Pete Johnson’s Tatuaje brand is known for its strength and full bodied flavor, but this incarnation of Tatuaje — the Havana VI series — is a mellower creation. Unlike the standard line made in Miami, these are blended and rolled at the Tabacalera Cubana factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. This is the new factory operated by Jose “Don Pepin” Garcia where the mixed filler Tatuaje “Serie P” and some of Ernesto Padilla’s cigars are also made.
This is a Nicaraguan puro with Don Pepin’s trademark Corojo 99 wrapper. Well, it’s not trademarked per se, but I’m quickly coming to believe that this wrapper is what defines a Don Pepin creation. There’s nothing like it, and it’s fantastic.
There are six models of the Tat VI — the first letter of each size forms an anagram of the name of one of Pete Johnson’s dogs, “Havana.” The cigar I’m smoking today is the Nobles size, a classic robusto at 5 inches by a 50 ring gauge. The Havana VI series was released in October of this year and is now becoming easier to find in the cigar shops. (Easier than finding the previous Tatuajes anyway.)
The roll on this Nobles is rock solid. I sheared off the triple-cap and found the draw to be kind of tight, a little tougher than I like. But not anticipating any problems I put it to the torch.
The first third is rather sharp tasting. The smoke is fairly light in body, but very flavorful with lots of black pepper and some wood underneath. The wrapper flavor is not as bold as I anticipated — there’s some of the sweet and bready flavors I expect from Pepin’s corojo 99, but it isn’t as pronounced as I expected. The firm roll results in a slow burn and a solid light gray ash.
The second third gets a bit stronger and the peppery taste gives way to a lighter flavor. It’s still tangy though, something along the lines of ginger maybe, with a moderate finish. The last bit becomes smoother and takes on some cocoa flavor. A very nice finale.
The Havana VI Nobles is a tasty medium bodied cigar with a good deal of complexity. Once again, I am very impressed with the work of Don Pepin and I’m looking forward to sampling more. But apparently my dog is ready to call it a night.