When Justin Horst opened the Coast Cigar Company, he wanted to create a relaxing space in Jackson County where cigar aficionados could do more than just buy a cigar.
As Horst describes it, Coast Cigar Company is the type of place where cigar lovers gather to build camaraderie over their niche hobby, and it all starts by just staying awhile to enjoy your favorite cigar.
“At the end of that cigar, you have 12 new friends you didn’t have before,” Horst said. Along with a new crew of cohorts, customers of Coast Cigar are faced with a daunting selection of 60 different types of premium, hand-rolled cigars, from small boutique names to big brands. Once you’ve selected that cigar, you can pair it with one of the 25 craft beers available on site–or just a cup of coffee or an energy drink if beer isn’t your thing— and watch the game in the store’s 22-seat lounge.
Horst, a graduate of Ocean Springs High School and paramedic of 12 years, started smoking cigars eight years ago through the encouragement of his best friend. His passion for cigars grew to the point where Horst was making a daily trip to a cigar shop in Biloxi, until someone approached him with an idea to open his own shop much closer to home.
The “entertainment district” in Ocean Springs seemed like the perfect fit, Horst said, and the response has been overwhelming. Soon after it opened, Coast Cigar Company joined forces with Crooked Letter Brewery for regular “Whiskey and Sticks” events where attendees enjoy the best of both worlds.
“We haven’t had any negative feedback,” Horst said.
The shop is rapidly outgrowing its space, and Horst continues to add to the list of future improvements: Perfect the humidor, stock more accessories, and bring in more cigar brands and exotic tobaccos.
To Horst, each cigar is a “work of art” with a different story to tell, where the flavor and body of the cigar is influenced by the entire process. The wine or rum barrel where the tobacco is aged, what part of the tobacco plant is used, and even how different tobaccos are blended all work to tell Horst a unique story about each cigar.
“You pick up any type of cigar, and it’s a work of art, so I appreciate it for what it is,” Horst said.
Coast Cigar Shop is located at 2420 Government Street.
For more information about hours of operation or upcoming events, visit httpss://coastcigar.com/.