Wrapper: 100% Habano Nicaraguan
Binder: 2009 La Estrella Habano Criollo
Filler: 45% Habano Nicaragua, 40% Criollo ’98, 15% Pelo De Oro
Size: 7 x 47 “Churchill”
Number of Cigars Smoked Prior to Review: 1
Accompanying Libation: Clorox Cleanup
Today we take a look at the Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009.
This was gifted to me by Joseph Talotta. Vintage, baby. The cigar too.
From the Tatuaje web site:
“La Vérité Vintage is an idea that was conceived when Pete first saw the tobacco growing in the Garcia’s first wholly owned farm (Finca La Estrella) in late 2007 that was cropped in early 2008. He realized that the tobacco was going to be spectacular but didn’t know how it was going to blend. It wasn’t until late 2008 while the tobacco was still undergoing fermentation that Pete realized the tobacco was growing perfectly and would make a great single farm vintage cigar. La Vérité debuted in 2009 and shipped to consumers in 2010 and uses only tobacco from a single farm in Esteli, Nicaragua. Much like a single vineyard wine, La Vérité showcases the soil (Terroir) where the tobacco was grown. The seed varietal varies from year to year based on the crop planted and the tobacco yield.”
The cigars were manufactured at My Father Cigars S.A.
Despite the amount of years that Joe Talotta had this cigar; it is in strikingly good shape. The oily, mottled butterscotch colored wrapper is firm but with the right amount of give. Seams are pretty tight. Lots of veins. A nicely applied flat triple cap. There is the slightest amount of tooth here and there.
The cigar bands are a nightmare for me to photograph. The shiny white background and gold lettering is beyond my skills as a mediocre photographer.
These cigars are available from obscure online stores that still have a box lying around. I know this because I Googled the sale of this cigar. So all is not lost. Plus, there are plenty of Face Book cigar groups that trade, buy, sell, and auction off great stuff.
AROMA AND COLD DRAW NOTES:
The shaft smells of barnyard, chocolate, cedar, and smoked meat. At the foot and recently clipped cap, there are notes of strong baking cocoa, spice, espresso, and cream.
The cold draw is full of cedar, wood, sweetness, and leather.
The strength starts out right down the middle with classic medium body.
There are more flavor notes: Sweetness, dried apple, butterscotch (In fact, I can taste those hard butterscotch candies.), and very buttery.
Caramel and butterscotch are two different animals: “Caramel is typically made with granulated sugar, milk and/or cream, butter, and sometimes vanilla. The primary flavors of caramel are the sugar and milk/cream. Butterscotch on the other hand is made with brown sugar. Its primary flavors are brown sugar and butter.”
The Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009 has found the “It” factor in the first ¾”.
Flavors are taking off. That whole list is airborne.
This is a nice treat. After that horrible CAO Sopranos review yesterday, this is a welcome relief.
The Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009 is dy-no-mite, Willis.
The years have been very kind to this blend. The blend is now so complex that I find it difficult to describe what I taste to my satisfaction.
Strength is still medium body.
Here they are: Creaminess, butterscotch, spice, cedar, sweetness, wood, chocolate, coffee, meaty, dried fruit, nutty, toasty, leather, cinnamon, and graham cracker.
Whew! I do believe there is a tertiary level with even more flavors. But I can’t nail it so I will shut the fuck up.
One of the seams breaks loose near the foot so I grab my bottle of Kingpin glue and fix it. It appears the Kingpin no longer makes the glue. They still make paraphernalia for the weed smoker. The substitute is Juicy Glue which comes in tiny bottles for 49 cents. A shame really. But luckily, a year ago I bought a shit load of the Kingpin. Stuff lasts forever. And please, don’t send me your recipe for homemade cigar glue. I’m sure it’s wonderful but I believe the cost of the Kingpin, $1.49 for a 2oz bottle is a helluva deal…or was at least. The Juicy Glue is a good substitute and while the quantity is small, you need much less than the Kingpin.
The ash is super delicate and can’t make it past half an inch. The slightest jar to the cigar like gently placing it in my ashtray knocks it off.
There is no way that the Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009 would taste this good without this much humidor time. It is remarkable.
Flavors are bold and some are subtle and nuanced. You know I don’t rate cigars but I’m going to tell you what I think during the Summation portion of the review.
In addition to dried fruit, I taste black grapes. Almost like an intense grape jelly.
Construction is top notch. Not a single touch up required and no wrapper issues except for that minor one that is now in perfect shape.
I’d love to be a fly on the wall when Pete Johnson and Pepin Garcia sit around testing blends. In my book, Garcia can do no wrong. He is as dependable as your wife. Uh…maybe more. That’s the ticket. Now if your wife could only roll magnificent cigars…well, she’d divorce you and marry in upward mobility.
Changes to the flavor profile are in flux. Top of the list is constantly evolving.
At the moment, it is butterscotch and graham cracker plus plenty of sweetness. Spiciness has moved to the center point. Chocolate and coffee are right behind the top flavors in a secondary layer. The other flavors listed are still there and going strong.
The nutty flavor defines itself with almonds, filberts, and hazelnuts.
The toast element is all buttered scone with clotted cream. Sort of the British version of a Napoleon.
There is no significant change to the flavor profile. It has formed a conga line just as described earlier: Creaminess, butterscotch, spice, cedar, sweetness, wood, chocolate, coffee, meaty, dried fruit, nutty, toasty, leather, cinnamon, and graham cracker.
The spiciness makes a huge resurgence. Mikey likey.
I’m in love with the Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009. What a wonderful start to my day.
Nicotine pops up as the body moves into medium/full territory.
Alas, the end is nigh.
The Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009 is a smooth sweetheart.
The blend has been ultra-consistent. I’ve had no problems with the construction.
There isn’t a hint of harshness, bitterness, or heat.
The nicotine is very strong now. My motor skills are severely diminished. I find myself typing things two or three times to get it right. There is a disconnect between brain and hands. The strength of the cigar is now full bodied.
Each sip of water gives me a rush. I can taste all that the Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009 has to give.
This was a 5 star cigar blend.
$12.50 was a lot of dough for a single cigar back in 2009. Now it is the norm. But the Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009 is a true masterpiece of blending skill.
This cigar is like a unicorn. You don’t think they exist and would like to have one in your living room. With a very large cat litter box.
There are small online stores that still have them. And you don’t have to sell your soul to the devil to buy them. You do have to provide a 6 year lease, though.
I just reviewed three Rolling Thunder blends: .50 Caliber Connecticut Shade Double Robusto, .50 Caliber Maduro Double Robusto, and the .50 Caliber Natural Wrapper Double Robusto. I just wanted to refresh your memory because these were stupendous cigars for only $6.00-$6.50 each.
I never liked Connecticut wrappers. My Father Connecticut was the first I truly enjoyed. The Rolling Thunder is every bit as good for half the price.
Owner, Dave Cribbin, is a good guy for providing me samples and he deserves your business. It is a win/win. You get friggin great cigars for pennies on the dollar compared to what’s out there now. And Dave gets to take a vacation in Northern Ukraine. He has no family there. But he has always wanted to see what it is like being taken hostage and maybe having his head cut off on video. Who wouldn’t want that?
Make sure you tell Dave that the Katman sent you. I am not receiving anything in return for this shameless plug. I want my readers to get the best bang for their buck and this is a terrific way to do that.
I had my last RT Maduro last night and if I was honest I’d tell you that I had real old man wood the whole time. Disregard the last sentence.
Well, I’ve got just 3 or 4 cigars left to review and then it is hiatus time.
I said earlier that I would break with convention and rate this cigar. Because ratings are so subjective, I refrain from doing it.
But the Tatuaje La Vérité Vintage 2009 deserves a 95. Near perfection.
And now for something completely different:
It was the first time I took acid. 1973. I was 23.
A good friend, Mike Cook, now passed, came over with some blotter and we decided to make the day of it.
Two friends and I had rented a nice house in Santa Ana, Ca. They were gone for the day…so just me and Mike.
We had recently moved into the house less than a month earlier. And while putting the very first thing into our moving truck, I had an accident and broke my wrist. I had my 10 speed bike from when I was 13. I took a flying leap trying to drive the bike up the ramp and just as I got to the top, I ran out of steam and fell sideways to the ground, four feet below. My feet were in the rat traps so the only thing I could use to break my fall was my right arm. Snap!
A whole bunch of friends had accepted our invitation to help all us move from our current abodes. I walked back into the apartment where everyone was drinking and smoking joints and I said, “I think I broke my arm.”
My oldest buddy, Skip, grabbed it, looked at it and said I was fine. He now makes antibiotics for farm animals.
That day was horrendous. It ended up being a 15 hour move. And to make things much worse, no one knew how to drive a stick on that big truck but me. The stick was about 6 feet tall. And each time I had to use it, I screamed out in pain.
On the way back from Riverside, a friend said he would drive the truck. Why he let me drive in so much pain is beyond me. So, Mike and I were in the back with the door closed. It was pitch black. And the pain was making me crazy. Mike told me to take a hit of hash, which I did. Then the pain went from 0-60 in 4.2 seconds.
On Monday, I went to an orthopod and all he did was look at it and told me it was broken. But an X-ray was in order.
45 minutes later, it hit me. Whoa. You cannot explain what taking acid is like to someone who has never taken it. Like Jimi said, “Are You Experienced?”
Mike got real paranoid and did a lot of stupid things.
Two things stand out in my memory.
The first being that Mike told me he was worried that I would hit myself in the head with my cast and split my head in two. So he spent a lot of time holding my arm to make sure that didn’t happen. I kept saying, “OW!” a lot.
The second was a song came on the radio called “Frankenstein” by the Edgar Winter Band. It was an instrumental. A synthesizer part came on and we began to freak so Mike yelled at me to turn the radio off.
That evening, friends stopped by and one took me for a ride in his new sports car. I was still frying and he knew it so he drove like a maniac scaring the shit out of me.
That’s the nice thing about friends. They are always there to take advantage of your situation.
Late that night, the stuff wore off and the hallucinations stopped. I was a limp noodle.
I took it another time when we went to Disneyland. That was a huge mistake. Standing in those long lines frying.
And the last time I took it was on my 25th birthday in London. It was the perfect trip and around a dozen or so of my musical friends took it with me. It was a great night and I decided never to take it again. Go out on a good experience.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS