Nostalgic notions of tight Cuban cigars fancied by the high-rollers of yesteryear fade as humanity's flow of consciousness is decisively drawn to new delights. However, a smoothly smoked cigar is still the allegorical apex of a deal well drawn. To ensure utmost pleasure from each puff, any purveyor will implore connoisseurs to angle their bright light half-right. If one's desire is perfection (why would one strive for anything otherwise?) then it's all about the angle.
Sure, this talk of a perfect angle may be a profound source of humor to the ordinary customer. However, when it comes to the conditional aspects of cigars, laughter should be swiftly stifled. A true connoisseur understands the landscape behind the shroud of smoke; they can envision the labor of a tobacco farmer's calloused hand, the sweet smell of broad leaves left to cure, even the feel of a drag from a creation rolled tight enough for an even burn, yet loose enough to avoid effort. Now, is it really so silly to ensure a proper angle when lighting? Allow me to elaborate concretely.
Frankly, the angle of ignition is so critical because accessible sources of flame are somewhat tainted. Whether one employs trusty matches, a traditional lighter, or today's butane flame, the last thing one desires is letting an impure medium taint the entire cigar. Let us review these factors. Modern butane lighters do not contain solely butane. They are rife with impurities which continuously compromise the taste and integrity of a cigar, should they be used improperly. Lighter fluid in a traditional lighting system can have a similar effect. Thus, while they may not be the most convenient, an organic match can be the best solution. Even then, a striking smoker needs to allow the tip of their matchstick to burn a bit, avoiding sulfur inhalation.
Watching an amateur angle at 90 degrees, light, and puff directly into a cigar is as painful for observers as it will be for the unenlightened amateur. Luckily, wisdom of age is available to guide the inexperienced, potential connoisseur, and it all starts at the angle. One needs to hold their flame at 45 degrees in relation to the tip of one's cigar. Be careful to avoid making direct contact with the flame to the cigar, as this can leave residue from the lighting medium at the tip, leaving a bitter taste. While this is not as harmful as inhaling the lighting medium, it's still a factor to consider.
Make sure to slowly bring the flame closer to the tip until you begin to see the wrapping leaf contort, this is a sure indicator that the tip is growing closer to ignition. At this point, roll the cigar back and forth, in inverse fashion, until you see that combustion has begun (a faint red-orange glow will begin to form).
Now, all that's left are the initial puffs, these must be rapid and consistent, done while observing the tip. Note that one may exhale outward first if one is anxious that the lighting medium has seeped into the cigar, however, lighting performed in tune with aforementioned guidelines should not compel an exhale.
Given this elaboration of the intricacies involved in cigar lighting, it behooves any amateur to adhere to proper processes. While it may seem as though the end result of a smoked cigar is not dependent on any process or ritual, sacredness is derived from the journey, not the end result. There's no doubt that choosing an ideal medium for flame and employing it at a 45 degree angle, delicately, makes a world of difference.