In March 2021, Vintage Rock-A-Feller released a 6 x 52 toro named Art of Magic, an homage to the fact that Kevin Schweitzer, the company’s owner, has been a magician since he was eight-years-old and is also a member of the Society of American Magicians.
According to the company, 5 percent of sales from the limited edition cigars was donated to Phuck Cancer, a GoFundMe started by artist Jessi Flores—who has produced all of the original packaging art used for each of the Art of Magic releases—in order to help pay medical expenses for his daughter, Stephanie Nicole, who has heart issues that complicate the treatment of her kidney cancer.
Blend-wise, the original Art of Magic was made with all AGANORSA tobacco, including a Mexican San Andrés wrapper covering a binder and filler that both use Nicaraguan tobacco. They were rolled at Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A. in Estelí, Nicaragua and were packaged in 10-count boxes with a total of 200 boxes—or 2,000 cigars—produced, which started shipping to retailers in March 2021.
Eight months later, Vintage Rock-A-Feller released a follow-up named Art of Magic Cardician, a 6 x 52 box-pressed toro made with a Cameroon wrapper grown in Ecuador covering Nicaraguan tobaccos used for the binder and filler. This time, the cigars were packaged in a 10-count carton made of cardboard that was designed to replicate a box of playing cards. Each cigar carried a retail price of $16 and only 4,000 cigars were released.
Earlier this year, the company added a third member to the Art of Magic line, a limited edition named Magician’s Wand. The 7 x 44 lonsdale features a Cuban-seed wrapper grown in Brazil, Indonesian binder and fillers from Nicaraguan and the Dominican Republic, with production handled by Tabacalera L&V S.R.L. in the Dominican Republic. Once again, the cigars were packaged in 10-count boxes, with a total of 20,000 cigars released priced at $15 each.
There have been three different Art of Magic releases so far:
- Vintage Rock-A-Feller Limited Edition Art of Magic Toro (6 x 52) — March 2021 — 200 Boxes of 10 Cigars (2,000 Total Cigars)
- Vintage Rock-A-Feller Limited Edition Art of Magic Cardician (6 x 52) — November 2021 — 400 Boxes of 10 Cigars (4,000 Total Cigars)
- Vintage Rock-A-Feller Limited Edition Art of Magic Magician’s Wand (7 x 44) — February 2023 — 2,000 Boxes of 10 Cigars (20,000 T0tal Cigars)
Here is what I wrote in my review of the original Art of Magic back in May 2021:
Although it starts out in a very promising way with flavors of cocoa nibs and dry tea leaves, the Art of Magic’s profile runs into trouble starting around the halfway point when an earth note begins to take over and it is never able to recover. In addition, there are some noticeable issues with the draw being a bit tight on each of the cigars I smoked and I wish there was a bit more sweetness to counteract the significant black pepper that is present on the retrohale throughout the smoke. Having said all of that, the first third is quite good and I am willing to bet a bit of time will tame some of the more pressing issues, and look forward to seeing if that is the case.
- Cigar Reviewed: Vintage Rock-A-Feller Limited Edition Art of Magic Toro
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A.
- Wrapper: Mexico (San Andrés)
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Length: 6 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 52
- Vitola: Toro
- MSRP: $20 (Box of 10, $200)
- Release Date: March 2021
- Number of Cigars Released: 200 Boxes of 10 Cigars (2,000 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Redux: 1
While the extremely dark wrapper color on this Art of Magic Toro is similar to what I saw on the cigars from my original review, the newest cigar features quite a bit more mottling than I remember the first time around. In addition, despite the copious amount of oil that is present, the cigar is sandpaper rough to the touch and extremely hard when squeezed. Aromas from the wrapper include sweet woodiness, creamy leather, gritty earth and light nuttiness along with some generic sweetness. Notes from the foot are more distinct and include strong peanuts, sweet oak, barnyard, dry tea leaves and dark chocolate. After a straight cut, the cold draw brings flavors of espresso beans, creamy earth, leather tack, oak, hay and milk chocolate sweetness.
Almonds and black pepper start off the Vintage Rock-A-Feller limited edition, but it does not take long before flavors of sweet oak and creamy leather soon take over the profile. Secondary notes of earth, dry straw, brewed black coffee, cinnamon and tea leaves flit in and out at various points, while the retrohale features black pepper and milk chocolate sweetness. Flavor ends the first half at a solid medium, the body is at a point just under medium and the strength passes into solid medium territory. In terms of construction, the burn a bit wonky through the first half but never becomes problematic enough to need correcting, while there is more than enough smoke emanating from the foot and the draw gives me just the right amount of resistance.
Sweet oak and toasted bread lead the flavor profile during the second half of the Vintage Rock-A-Feller Limited Edition Art of Magic Toro, followed by additional notes that include dark chocolate, hay, espresso beans, almonds and gritty earth. In addition, there is a bit of new mineral saltiness on my lips that comes and goes, although it is never strong enough to have any significant impact on the profile as a whole. There is also a bit more black pepper and a bit less milk chocolate sweetness on the retrohale, with the latter note continuing to recede as the final third burns down. Flavor ends at medium-plus while the body also hits a solid medium and the strength increases to a point just over the medium mark by the end of the cigar. Finally, the burn needs one quick correction with my lighter to avoid larger issues, although the smoke production and draw both continue along their excellent paths until I put the nub down with less than an inch remaining.
When I first smoked it, my biggest issue with the Vintage Rock-A-Feller Limited Edition Art of Magic Toro was a profile that started out with promise but became noticeably more linear in the second half. After two years of age, the situation has definitely changed for the better, with flavors that have become noticeably more distinct and enjoyable during the latter part of the cigar. Having said that, there is still just not enough sweetness throughout the smoke, and although the draw has improved dramatically, the burn did need to be corrected once in the second third. All in all, the additional aging time has given the Art of Magic Toro at least some of what it needs to be a better cigar overall, and sometimes that is all you can ask for.