Premium hand made cigars come in a variety of shapes and sizes. These two factors are basically inseparable when considering the type of a cigar so the term vitola is used when referring to a cigar's classification or category.
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Cigar sizes are generally measured by two different measurements, the width and the length. The width measurement is commonly known as the ring gauge. The ring gauge is a measurement of the cigar's diameter. The diameter sizes are measured in sixty fourths of an inch.
Premium hand made cigars are basically split into two categories when considering shapes. The classic cigar shape is known as a parejo. The parejo has a cylindrical body, straight sides, an open end and a closed end. The parejo shaped cigar is then categorized by the sizes it takes.
Each of the sizes of a parejo has a name. One thing to note however is that not all the cigar manufacturers adhere to the exact same sizes when calling there parejos one thing or another.
Taken by my at various different times The 5 most common cigar shapes (Parejo, Torpedo, Pyramid, Perfecto, Presidente), the culebras shape omited because it is not a very common cigar shape. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Cigar sizes are measured in inches. Some common sizes are Belicoso (6.5 x 52), Rothschild (4.5 x 48), Robusto (4.875 x 50), Small Panatela (5 x 33), Petit Corona (5.125 x 42), Corona (5.5 x 42), Carlota (5.625 x 35), Corona Gorda (5.625 x 46), Panatela (6 x 38), Toro (6 x 50), Corona Grande (6.125 x 42), Lonsdale (6.5 x 42), Churchill (7 x 50), Double Corona (7.625 x 49), Presidente (8 x 50), Gran Corona (9.25 x 47) and Double Toro (6 x 60).
The second category of premium hand made cigar shape is the figurado. Figurado is a term that encompasses any type of irregularly shaped hand made cigar.
Some common shapes classified as figurados are the torpedo, pyramid, and the perfecto among others. These shapes come in various sizes in terms of length and ring gauge and are not further categorized based on sizes.
Different sizes suit different smokers and different occasions. Some smokers prefer to have an enormous cigar like a Churchill while others prefer a petit corona. This can often be determined simply by the amount of time one has to smoke.
The smokers tobacco tolerance should also be considered. Sizes that are shorter in length but thicker pack a more concentrated punch with every draw, so they should be smoked with a little caution or at least with attention to the frequency of your draws.