I remember when I was first introduced to cigars in 2011, although I always thought it was sexy visually to see a man take a toke and then take a sip of cognac, I never embraced that this was something I could indulge in from a novice perspective. Fast-forward eight years later, I find myself in a semi-love affair with a stogie and a glass of merlot as a wind down to the week. That being said, an occasional cigar may not be the look for everyone, but before you shut down at least trying the experience I thought it would be dope to hear from one of Detroit’s own connoisseur of cigars, and guess what? She’s a GIRL… Monique Henderson of Cigarden:
City.Life.Style: How did you find a passion for cigars?
Monique Henderson: I began smoking cigars over 10 years ago while dating a gentleman that to this day is a great friend that I still enjoy having a good smoke with. What’s funny, is now I am able to teach him a few things about cigars. I find cigar smoking to be very relaxing and sexy. It is an activity that you can enjoy alone or in a more communal setting. Cigar smokers are some of the coolest and discerning people in the world! The fact that it is not a rushed activity is also very appealing to me. As I began to read more, talk to other cigar smokers and try different cigars, I gained an appreciation and fascination with cigars and their complexity.
CLS: What is Cigargarden?
M.H: CIGARDEN is a mobile cigar service that specializes in cultivating great cigar experiences for novice cigar smokers and aficionados. Our service can be added to an event to make it most memorable…or it can be the event itself!
Our products include cigars, cigar accessories, custom gifts and apparel. We also offer services that include inside/outside cigar service, cigar pop-up tent, cigar parties, cigar rolling services.
CSL: Is Cigar smoking just for boys?
M.H: Absolutely not! Women have always had a fascination with cigars. However, in recent years more and more women have taken up cigar smoking as a hobby. This is partly why CIGARDEN was created. It started with us doing Cigar 101 events where women can come together without the element of intimidation to learn the basics about cigar smoking.
Top 5: Cigar 101
– Smoke what you like. A lot of people refer to flavored cigars as “cigars for girls”. To me the sexiest thing in the world is confidence. Anyone that exudes the confidence to smoke what they like is Ok with me. Besides, we all like stuff that tastes good to us, right?!
– Bigger isn’t always better. Pick a size cigar that you are comfortable with. Don’t go big just because you think it makes you look cool. The goal should be to truly enjoy the flavor and experience of what you are smoking and if that means going with a smaller sized cigar than you should do that.
– Find your strength. Different cigar strengths have a different reaction for different people. For beginner smokers, start with a milder cigar (e.g. Connecticut) and work your way up to the darker blends (e.g. Maduros). Once you have determined the strength that you like best, begin trying different blends and brands at that strength level. You will be surprised at the vasteness of cigars that can be enjoyed in that particular category.
– Take your time. Cigars are meant to be savored, experienced and enjoyed. Plan to dedicate at least an hour to truly enjoy your smoke.
– Don’t be afraid to try something new. Many cigar smokers have their one “go-to” cigar brand or maybe a small handful of brands. Don’t be afraid to try something that you have never had before. And, don’t be fooled by the label. Some of the best cigars come marked down in price and “naked” with no label at all.