I’ll tell you why I love Nashville. There’s music everywhere, more food options than I know what to do with, and at any moment I can bump into Jon Huber and members of the Crowned Heads cigar team.
Jon Huber, who co-founded Crowned Heads in Nashville with Mike Conder, gave me a sneak peak into a very special cigar that will be hitting the shelves in limited vitolas this November (though you may be able to find them now in a very select group of stores) and will be released nationwide after the IPCPR in 2016.
Wrapper: Corojo 99 (Nicaragua)
The Las Mareas, which translates to “The Tide”, is a unique creation from Crowned Heads that was inspired by the surf culture Huber experienced while visiting Hawaii. While they enlist the production expertise of the Garcia family (My Father Cigars) for many of their lines, this is the first time that Huber and team have used wrapper, filler and binder grown by the Garcias from their Namanji Finca family farm a few miles outside of Esteli, Nicaragua.
According to Huber, “What you’re smoking is essentially a preview-of-a-preview-of-a-2016 brand. This week, we selected 7 stores across the US (4 in Nashville, 2 in Texas, 1 in Arizona) to each receive a box of each of the 4 vitolas: 6 1/8 x 46, 4 1/2 x 48, 5 1/2 x 52 and 6 x 54. This November, we’re planning on releasing 10,000 cigars of 2 of the vitolas nationwide—then, come July 2016 we’ll launch all 4 sizes at the IPCPR in Vegas.”
Marketing for the Las Mareas has yet to be finalized, as for now the cigar still brandishes a test blend type label with the name in a simple black font and a plain, unfinished cedar box with the Crowned Heads stamp on the bottom.
I had the pleasure of cracking open one of the 4 1/2 x 48s boxes before they went out to shops and I can honestly say that the overused word “Cubanesque”, that Huber says is thrown around too much, is accurate. When I lit it up, I was blown away by the flavor, and seeing the look on my face, Huber said, “It’s a stout little thing, isn’t it?” This cigar is a no gimmicks stick, just quality. It was old schooled, spicy (but not too much) and balanced…and just enough body to get my attention without making me woozy.
If you have the pleasure of finding a shop that has the Las Mareas, you’re in for a treat. If you’re not, November won’t be able to get here soon enough…and even then there will only be a handful of them to enjoy. So ask around, search #CrownedHeads on social media and get in good with your local Brick and Mortars, because “The Tide” will be rolling through soon and you want to be on it.