Welcome to XIKAR Nation!

Hello and welcome to XIKAR Nation.  Here you will find all the latest information on what is happening with XIKAR.  We will be posting Newsletters, Instructional Videos and the latest cigar and accessories news.

Stay tuned for much more!

The XIKAR Team

March 2014 Newsletter


XIKAR NATION Newsletter

March 20, 2014

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Kurt's Corner
 
We've been talking a lot about Innovation lately, at the office, with our
customers and even on these pages. You see, we believe that 
Innovation (and extraordinary customer experience), is key to growing 
a business that attracts consumers like you to our products and brand.

Innovation began at XIKAR in my hand.  As I observed my hand cutting a 
cigar, I realized that the entire palm could be used to create a much 
more powerful cut - and the Xi cutter was born.  We have made this 
process, of seeking better solutions by observing consumer interaction,
core to our innovation - and now a formal process at XIKAR.  Not only
do we observe, but also we strip away comfortable assumptions of past
solutions, by asking: what's the problem  / what's the goal?

I take great pride in announcing the latest result of this process. Our PuroTemp Wireless Hygrometer System solves the problem of both neglect and hyper-attention to your humidification systems. The system not only gives you a desktop readout of your humidor's temperature and humidity, but also alarms you when either surpasses your set limits.  Now you give both your cigars, and yourself, a worry-free rest. You don't have to open the box to see what's going on in there!

You can find one at your local tobacconist - ask him for a demo.  And while there, pick up a bottle of XIKAR PG Solution, the other key to maintaining proper humidity.  (For more education on this topic than you imagine or perhaps even want, check this link).

In the meantime, we'll be back at XPDS (XIKAR Product Design Services) center, dreaming up more ways to improve your smoking experience.  And on these pages, and on Twitter and Facebook, we'll ask for your help, opinions and advice.  Keep an eye out! 

Sincerely,


Kurt Van Keppel
President
XIKAR Inc.

February 2014 Newsletter


XIKAR NATION Newsletter

February 11, 2014

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Kurt's Corner
 
    "What's new?" is something our team gets asked daily through
social media, customer service or even at events. The answer for
XIKAR is, "What isn't new?" XIKAR's focus on quality and continuous
improvement is obvious throughout our new product offerings.
Our design team is constantly hard at work to bring you the
next great thing in cigar accessories whether it's a current product
upgrade or a brand new launch. We will now introduce 
cool new products to make your smoking experience more
enjoyable all year long, not just at IPCPR.
    For example, we have just released a new double jet flame lighter. 
As you will read below, our popular Enigma lighter is now redesigned
as the Enigma II. This new model has an amazing new feel/power in your hand. Check in with your local XIKAR retailer to pick one up and feel for yourself.  
   Also, stay tuned for an exciting new product launch coming soon! We have been working hard to develop a humidification product that will make the hobby even more simple for you to relax and enjoy. 
    Perhaps the best closing in answering the "what's new" question is always stay tuned. You won't have to wait long to get more truly innovative new products from XIKAR.  

Sincerely,


Kurt Van Keppel
President
XIKAR Inc.

December 2013 Newsletter

XIKAR NATION Newsletter

December 2013

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Kurt's Corner
 
  Happy Holidays XIKAR Nation! It truly is the most wonderful
time of the year, and the season for giving. It's easy to get swept
up in the momentum of the holiday season with travel plans, gifts,
(getting and giving), but I'm asking you to take a step back with me
and think about those that have to be away from their loved
ones this season. 

    The US Armed Forces make up a large part of XIKAR Nation, and
we do our best to show how thankful we are for their sacrifice for
our country. Over the past 2 years, XIKAR has donated over 2,040
accessories in care packages.  We plan to expand that number in
2014. XIKAR will partner with Cigars for Warriors next year to send even more care packages.  Cigars for Warriors’ mission is to collect and disperse premium cigars to US Military Personnel stationed abroad. Their goal is to let the men and women of our Armed Forces enjoy well-deserved moments of reassurance and relaxation. 

    To kick off our relationship with Cigars for Warriors, we are currently auctioning off our 1,000th Fossil Mammoth Xi3 Cutter, with all of the proceeds going to Cigars For Warriors.

The Xi3 Mammoth cutter builds on XIKAR’s long history of design, elegance and engineered performance with unique handles assembled by Scrimshaw Artist, Rick “HutcH” Hutchings. The highest bidder will receive the one-of-a-kind cutter, free inscription from HutcH AND get inducted into the XIKAR FOR LIFE Hall of Fame. Please join me in showing our US armed forces some love this holiday season and visit the auction site to contribute before it closes this Friday! Also, if you know anyone currently stationed abroad, feel free to submit a care package request to ktroske@xikar.com. 

Wishing you and your family a wonderful holiday season,


Kurt Van Keppel
President
XIKAR Inc.

1,000th Mammoth Xi3 cutter to be auctioned to benefit Cigars for Warriors


December 2012 Newsletter


December 2012
 

How to Cut with an Ultra Slim Cutter

 
XIKAR Co-Founder and CDO Scott Almsberger demonstrates how to properly cut a cigar
with an Ultra Slim cutter, a mere 3.5mm thick.

November 2012 Newsletter


November 2012
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Kurt's Corner

     Sometimes (mostly at cocktail parties), someone will ask, “what's your (company) goal?” It makes me chuckle to hear it – reminds me of “what do you want to be when you grow up?” I suppose the question really means, “how big do you want to be?” Unfortunately, I can’t answer that – I don’t set goals by an arbitrary figure that may sound impressive. Instead, I have set XIKAR’s goal to be about performance.

“Our goal is to be great at our mission, and achieve our potential through the highest capabilities of our people, enhancing and developing those along the way” 
 
     Performance means many things, for instance great function of high quality goods. It means creative innovation to answer the perennial question, “what’s new”. And, performance at XIKAR means providing extraordinary customer experience to both retailers and consumers. This is organizational performance, which we focus ourselves around and accomplish as a team.
     How then, do team members perform? What does it mean to our people every day? I love the Army’s slogan, Be All You Can Be! At XIKAR we work to develop strengths, and improve on our weaknesses. Back to the sports metaphor, the quarterback throws, the receivers catch, the blockers block. We don’t ask our team to do things that don’t suit them, and we don’t focus too much on improving their faults. Instead, we make sure they are in the right “position” and we ask them to build on their strengths.
      But it’s not enough to field a good team – if we don’t communicate the goals properly and regularly. And then, we must exercise the discipline to work them by priority, day by day, week, month, year. We take this work seriously and spend a lot of effort to plan the work and work the plan. In fact, we are right now finishing up the plan for 2013, and will begin to work the plan in January.
     We bring enthusiasm to our work, and look forward to presenting the results (cool new products!) But, we try not to take ourselves too seriously, by displaying humor and humility (interesting that both begin “hum”, like “human”). And at the end of the day, we give thanks for what we have, and what we did. So in the spirit of Thanksgiving, here's what I am thankful for at XIKAR: my team, who works hard at improving themselves and the business every day, my partners, who take the risks with me and apply all of their strength to our goals, and especially my wife, who signed up to be my life partner and supported XIKAR all the way!

I wish you a peaceful, happy and safe holiday season,

 
Kurt Van Keppel
President & Founder
XIKAR, Inc.
New Hunter
Stratosphere Lighter!
     Fire up at any elevation! The popular XIKAR Stratosphere lighter is now available in a durable Hunter (green-colored) rubber body. This high altitude lighter works at up to 12,000 feet above sea level and is perfect for hunters with a handy lanyard, protective lid and windproof flame.

 

XIKAR U: How to cut your cigar with a Punch

     XIKAR President and Co Founder, Kurt Van Keppel demonstrates how to properly use a Punch to cut your cigar. View XIKAR’s three punches in 7, 9, and 11mm here.

If you are new to this hobby, you can visit TobacconistUniversity.com to learn how to properly cut, light, smoke or store your cigars. 
Read more at

Cooler Weather =
Watch your RH%

     The days are getting shorter, the mornings are a little more brisk and it's time to winterize those lawn mowers.  Have you been 'winterizing' your humidors?  Summer months allow us to get a little lax in how often we check our humidifiers because of all the humidity present in the environment.  Winter months, on the other hand, require a vigilant spirit to combat the moisture-sapping season ahead.  
     To fight the effects of forced-air heating and sub-zero temperatures, make sure you are educated about proper humidification.  While the two-way nature of XIKAR's humidity products is critical during the summer months to remove excess moisture, the large-volume and open-to-the-air attributes of XIKAR jars and humidifiers make them perfect for winter as well.  

  • Some humidification products work by waiting for moisture to be pulled through a paper and plastic membrane.  XIKAR jars and humidifiers allow our specially-mixed PG solution to replace that lost moisture directly into the air, preventing cigars from seeing a roller coaster of humidity levels.  
  • XIKAR jars and humidifiers are sized for your ease of use.  Why worry whether those thin envelopes of gel are dried up already when you can have a humidifier that can hold up to 4 ounces of PG solution that keeps on working?  When the fluid level does get low, just refill with our economical PG solution instead of throwing another humidifier away. 
Featured Product:
Ceramic Stair Step Ashtray
     From first light to the last ash, smoke in style with the XIKAR Stair Step Ashtray. This unique stair step notch design ensures that your freshly lit cigar doesn’t fall down into the ash prematurely, and that tasty smoke you burn down to the nub has a rightful place to breathe until the last puff.

     Perfect for the patio, smoking room or man cave! Fits 5 cigars and is available in white or black. 

Upcoming XIKAR Events

     There are a lot of great events across the country for you to check out. Here are a few coming up from our XIKAR retailers.  
11/23 Emerson’s Cigars 
in Virginia Beach, VA 11 a.m.- 3 p.m.

11/23 Cigar Warehouse
in Plano, TX 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.


11/28 Goodfellas Cigar Lounge 
in Mahtomedi, MN 5-8 p.m.

11/29 Finck’s Cigar Company
in Helotes, TX 4-7 p.m.
11/30 Fufiokas Wine Times
in Honolulu, HI 6-9 p.m.
11/30 Liquid Smoke/The Humidor
in Murfreesboro, TN 4-8 p.m.
12/1 Stag Tobacconist
in Colorado Springs, CO 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
12/5 Metro Cigar
in Germantown, WI 4-8 p.m.
12/5 Tobacco Junction
in McGregor, TX 7-10 p.m.
12/6 Emerson’s Holiday Open House
Event in VA Beach, VA
12/6 Jerry’s Cigars
in Tucson, AZ 3-6 p.m.
12/7 Humidor Pipe Shop
in Huntsville, AL 1-6 p.m.
12/8 Cigar Studio “57”
in Cumming, GA 2-6 p.m.
12/8 Briar Shoppe
in Houston, TX 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
12/8 Cigar! Cigar! Christmas Party
in Sugarland, TX
12/11 John B. Hayes Tobacconist
in Fairfax, VA 5-8 p.m.
12/13 Emerson’s Cigars
in VA Beach, VA 12-8 p.m.
12/13 Grand River Cigar
in Grand Rapids, MI 4-8 p.m.
12/13 Finck’s Cigar Company
in San Antonio, TX 4-8 p.m.

12/14 The Cigar Shop
in Biloxi, MS 12-9 p.m.
12/14 Cigar Warehouse
in Plano, TX 10 a.m.- 9 p.m.
12/14 Tobacco Plaza
in Great Neck, NY
12/15 CI Superstore Holiday Sale
in Bethlehem, PA
12/16 Tobacco Road
in Arlington, TX 12-4 p.m.
12/21 Don’s Cigars
in Phoenix, AZ 11 a.m.- 6 p.m. 
Happy Birthday Scott!
     XIKAR Co-Founder and CDO, Scott Almsberger celebrated his birthday at a Halloween-themed event in San Antonio, TX at Club Humidor. The turnout was awesome and they even surprised him with a XIKAR birthday cake. Thanks Club Humidor


Custom Travel Case for Rush Guitarist

     Below is a custom travel case we designed for Alex Lifeson, the guitarist for Rush. Alex had the travel case sitting on stage with him at the concert he played in New York City where Ron Melendi from De La Concha presented it to him.

Be a part of XIKAR Nation! Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to see daily updates of events, pictures and even weekly contests to win XIKAR swag! 

XIKAR PRODUCT REVIEWS
 
XIKAR Accessories by CigarBunch
Watch full review

Xi Cutters with Lighters Direct
Watch full review


Tech Lighters with Lighters Direct
Watch full review


Xi2 Cutter with The Cigar Crook
Watch full review

XIKAR For Life Hall of Fame

     The XIKAR For Life Hall of Fame Award is designed to recognize an individual who has demonstrated exceptional support and commitment of the XIKAR organization. Nominees are selected based on their affiliation with XIKAR plus their passion and commitment for the cigar industry.

XIKAR FOR LIFE HALL OF FAME MEMBERS
Carolee Martin
Fraser Monk
Jeff McDowell
Robbie Morton
Daniel Dwyer
Jay Bitzer
Michael “Moe” O’Donovan
 

Each year, four individuals are inducted into the XIKAR Hall of Fame. The next inductee will be announced in December. All retailers and consumers can submit their nominees to XIKAR at info@xikar.com

 

Manliest Meal Winner: 
Congratulations to the winner of an X8 Carbon Fiber Cutter, Russ Page! He sent in the manliest meal celebrating National Men Make Dinner Day on November 1st!
Here is Russ Page’s winning entry:
“Beef Stew? More like MEAT EXPLOSION!!! I have had this crock filled with the best potatoes, babiest of carrots, stalkiest of the celery, some of the rarest cuts of beef, and strips of smoked bacon. Did I mention I paired the beef with VENISON CHUNKS!?!? I did. That is not a regular sized spoon you see, it is Thor's Hammer melting into the stew after he was defeated by the overbearingly manly aroma that exudes from this primal crock. But seriously it’s delicious.”


Here are a couple other great entries...

James Miller

George Krichbaum Jr.

 
     Tis’ the season XIKAR Nation! Send us a picture of you getting into the holiday spirit to info@xikar.com. Dress up as Santa, cook up a storm, stand out in the snow (or under a mistletoe), give XIKAR as presents, etc. It doesn’t matter what holiday you are celebrating, the possibilities are endless so don’t be afraid to get creative!  Always remember, it doesn’t hurt to incorporate XIKAR into your entry (hint, hint). Our favorite entry will receive the perfect present of a 5ct Travel Case and red Executive II lighter. All entries must be submitted by December 19th 11:59 p.m. CST. The winner will be announced December 20th in our next newsletter and on Facebook/Twitter.
Copyright © 2012 reserved.
Our mailing address is:
PO Box 025757, Kansas City, MO 64102
info@xikar.com
866-676-7380

October 2012 Newsletter

 

 

October 2012
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Kurt's Corner

 
     I wonder why Merriam-Webster struggled to define excellence:  “A quality of being excellent, eminently good, first-class, great worth, of exalted merit, a virtue.” Perhaps Webster didn’t play sports as a boy.
 
Sports act as life’s coach, teaching by example and training such important qualities as discipline, hard work, team work, persistence and of course success and failure.  We so celebrate sports teams and heroes for their excellence – that almost any fan could tell Webster what excellence looks like.
 
Sports also conditions and prepares us for the much harder work of the mind.  Excellence isn’t easy.  It isn’t lazy or complacent.  It isn’t “good enough”.  It requires all of the same attributes of the sports hero, but on the fields of our thoughts.  Excellence demands a high level of mastery over our minds -- that may be attuned to entertainment rather than prone to action.
 
I find it rewarding that like sports, life rewards effort, or the attempt at excellence.  “I've always tried to do my best on the ball field. I can't do any more than that. I always try to give one hundred percent; and if my team loses, I come back and give one hundred percent the next day.” Excellence in life is like that: “There is no comparison between that which is lost by not succeeding and that lost by not trying.”   
 
Here at XIKAR, we strive for and reward excellence.  I’ve just rewritten our Mission Statement to memorialize this: “XIKAR is an innovation company whose mission is to create innovative and excellent product combined with exceptional customer experience.  Our goal is to be great at our mission, and achieve our potential through the highest capabilities of our people, enhancing and developing those along the way.”  Thank you for supporting us in that!

 
Kurt Van Keppel
President & Founder
XIKAR, Inc.
New Room101 OSOK Xi1 cutter and EXII lighter!
     Room101 is the luxury lifestyle brand for those who demand quality with an edge. Together, XIKAR and Matt Booth demand quality and design and Matt’s Room101 Brand is now captured in an inspired collection with both style and Asian influence.

     OSOK which is short for “One Shot, One Kill”, is a collaboration between Matt Booth and photographer Edgar Hoill, who gets his nickname “One Shot One Kill” from his ability to capture breathtaking photographs with one “shot”. The OSOK EXII lighter is a single windproof flame design that makes this lighter the perfect cigar tool for any cigar enthusiast. The OSOK design gives this lighter the final creative touch, making it the perfect lighter to complement your classic OSOK Xi1 cutter.

 

XIKAR U: How to light your cigar with a Triple Jet Flame

     Sit down with XIKAR President and Co Founder, Kurt Van Keppel as he demonstrates how to properly light your cigar with a triple jet flame lighter without damaging your cigar.

If you are new to this hobby, you can visit TobacconistUniversity.com to learn how to properly cut, light, smoke or store your cigars. 
Read more at
Featured Product:
Ashtray Can
     Our Ashtray Can is the perfect cigar accessory for the smoker on the go. Its stainless steel construction fits into cup holders and consoles of most cars, motorcycles, boats, RVs, golf carts, etc. The ring and spiral secure cigars and cigarettes with a deep reservoir for ashes. This handy accessory is complete with an easy slide-on lid keeping all ashes and odors contained.

Upcoming XIKAR Events

     There are a lot of great events across the country this fall for you to check out. Here are a few coming up from our XIKAR retailers.  
10/25 Havana Jim in Allen, TX 5-8 p.m.

10/26 Cigar Time in Missouri, TX 6-9 p.m.
11/1 Club Humidor in San Antonio, TX 4-8 p.m.

11/3 Sabor-Havana Doral in Doral, FL 12 p.m.

11/3 CI- Hamburg new store opening
10 a.m.-10 p.m.


11/3 Gatlin-Burlier in Gatlinburg, TN 1-4 p.m.

11/7 Indy Cigar Bar in Indianapolis, IN
5-10 p.m.


11/10 Outlaw Cigar in Overland Park, KS
10 a.m.-10 p.m.
*|END:IF|* 
*|IF:ARCHIVE_PAGE|*
11/13 Royal 10 Cigar & Tobacco in N. Royalton, OH 4-8 p.m.

11/16 Heroes and Legacies in Austin, TX 12- close

11/16 Allegheny Smoke Works in Blawnox, PA 4-8 p.m.

11/17 PJ’s Plus in Oxford, MS 5-10 p.m.

11/17 Finck Cigar Company in San Antonio, TX 9 a.m.- 7 p.m.

11/17 Tobacco World in Marietta, GA 12-8 p.m.

11/23 Emerson’s Cigars in Virginia Beach, VA 11 a.m.- 3 p.m.

11/28 Goodfellas Cigar Lounge in Mahtomedi, MN 5-8 p.m.
*|END:IF|*
XIKAR &
En Fuego Tobacco Shop raise Autism Awareness!
      Autism affects one out of every 88 children and continues to increase.  More children this year will be diagnosed with Autism than AIDS, diabetes and cancer combined. Autism receives less than 5% of the research funding of many less prevalent childhood diseases. These shocking statistics show that autism is an epidemic and needs continual awareness and support.

     En Fuego Tobacco Shop's Annual Golf Tournament raised over $24,000 for the nonPareil institute in 2011 and this year was also a huge success. "Though, there are still many questions not answered about this disability, our partnership with nonPareil has helped make great strides in taking kids that the world has written off and turning them into contributing members of society," Lee Moore, owner of En Fuego Tobacco Shop said.
      This year's tournament was held October 22, 2012 at El Dorado Country Club in McKinney, TX. A dinner was held Sunday night with a live auction and Dallas Mavericks GM Donnie Nelson as a special guest speaker. nonPareil put on an awesome presentation showcasing their students' outstanding work in game/video making. XIKAR was the title sponsor and also raised $700 with a "Beat the XIKAR Girl" promotion on hole 5 with Marketing Coordinator, Kaitlyn hitting shots against all of the guys. This organization is very close to XIKAR's heart so we ask that you join in the fight to help support, autism education, awareness, advocacy, research and most importantly, enable us to assist children and families living with autism. Check out Autism Speaks or Autism Society to get involved.



XIKAR Product Reviews

Ultra Lighter/Cutter Combo
by CI
Watch the review here

 


VX V-Cutter by Cigarapolis
Read review here

VX V-Cutter Thread on Cigar Geeks
Read thread here



Travel Case by Hemingway’s Foyer
Read review here

XIKAR For Life Hall of Fame

     The XIKAR For Life Hall of Fame Award is designed to recognize an individual who has demonstrated exceptional support and commitment of the XIKAR organization. Nominees are selected based on their affiliation with XIKAR plus their passion and commitment for the cigar industry.

XIKAR FOR LIFE HALL OF FAME MEMBERS
Carolee Martin
Fraser Monk
Jeff McDowell
Robbie Morton
Daniel Dwyer
Michael “Moe” O’Donovan
 

Each year, four individuals are inducted into the XIKAR Hall of Fame. The next inductee will be announced in December. All retailers and consumers can submit their nominees to XIKAR at info@xikar.com

To see all of the pictures from the En Fuego Golf Tournament benefitting the nonPareil Institute, go to our Facebook page. 
Oktoberfest Contest Winner: Congratulations to the winner of a Ultra lighter/cutter combo, Dave Richards! He had the best picture showing his Oktoberfest celebration incorporating XIKAR!  

Here are a couple other great entries...

     November has two very important holidays that need to be recognized—National Men Make Dinner Day on the 1st and National Sandwich Day on the 3rd (we did not make these up, people). Send us a picture of the ultimate manly sandwich/meal to info@xikar.com. Put on that masculine apron and smother everything in bacon!  Always remember, it doesn’t hurt to incorporate XIKAR into your entry (hint, hint). Our favorite entry will receive the X8 Carbon Fiber Cutter—tough enough to handle your 64 ring gauge sticks! All entries must be submitted by November 19th 11:59 p.m. CST. The winner will be announced November 20th in our next newsletter and on Facebook/Twitter.

     Be a part of XIKAR Nation! Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to see daily updates of events, pictures and even weekly contests to win XIKAR swag! 

 

 
 





 

 
Copyright © 2012 reserved.

Our mailing address is:

PO Box 025757, Kansas City, MO 64102
info@xikar.com
866-676-7380

How to Light with a Triple Jet Flame Lighter

Do you prefer a single, double or triple jet flame when lighting up a stick? XIKAR President and Co-Founder Kurt Van Keppel demonstrates how to properly light a cigar with a triple jet flame lighter.

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