Crowned Heads and Jon Huber seem to be everywhere these days. Fresh off the release of the Las Calaveras, Crowned Heads introduced The Angel's Anvil in June of this year. The Angel's Anvil is a TAA Exclusive (Tobacconist Association of America), so it's only available at TAA shops.
There was a lot of buzz around this cigar when it was announced and a lot of that buzz centered around the name. Our good friend Cigar-Coop gives a nice overview of the of the Angel's Anvil and the TAA here.
The Angel's Anvil TAA Exclusive
Size: 7 1/4 x 49
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Havana
Cigars smoked for review: 2
Smoke Time: Approximately 2 hours
Cigars for this review were purchased by RobbyRas
Quick Note: For this review we used the CigarFederation rating system. You can view it in detail here.
Pre-Light: The Angel's Anvil sports an Ecuadorian Havana wrapper which gives the cigar a semi-rugged look. The wrapper had some veins and rough patches and gave off notes of warm spice, wood and earth. The cold draw was perfect and confirmed the presence of that warm spice along with notes of sweet tobacco and dried stone fruit (prune-ish).
Beginning: Things got off to a very smooth (and somewhat mild) start. The flavor profile started off with a chewy molasses note along with some leather and mild cedar. As I progressed through the first inch, a mild baking spice showed up. This was a nondescript spice at first, but it would become more pronounced a bit later. The first few inches of the Angel's Anvil offered nice flavor and balance to go along with mild strength
Middle: Any and all molasses died away as I reached the two-inch mark. This is where things got a bit more spicy. At this point the Allspice note was joined by a cinnamon spice while the leather and cedar notes took a back seat. The spice showed up on the retrohale for the first time and settled on the tongue. The finish lingered with baked sweetness similar to that of a sugar cookie, but not very strong. The middle portion of the Angel's Anvil was fantastic as it feature tons of flavor and the strength kicked up to a steady medium.
End: The final few inches took me by surprise with yet another transition. The spice picked up again and transformed from a baking spice into a green bell pepper spice. The sweetness "baked" sweetness died away completely while the leather note became more prominent. This was a curveball, but I'm a baseball fan and I love a good breaking pitch. Each puff was spicy green bell pepper up front and smooth leather on the finish. It was a very unique flavor combo that may not sound appetizing, but was rather enjoyable. The strength stayed at a solid medium.
Final Thoughts: What a ride! When I fired up the Angel's Anvil I was surprised how mild it was. As the show went on I was treated to several flavor transition and an uptick in strength. I have been a fan of Crowned Heads since day one. The Las Calaveras was the first CH release that I didn't love, so I was hopeful that the Angel's Anvil would be in my wheelhouse. I had high expectations and they were met. I loved the flavor profile and all its changes. The smooth and mild start followed by the uptick in spice and strength was masterfully executed and the uniqueness of flavor was a welcome surprise. With that being said, I am not a huge fan of the Churchill size and the MSRP of $10.50 can be cost prohibitive for some. While the smoke time of 2 hours justifies the price point, if I were given the choice, I'd prefer to see it in a simple robusto.
Score: 93 AKA Box Split
The Angel's Anvil falls right between a Box Buy and a Box Split. I completely enjoyed the originality and performance of this cigar and I will be purchasing more. The production of the Angel's Anvil is limited to 1,000 20-count boxes, so I can't completely rule out a box buy.