Archive for September, 2009
The hype – Arturo Fuente Anejo is one of the world’s rarest cigars. It features a dark maduro wrapper that is aged in cognac barrels. The Fuente name is no stranger to cigar enthusiasts both at the novice and aficionado levels. For generations, they have been producing the best tobacco and the best cigars in the Dominican Republic. After the hugely successful launch of their coveted Opus X cigar, a new idea was born. This idea was for a cigar that uses the very best Dominican filler and binder, but adds a 5-year-old Connecticut maduro wrapper aged in a cognac barrel. The cigar became known as Fuente Anejo (extra Viejo). Fuente Anejo is a full-bodied Dominican cigar with unique aging process that leaves a very distinct finish on the palate. Typically, only available around Fathers Day and Christmas, this cigar is one of the hardest to find and exclusive cigars in the world. While this line features several different sizes, it is also home to one of the world’s most famous shapes, the No. 77 or shark as it is commonly referred to. It was the first torpedo shaped cigar ever rolled so it progresses from a rounded parejo shape to a square press. This size is particularly rare.
The review – I visited the Casa Fuente store in Las Vegas today. Although not as large as my local tobacconist, it definitely has a well-stocked humidor and has an inviting atmosphere that is friendly to smoker and non-smoker alike. I spent way too much money there, but hey when in Vegas…I decided to smoke the Anejo Reserve in their enclosed patio area while waiting to meet some friends. My drink of choice was bud light.
This cigar is simply beautiful, it has a firm feel in hand and smells fantastic, with hints on cognac and aged-tobacco. The cigar lights easily and has a delightful aroma – earthy and nutty while enveloping me in a cloud of earthy goodness. The cigar burns evenly and draws uniformly. The maduro wrapper imparts a unique sweetness to this cigar and definitely gives it a strong taste and mouth-feel. The first few puffs are harsh and take a minute to become accustomed to. After a few minutes, the flavor mellows out beautifully and has a definite sugary overtone, almost like molasses. Like a good woman, this cigar certainly gets better over time. The flavor profile is definitely complex, invoking a blend of nuts, aniseed, coffee, and leather. Ash on this cigar is textbook – firm white and lingering well over an inch and a half. Smoking time exceeded an hour as I sat in the emporium watching the world go by, enjoying the Fuente family’s exquisite craftsmanship. The nub is slightly harsh, but still very enjoyable. Friends whisper that this is the same as an Opus-X. While the Anejo Reserve does taste a lot like the overpriced Opus-X, I think it is actually better and a significantly different flavor profile that warrants keeping a box of these around.