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Stogie Reviews: Tatuaje Black (CRA Exclusive)

21 Oct 2009

Tatuaje Black CRAI don’t like to write a full review based on only one stick, but there are times when it’s unavoidable. Case in point: this Tatuaje Black, which is exclusively available in the sampler for Cigar Rights of America (CRA) members (limit one per member).

Like the original Tatjaue Black, known as Tatuaje founder Pete Johnson’s personal cigar, the CRA Sampler edition of the Black is a Nicaraguan puro, made by Don Pepin Garcia. The most obvious difference between the two is that the CRA version is slightly larger  (6 x 50) than the regular version (5.6 x 46).

The Tatuaje Black CRA edition features a dark and oily (though not particularly shiny) wrapper that is folded over the foot, fuma style. Below the plain black Tatuaje band is a second CRA band that reads “Become a CRA Member – – 818-541-1535” on the side that faces the cigar.

This toro has a delicious pre-light aroma of roasted nuts, a pre-cursor to the roller coaster of flavor that follows.

The profile starts with a burst of heavy leather, followed almost immediately by a strong burst of pepper. Then, about an inch in, it transforms again into a medium- to full-bodied woody combination with some lingering leather. The finish includes  a ramped-up combination of leather, licorice, and earth.

This is an impressively complex cigar, even though it’s not always balanced or particularly nuanced. With so many twists and turns, the Tatuaje Black CRA edition is an immensely interesting smoke.

Thanks to  excellent construction, which leaves those flavor shifts to speak for themselves, the Tatuaje Black CRA Sampler Exclusive earns four and a half stogies out of five.

[To read more cigar reviews, please click here.]

Patrick S

photo credit: CRA

9 Responses to “Stogie Reviews: Tatuaje Black (CRA Exclusive)”

  1. TremendO Wednesday, October 21, 2009 at 11:12 am #

    Glad to see you reviewing and enjoying CRA exclusive smokes. I bought my sampler today…looking forward to trying this and the others–especially that Padrón!

  2. John Brooke - The We Thursday, October 22, 2009 at 3:53 am #

    I wish I had the funds to pick up one of these samplers. Glad you enjoyed it.

  3. Chris V Thursday, October 22, 2009 at 5:52 am #

    Speaking of funds, any info on the cost (and what is included in) this sampler for those of us that are not yet CRA members?

  4. The Stogie Guys Thursday, October 22, 2009 at 6:08 am #


    The 10 cigar sampler is available to CRA members for $90.

    CRA Membership is $35 for a year and you get 2 free cigars if you sign up now (plus the satisfaction of supporting an organization that is fighting to protect our right to enjoy cigars.

    Here are the cigars in the sample:

    <span id="bobcontent1-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">ASHTON VSG</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent1" style="display: block;">Ashton Distributors will offer CRA members a memorable experience using 4-5 year old Dominican tobacco and an Ecuadorian wrapper. Ashton Distributors Vice President Sathya Levin stated, “Ashton is pleased to provide this one-time only presentation of the VSG. For the many fans of the VSG, this should be a great experience.”<img src="; alt="" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent2-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">CAO Lx2 Rosado Especiale</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent2" style="display: block;">This Nicaraguan wrapper, Honduran binder, and fillers from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic make this a signature cigar for CAO , and the members of CRA. Tim Ozgener, President of CAO International noted, “The CAO LX2 Rosado Toro is an extremely limited production cigar made exclusively for the CRA at CAO Fabrica de Tabacos in Danli , Honduras . Featuring a Nicaraguan-grown Rosado wrapper, the cigar boasts a bold, muscular structure layered with flavors of bittersweet chocolate, paprika, and woody tobacco notes. The exquisite Rosado wrapper imparts a pleasant floral note upon the flavor profile, which balances superbly with the three different ligero fillers.”<img src="; alt="" width="573" height="77" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent3-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Casa Fenerandez</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent3" style="display: block;">With a 100% Cuban Corojo Seed from specific farms in the Jalapa Valley and Esteli, Tobacalera Tropical President Paul Palmer pointed to the Café Rosado leaf and tobacco from Aganorsa as attributes of this cigar, which has a medium to full-bodied strength.<img src="; alt="" width="559" height="79" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent4-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Davidoff Avo Classic #2</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent4" style="display: block;">This carefully crafted blend of five different tobaccos results in a rich and mellow flavor. The Cuban Piloto seed, San Vicente filler and binders, blended with Dominican Olor leaves, offers the CRA Avo a special aroma, in this mild, yet flavorful cigar. Davidoff USA President Peter Banninger noted, “We are proud to make this carefully crafted cigar available to the members of CRA. It should prove to be a memorable moment.”<img src="; alt="" width="572" height="77" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent5-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Drew Estate Liga Privada No. 9</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent5" style="display: block;">Through a limited production run with tobacco from seven different farms, Drew Estate's Liga Privada No. 9 is a rich and complex cigar, using a Connecticut Broadleaf #1 darks, Plantation Grown Brazilian Mata Fina and Honduran and Nicaraguan Cuban Seed. Drew Estate President Steve Saka stated, “We are very pleased to offer the cigar that was initially meant to be strictly a private stock cigar, to the members of CRA.”<img src="; alt="" width="557" height="75" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent6-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">General Cigar's Punch – CRA Blend</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent6" style="display: block;">Punch cigars continue to enjoy critical acclaim and a devoted following among tenured smokers. As an exclusive offering to the CRA, General Cigar developed a unique blend if this celebrated brand. Featuring spicy blend of Nicaraguan and Dominican tobacco, punctuated by a Nicaraguan binder and enveloped in a brawny Nicaraguan wrapper, Punch CRA cigars are handcrafted in Honduras.Debo Mukherjee, Vice President of Marketing for General Cigar commented, “It is with great pleasure that we have donated 5,000 handcrafted Punch cigars to continue our support of CRA. As a Founding Sponsor, we continue to stand behind the organization and its ongoing effort to protect the rights of premium cigar smokers.”

    <img src="; alt="" width="548" height="74" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent7-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">La Flor Dominicana LG – CRA Blend</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent7" style="display: block;">Litto Gomez, recently referred to as one of the “most innovative minds in the cigar business today” by Cigar Aficionado stated, “We were pleased to develop this cigar exclusively for the members of CRA. It should prove to be a great experience knowing that only a select few can enjoy this, and the other cigars in this sampler.”<img src="; alt="" width="538" height="78" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent8-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Padron 1964 Anniversary Series™</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent8" style="display: block;">The 1964 Anniversary Series™ line was introduced in 1994 to commemorate the company's 30th anniversary. All tobacco used in this limited production series is aged for four years, creating a smooth and complex flavor. In honor of the age-old Cuban tradition of box – pressing cigars, the 1964 Anniversary line was introduced as a box-pressed series. The Padrón 1964 Anniversary Series™ is consistently ranked by industry experts as one of the top brands in the world.<img src="; alt="" width="464" height="74" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent9-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Rocky Patel – CRA Blend</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent9" style="display: block;">This exclusive 'CRA Blend' offers a medium to full bodied 'masterpiece' with its Habana wrapper from Ecuador, that is spicy yet elegant with just a hint of sweetness. Rocky Patel stated, “We wanted to do something special for the CRA sampler. The mission of CRA is to allow consumers the very ability to enjoy our cigars. They deserve the best from each company, and this sampler tells that story.”<img src="; alt="" width="621" height="80" />

    <img src="; alt="" width="640" height="1" /></div>

    <span id="bobcontent10-title" style="color: darkred;"><span> </span><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Tatuaje</span></span>

    <div id="bobcontent10" style="display: block;">This 6×50 Nicaraguan Puro comes from Tatuaje with Pete Johnson stating, “CRA members will remember this sampler, and each cigar within it for time to come. That's the affect we wanted with this project.”<img src="; alt="" width="581" height="80" /></div>

  5. Jason Friday, October 23, 2009 at 5:08 am #

    Thanks for the review. I've smoke one black (jar release). It was a fantastic cigar. One of my top three. I hope I'm able to buy a few when they are release again this year. I joined CRA this past week and I'm really considering this sampler.

Trackbacks and Pingbacks

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    […] Some time ago, we posted about the special offer from CRA – new members could get limited edition samplers from the most popular manufacturers. Patrick tried the Tatuaje from this sampler and was impressed. Read the full review here… […]

  2. Cigar Reviews of the Week #78 (Oct 24 2009) | Bold Remark - Sunday, October 25, 2009

    […] Some time ago, we posted about the special offer from CRA – new members could get limited edition samplers from the most popular manufacturers. Patrick tried the Tatuaje from this sampler and was impressed. Read the full review here… […]

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