Cigar Review: Tatuaje Little Monsters “Lil’ Drac”
Tatuaje Little Monsters “Lil’ Drac”
Size: Short Torpedo (5 x 48 )
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano Maduro
Price: $7.50 (Part of the 10 count Lil Monsters Sampler, $75 MSRP)
Today we are going to review the “Lil Drac” a miniaturized version of the Tatuaje limited 2009 Halloween release, The Drac, named obviously after Dracula. The torpedo shape of this cigar is meant to be reminiscent of the Vampires’ fangs.
A few quick thoughts: The Maduro wrapper is strikingly dark in appearance. While I enjoyed the OR Drac, it wasn’t a cigar that I went nuts for, that said I did smoke a few and didn’t have a dislike for them either. I was very much in the midle of the road when it came to being a fan of that release. Oh yeah, I love the concept and the smaller Vitolas in this sampler, although I may have said that before.
But enough about that, how’s it smoke?
Pre-Light: (1.8) As previously noted, the Maduro wrapper is very dark. I normally prefer Maduros and therefore smoke a lot of them, I often note if they are unusually light, but the Lil Drac was notably dark. The black band and red lettering made for a very striking appearance on the short, dark torpedo.
Aside from being really dark, the wrapper had a few veins, was a bit toothy, had a rough seam, and appeared to have a minor tear. This “tear” was inconsequential to the smoke, just something I noticed while looking over the cigar. The Lil Drac is very firm and tightly packed.
The scent off the foot was rich barnyard, with, dark chocolate, and a hint of citrus. After I cut the head the Prelight draw offered up a tight draw that had flavors hay with small bits of chocolate and spice.
Burn: (1.5) As mentioned, the first draw during the pre light inspection, was quite tight. I gave the Lil Drac another snip but the draw was still very tight. I didn’t want to keep snipping for fear of damaging the cigar so I decided to try and burn through it. Good decision as after a few finger rolls and after smoking through the first inch, the draw opened up enough to go from being an issue, to just being noticeable.
Other elements of construction and burn were perfect. Ash was firm and held on well and left a nice greay and black ringed ash. Resting smoke was average but I had a hell of a time trying to get a photo of it due to some Florida storm driven winds. The Lil Drac was a slow burner, probably related to the tight draw and a bit surprised by that given the size/Vitola.
Flavor: (2.5) The first few puffs were of the Lil Drac revealed a very earthy tobacco flavor with elements of cocoa, and a tangy hint of citrus. There was a strong bite, no pun intended, of pepper on the finish.
Through the second third the earthy rich tobacco was the most dominant flavor but the cocoa notes were intermittent. The pepper and spice picked increased through the smoke. The retro hale was very sharp with pepper and in my opinion didn’t bring together the best of the flavors the way I usually experience when I retro hale.
Smoking into the last third I pick up a new note of dark, roast, coffee. This was a welcome addition to the flavor profile and kept the last third a bit more interesting. The pepper also continued to increase through the final third. Body was a steady medium through the whole smoke. I wonder if my impression of the body may have been affected by the fact that this wasn’t my first medium/full cigar of the day.
Overall: (2.5) First, the draw, which did loosen a bit after the first inch, was still tight throughout, and that did impact my impression of this cigar
As for the flavors, the Lil Drac was an incredibly rich and earthy cigar. At times it reminded me slightly of a JdN Dark Corojo. The cocoa from the wrapper was distinct but overmatched by the core earthy tobacco. That citrus zing I picked up early faded through the first third, was absent through much of the middle of the smoke, and reemerged ever so slightly late in the smoke. The dark, roast coffee in the last third was welcome. Frankly all the additional notes (cocoa, coffee, citrus zing, and spice) were very good, I just felt that the core flavor of dark earthiness dominated and didn’t let the other notes stand out as much as I would of liked.
Total: 8.3 (though this would have been higher without the draw issues)
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