A during- or post-dinner cigar is one of life’s small pleasures. But pairing the correct cigar with the meal you’re enjoying, or just enjoyed, is important to your overall satisfaction. If you’ve just had a heavy dinner, you don’t want to choose a cigar that will overpower it, for example. Finding that sweet spot of complementing flavors doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Here are our tips for the perfect cigar and food pairings.

Grilled or Broiled Meats & Cigars Alabama

You’ll want to choose a cigar that is medium or full bodied, with reach, heavy flavors to match the heaviness of the meat. Think of all the rich flavors you pair with a burger or steak- onions, mushrooms and heavy seasonings, for example. A lot of flavor profiles are mixing together, so you want the cigar to match that. A nice Maduro would be an excellent choice here.

Barbecue & Cigars in Alabama

Now that the weather has gotten warmer, everyone wants to gather around the barbecue for some slow-smoked pork, chicken, ribs or even some brisket. These meats will feature a combination of dry rubs and sauces. Whether your favorite is a Carolina mustard-based sauce or a tangy St. Louis style, you’ll want to choose a cigar that stands up to all of the different flavors. Something dark and full-bodied like a Dominican will be your best bet for a pleasurable pairing.

Italian Food & Cigars

Who doesn’t love tomato sauce, rich garlic flavors and cheeses? Italian dishes tend to mix sweet sauces, like marinara, with savory meats, like meatballs or sausage. With all of these different flavors mixing, you want to choose a medium-bodied cigar with some hints of complementary sweetness to the herbs in the tomato sauce. The Montecristo White is an excellent choice for your next spaghetti night. Buon appetito!

Seafood & Cigars

When it comes to shrimp, lobster, salmon or another kind of fish, these meats aren’t packed with flavor, so your cigar should also be a bit on the lighter side. Go with something that smells sweet on first impression to complement the sweet butter or sauce that accompanies most freshly-caught dishes. If you aren’t a seasoned cigar smoker, starting with something lighter is a good first step. We recommend the Camacho Connecticut Churchill.


If you still have questions on how to pair the perfect cigar or are looking for recommendations to pair with a specific dish, our talented team of professionals at Vitola Fine Cigars is here to help. With locations in Tuscaloosa and Birmingham, we’re always close by. Call or visit us today!