The wrapper of the cigar determines its main characteristics. Many cigar manufacturers will use the same blend of filler tobacco with different shades or types of wrappers. This small change has much influence on the flavor, strength, and construction of the cigar.
Lets go over each type of wrapper briefly:
Candela: This wrapper varies from a very light brown all the way to a green color. It provides the cigar with a very mild, sweet flavor that many prefer in cigars that are smoked during daylight. (If you are looking to try a cigar with a Candela wrapper, try one from the Don Tomas Candela line).
Corojo: Also called Colorado or Colorado Red. This wrapper gives the cigar a distinctive spice. These cigars are usually more bold than mild. (If you are looking to try a cigar with a Corojo wrapper, try one from the Perdomo Habano Corojo line).
Maduro: A maduro wrapper is a very dark brown or even black. Maduro tobaccos are almost only used as a wrapper (except in the case of the CAO MX2 and MX3) because they are sure to provide a kick. Common flavors that come from a maduro wrapper are coffee, chocolate, and a little bit of spice. (If you are looking to try a cigar with a maduro wrapper, try a Perdomo Lot 23 Reserve Maduro)
Oscuro: These wrappers come from the part of the tobacco plant that receives the most sun. They are often very strong but can be smooth (and lighter in the case of the Bolivar Cofradia series). The commonly provide a nice chocolately flavor. (If you are looking to try a cigar with an Oscuro wrapper, try a Cohiba Black, or for a cheaper alternative, try a Bolivar Cofradia no. 554)
Maduro and Oscuro wrappers tend to be oily to the touch. If they aren’t, the cigars may be too dry.
How much sunlight the leaves receive, where they are grown, and how long they are fermented all affect the characteristics of the wrappers.
The wrapper of a cigar can also affect the construction. If the wrapper is not fermented properly and humidified evenly, then the cigar wont burn straight or will burn too fast, resulting in unwanted flavors similar to ammonia.
Many cigar manufacturers use a specific technique to test if a wrapper is done fermenting and ready to be used. They will take an already made cigar of known quality and wrap it with one of the leaves of unknown quality. The way it affects the smoothness, strength, and flavor of the cigar will tell the taster if it is ready to be used.