I’m numb. The pleasure I just experienced was beyond words. I just sat there after I finished smoking my first Cornelius & Anthony cigar and I couldn’t think of anything but the experience I just had. If sex didn’t exist, the pinnacle of pleasure was mine – all mine. This is a cigar that will not only work its way into the marketplace, but may have a crack at a coup.
“Cornelius & Anthony is the new premium cigar division of the Bailey family’s company portfolio. The company’s owner, Steven Bailey, is the 5th generation to run his family business. The Bailey family has been the largest tobacco grower in Virginia since 1866. The company grows tobacco on 20 thousand acres in Virginia, manufactures cigarettes, manufactures vape products, and has now rounded out their family’s company with a premium cigar division.” (Smith)
Just a little more background, the cigar is made at the El Titan de Bronze factory in Miami. This small factory has become a cathedral where tobacco is not just rolled into cigars with a special blend but has developed into a haven where raw nature is transformed into a product that cannot be found elsewhere. El Titan de Bronze is a safe house where your senses cannot be fooled into cigar chicanery. The cigars that are produced here are sacrosanct.
The Cornelius is the perfect blend of tobaccos – an Ecuadorian habano wrapper and binder, with a Nicaraguan filler – gently brought together to produce the impeccable rush of flavors. The flawless essence of what pure satisfaction can be. And I can’t believe I’m writing these superlative accolades so early in the game. The pre-draw was as delicious as the lit cigar itself. The flood of flavors the instant I put flame to the foot had me in a mellifluous state of astonishment. This can’t be happening. Something has to swerve this newcomer off the road into a horrible, devastating thump. But it didn’t happen. It blossomed into one of the most existential experiences I can remember ever having with an unknown, boutique cigar.
There was charcoal, charred cherry wood, espresso, silken smooth cumulous clouds of aromatic aroma all being produced from the moment it was lighted. The cigar is amazing. How trite that sounds. But if you are familiar with any work by the composer, Philip Glass, listen to Glassworks https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Stu7h7Qup8 (skip the damn commercials) and you may be on the cusp of experiencing this new cigar without ever having the pleasure of smoking it. It lulls you into a place where you never want to leave. It draws you into the moment and hypnotically keeps you there.
There is no bitterness, nothing littered about to take your mind off the luxurious smoking experience at hand. The flavors morph into a mix that complements each individual essence creating a cigar that has to be reckoned with. And will be.
Toward the end of the smoke I did notice a subtle hint of spice and the definite lilt of charred cherry wood, perhaps from a pipe that has aged and sat and with this resting has been allowed to retain its pure natural wood flavor sans impurities once paired with tobacco. How do I know this? I’ve smoked a pipe made of cherry wood and that is exactly what this essence reminded me of.
I know of no other cigar that comes at you with such ferocity yet is as gentle as a lamb as it introduces what I would call one of the best cigars I have ever smoked. And I have smoked many a cigar and none to my recollection has had this effect on me.
When the cigar will be released has not been officially announced. But rest assured that when it appears in your shop take the time to pick one up and put aside an hour or a bit more and be ready for one of the most intoxitating, most memorable smokes you have ever had. And if you’re honest, you will agree with me that this is truth, not conjecture or a guess or a hope or a prayer, or the empty words of a broker trying to sell his wares. It is a fact.
Say the name aloud – Cornelius & Anthony. Repeat it several times so it rolls off your tongue so when you request it at your tobacconist’s store you will walk in with confidence and know that you have found what some may consider the Holy Grail.
I know I’m bleeding all over this cigar, I rep it. But I don’t have to rep it for you to experience it. I won’t have to sell it; the cigar will sell itself over and over again. I am still reeling from what I have just smoked – and you will too.