A Groom’s Guide to the Perfect After Wedding Cigar/Whiskey Pairing

blog-1Amanda White, Research Technologist in the Department of Psychiatry at Penn State College of Medicine states,”A number of behavioral studies have demonstrated that smells trigger more vivid emotional memories and are better at inducing that feeling of “being brought back in time” than images.” Whether you’re a cigar aficionado or want nothing to do with smoking at all, the smell, feel or taste of a cigar has the ability to trigger a memory of a special day or time in your life. Tad Gage, from Cigar Chronicles states,”Beyond all the basics, there is a “certain something” about cigars and fine tobacco that captures our interest and passion. A cylindrical roll of well-aged leaves and the drifting blue smoke of a fine stogie tell part of the story, but not the full story. In the end, tobacco is as much about enjoying the moment and making memories, as it about the smoke itself. Not every cigar or situation will yield a memorable moment, but if you keep your eyes, ears and taste buds open, it’s surprising how many times a fine cigar can also yield a fine memory.” From Tennessee to Texas, cigar  stations at weddings are becoming quite popular. Even if the bride and groom are non-smokers, it is a great way to connect your guests with conversation, entertainment and those memories we all go out of our way to leave in each guest’s mind about your special day. blog-2Although I could go into great detail about the do’s and dont’s of a great cigar station at your wedding, this is more or less all about you and your personal experience. The stress of pulling off a perfect wedding day, although on many occasions are left to the professionals, can still leave you ready to kick back and unwind after the vows are completed and the cake has been cut.

There is something about smoking a cigar that can make a person feel strong, relaxed, confident, and dauntless; all the things a man will need on the first day/night of their new responsibilities; just think of Clint Eastwood in The Outlaw Josey Wales, Demi Moore as a navy seal in, G.I. Jane, General Patton on the front lines speaking to his troops, and of course, Arnold Schwarzenegger in almost every picture.  Besides making the choice of which pairing you are going to try, there are a few other decisions you will need to make. blog-3For example, make sure beforehand that your choice of venue allows smoking, as some do not. Another decision to make is choosing the perfect time; whether you slip off and find a quiet spot alone, have your wedding planner script in a 30 minutes hiatus, or choose to wait until after the new in-laws have made their way back to the hotel, will be totally up to your personality and style. Another decision to make is whether you choose to kick back alone with just your thoughts, invite the best man to join for some good conversation, or whether you are going to make it a bonding moment for you and your new forever friend in the middle of all the chaos while your guests eat, drink, dance, and be merry.

Now for the options… Whether you have tried every cigar and whiskey on this list or have blog-4never heard of them before, I recommend just going with what sounds like the most enjoyable to you for the occasion. It can be a tricky thing to pick the right whiskey for a cigar—I would say personally that whiskey will overpower most mild cigars, but sometimes there are exceptions. According to an article by Cigar Aficionado’s Jack Bettridge, “We’ve been pleasantly surprised in pairings when a big, ballsy cigar made a great partner for a light whiskey and vice versa.” In the grand scheme of things, it is always best to leave the details to the professionals. With that being said, here are some links to some great pairings along with excellent descriptions of flavor and taste. Some may be quite expensive, while others will be more affordable, however I will say if you can afford it, don’t let price be a barrier to the experience of building a great and lasting memory! https://www.jrcigars.com/blending-room/university/cigar-pairings/best-american-whiskeybourbon-and-cigar-pairing/2015/07/27/


By Steven C. Smith

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