Let's Talk About Cigar Binders

When discussing or admiring a cigar, the one part that everyone talks about is the wrapper, which makes sense since it is the part everyone sees, and it’s the one element that provides most of the flavor. But the wrapper is not the only part that makes a cigar a great smoke. Just beneath the wrapper’s surface is the binder, and it too plays an important role in the making of a memorable cigar. So, let’s talk about the binder.   

A cigar’s binder serves two purposes. The binder’s first function is to contain the filler while the bunch dries in the mold and until the cigar is ready to be rolled with the wrapper. Its second role is to add to the cigar’s overall flavor and aroma.

There is no specific type of tobacco grown for binders. Instead, leaves used for binders come from either flawed wrapper leaves or from strong filler leaves. The middle or the top part of the tobacco plant is where most binder leaves come from. To be considered binder worthy, the leaves must meet certain criteria. They need to be large, solid, elastic, and the leaves must burn well. The leaves do not have to look pretty since they will be covered by the wrapper.

To sum it up, the binder is what keeps the filler in place, and it adds to a cigar’s overall flavor. Marred wrapper leaves are usually used as binders. There is no exact way to measure how much the binder impacts the overall quality of a cigar. Regardless manufacturers go through great lengths to choose the right binder leaf. So, the next time you are looking to purchase a cigar, be sure to inquire about the binder because as its name implies, it’s what holds the cigar together.

By Luzzie Normand
Co-Founder & Editor; Neptune Cigars Inc.
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