Xikar is the self-proclaimed ‘Best thing to happen to cigars since fire’. Given the excellent quality of every single one of their xikar cutters that is a difficult statement to argue with! The name Xikar comes from the Taino (Indigenous people of the new world) word for cigar, which is ‘sikar’. The ‘X’ was added so that the brand would be more memorable but also to represent the double blades that Xikar cutters feature.
The Men Behind Xikar
Kurt Van Keppel is the leading innovator behind Xikar products and is the current president of the company. Scott Almsberger is the vice-president and director of design. The two came together through an eye for innovation and a dissatisfaction with the cigar accessories market. Kurt, who has an MBA, took control of management and administration whilst Scott, who was an industrial designer by trade, took control of engineering and product design.
A long time ago in 1994, when we were all younger, Kurt wanted to buy a good cigar cutter. He found that both the inexpensive cutters and the high-end models were under performing and not providing good value.
In response to this, Kurt and Scot set out to produce a new style of cutter that combined a unique design with the reliable materials at the best quality price. The two men assembled the prototype in their garage. The result was Xikar’s first Xi cutter, featuring the iconic teardrop design.
Xikar Product Range
The cigar cutter assembled in Kurt’s garage would go on to become the market leader! Not without good reason either, Xi cutters are without a doubt the most reliable pieces of cigar cutlery in production today. The original Xi cutter would go on to inspire the Xi1, Xi2 and Xi3 cutters that Xikar offer nowadays.
Xikar does not only produce one type of cigar cutter, however, Kurt and Scott have been innovating throughout the 20 years that the company has been thriving. Xikar produces punch cutters such as the 009 and 007, V-cutters such as the V-Cut. As well as guillotine cutters that do not feature the iconic Xikar teardrop shape such as the X8, M8 and the new Ultra Slim. Not forgetting the stainless steel cigar scissors and knives such as the MTX multi-tool.
Although cutters were the speciality of Xikar, the brand has since innovated a variety of cigar accessories such as their lighters, cases, ashtrays and humidification systems. All of which are of the best quality and feature some almost genius designs.
Xikar’s Most Iconic Products
Xikar is an iconic brand in the cigar world. If you ask any reputable aficionado about the best cigar cutlery, they will surely recommend Xikar. The brand has become so sure of their products that each and every one is sold with a lifetime warranty! There are, of course, a few Xikar products that particularly stand out for whatever reason, design, aesthetics or usefulness.
Xikar Xi3 Mammoth Tusk
A cigar cutter as impressive as the beast that inspired it! This cigar cutter is the rarest accessory that Xikar have ever made. The design is derived from the traditional Xi tear drop shape with high carbon stainless steel blades. The handles are made from some of the most scarce material on earth – 10,000-year-old fossilised mammoth tusks. The definition of a luxury product.
A sheath for your cigar cutter made from the hide of a tropical stingray may sound like an extravagant and unnecessary piece of equipment, until you realise that Stingray leather has been used for centuries, mainly in Japan. Not only is the hide of a Stingray waterproof, but it is durable enough to be used as armour by Samurai and is also fire proof, puncture proof and resistance to abrasion! To top it all off Stingrays are abundant in the wild and are fished sustainably. The meat is a delicacy across the Pacific. Furthermore, the Xikar Xi3 Mammoth Tusk cutter slides into the holster perfectly, making for an impossibly manly combination of cigar accessories.
The team here at Havana House hope that you enjoyed reading our blog! What are your opinions on Xikar? We love to read your opinions so be sure to leave a note in the comments section down below!