|Tatuaje Tattoo (2014) Caballero|
The Tatuaje Tattoo Caballero is the first vitola that has been released in a new line of cigars by Tatuaje called Tattoo. Tattoo is the English translation for Tatuaje. It actually was also the name of a limited edition box-pressed lancero that was released back in 2011. For the Tatuaje Tattoo this is an all-new blend with the Caballero being a Robusto-sized offering in the line. Plans are for three additional sizes to make their debut by this summer. The attractive thing about this cigar is its affordable $5.00 SRP. However tossing price out of the equation, this is a cigar that I would put up against premium cigars that are two to three times the price. Not only is this exceptional value, but I found this to be an exceptional product.
While Tatuaje Cigars are made by My Father Cigars, this particular cigar is made at Tabacalera Cubana (TACUBA) in Esteli, Nicaragua. TACUBA is a factory owned by the Garcia family. It was opened when the Garcias expanded its operation out of El Rey de los Habanos in Little Havana, but before the construction of the My Father Cigars S.A. factory. TACUBA is still used by the Garcia family today.
Not a lot has been disclosed about this blend other than it uses an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper and Nicaraguan filler.
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Unknown – Not disclosed
As mentioned there are four vitolas that will make up the Tattoo series. At press time only the Caballero has officially been announced. The Caballero is being packaged in 50 count boxes. The name Caballero translates to “gentleman”.
Caballero: 5 x 50
The Tatuaje Tattoo Caballero has a coffee bean brown wrapper. Upon closer examination, some darker marbling can be seen on the surface. The is also a light oil sheen on the Ecuadorian Habano wrapper. The cigar has some visible seams and visible veins. The cigars I smoked had a slight trunk press to it, but I’d still consider it rounded.
The band has a red, gold, black, and white color scheme. The front of the band countains a red circular field. On that field is the black Tatuaje “tattoo stamp” logo with the text “tattoo” draped over it in white font. There is a gold ring surrounding the red field that has a gold rivet-like pattern going around it. On the left and right side is a black stripe sitting on a red rectangle. The text “TATUAJE” in white font sits on that stripe. There is additional gold, white, and black trim going around the band.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
As I normally do, I started with a straight cut to remove the cap. After the cap was clipped, I proceeded to begin with the pre-light draw. The cold draw started with notes of coffee and mocha. As I continued, some spice notes that had a tingling effect emerged. I found the spice increased as I progressed with the cold draw. Overall, I was pleased with the pre-light draw of the Tatuaje Tattoo Cabellero. I was now ready to light up this cigar and see what the overall smoking phase had in store.
The start to the Tatuaje Tattoo Cabellero treated me to a classic Garcia family black pepper blast. Once the pepper subsided notes of mocha and earth entered the equation. The pepper also took on some herbal spice qualities which could also be detected on the retro-hale. As the Tattoo progressed through the first third the earth notes became primary. The mocha and pepper notes receded to the background. There also was a slight citrus quality that provided some sweetness.
In the second third, the spice seemed to creep back into the forefront joining the earth notes. Meanwhile the citrus notes remained subtle in the background and provided a small dose of sweetness.
In the final third, the spice took over as the primary note. The earth, mocha and citrus notes were distant background notes. Toward the final stages of the smoke, the spice was strong, but was not prone to any harshness. The resulting nub was cool in temperature and firm to the touch.
Burn and Draw
From both a burn and draw standpoint, the Tatuaje Tattoo Caballero performed extremely well. The burn line for the most part maintained a straight edge. On the sample used for this assessment, the burn line had a slight angle at the beginning, but straightened out after a touch-up. The resulting ash was tight and firm. The ash also had a white color with some dark speckling mixed in. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.
|Burn of the Tatuaje Tattoo Caballero|
The draw performed very well. I describe it as an open, but not loose draw. Overall I found the Tattoo to be a low maintenance smoke to puff on and derive flavors from.
Strength and Body
I found that the Tatuaje Tattoo Caballero provided a bit of firepower in terms of its strength and body. The strength to the Tattoo remained medium to full for the duration of the cigar experience. In terms of the flavors, they provided some weight on the pallet. The flavors started out medium to full-bodied, but by the second third they entered full-bodied territory – and stayed in that range for the remainder of the smoke. In terms of strength versus body, I gave the body a slight edge.
I mentioned the fact that for a low price or not, the Tatuaje Tattoo Caballero delivers as an excellent smoking experience. In terms of my numerical score, the price is not factored in (our assessment rating which is separate from the score now does incorporate price), however this is as good a $5.00 cigar as I have smoked. This cigar does have a little more in the way of strength and body, so I probably would gear this to a more experienced cigar enthusiast. At the same time for the price, this is a easy choice for a novice looking to graduate to something fuller. While some may be put off for a box purchase because these are in 50 count boxes, some retailers are offering packages with less cigars in it. As a result, in terms of applying our assessment rating, this becomes a box-worthy cigar – assuming you went with 20 cigars. It’s definitely a cigar I’d put in my rotation and smoke again.
Strength: Medium to Full
Body: Medium to Full (1st third), Full (remainder)
Assessment: 4.0 – Box Worthy
News: Tatuaje Announces Tatuaje Tattoo Series
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