Crowned Heads – The Angel’s Anvil 2019

Since 2014, Crowned Heads has been a part of the exclusive series of cigars made for Tobacconist Association of America (TAA) retailers with its “The Angel’s Anvil” series. Each year the company has released a different blend with different packaging. 2019 was no exception as the company released “The Angel’s Anvil 2019.” Crowned Heads has had a track record of producing some of the most consistent and popular TAA releases and as a result, by the time TAA cigar are announced, it is one of the more sought after releases. Today we take a closer look at this 2019 installment

The TAA Exclusive Series consists of cigars made by leading manufacturers that are exclusively sold at TAA member retailers. The TAA is a small group of retailers. At press time the number of retailers is approximately 80. The TAA has defined itself as:

The Tobacconists’ Association of America, Ltd. is a trade organization established in 1968 by visionary retail tobacconists. By providing education, communication, research, advocacy, and member discount programs, The TAA works with our members and the industry they support to offer the tools and relationship building opportunities needed to maximize professionalism and success.

There are 14 cigars released for 2019 as a part of the TAA Exclusive Series:

The 2019 TAA Exclusive Series

There are six installments to The Angel’s Anvil Series:

We have described the background and story behind The Angel’s Anvil release:

The name “The Angel’s Anvil” is derived from a story of a fallen angel who seeks to find his way back to heaven. During this time, the outcast angel finds a blacksmith who provides him with a hammer and anvil – the tools that can be used to rebuild his wings. As many know, Crowned Heads was formed by a group of four CAO employees who had left the brand after the acquisition by General Cigar Company. The cigar name is an analogy to that story as it is based on the personal experience (the fall and rebirth) of one of the company owners at the time of that acquisition – a company having to rebuild things from the ground up. The name “The Angel’s Anvil” also has the acronym “TAA”.

One other interesting footnote: The name “The Angel’s Anvil” shares the same acronym as the Tobacconist Association of America (i.e. TAA).

Without further ado, let’s break down the Crowned Heads The Angel’s Anvil 2018 and see what this cigar brings to the table.

SPECIFICATIONS

Blend and Origin

As they have done with each release of The Angel’s Anvil, Crowned Heads teams up with long-time partner Ernesto Perez-Carrillo Jr. at Tabacalera La Alianza to produce the 2019 edition. While it’s a familiar factory, it’s a cigar with a wrapper that has not been used in a Crowned Heads release at all – Brazilian Arapiraca. The remainder of the blend uses an Ecuadorian Sumatra binder and Nicaraguan fillers.

Wrapper: Brazilian Arapiraca
Binder: Ecuadorian Sumatra
Filler: Nicaraguan
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory: Tabacalera La Alianza

Vitolas Offered

The Angel’s Anvil 2019 was made available in one size – a 6 1/8 x 50 Toro. The cigars were presented in 20-count boxes.

Appearance

The Brazilian Arapiraca wrapper of The Angel’s Anvil 2019 had a dark roasted espresso bean color. There was not much in the way of oil on the wrapper. The wrapper itself was slightly bumpy. There were some visible veins. As for any significant visible wrapper seams, the dark color of the wrapper did a decent job at hiding them.

There are two bands on The Angel’s Anvil 2019. The primary band to the Crowned Heads Angel’s Anvil 2019 is similar to previous editions, but with a different color scheme. The band itself has a black and silver color scheme. At the center of the band is the black Angel’s Anvil logo consisting of a “T” along with two interlocking letter A’s sitting on a silver background. There is a black colored outer ring surrounding that circle. On the upper part of the ring it says “THE ANGEL’S ANVIL” in silver font – arranged in a curved fashion. Going clockwise is a silver adornment; toward the bottom is the text “TAA-2019” arranged in a curved fashion, and finally, there is another silver adornment. To the left and right of the circular pattern are black medallions and silver adornments on a silver background.

For the first time, The Angel’s Anvil features a secondary band. This is the same secondary band now appearing on many Crowned Heads releases. The band is gold with black font. On the band is the “CROWNED HEADS” name featuring the company’s logo font. Black trim surrounds the text on the upper and lower portion.

PERFORMANCE

Pre-Light Draw

A straight cut was used to remove the cap of The Angel’s Anvil 2019. From that point, it was on to the pre-light draw ritual. The cold draw delivered a mix of chocolate, earth, cedar, and maduro sweetness (a cross of dried fruit and natural tobacco). This was a satisfactory pre-light draw. At this point, it was time to remove the footer band, light up the Crowned Heads Angel’s Anvil 2019 and see what the smoking experience would deliver.

Tasting Notes

The Angel’s Anvil 2019 started out with notes of chocolate, coffee, black pepper, wood, and more maduro sweetness. Early on the chocolate and coffee notes moved to the forefront. Sometimes on cigars with these flavors, I get what I term “mocha fusion”, but in this case, the notes remained separate and distinct The pepper, wood, and maduro sweetness settled in the background. On the retro-hale was an additional layer of mixed pepper.

The coffee and chocolate notes remained in the forefront during the first third of The Angel’s Anvil 2019. As the cigar moved into the second third, there was more of a variation in the intensity levels between both flavor notes. The white pepper was the most prominent of the secondary notes. The wood notes had morphed to a cedar note and it remained more distant in the background with the maduro sweetness.

By the last third, the coffee notes took control as the primary note. The pepper remained the most prominent of the secondary notes with the chocolate, cedar, and maduro sweetness. This is the way the cigar experience of The Angel’s Anvil came to a close. The resulting nub was soft to the touch and cool in temperature.

Burn

The burn of The Angel’s Anvil 2019 performed very well. This cigar, for the most part, maintained a straight burn line and straight burn path from start to finish. The resulting ash was light gray skewed to the firmer side. The burn rate and burn temperature were both ideal.

Burn of the Crowned Heads Angel’s Anvil 2019

Draw

In terms of draw, The Angel’s Anvil 2018 also performed well. This is a cigar that had a touch of resistance making for a very nice draw. This cigar also produced ample amounts of smoke.

Strength and Body

Looking at the six releases of The Angel’s Anvil since 2014, the 2019 edition ranks as the boldest one to date. This is a cigar that is medium to full in strength. The flavors start out medium to full-bodied and by the second half are well entrenched in full territory. In terms of strength versus body, the body maintained the edge throughout the smoking experience.

OVERALL ASSESSMENT

Final Thoughts

A lot of times I find Brazilian Arapiraca wrapper blends to be too pungent for my liking. While there definitely still is some sharp spice, it’s not at the expense of the other flavors. In the end, I found this cigar hit the marks in terms of excellent flavor.

On Cigar Coop our scoring has now been calibrated for a 90 to be the standard of excellence. The Crowned Heads Angel’s Anvil 2019 edition certainly qualifies as such a cigar.  Crowned Heads is a company that has taken their TAA Exclusive releases very seriously – and this an excellent addition to the collection. Given its a bolder cigar, I’d recommend it to a more seasoned cigar enthusiast. As for myself, it’s a cigar I’d smoke again – and it’s one worthy of picking up and smoking again.

Summary

Key Flavors: Chocolate, Coffee, Pepper, Maduro Sweetness, Classic Wood, Cedar
Burn: Excellent
Draw: Excellent
Complexity: Medium Minus
Strength: Medium to Full
Body: Medium to Full (1st Half), Full (Second Half)
Finish: Very Good

Rating

Value: Buy One
Score: 90

References

News: Crowned Heads The Angel’s Anvil 2019 Announced
Price: $11.75
Source: Purchased, Crowned Heads
Brand Reference: Crowned Heads

Photo Credits: Cigar Coop, except where noted