The inaugural Crowned Heads exclusive for members of the Tobacconists’ Association of America (TAA) is heading to stores. The Nashville-based company started shipping to retailers yesterday and says all 1,000 boxes will be shipped by tomorrow.

The Angel’s Anvil, a 7 1/8 x 49 churchill, retails for $10.50 and is rolled at Ernesto Perez-Carrillo Jr.’s Tabacalera La Alianza, S.A. in the Dominican Republic. The blend incorporates Nicaraguan tobacco for both the filler and binder and uses an Ecuadorian Havana wrapper. Only 1,000 boxes of 20 were released.

Crowned Heads co-owner Jon Huber explained the story behind the new brand: a wingless angel befriends a blacksmith to help him create new wings. The story parallels Huber’s time in the cigar business, specifically when his former employer, CAO, was forced to move from Nashville to Richmond, Va. in order to become part of the General Cigar Co. portfolio following the completion of the merger between Swedish Match and Scandinavian Tobacco Group. Huber and Mike Conder, another former CAO employee, started Crowned Heads in 2011.

The TAA consists of just under 80 retailers and 40 manufacturers. Each year, they come together to discuss issues of the cigar industry, partake in a smaller trade show and socialize. This is the second TAA release to be released this week, as the Padrón 1964 TAA Exclusive Belicoso started to show up at retail shops yesterday. Several other manufacturers have created new TAA exclusives this year, including the La Flor Dominicana 707, My Father 2014 TAA ExclusiveH. Upmann Bank NoteTatuaje 2014 TAA and the AVO 2nd Movement.

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Brooks Whittington

I have been smoking cigars for over eight years. A documentary wedding photographer by trade, I spent seven years as a photojournalist for the Dallas Morning News and the Fort Worth Star Telegram. I started the cigar blog SmokingStogie in 2008 after realizing that there was a need for a cigar blog with better photographs and more in-depth information about each release. SmokingStogie quickly became one of the more influential cigar blogs on the internet, known for reviewing preproduction, prerelease, rare, extremely hard-to-find and expensive cigars. I am a co-founder of halfwheel and now serve as an editor for halfwheel.