Wrapper: Dominican Habano Vuelta Arriba
Binder: Dominican Grown Cuban-seed tobacco
Filler: Cuban Seed Dominican and Nicaraguan
Size: 4.875 x 60 Gordo
The Fonseca CXX Anni is a special limited production cigar that made its debut in 2011. Its purpose is to commemorate the 120th anniversary of the brand.
The wrapper is medium brown with some large veins in a couple of places and some little ones that are here and there but unobtrusive. The seams are good and tight. There is a slight oily sheen with some tooth to it. There is a tiny pig-tail on the cap.
I do the sniff-o-rama and detect some strong cocoa and cedar. Intensified greatly at the foot.
I clip the pig tail and light ‘er up.
Right away, I get some sweet cocoa along with a tart citrusy profile. There is a nice wood component as well.
The draw is perfect and so far the burn line is dead nuts. I say that a lot. Never met a live nut. Makes no sense.
The body is a light medium at this point. This is a big cigar in terms of ring gauge and one I usually don’t purchase. But because it is basically a fat boy robusto instead of some behemoth 6” or longer, it is doable for me. I just have to clean the slobber off of my chin now and then.
Because of the dominant cocoa flavor, I grab a Diet Coke so I can enjoy the chocolate phosphate experience.
About an inch in, the cocoa has its own character. Not dark or milky, but rather, like real hot cocoa. The kind of cocoa with a long finish and well balanced.
Some pepper notes show up making me a happy boy. Mild red pepper. The citrusy notes are moving to the forefront as quickly as the cocoa. As the spiciness ramps up, the flavor profile becomes more interesting. They begin to merge which is a good sign that it will become nicely complex.
I take a couple large puffs and then take a swig of the Diet Coke. A huge wash of chocolate soda coats my mouth. Man, that’s good.
Still in the first third, some creaminess shows up which compliments the flavors big time. I’m still not to the second third and it’s been around 40 minutes.
But I do get there.
The ash is hanging tough.
The same flavors are in place as the first third, just more pronounced. But the body is building to a medium/full status.
The char line is becoming erratic. And it doesn’t seem to want to correct itself so I give it some help with my lighter. A small 2 second blast and things are in order.
Getting a bit of a nicotine buzz. 60 ring gauges do that to me as I must ingest more than a smaller gauge, which I prefer. You gotta’ puff a little harder and it draws the tar closer to the cap.
I should note that while I posted a $7 price tag on this stick, it can be had on cbid for $5. There is word on the street that this is a very decent cigar. Plus there are a bountiful amount of stupid bidders.
I am getting close to the halfway point. No new flavors have been introduced. But they are getting more and more refined. The stick is very well balanced. And has a nice long finish.
The most fun I am having is the cocoa puffs and Coke experience.
The last third opens the cigar up. Flavors are exploding now. Like a Pink Floyd laser show. The strength is full bodied plus some.
The red pepper is very strong and making the tip of my tongue tingle. The cocoa and creaminess are working overtime. The zesty, citrus flavor is right behind them.
As the cigar nubs out, there is no harshness or bitterness. All in all, I found this cigar to be very pleasant and a nice surprise from the Fonseca people. It is a well made ode to their founding and I certainly recommend it.
And now for something completely different:
It was my 25th birthday. February 10, 1975.
My band, Curved Air, decided to celebrate by taking me to England’s most famous club, The Marquee. It is the English equivalent to the Whisky A Go Go. I have no recollection of who was playing that night.
All my flat (apartment) friends and the band… plus the band, Renaissance, showed up. I remember hanging out in the lobby with Stewart Copeland (The Police) and our chick singer, Sonja. Stewart pulled out an 8-1/2 x 11 piece of paper that turned out to be blotter paper. A friend of Stew’s sent him a blotter fully engorged in LSD. A piece the size of a dime was a trip.
I told Sonja I didn’t want to do it. She smiled her Cheshire Cat grin and shoved it into my mouth. She told me to down the giant vat sized glasses of ale….it would get the acid off to a good start.
30 minutes later, I was inside where the band was playing. No seats. Everyone stood. The acid hit me like a freight train. I looked over to Sonja and told her I had never gotten this high, this fast, in my life. She smiled again without saying a thing.
After a short while, I begged her to take me out of there and she led me to the lobby where I plotzed on a soft bench in the lobby. She sat with me while the acid did its thing.
3 hours later, I was still sitting there and had no sense of time passing. All my friends and the other band members approached us as the bar was closing and Stew handed out dime sized blotter paper to all.
I was vividly hallucinating and very uncomfortable. I told them I was really high and not to fuck with me….wrong thing to say as they fucked with me relentlessly.
We went outside to the bitter cold of a February English night. Everyone was trying to hail a cab but it seemed useless. I saw a cab on the other side of Piccadilly Circus and screamed, “Taxi!” The driver actually heard me and came for us. My friends all patted me on the back.
We climbed into two cabs and headed back to the communal flat I lived in. Inside the cab, the fuck with Philly’s head, continued. I begged for mercy but got none.
By the time we got to the flat, they were in the same acid land as I was.
OUR FLAT ON THE WEST SIDE OF LONDON
I remember sitting by myself in the living room staring at a poster on the wall, watching it gyrate and melt. I laughed.
One of the girls popped in and asked if this is what acid is really like? I said no. “Usually, it’s not this good.” With that, she ran screaming out of the living room. She decided she needed air and went outside and walked over to the park across the street where she place her head between the wrought iron pickets….completely flying to the outer reaches of the universe.
When she returned, the door was locked and no one could hear her knock. She spent an hour outside, blasted on acid, before someone heard her and let her in. She was crying and then began to vomit from panic. So a small coterie of friends held her head in the toilet. I had none of that as she bragged before taking the acid that she had done this many times before. Apparently, not.
My buddy Skip was in the kitchen following Sonja around while she walked her lemon that she found on the kitchen table.
MILK (YOU KNEW THAT)
Skip, being artistic, had kept all the glass milk bottles that the milk man had placed at our door step. He filled them with colored water at different levels of height. He then placed them on to the stairway to nowhere. We lived in a basement flat that had once been part of a very large house. The door at the top of the stairs had been boarded off.
STAIRS (YOU KNEW THIS TOO)
There was at least 100 glass bottles full of water on those steps.
In front of me and half a dozen people, Stew ran up the stairs without knocking a bottle over. He ran down the same way. Everyone applauded.
Skip was still in the kitchen with Sonja. I yelled for both of them to come see something and I asked Stew to do it again.
In his acid stupor, he had no idea what he was doing…and instead of flying up the stairs, he took a giant leap into midair. He hung there for a Looney Tunes instant, and then gave us a horrified stare, and collapsed on to the bottles breaking all of them.
He emerged without a scratch and received more applause.
Night turned into morning and we were still stoned. Curved Air had a gig that night. Their first of a 6 week tour. So did Renaissance.
Being a bunch of stoneys, we did the gig along with the fun of a few encores. The boys in Renaissance called the gig off. They were pussies. Annie Haslam, the chick singer in the band, did not do drugs. She was furious that they had to cancel an important gig because of an LSD party in my honor.
Each time I saw her after that night, she refused to talk to me, or even look at me, because it was my birthday and therefore my fault her band was a bunch of limp noodles.
It had been a wonderful night of mind expansion, but that was it for me. I had taken very clean acid, not mixed with other drugs, and therefore got a fun trip….except for the stomachache I got sometime in the middle of the night. Being that high, I wasn’t sure if the stomachache was in head. So I went into the very cold bathroom and sat on the toilet. Cold air emitted from my mouth and nose. These old buildings did not have central heat and we had to buy small space heaters. There was none in the bathroom so it was the same temp as outside.
Here is my advice: Never take a dump while on acid. All of my senses fixated on my asshole. Not pleasant. But I did have to go and my stomach felt better afterwards.
I never took LSD again. It was a perfect trip not to be followed by imperfect ones. The missive of the hip….show up late, and leave early.
Now I take Lipitor, blood pressure meds, and pain meds for the horrific skydiving accident I had in 2001.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS