Pet peeve: When the wrapper leaf is damaged after removing the cigar band
What sucks the wind out of my sail is when I remove the band and a piece of wrapper leaf comes off with it. I've noticed this happening much more lately, and with cigars of every class - even when I let the cigar smoke down a bit to let the heat soften the glue on the band. I found this particularly common with one brand that I'm very fond of. It seems to happen more with Connecticut wrapped cigars, whose wrappers tend to be naturally delicate. Finally, I mentioned it to someone at the company who told me I wasn't the first to bring it up, and they were working on it.
Having now ruined many a good cigar, these days I'm almost afraid to remove the band until the cigar has burned down to within a millimeter of it. Even then, you can't be sure whether the band will come off with a negligible little patch of wrapper, or result in the cigar unraveling like a cheap wool sweater.
Then there are some bands that don't come off at all. I found this evident with Avo bands. They use a heavy stock for their bands, and the ends are glued so well it's almost impossible to get your finger underneath to pry them apart. But to their credit, I don't remember damaging a wrapper leaf while removing the band on an Avo.
So I've developed the following conspiracy theory: The manufacturers intentionally apply the bands with extra glue. Then, after the wrapper leaf has torn on several cigars, you give up and are forced to leave the bands on. This way you help the manufacturer advertise their brand when you're among other cigar smokers. Brilliant, huh?
Or, as Larry David might say, "Pretty good. Pretty, pretty good."
~ Gary Korb