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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hey all-
i came into 2 boxes of petite corona size smokes that have been 'in the mail' for the past almost 4 months. needless to say they are dry as a bone. they don't feel too brittle, however a couple have the wrapper just BARELY trying to come off. hardly unraveling.
my question is, if i put these boxes in my cooler for a while will the eventually be ok? i have never had to restore any smokes from this bad a situation.
any help, input or advice greatly appreciated.
thanx
jimmy
 

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jimmy said:
hey all-
i came into 2 boxes of petite corona size smokes that have been 'in the mail' for the past almost 4 months. needless to say they are dry as a bone. they don't feel too brittle, however a couple have the wrapper just BARELY trying to come off. hardly unraveling.
my question is, if i put these boxes in my cooler for a while will the eventually be ok? i have never had to restore any smokes from this bad a situation.
any help, input or advice greatly appreciated.
thanx
jimmy
If you slowly increase the humidity level, you may get them back to a smokeable state though much of the flavor will have most likely dissipated due to the loss of oils....worth a try, I imagine.
 

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Habana Mike is correct. You may be able to get the cigars back to a smokable condition, but unfortunately the flavor may be diminished. Whenever a cigar dries out then is rehumidified, it loses a bit of it's "essence". This is a problem I come across quite frequently with rare/vintage cigars.

Just make sure you take your time bringing these back to smokable condition. The best thing to do is to place the box on the bottom of your humi and forget about them for about 3 months.
 

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Funny that someone should ask this question! I have just receive an e-mail from Dave at CheapHumidors.com about this topic today no less so here it is and I quote:

Subject: How to Restore Dry Cigars

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------You discover a box of your favorite cigars that you left in a
closet for six months, and the cigars are as dry as a bone. What do
you do?

First, have patience. Put the cigars in a humidor that hasn't been
charged in the previous week. Let them rest in the slightly dry
humidor for a few days so the cigars absorb some humidity. Then,
partially fill the humidification system, letting the cigars rest
for another week before fully charging the humidity regulator. This
process will ensure a slow absorption of moisture, preventing the
cigars from getting too much humidity too soon. If you shock the
cigars from too much moisture, they may burst.

If you have a cabinet-style humidor, first place the cigars as far
from the humidification device as possible, moving them closer to
the humidification device little by little over a period of six
weeks.

In any case, do not light up until the cigars are supple to the
touch. A dry cigar will burn too hotly, and the flavor will seem
burned or carbonized.

The same principle applies to cold cigars or ones that have been
stored frozen, a method some people use. (There's nothing wrong
with this method except that the cigars don't age.) You must allow
the cigars to return to normal temperature slowly. If you light
them too soon, the abrupt change in temperature may cause them to
crack open or explode. Give chilled cigars at least two or three
days at the proper temperature in a humidified environment before
lighting them up.

Funny enough it was just a radom e-mail I have had to rescue cigars in past but I didn't ask Dave about this and got this e-mail, I guess I am on his mass e-mail list, but he is a nice guy and his company seems really great. Best of luck on fixing them. I also let mine sit mixed with fresh ones for another six months and results were better than I expected. :D
 

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jimmy said:
hey all-
i came into 2 boxes of petite corona size smokes that have been 'in the mail' for the past almost 4 months. needless to say they are dry as a bone. they don't feel too brittle, however a couple have the wrapper just BARELY trying to come off. hardly unraveling.
my question is, if i put these boxes in my cooler for a while will the eventually be ok? i have never had to restore any smokes from this bad a situation.
any help, input or advice greatly appreciated.
thanx
jimmy
You've already got good advice on how to s-l-o-w-l-y bring up the humidity without affecting your wrappers. However, I wouldn't worry too much about loosing flavors since it doesn't sound like your cigars dried out too much - say below 55%RH - otherwise, they would've been very brittle and wrappers would've cracked already. Your post mentions "old dry cigars", if they are more than 20 yrs old, you may even like smoking them dry! I have experimented with smoking cigars straight from my cellar that I keep at 55-60% RH and at cooler than conventional temps. (during winter it gets as cold as 54-55 DF and summer as high as 65 DF - just to slow down the age process. In my limited experience, lower humidity and temp. keeps the flavors going for longer, therefore for long term age I keep them in the cellar at 55-60%, the older cigars "may" smoke quite nice at those dryer levels - once you get used to it! (although I have to admit that I prefer smoking them at 65-70! depending on their age!).

In any event I wouldn't worry much about loosing flavors, actually it just reminded me that last year (?) poker also had a similar experience with the mail keeping his cigars for several months, I've forgotten to ask him how those cigars smoked afterwards!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
ESP said:
In any event I wouldn't worry much about loosing flavors, actually it just reminded me that last year (?) poker also had a similar experience with the mail keeping his cigars for several months, I've forgotten to ask him how those cigars smoked afterwards!
i sure hope he sees this and writes his experience with that ;)

thanx everyone for the input
jimmy
 

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Loss of flavor? Quite possible, as it has happened to me personally with some RA Coronas. Got a cab in from a source and it was excellent. I then ordered another cab immediately and it took over 8 weeks to get the cigars. Now I know the flavor can vary from box to box, but these 2 cabs were from the same source and the same box code, and the cab that I had to re-hydrate definitely had a flavor drop off.

Now you still may get excellent flavor from a box that was re-hydrated, but who knows........... maybey if those cigars were not allowed to dry out that flavor would have been phenomenal.
 

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I would think that if the wrappers are not cracking apart badly, then they have not lost too much of their oils and will be ok in a couple months.
 

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Bruce said:
Loss of flavor? Quite possible, as it has happened to me personally with some RA Coronas. Got a cab in from a source and it was excellent. I then ordered another cab immediately and it took over 8 weeks to get the cigars. Now I know the flavor can vary from box to box, but these 2 cabs were from the same source and the same box code, and the cab that I had to re-hydrate definitely had a flavor drop off.

Now you still may get excellent flavor from a box that was re-hydrated, but who knows........... maybey if those cigars were not allowed to dry out that flavor would have been phenomenal.
It is a good thing we discuss our collective experiences here, it sort of adds to the collective database of .... I am not sure what this is, but there is so much useful and useless information floating in my head ;)
I think cigars "lost in the mail' carry too many possibilities and therefore variables that can either "help" or "deter" the age process of cigars. For instance, some of the best aged cigars I have smoked have been stored in sort of air tight bags, stored in low humidity and low temps (compared to the customary 70/70), on the other hand, a package of "lost in the mail" cigars that presumably is double zip locked (nearly air tight) may not dry out too fast, but let's say they sit in a warm environment for a long time- say 85 degrees - for a good while, this may well accelerate the age process and therefore account for the variance in the flavor department when compared to the ones kept at lower temps.,

In short (geesh! This is the short version, just imagine if I had some time on my hand! :r), I think temperature variations during shipping may have a more drastic effect on aging of cigars than lowering the RH. On the other hand if the RH drops to levels as low as 45% I don't think the cigar would hold together and will become way too brittle to handle ,, in any event, the key is no control over how they were kept for a long period of time - and IMHO the high Temp. plays a more active role than the gradual drying up - obviously no control is not a good thing! But for example - in my case - if cigars are delayed in some UK warehouse, my chances of high temperatures are very slim! (I hate the wet and cool weather here - its like living in a big humidor! LOL, but my cigars don't mind that),,
 

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ESP,
The cigars I've smoked from your cellar smoked perfect. What were they stored at?
 

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An excellent thread. Good reading. One of the best threads in a while now... Where and how do I rate this thread? A 4 out of 5... at least... :)

Edit: OK I think I voted... I gave it a 4 out of 5...
 

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Fredster said:
ESP,
The cigars I've smoked from your cellar smoked perfect. What were they stored at?
Except the MC2, the rest were kept at 65%RH (not my cellar) for the last year, before that, they were in J.Fox's cellar! (at around 60%RH).
 
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How old is too old? Is a cigar that has been sitting out for a couple years un-salvagable (if that's even a word)?
 

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imajn34 said:
How old is too old? Is a cigar that has been sitting out for a couple years un-salvagable (if that's even a word)?
If it didn't fall to dust or break apart when I picked it up, I'd probably try to re-humidify it and smoke it, just to see what it was like, but if it's been out in the elements for 2 years, I'm guessing that's one dead smoke and would probably be better off if you gave it a proper funeral and played some taps....
 

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ESP said:
Except the MC2, the rest were kept at 65%RH (not my cellar) for the last year, before that, they were in J.Fox's cellar! (at around 60%RH).
They all smoked and tasted fantastic.
 

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:sb ..............a friend of mine found a box of misc. pre-embargo tubos a couple of years ago, in his aunts basement. Knowing I'm a genuine connesseur, he gave them to me. (or maybe he just tried one) :tg
These were all Tampa made MMs and were very dry. I put them in the bottom of my coolerdor and left them alone, smoking one every couple of months. After about 6 mos. they were very tasty. There were a few that ended up with split wrappers.. (mostly Claro ones)..that I had to toss. Although I don't have any idea what they were supposed to taste like, I'd give them a very favorable comparision to some of the cheaper and milder non-vintage Cuban cigars I've smoked.
My point is that you can probably salvage a decent smoke out of those cigars....................or you can always send them to me and I'll see what I can do!!! :r
 
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