an environment that is as close to where they were made – warm and very humid. The best method out there is to store your cigars and closely simulate that environment is by using a humidor.

One of the insider tricks to finding a quality wooden humidor is by performing the “whoosh test”. First lift the lid about three inches high, then release it. As the lid drops, listen for a “whoosh” of air escaping and preventing the lid from slamming. A “whoosh” sound means the humidor is well crafted and will create a tight seal to keep your cigar fresh.

Along with a humidor, you should also invest in a humidifier. You can find various humidifier models out there. An inexpensive option is florist foam, which is enclosed in a vented plastic piece. A more expensive option is a built-in, which is typically attached by a magnet to the lid of the humidor.

One additional product to consider owning for your humidor is a hygrometer. A hygrometer measures the humidity level of your humidor. A good test thing to remember is perform a “pinch test” every two weeks. This method will help ensure your cigars are properly humidified. This simple test will help you to know whether to add or remove moisture from your humidor.

A standard, yet simple industry rule for cigar storage is the 70/70 Rule – 70 degrees Fahrenheit or 21.1 degrees Celsius and 70% humidity.

Cigars that are too dry, will cause the the wrapper to crack, and the cigar will likely burn hot producing a harsh taste. Dry cigars also cause the essential oils within the cigar to evaporate. This results in a bland and tasteless smoke.

Here are some basic steps to stabilize a humidor, and help keep your cigars from getting dry and tasteless.

1. Charge your humidifying device.
2. Lay a calibrated (salt tested or electronic) hygrometer in your humidor.
3. Lay a shallow dish of distilled water in your humidor.
4. Place the humidification device inside your humidor.
5. Be sure to check the humidity every day. Once the humidor humidity reaches and stays at 70%, add in your cigars.

Note: It may take a few days to a few weeks to stabilize your humidor.

After your humidor has become stabilized, just add some distilled water to the humidifying device before it completely dries out.

Source: Tobacco Barn