Much More Than Just a Cheap Plastic Cutter: The Xikar Story

January 25, 2016

Cigar smoking is more than a hobby, it’s a lifestyle. And as the premium-cigar industry continues growing at a rapid pace, consumer choice has never been so great. Not only are manufacturers creating unique blends with tobacco-leaf combinations unheard of in the past, but the accessory industry is also stepping up its game by adding state-of-the-art technology and luxury to cutting and lighting a cigar.

One such company that always remained at the forefront of this market is Xikar. Kurt Van Keppel, Xikar’s president, wanted to buy a good cigar cutter in 1994, and found that not only did the inexpensive models underperform but so did the high-end versions. So he set out with cofounder, Scott Almsberger, to match good design (ergonomics and function) with the best materials and styling possible. The result was the Xikar, which they first assembled in their garages and is now known as the very best cigar cutter in the world.

Xikar originated from the word sikar, which is said to be the first Spanish spelling of the Taino word for cigar. The Tainos were the indigenous populations of Hispaniola and Cuba, where Columbus first landed when he discovered the “New World” and the tobacco that went along with it. Van Keppel and Almsberger changed the S to an X (to represent their product’s two blades), which in turn “cut” the i, like a cutter clipping a cigar.

In 2000, riding on the overwhelming success of their top-quality selection of patented double-bladed cutters, Kurt and Scott decided to expand their product development into the full accessory category to include lighters, humidification, travel humidors, butane, and even cigars.

Today, the popular lineup of Xikar lighters and smoking accessories features bold, masculine, state-of-the-art designs that continue to evolve, while Scott and Kurt continue creating affordable products for even the most discerning lovers of the leaf. All of the above, backed by a lifetime warranty, has made Xikar one the most highly regarded and trusted names in the industry. Just take a good look at our Xikar Cigar Lighters, Xikar Cigar Cutters, and Xikar X-Treme Travel Humidors to see the artistry and beauty for yourself. And, for that special cigar connoisseur in your life, check out one our popular Xikar Gift Sets containing everything anyone could ever need to smoke in style!


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