In 2014, Crowned Heads announced a new limited edition line known as Las Calaveras. This line was significant because it marked the first time Crowned Heads would produce a cigar outside of Ernesto Perez-Carrillo’s Tabacalera La Alianza factory in the Dominican Republic. For Las Calaveras, Crowned Heads would team up with the Garcia family at My Father Cigars in Nicaragua. Since then Las Calaveras has become an annual release – each with a different blend and different packaging. Today we take a look at the fifth installment of Las Calaveras – the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 in the LC54 (Toro) size.
The name “Las Calaveras” translates to “The Skulls”. It is a line that pays homage to those who have passed away over the past year. As opposed to being a mournful symbol, it is intended to be a celebration of those lives and remembrances of those who are no longer with us.
The following are the releases of Las Calaveras. One significant note is that while each year the blend has changed, the blend has also featured a unique wrapper. There is an Edición Limitada 2019 planned but at press time details have not been disclosed
- Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2014: Ecuadorian Habano Oscuro
- Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2015: Ecuadorian Habano Rosado
- Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2016: Connecticut Broadleaf
- Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2017: Ecuadorian Maduro
- Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018: San Andres Mexican
- Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2019: TBA
Blend and Origin
Wrapper: San Andres Maduro
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Factory: My Father Cigars SA
Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 is offered in three sizes. Each comes in 24-count boxes. A total of 1,700 boxes were produced.
LC46: 5 5/8 x 46
LC50: 5 x 50
LC54: 6 x 54
The Mexican San Andres wrapper of the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54 had a classic chocolate brown color. There was some oil on the surface of the wrapper. The surface of the wrapper was slightly bumpy with some visible veins. The darker color of the wrapper does a nice job a minimizing any visible wrapper seams.
Each year the band of the Las Calaveras changes. For the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018, the band is primarily green in color. On the center of the band is the text “LAS CALAVERAS” in large white font and the text “EDICION LIMITADA” in a smaller gold font. A red and gold ring surrounds the center of the band with a gold crown at the top of the ring. The left and right side of the band has a red pinstriping pattern with two gold medallions on each side.
A straight cut was used to remove the cap of the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54. Once the cap was removed, it was time to commence with the pre-light draw. The cold draw delivered a mix of cream, chocolate, and a slight cedar note. While this was a simple pre-light draw, it was an excellent one. At this point, it was time to light up the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54 and see what the smoking experience would deliver.
The Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54 started out with a mix of red pepper, cedar, chocolate, cream, and natural tobacco. It took a few minutes for a primary note to emerge, but by the midway point, the natural tobacco emerged as a primary note. Meanwhile, the retro-hale delivered an additional layer of red pepper.
During the second third, there was an increase in the chocolate notes. It didn’t take long for these flavors to join the natural tobacco in the forefront. The pepper, cedar, and natural tobacco, remained in the background, however, there was an increase in the pepper past the midway point.
By the last third, the pepper reached the forefront joining the chocolate and natural tobacco. There were still some notes of cedar in the more distant background. By this point, the cream notes dissipated. This is the way the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54 came to a close. The resulting nub was firm to the touch and cool in temperature.
There was some jaggedness on the burn line of the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54, but this was a cigar that had no trouble maintaining a straight burn path and didn’t require excessive touch-ups. The resulting ash was a silvery-gray with some darker speckling in it. This was not an overly firm ash, but it wasn’t loose nor flaky either. As for the burn rate and burn temperature – both were ideal.
The draw of the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54 struck a nice equilibrium of openness and resistance. This was a cigar that produced a nice amount of smoke to it. In the end, this was a cigar where one will have no trouble deriving the flavors from it while smoking.
Strength and Body
The Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54 was a bold cigar. This was a cigar that started out medium to full in strength. There was a slight increase in strength along the way, but in the end, the cigar didn’t cross the threshold to full strength. As for the body, this was also medium to full. Like the strength, the body of the LC54 also increased – however by the last third, the cigar had entered full-bodied territory.
Throughout the smoking experience, the body maintained an edge over the strength.
In terms of the Las Calaveras, series, I found the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2018 LC54 to be the star of the series. On top of that, I personally found this to be one of the best cigars released out of My Father’s Cigars in 2018. This is not your cookie-cutter San Andres wrapped cigar. This cigar has a smoothness early on that becomes a little more rugged toward the end. After releasing the Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2014, the company decided to take it to regular production making it the La Imperiosa. My hope is that this cigar comes back in some way as well. This is a cigar I’d recommend to a more seasoned cigar enthusiast who enjoys a bolder cigar. While this limited edition is getting harder to find, it’s one I’d smoke again – and it earns box worthy consideration.
Key Flavors: Natural Tobacco, Chocolate, Cream, Red Pepper, Cedar
Burn: Very Good
Complexity: Medium Plus
Strength: Medium to Full
Body: Medium to Full (1st 2/3), Full (Remainder)
Finish Very Good
Value: Box Worthy Consideration
News: Crowned Heads Las Calaveras EL 2018 Coming in June
Brand Reference: Crowned Heads
Photo Credit: Cigar Coop, except where noted