Arturo Fuente Reserva Anejo No. 55

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Arturo Fuente produces many of the quintessential “hard to find” cigars that get snatched up almost as soon as they are released. Most popular among these is the storied Opus X line. However, only slightly less well known is the Anejo line. The Arturo Fuente Reserva Anejo cigars use the same fillers as the Opus X, but feature a Connecticut broadleaf wrapper that is aged for a full year in charred oak cognac barrels. I personally have a special bit of fondness for see sticks, because in my cigar journeys they were the first elusive cigar that I was actually able to add to my collection.

This review focuses on the Arturo Fuente Anejo no. 55, a beautiful 6×55 torpedo. This cigar gives off a very distinctive initial goedkope voetbalshirts aroma, like an earthy wine cellar. These cigars also have an excellent consistency, not a tight pack but perfectly springy. In contrast to their Opus X brethren, the band on these smokes is understated, using a basic Fuente design. That can actually make these difficult to spot at a glance in your B&M. Check carefully if you’re on the hunt!

The Anejo cuts and lights easily. Even before the first draw, smoke production is admirable. Not quite on par with a true smokestack (like the Liga Privada), but still voluminous. First third basketbal kleding kopen is pure elegance. There is lots of wood and spice which melts into a deep flavors of, what else, cognac. Unline many aging gimmicks, the barrels that the Anejo are aged in define this stick from beginning to end.

The second third sees the cognac brighten noticeably, transitioning into a deep red wine complete with pleasant tannin characteristics. The retrohale magnifies this profile, bringing the red wine almost completely to the forefront. Though I paired this with The Glenlivet, I actually wish I would’ve gone with an aged Cabernet, because I believe the synergy would’ve been incredible.

The final third mingles the distinctive cognac and wine flavors of the first and second thirds. The wood also shifts subtly, adding brief bursts of exotic spice. This portion of the cigar tastes like a fresh cut cherrywood plank varnished with wine. The only word here is beautiful, almost feminine in the way the spices play with you.

This cigar is an absolute delight, and stays strong the entire way through. It easily holds its own alongside its more popular Opus X brother, and is in many ways more alluring. This is an easy recommendation, a cigar that deserves to be actively sought out.

Paired with: Glenlivet 12

 

Opus X Fuente Fuente

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Even though I try to live by the mantra “smoke ’em if ya got ’em” there are certain stogies that just beg to be smoked at a special occasion. Therefore, when I recently got a new job doing about exactly what I’ve wanted to do for a few years now, I knew there were just a handful of cigars that would do the trick. Of course, the one that floated right to the top was one of the Arturo Fuente Opus X in the Fuente Fuente vitola that I’d gotten over Christmas. I knew that this was a cigar that has received both tons of praise and claims of being overrated. In addition, at the time of smoking I had only personally aged the stick for a month, far short of the recommended 1+ years recommended by most Fuente aficionados. With excitement (and a slight amount of trepidation), I made my way to the backyard to savor this popular and hard to find stick.

As I’ve now noted several times, appearance is important to me, and the Opus X delivers 100% in this regard. With a beautiful mottled brown wrapper and an incredibly bold red and gold band, the Opus X demands your attention and doesn’t let go. The cigar also gives off a very deep, earthy aroma with some hints of pepper. The cold draw gives more of the same and is perfectly firm. Mouth watering, I get toasting.

At the first puff of the Opus X I am immediately overcome with an amazing variety of flavor. The earth and pepper from the cold draw is there, but I also get cedar and something that vaguely resembles allspice. There are also occasional bursts of very potent red pepper that seem to appear and disappear at random. We’re off to a good start and I am really enjoying the diversity of flavors.

The second third starts off similarly strong but then I faced a little issue resulting in a disproportionate freak out. The Opus X just goes completely out. I humbly submit that this was no fault of my own, and there was no progression. One puff gives off a big cloud of smoke, the next…nothing. Trying not to get too worried, I relight the cigar, and after a few puffs I am back to normal. Whew. The flavors don’t really change too much, but I get more pepper and cayenne makes its appearance here. I am pleased to discover the tasty pops of red pepper continue with their surprising irregularity.

The final third changes fairly substantially for me, dropping the majority of the pepper and wood and offering some rich blonde coffee. This offers a welcome sweetness to the stick and rounds off the diversity with a dessert-like undertone as the sweetness ramps in intensity for the remainder of the cigar. Satisfied, I finally put out this legendary stick.

I will say that, aside from the small blip that required me to relight the cigar, the Opus X performed beautifully. A perfect burn was complemented by ample and fragrant smoke. I sincerely wish that small issue hadn’t arisen, because the Opus would have been a contender for best performing cigar I have yet smoked. Still, these things happen sometimes so I will probably write this off as an irregularity.

To everyone who has held off of their Opus X collection to put a lot of age on it, I say you should try or “fresh.” That being said, I can definitely see how this will get fantastic with some serious age. I will be sure to put up a review when such time comes, but for now I can heartily recommend the Opus X and will definitely be picking these up whenever I get the chance so one day I can hopefully have a substantial Opus rotation.

Paired With: Glenlivet 12