Cigar Review: The Angel’s Anvil 2017 by Crowned Heads

  • Anvil2017_straightVitola: Toro
  • 6.25” x 52 ring gauge 
  • $11.99
  • Purchased at Burns Tobacconist

Background

Crowned Heads has released its fourth installment in The Angel’s Anvil series of cigars, which they make as an exclusive for Tobacconist Association of America member stores. Each year they release a different size and different blend…really the only thing in common from year to year is the name of the blend and the fact that they are produced in Tabacalera La Alianza, Ernesto Perez-Carrillo Jr.’s factory in the Dominican Republic. (And to be totally accurate, the 2017 is the same size as the 2015.)

The blend has not been disclosed really at all this year, except to say that the wrapper is Habano…which isn’t saying a whole lot since it still doesn’t specify a country of origin. If we go by history of EPC cigars made for Crowned Heads, it’s safe to say the the fillers are probably Nicaraguan and the binder is most likely the same (though Sumatran has been used before in a couple instances). EPC has commonly used Ecuadorian Habano wrapper leaves, so that would sound safe, as well…though who knows. Any of these things could be wrong.

I smoked one sample of Angel’s Anvil 2017 before this review sample; I bought both at Burns Tobacconist. Credit for some factual information above goes to Cigar Coop and his news story on this item.

Prelight

Each year, the band design of The Angel’s Anvil is almost exactly the same as the year before…with just the date and the color scheme changed. For 2014, they had a cream background, with blue and gold on it. The 2015 used black and cream background with red and gold foreground elements. The 2016 used white background with gold and red. This year is almost identical to the look of the original, except it uses black instead of blue.

The wrapper leaf was a peanut butter color with a little darker smudging and mottling. Honestly, it looks a lot like the 2014 version, though in a totally different size. It did have a nice, smooth, oily feel under my fingertips and a potent earthiness to my nose. The foot of the stogie had a rich mix of cedar, hay and earth aromas to it.

After clipping, the cold draw was very good and had flavors of molasses and hay.

Anvil2017_angleFlavor

The Anvil 2017 fired up with a mix of earth and cedar taking the lead, sweet hay coming in close behind, and a nice, medium red pepper burn bringing up the rear. As I made my way through the first third, I noted a bit of citrus sourness in the mix, which made me think again of the 2014 Anvil.

The second third of the Angel’s Anvil 2017 featured an increase in the citrus notes, both sour and sweet. There was a nice mix of cedar and pepper backing it up and earth was reduced to a small supporting note.

As I made my way through the last third of the cigar there was more pepper spice and less citrus the farther I went. Earth notes came back up in prominence along with a small increase in grassy flavor.

Construction

The draw was fantastic, the ash piled up for close to an inch, and the burn line was very straight with no need for major touching up.

Value

The price increased a bit this year, most likely due to FDA user fees, but it’s still reasonable for a limited release item. With the experience it delivers, I call it decent value.

Conclusions

This blend continues to remind me of the 2014 Angel’s Anvil release. That release didn’t impress me when it came out, but after a few months on the shelf it transformed into something magical. This seems to be residing somewhere in between at the moment. It is very enjoyable, yet it seems like something may be yet to come with a bit more age. I will buy more of these in the coming months and see if that comes to fruition. Could be that this cigar deserves a revisit before the year is over. Even if it doesn’t improve, though, it’s still a very good cigar that deserves your consideration.

By-The-Numbers

Prelight: 2/2
Construction: 2/2
Flavor: 4/5
Value: 1/1
Total: 9/10

David Jones

David has been smoking premium cigars since 2001. He is co-founder and editor-in-chief of Leaf Enthusiast. He is a full-time retail tobacconist, working for Burns Tobacconist in Chattanooga, where he has also organized the Chattanooga Tweet-Up for the last four years. He is also an independent graphic designer and typesetter. Twitter: @dmjones1009

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