Tatuaje TAA 2016 – Cigar Review

The TAA’s are rolling out in full force in a race against the clock before it strikes midnight on August 8th, 2016. One of the most anticipated blends to pay homage to the Tobacconists Association of America has arrived. The Tatuaje TAA 2016, a cigar by Pete Johnson of Tatuaje Cigars, hit the shelves last week and is ready for eager consumers to start buying them up once again. This years limited release is a rehash of the popular 2012 blend, which was described by Johnson as being a cross between the Pork Tenderloin and Barclay Rex cigars.

What am I smoking?

Cigar Review: Tatuaje TAA 2016
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Factory: My Father Cigars S.A.
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Length: 6.25″
Ring Gauge: 50
Vitola: Toro
Body: Full
Production: Limited – 4,000 boxes of 20

Packaging & Design
The Tatuaje TAA 2016 are packaged in cabinet boxes of 20. Inside of the box, the cigars are wrapped in a foil bundle to ensure freshness and provide some added protection. The top of the box features the “Tatuaje Exclusive Series” logo and showcases the famous TAA logo on the front side.

First Impressions
As soon as I cracked open the foil to expose the cigars, I was hit with a massive aroma of rich peppery tobacco. The cigars themselves appear dark, oily, and what seems to be crystallized tobacco leaf sugars or minerals that glisten in the light. The Tatuaje TAA 2016 are also softly box pressed and finished off with a closed foot. After cutting, there are unmistakable notes of sweet aged tobacco, leather and rich earth. There are some visible seams and veins on the cigar, but previous Tatuaje TAA’s shared the same trait, so I expected that. It looks rustic and powerful sitting heavily in my hand.

The Smoke
While I was toasting the closed foot, the aroma reminded me of freshly brewed espresso coffee. On the first few puffs, I was able to pick up notes of rich oily leather, black ground pepper, brown sugar and earth. The broadleaf wrapper on this thing is savory, giving off a huge dark chocolate taste that hangs around my palate.

Getting into the second third, the tasting notes are full and rich. It has changed since the beginning, now offering up a grilled steak quality to the smoke behind nuances of vanilla bean and leather. The burn did start to become uneven, but it corrected itself after a few minutes. So far, this is a complex smoke and it’s taking a bit of thinking to figure out what I’m tasting. A challenge I’m enjoying quite a bit.

Getting into the final third, and the cigar has hit its peak. Notes of dates, raisins, dark chocolate and freshly cut mahogany wood are balanced behind strong sensations of pepper through the nose. The finish lasts quite a while and offers a complex bouquet of flavor.

Final Thoughts
I’ve smoked plenty of what Pete Johnson has to offer, as I’m sure many of you have as well. And the Tatuaje TAA 2016 was impressive, to say the least. If you want a smoke that will give you a top-notch full-bodied experience, pick up a box or two of these while they last. I’m excited to see what a year or two of age will do for them.

Score Breakdown

Appearance: 18
Flavor: 19
Balance: 19
Burn: 18
Construction: 19

Rating: 93
Price: $11.99 / $214.99 (Box of 20)

Tatuaje TAA 2016

Tatuaje TAA 2016

Tatuaje TAA 2016 Burn

Tatuaje TAA 2016 Burn

Tatuaje TAA 2016 Finish

Tatuaje TAA 2016 Finish

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