L’Atelier Surrogates Tramp Stamp | Cigar Review

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler: Nicaraguan
Size: 5.25 x 48
Body: Medium/Full
Price: $7.00 MSRP
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Today we take a look at the L’Atelier Surrogates Tramp Stamp.

The cigar has a bit of rustic-ness to it. A little bumpy and lumpy but a beautiful oily coffee bean wrapper…that shimmers in the sunlight. Seams are tight. Lots of small veins and a couple of big ones. A perfect triple cap. A closed foot. And a double cigar band.
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I clip the cap and find aromas of cocoa, spice, black licorice, and some smoky meatiness.
Time to light up.

I don’t like close footsies when you light up. They tend to shoot fireworks all over everything like lighting flash paper. Whine, whine, whine.

The draw is good as I realize I am clamping down on the cigar like a Gila Monster. Let loose, Katman, let loose.

The famous Garcia Blast of Pepper is upon me. I smile. Cocoa follows right behind. If cocoa could be on fire, this is what it would taste like. I have shark teeth marks in the cap.
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Flavors expand quickly. Over under sideways down.

Creaminess compliments the cocoa. The red pepper is flying, man.

A shout out to all my buddies on Katmensch Cigar Group. We have been very careful who we let in. We say what we mean and we mean what we say. There are no cigar insiders in the group. We are few but we are mighty. And we can have, unlike 99% of other FB cigar groups, actual conversations. The other groups have so many people that your post flies down to 25th position in 2 minutes.

There is a brilliant snow white ash on the stick. Reminds me of a Wisconsin winter. Yuck. It is the only time I wish we were flush so we could live in Arizona in the winter.

And no, Wally Guse, I am not moving in with you.

Earthiness takes its potent place in line. There is a nice black cherry element. The spiciness is pedal to the metal.

Here is the small list of flavors: Spice, earthiness, creaminess, cocoa, black cherry, black licorice, and cedar.

A newly added sweetness that doesn’t come from fruit joins up. The spiciness makes a subtle change and it is a curry sauce. I love curry. Learned to love it while living in England. Back then, English food was just as bad as its reputation. So ethnic foods were what we ate on the road. In order: Indian food, Chinese food, Jamaican food, and Thai food.

The strength started out as classic medium but now is medium/full. I am close to the start of the second third and I do believe the stick is going to kick my ass before it’s through with me.
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I’ve enjoyed all the Surrogate blends but only reviewed the Crystal Baller here. I reviewed the other two on other sites. Dumb move. I did review the new Surrogates Satin Glove which is a fine cigar. Both the Surrogates Tramp Stamp and the Satin Glove have a ridiculous price point for being such good cigars. Small Batch Cigar has them in the $6 region. If they aren’t out of stock, everyone else has them for $7.50. And no free shipping.
Andrew sent me some great sticks for review but I am letting them rest. I also got some wonderful sticks from my VIP Sponsors whose photos you can see on the left side of my blog.

The cigar…The chocolatyness is marvelous. The spiciness dissipates some allowing the subtle flavors to emerge from their hiding places. This is a Garcia pepper bomb so if you like a spicy cigar, then the Surrogates Tramp Stamp is your stick.

I have just passed the second third.

It rained all night but this morning is extraordinarily sunny.
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The cigar hits flavor bomb status. The creaminess and chocolate flavors make it so. The black licorice is a nice third flavor. And the earthiness gives it a nice richness.

The char line is razor sharp.

I didn’t look to see what size this is called. Probably a robusto but it smokes more like a big corona. The ring gauge looks smaller than 48. Like maybe 46. I have calipers and a micrometer left over from my days in construction. I even have my old slide rule. It was my father’s while he was in engineering school and has his name etched in it. Nice keep sake. But learning how to use a slide rule is a real bitch. It was 1976 before I bought my first calculator. $25 for what now looks like a $3 calculator.

I am dead center of the Surrogates Tramp Stamp. Gorgeous, simple flavor profile but zesty and warm.

The strength maintains at medium/full.

The flavor bomb status becomes the sweet spot in the last third of the cigar. It is sort of a one dimensional cigar but those few flavors are spectacular. The earthy tobacco is probably the real star of the blend.

The cigar finds its complexity within that one dimensional profile. It is perfectly balanced with a long finish.

No time for an after story today. Tomorrow. I have a hair appointment. I’m letting my hair grow long and Charlotte suggested I grow a pony tail. I’m almost there now; albeit a small pony tail.
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And Charlotte is just fine. I appreciate my friends and readers asking about her. Her boss is now working her to death. He is going in for a bone marrow transplant to deal with his leukemia and must stay at home for a full year after the surgery. So Charlotte is totally in charge and will get a raise. Thank you Cosmic Muffin!

But I hate seeing her work so hard. She is only 9 months younger than me. And the physicality of the job is tough…i.e. moving boxes and stocking once a week. She has a couple people working for her, thankfully.

This is an excellent cigar. A few months of humidor time will improve it immensely and maybe draw out more flavors. I’ve only had this cigar for a week or so. But dry boxing it has helped bring out the flavor bomb status.

I have 2” to go. Flavors are very potent. The spiciness returns in force.
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The creaminess and chocolate flavors and just out of this world. And that black licorice element gives the Surrogates Tramp Stamp a nice twist.

I am very impressed with the construction. No touch ups needed. The wrapper hangs tough. And I’ve only had to clip the cap once.

The black cherry returns. Gives the flavor profile a nice sweetness that was in the background for most of the smoke.

This is one of those rare dual purpose cigars. It’s good to go in a very short time for a 75% blender’s intent experience and it is a cigar that left for a few months in your humidor will get even better. This is the type of cigar that I strive to buy because of my cigar budget.

The last bit of the Surrogates Tramp Stamp is cool and without a hint of harshness. The small flavor profile is delicious and I want more. The flavor bomb status hits a tertiary level here and just blasts away.

It is about as close to a chocolate milk shake as you can get.
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I highly recommend this cigar. I think the Surrogates Tramp Stamp is my favorite of the Surrogates line.

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8 replies

  1. Agreed! There’s nothing wrong with a stick lacking in complexity,as long as it keeps the pleasure synapses firing in your brain. Including the ones that congratulate yourself on not making your wallet grab it’s ankles on a simple yet lovely flavor profile.
    Glad to hear Charlotte is doing well. Wouldn’t want to be her boss. Knew a guy when I was younger diagnosed with that. So far gone they gave him 4 months at the outside. Had no family,didn’t own a home. Sold anything of value for traveling coin. Hopped on his 1969 BMW with over 200,000 miles on it’s original motor,and off he went. Never saw or heard from him again. Always thought it was good he punched out on his own terms,but sad to think he might have died alone.

    • Charlotte has a love/hate relationship with her job…like most people, I guess.
      She is adamant that her raise be substantial or they can get someone else to run the place on their own.
      She has been with them for 5 years and employees have come and go. She has that Germanic work ethic. And if she left, they would probably have to close the doors.
      But she is miserable when she gets home. She is exhausted. It was only a month ago that she was only working two days a week for a long time. And she put off seeing a rheumatologist. Now she has only Mondays off and she needs to see a doc soon. Her hands are crippled. But I it’s like talking to a wall. That German stubborness and laziness at the same time.
      We have to take the car in on Monday because it has a fucked up brake line.
      But I plan to make an appointment for her to see a rheum doc asap. She needs to be on meds.
      Thanks for your concern. Charlotte says to say hello and thank you.

  2. I retrohale now I just wanted to know if you do it

  3. You sort of told everyone who you are on Katmensch but not really. I don’t know why you just don’t tell them?
    I’ve pared down the group to only your friends on this blog. No one else. I booted every one that didn’t belong. It is a small group but you can trust everyone. You trust them here…why not there?

    • Kind of shy like Patrick,but for you Uncle I shall fully expose myself there. ( Oooo…that’s naughty,isn’t it? )

  4. I really want one now…but then…what sticks that Katman reviews that are good…that I don’t end up wanting?

  5. I’m thinking about an involuntary commitment (for me) as a last resort to preserve a modicum of funds for my wife and children when I vanish in a cloud of smoke. Nothing else so far has helped me to resist the siren song that Katmensch weaves – and, of course, Small Batch Cigars loves it, and should be named “credit score too high? We can help!”

  6. Rene Cordona is moving in so you might as well Kat man…There is no smoking in the house, but I do have a private Golf Course with internet access, so that you could be reviewing in the wind, while you learn to play golf…Golf is required here at Camp Wally , and Rene is the Marshal in charge of compliance…Sounds like fun…Right ? Keep it smokey my brother !