5 Vegas Series 'A' July 1st, 2005 Gonz Share: a·nom·a·ly, n., deviation or departure from the normal or common order, form, or rule. Let me get it out of the way 'geez Gonz, back to back 5 Vegas reviews???' Well, after my incredible string of good fortune in furthering the supremacy of 5 Vegas (in my mind at least) with my last review of 5 Vegas Gold, I couldn't resist picking up the recently released Series 'A'. I ripped open a bundle as soon as they came off the dock (at the time of this writing, the boxes aren't even ready yet). I was so anxious that I even picked up a size I'm least likely to smoke...a 4.5 x 44 petite corona called Anomaly. It's a sporty looking, dark maduro wrapped cigar individually dressed in cedar from below the band down to the foot. Peel back the cedar to find an impeccably rolled firm cigar with one of the finest maduro wrappers I've ever seen. Kinda like Homer Simpson's infatuation with the rare gummi Venus de Milo, the front of my shirt was soon covered in drool as I nervously fumbled for a cutter and lighter, as I began grunting softly "must light 5 Vegas 'A'....must light 5 Vegas 'A'" I soon fell into a trance-like state. Heart-racing, taste buds singing, I couldn't light this cigar fast enough. Holy cow, a leathery burst of intoxicating deep body quickly lights up your senses. Call this the 5 Vegas 'Wild Side" b/c even on the small size I picked up, the raw full-bodied richness starts with the initial draw and finishes strong with a lingering note of black pepper. Whoa, is it hot in here or is it just me? The surprisingly cool burn of this impressively stuffed cigar proves this is no fly-by-night, I just need a quick cigar fix, cigar. While it'll satisfy any crave and then some, I'm finding myself wanting to enjoy and analyze every puff. Featuring a Costa Rican maduro wrapper that leaves off the occasional sweetness you often get from a Broadleaf Maduro, yet the fullness of body won't overwhelm. I didn't find one speckle of flat flavor here, and in case I haven't hinted at this already, this borders on powerhouse in my book, but thanks to a smooth character that keeps me puffing for more, I've smoked two back-to-back and can still stand up straight in my chair. A beautiful chalky-white ash holds firm and furthers the perfect construction. An inch or so in, the flavor levels and then picks up again about midway through. So back to my definition at the top - the true anomaly is that even this petite corona (code-named Anomaly) I'm smoking feels more like a 50-ring toro than 44 ring petite. After smoking a 1/2 dozen of these, I'm afraid to smoke anything else for my palate has been tainted toward the wild-side, and dammit, I like the wild side. The 5 Vegas Trio is complete in my book - Original, Gold, and 'A'. The 'A' very well could be the best one that was saved for last. Doh, almost forgot to mention that they start at about $2.50 per stick, you betcha, that's no joke. Light'em up.