The Tatuaje Skinny Drac is the fourth vitola based on the Tatuaje Drac blend, which in 2009 became the second installment of the Tatuaje Monsters Series. The Skinny Drac was originally released as one of ten cigars included in the Tatuaje Skinny Monsters collection. Skinny Monsters is a sampler of 6 x 38 petite lanceros based on the first ten Tatuaje Monster Series blends. Since 2008, the Tatuaje Monsters Series has been an annual release right before Halloween. For each installment of the series, a different blend with a different large-size pays homage to a monster / horror movie character. There have been several offshoots consisting of different size variations, by which the Skinny Monsters collection is one of them. Recently I’ve had an opportunity to smoke the new Tatuaje Skinny Drac. Overall while I haven’t found the Drac blend to be one of the upper echelon ones in the various Monsters Collections, I have found it to be a steady performer and the Skinny Drac falls into that category.
As mentioned, while the Monsters Series remains an annual release, there have been several off-shoot sampler releases, one of which is the Tatuaje Skinny Monsters series. With the exception of the original Monsters Series, all have been made available in sampler packs. Each of the collections are (or have been) limited in production. Here is some further details:
- Monster Series: Released annually (usually around Halloween) since 2008. These have been Double Corona or Churchill sizes.
- Little Monsters: Released in 2012, these are shorter, thinner versions of the first five Monster releases from 2008 to 2012. The sampler includes two cigars per blend. The Mini Mum was the little version of the Tatuaje Mummy and is the only case in any Monster Series collection where one of the offshoot sizes was released before the full monster sized vitola.
- Pudgy Monsters: Released in 2014, these cigars are the same length of the Little Monsters and same ring gauge of the original Monsters. This collection introduced two new monsters not previously released before, Chuck and Tiff. Each sampler contains two Chuck and two Tiff cigars as well as one Pudgy size for each of the Monster Blends released from 2008 to 2013.
- Skinny Monsters: Released this year, this includes one 6 x 38 petite lancero of each of the first eight full monster releases as well as 6 x 38 versions of the Chuck and Tiff. At this year’s IPCPR each of the Skinny Monsters were made available in 25 count boxes consisting of a single blend.
- Skinny Monsters Cazadores Edition: This includes a 6 3/4 x 43 vitola of each of the first eight full monster releases as well as 6 3/4 x 43 versions of the Chuck and Tiff. This format was introduced at the 2016 IPCPR Trade Show.
- Skinny Monsters Lancero Edition: This includes a 7 1/2 x 38 lancero of each of the first eight full monster releases as well as 7 1/2 x 38 versions of the Chuck and Tiff. This format was introduced at the 2016 IPCPR Trade Show.
The Tatuaje Drac is one of five blends that is included in each of the six Monster series collections. The other four are: Frank, Face, Wolf, and Mummy. The recently announced Tatuaje – The Krueger has only been made available in a full Monster size.
The grid below maps each monster / horror film character blend to the cigar that was released in each of the Monster Series collections. A blank indicates the blend was not released in that collection.
(The +) -Annual
|Little Monsters – 2012
||Pudgy Monsters||Skinny Monsters||Skinny Monsters
|Frankenstein (2008)||Frank||Frank Jr.||Frank||Frank||Frank||Frank|
|Dracula (2009)||Drac||Lil’ Drac||Drac||Drac||Drac||Drac|
|Leather Face (2010)||Face||Baby Face||Face||Face||Face||Face|
|The Wolfman (2011)||Wolfman||Wolfie||Wolf||Wolf||Wolf||Wolf|
|The Mummy (2012)||Mummy||Mini Mum||Mummy||Mummy||Mummy||Mummy|
|Jason Voorhees (2013)||JV13||Jason||Jason||Jason||Jason|
|Dr. Jekyll (2014)||Jekyll||Jekyll||Jekyll||Jekyll|
|Mr. Hyde (2015)||Hyde||Hyde||Hyde||Hyde|
|Chuck (Child’s Play)||Chuck||Chuck||Chuck||Chuck|
|Tiff (Child’s Play)||Tiff||Tiff||Tiff||Tiff|
|Freddy Krueger (2016)||Krueger|
Without further ado, let’s break down the Tatuaje Skinny Drac and see what this cigar brings to the table.
The Skinny Drac uses the same blend as the original Tatuaje – The Drac. As with just about all Tatuaje Cigars these are made by the Garcia family of My Father Cigars. The Drac blend along with the Chuck blend are the two Monsters blend that use an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, but with the case of the Drac it is a maduro.
Wrapper: Habano Ecuador Maduro
Country of Origin: Nicaragua (My Father Cigars SA)
With the new Cazadores and Lancero line extensions, it brings the total number of vitolas using the Drac blend to six.
* Showcased at the 2016 IPCPR Trade Show, wider distribution coming soon
As mentioned, in addition to being a part of the Skinny Monsters sampler, the Skinny Drac has also been made available in 25 count boxes:
The Ecuadorian Habano Maduro wrapper of the Skinny Drac has a dark chocolate color to it. There is a light coating of oil on the surface. There were some thin visible veins and thin wrapper seams. Overall I found the Skinny Drac to have one of the smoother wrappers among the ten installments of the Skinny Monsters.
There is one big change with the Skinny Drac compared to the previous other vitolas released in this blend. It is the first one that is not a torpedo as this one is a rounded petite lancero.
The band of the Tatuaje Skinny Drac features red font on a black background. To the left of the “Tatuaje” scripting is the text “SKINNY” in the a gothic style red font. To the right of the scripting” it says “MONSTERS” – also in red font. To the far right is a red Tatuaje “Tattoo” stamp. The band is finished with a red pinstripe across the top and bottom.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Prior to lighting up the Tatuaje Skinny Drac, I clipped the cap with a straight cut and commenced with the pre-light draw. The dry draw delivered a mix of chocolate, earth, and a slight cedar note. Overall I considered the pre-light draw experience of this cigar to be satisfactory. At this point I was ready to light up the Tatuaje Skinny Drac and move on to the smoking phase.
The Tatuaje Skinny Drac kicked off with some notes of black pepper, earth, chocolate, and a slight maduro sweetness (a cross of natural tobacco and some cherry notes). Early on the chocolate notes moved into the forefront. Meanwhile the pepper, earth, and maduro sweetness took to the background. I also picked up an additional layer of assorted pepper spices on the retro-hale.
As the Skinny Drac moved through the first third, I found the maduro sweetness increased and midway through the first third, it made its way into the forefront joining the chocolate notes. From this point, the chocolate and maduro sweetness alternated in intensity. Meanwhile the pepper and earth notes remained in the background.
By the midway point, the maduro sweetness took over as the primary note with the chocolate receding into the background. The pepper spices started to increase in intensity and changed from a black pepper note to more of a potpourri of pepper spices. During the last third, the pepper was now a close secondary note. The earth notes were also present. This is the way the flavor profile of the Skinny Drac held until the end. The resulting nub was cool in temperature and had a slight softness on the touch.
Burn and Draw
Overall the Tatuaje Skinny Drac had a low maintenance burn. The cigar maintained both a straight burn path and had a straight burn line from start to finish. This was a cigar that didn’t require an excessive amount of touch-ups. The resulting ash was firm with a mostly light gray in color. Meanwhile the Skinny Drac maintained an ideal burn rate and ideal burn temperature.
The draw of the Tatuaje Skinny Drac also scored nice. This was a draw that was not too tight, nor was it too loose. This was a low maintenance cigar to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
I was a little surprised, but I found the Skinny Drac to be a little more dialed back than its sibling Lil Drac and Pudgy Drac counterparts. I assessed the Skinny Drac as a medium strength, medium-bodied cigar from start to finish. There was a slight increase in intensity of strength and body, but overall the cigar still kept its medium profile. In terms of strength versus body, I found both attributes maintained an equilibrium with neither attribute overshadowing the other.
Back when I smoked the Lil Drac and Pudgy Drac, I commented on how those vitolas demonstrated some very un-Nicaraguan tobacco qualities despite the fact that this blend has a binder and filler from Nicaragua. With the Skinny Drac, while I found some overlap with the notes produced from its sibling vitolas, but found this cigar had more of a classic Nicaraguan profile. That being said, this is a good cigar, but as I said upfront, it’s not a cigar I’d put in the upper echelon of the Monsters Series. It’s still a cigar I’d recommend to either the novice or experienced cigar enthusiast. As for myself, I’d still smoke this again – and it’s worthy of purchasing a fiver.
Finish: Very Good
Assessment: 3.0-The Fiver