Review: AVO 25th Anniversary Edition
Introduced at IPCPR 2012, the AVO 25th Anniversary Edition celebrates Avo Uvezian’s quarter of a century in the cigar business. Avo was born into a very musical family and started playing the piano at three years old. Over the years he has enjoyed a very successful career as a composer and pianist. As a nod towards his musical background, Avo has released three cigars that are musically themed. The first being the AVO XO Series, the second being the the La Trompeta, the third being the 25th Anniversary packaged in a humidor that looks like a grand piano.
Here is a picture of the humidor:
The cigars are stored in the body of the piano and the keys slide away to reveal a storage section for your cigar accessories. The humidor even has a high gloss piano finish to really finish out the look.
Now you know the background, so let’s get to the review.
- Cigar Reviewed: AVO 25th Anniversary Edition
- Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
- Factory: O.K. Cigars
- Wrapper: Dominican Criollo Sun Grown
- Binder: Dominican
- Filler: Dominican
- Size: 6 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 52
- Vitola: Toro
- MSRP: $16.00 (Boxes of 25, $400.00)
- Release Date: September 2012
- Number of Cigars Released: 2000 Boxes of 25 Cigars (50,000 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 2
The wrapper is thick and slightly oily with only a couple visible veins and is a very uniform light brown color. Aromas off the foot are grassy, cinnamon, and gingerbread. The pre-draw notes are grassy, gingerbread and a touch of pepper. It is very firm without any soft spots, but draw is still easy.
The beginning draws of the first third starting out the first third bring a mild and light grassy profile. Dancing around in the background are some light almond and vanilla notes along with a flowery background that matches nicely. Noticeably missing is the peppery bite that I tasted on the pre-draw although it wasn’t something I was expecting much of anyway. The ash in the first half inch is fairly flakey and didn’t look like it was going to hold much past that. Finishing up the first third brings back the cinnamon note I tasted in the pre-draw although the overall grassy profile still dominates.
The second third continues much as the first, which is to say delectably mild. The grassy profile continues although the background notes fade in and out to include the previously noted vanilla, flowery notes, and an occasional bout of white pepper barely peeking through. The brown-grey ash has continued to be a little flakey, although it is holding on better than the first third. I’m having to occasionally touch the cigar up a bit, though that can probably be attributed to the inconsistent storage the cigar has gone through in the past couple weeks due to travel.
The final third has started to get a little harsh, which unfortunately for a cigar with such a delicate profile means that most of the flavors have become muted. It isn’t harsh to the point of being unpleasant or bad, but just enough that it ruins the profile. Ironically, the final third has been the best as far as construction goes with very little flakey ash and no touch-ups required.
- I smoked this cigar in the morning with some coffee and mineral water, however the profile is so delicate that I stopped drinking my coffee so it wouldn’t overshadow the subtle notes. Having said that, I think this is a fantastic morning cigar.
- According to Avo Uvezian’s Wikipedia entry, he has enjoyed a very successful career as a pianist in addition to 25 years in the cigar industry, including being the Shah of Iran’s pianist, studying at Juilliard, and writing songs that contributed to an award winning hit by Frank Sinatra.
- Davidoff bought the rights to distribute AVO Cigars in 1995.
- The samples smoked for this review were given to halfwheel at IPCPR 2012.
- Final smoking time for the cigar was just over two hours.
The Bottom Line: I haven’t smoked an AVO in quite a while, and I’m not entirely sure why. I used to enjoy them regularly, but for some reason they have fallen out of my rotation. This cigar reminded me that I should occasionally enjoy an AVO, especially if I’m looking for a good, mild cigar. The subtle flavors and delicate profile was enjoyable throughout most of the cigar. Unfortunately the mild profile was overwhelmed at the end with some slight harshness that wouldn’t have ruined a fuller bodied cigar. I’m hoping that a few months in the humidor will allow that last third to mellow out and let the cigar shine in its entirety. For now though, I can easily recommend picking up a few to try, as overall it was an enjoyable smoke.
Final Score: 86