Agile Cigar Reviews are cigar assessments where we use a lightweight, shorter format. These will never take the place of our comprehensive reviews. They are only used on blends we have previously assessed. This might be a blend we are re-scoring or giving a score for the first time. It might be a blend we are looking at in a different size. Today we look at the Arturo Fuente Don Carlos Eye of the Shark This is a cigar line we previously assessed back in May 2018.
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory: Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia
Vitola: 5 3/4 x 52
Back in 2015, Arturo Fuente Cigars would introduce two limited production cigars that would celebrate a couple of milestones. May 6th of 2015 would mark the 80th birthday of family patriarch Carlos Fuente Sr. At the same time, the company was getting ready to commemorate 40 years of its Don Carlos brand in 2016. Given these milestones, it was no surprise that the company under the Don Carlos brand would commemorate the occasions. The two cigars released were the Arturo Fuente Don Carlos Personal Reserve Robusto and the Arturo Fuente Don Carlos Eye of the Shark. The latter of the two cigars features a unique signature shaped figurado vitola offered by Arturo Fuente known as the “Shark”. Today we take a closer look at the Arturo Fuente Don Carlos Eye of the Shark. It’s a cigar that went on to reach historic levels as it captured Cigar Aficionado’s #1 Cigar of the Year for 2017.
The “Shark” vitola is a unique box-pressed cigar with a rounded belicoso tip. The format was made famous by the Anejo No. 77 Shark. The Don Carlos Eye of the Shark is a 5 3/4 x 52. While it shares a similar shape to the Anejo No. 77, the Eye of the Shark is smaller than the Anejo No. 77 Shark (which measures 5 7/8 x 64) As for the blend, the Don Carlos Eye of the Shark is highlighted by a Cameroon wrapper over a blend of Dominican tobaccos. The cigar itself is a limited production cigar released periodically by Arturo Fuente.
The Eye of the Shark started out with notes of dusty earth, lemon rind, black pepper, and cedar. Early on sweet natural tobacco and nut flavors emerged. The natural tobacco notes moved to the forefront with the dusty earth, lemon rind, black pepper, and cedar rounding out the flavor profile. As the cigar experience progressed there was a slight increase in the cedar and pepper notes. In the second half there was a bitter component that emerged with the natural tobacco.
This time around I found the Eye of the Shark to be bolder than my previous experience. The Eye of the Shark started out medium in strength and body before progressing to medium to full in the second half.
When comparing my experience of the Eye of the Shark this time to my 2018 assessment, I found the two cigars to be in the same wheelhouse flavorwise. The one big difference is that for whatever reason, I found the 2020 cigars that I procured to be bolder than the 2018. The 2020 cigars I smoked only underwent 30 days aging in the Cigar Coop humidor, so that could be why the cigars were bolder this time around. I didn’t find the difference in boldness to change anything positively or negatively. This is still a cigar I could recommend to any cigar enthusiast. As for myself, there was still enough going on with the Eye of the Shark that it’s worthy to buy one and smoke it again.
Key Flavors: Natural Tobacco, Cedar, Lemon Rind, Nut, Black Pepper, Dusty Earth
Complexity: Medium to High
Strength: Medium (1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Body: Medium 1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Finish: Very Good
Value: Buy One
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop