What is retro-haling?

I received three contact form messages during the last week from users who wanted to know how to retro-hale and I decided to answer the question in a blog post.

First of all, what is retro-haling? According to the tobacconist university:

Retro-haling is the act of moving smoke from the back of the mouth, up through the sinuses, and exhaling through the nasal passages.

Now, why would one want to smoke a cigar through the nose? Well, it is simply because we have so many flavor detectors in our noses - much more than on the tongue that can only distinguish basic flavors. Smoking through the nose will maximize the flavors you will get out of your cigar.

Final question - how do you do it? That's the tricky part, quite difficult to explain. Former cigarette smokers will certainly know how to retro-hale and I'll try to describe it as concisely as I can. First of all, take a good puff on your cigar and release approximately half of the smoke through the mouth as you normally do. Do not inhale or swallow the remaining smoke. With your mouth closed, gently push the smoke to the back of the cavity with your tongue and at the same time start exhaling through the nose. That's it!

Make sure you try this with the mildest cigar you can get and go slowly or you might end up coughing quite a bit. I usually do it a couple of times in each third but there are aficionados who retro-hale every single puff.

What is your experience with retro-haling? Have you noticed that it helps to detect more flavors?

Cigar Reviews of the Week #72 (Sep 12 2009)

As we do every week, here are some interesting cigar reviews, recommended to read.

Perdomo Edicion de Silvio

Reviewed by Barry at  A Cigar Smoker

This is the first Perdomo that Barry ever liked.
Read the full review here...
Read our take at the Perdomo Edicion de Silvio...

Los Blancos Criollo Robusto

Reviewed by Linus at  Cigar Newbie

This is an average cigar with a particularly nice ending.
Read the full review here...
Read out take on the whole Los Blancos line...

Partagas Shorts - $135 for a box!

You have probably seen it by now, but PerfectCubanCigars.com has put the Partagas Shorts, one of our favorite budget Cubans, on sale - you can get a box of 25 for just $135 with free shipping.

Trinidad Ingenios Limited Edition 2007

Trinidad Ingenios Limited Edition 2007

Origin : CubaTrinidad
Format : Lonsdale
Size : 167 x 16.67 mm (6.4 x 42)
Ring : 42
Price : ~$220 for a box of 12
More info about purchasing Trinidad cigars...

Trinidad Ingenios is the first limited edition by the brand, released in 2007. This classic lonsdale retails for around 18 USD per single and won’t be an everyday smoke for most of us. In this review I will try to determine whether it’s worth the premium.

Read the full review of Trinidad Ingenios Limited Edition 2007...

CAO Brazilia Anaconda

CAO Brazilia Anaconda

Origin : Danli, Honduras
CAO CigarsFormat : Perfecto
Size : 8 x 58
Wrapper : Brazil
Filler : Nicaragua
Binder : Nicaragua
Price : $72.95 / box of 10
More info about purchasing CAO Brazilia cigars...

Last week I began my series of CAO reviews with the brand new CAO Gold Vintage Crémant. This week I review the CAO Brazilia Anaconda. The Brazilia line has been one of my longtime favorites from CAO. It doesn't seem to matter what the size is, I'm always pleased with my choice to pick one up and smoke it. The Brazilia Anaconda doesn't disappoint. Originally released as a limited edition in 2004, production of this vitola resumed in 2007. I have rarely seen these locally and in fact the ones I recently had came from a trade with my friend Scott.

Read the full review of CAO Brazilia Anaconda...

Showdown: Tatuaje Reserva Noellas – 2006 vs 2009

Showdown: Tatuaje Reserva Noellas – 2006 vs 2009

TatuajeOrigin : USA
Format : Corona
Size : 5 1/8” x 42
2006 Wrapper : Aged Nicaraguan Corojo Ligero (Cojonu Wrapper)
2009 Wrapper : Nicaraguan Sun Grown Broadleaf
Filler : Nicaraguan
Binder : Nicaraguan
Price : $10+
More info about purchasing Tatuaje cigars...

2009 has seen an exciting expansion to the Tatuaje brand with lots of new cigars including some new additions to the Reserva line of the Brown Label Tatuajes. Pete Johnson’s seemingly ever broadening use of the sun grown broadleaf wrapper found its way onto two new Tatuaje Reserva cigars. The Reserva Regios and the Reserva Noellas. The new Reserva Noellas are particularly intriguing to me because this is not the first time there has been a Reserva Noella.

Read the full review of Showdown: Tatuaje Reserva Noellas – 2006 vs 2009...

Cohiba Siglo I

Cohiba Siglo I

Origin : Cuba
Format : Petit Corona (Perla)Cohiba
Size : 102 x 17 mm (4 x 42)
Ring : 42
Weight : 5.91 g
Price : ~$9 each
More info about purchasing Cohiba cigars...

My latest foray into the Siglo line is the Siglo I. An expensive little guy, but these have a great reputation. So, I was looking forward to the experience.

Read the full review of Cohiba Siglo I...

Great Cigar Articles

Last week was very rich in great cigar articles published at cigar blogs - I would like to highlight the ones I thoroughly enjoyed in case you missed them somehow.

The Art of the Cigar Bomb

Chris over at NiceTightAsh.com explains very well what is a cigar bomb and how one should bomb his or her fellow aficionado.

Cigar Bombs have filled wish lists and humidors for years. But for those of you who are not familiar, or perhaps want to send a few out, read these directions carefully. Not following these instructions could result in losing a limb.

Read the article!

Cigar Shops Under Attack

Patrick S. at StogieGuys.com describes how anti-smoking zealots ingeniously come up with more and more techniques to complicate the existence for cigar shops and bars, the only places left for us where we can smoke.

Even where smoking is allowed, regulations are designed to do harm. In New York City, for example, the century-old Barclay Rex cigar store recently found itself in trouble with city inspectors who cited the shop for serving free coffee to its customers using a $9,000 automatic espresso maker. The violation was for serving “food” without a permit. Problem is, according to New York’s strict smoking ban, no place that allows smoking can have such a permit.

Read the article!

Cheap Smoke: Cigar.com Blue Label

Cigar.com Blue Label

Origin : Dominican Republic
Format : Torpedo
Size : 6 x 52
Price : ~$49.95 for a box of 20
More info about purchasing Cigar.com cigars...

This is another guest review from Matthew and Jed at Smoking & Talking. They are good at finding good value cigars!

Ever on the lookout for quality cigars at cheap prices, I recently received a sampler of the 7 House Blends produced by cigar.com. Today's review is the Blue Label, which is their flagship blend that started the idea to create their own line. The appearance looks like a $2 smoke but nothing else about this stick does. The smoke has a wonderful sweetness with hints of licorice and tiny bursts of pepper at each transition. Lacking a bit of complexity, this is a very smooth stick that doesn't quite measure up to the Medium body advertised by cigar.com. It burns fast, real fast--it took just over an hour to down this Torpedo. The draw was medium, the ash was loose, and there were a few green spots--but were talking about cheap smokes here! This is an everyday smoke to be sure, with a box of 20 coming in just under $50. If appearance bothers you, close your eyes and you'll find a can't miss smoke.

Thumbs (way) Up!

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