Last March, Pete Johnson released the first versions of the cigar that is believed to be the closet to his legendary T110—the Fausto F114. A total of 100 boxes were released at two events prior to the cigar’s national launch at the IPCPR 2012 show in Orlando, Fla. The cigar also marked the first release of the Tatuaje Limited Series, which also so releases under the Mexican Experiment moniker around this time last year.
Here’s what I said in my review over a year ago:
Before we go any further, if you are expecting a carbon copy of the T110, this isn’t it. Close? Meh. Closer? Yes. Although the profiles are I guess that was my issue, I was expecting the Fausto FT114 to be something other than another Fausto. In that regard, I was disappointed, but the reality is the FT114 is nothing to complain about. It’s a good cigar and by far my favorite balance of flavors and strength that the Fausto line has been able to present, including the Avion. Truth be told, limited bands or not, this was a far more complex and smokeable cigar than any T110 I’ve smoked and it’s unfortunate that its regular production status will surely place it second fiddle to the original amongst the Tatuaje purists.
I think the cigar has taken somewhat of an undeserved backseat, as commenters have mentioned, it’s a really good cigar, and one we don’t hear about very often. The other obvious question with the FT114 was how long could it hold onto its power, one that I decided to test at the 15-month mark.
- Cigar Reviewed: Tatuaje Limited Series Fausto FT114
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: My Father Cigars S.A.
- Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Size: 4 1/2 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 52
- Vitola: Petit Robusto
- MSRP: $8.00 (Boxes of 10, $80.00)
- Date Released: March 17, 2012
- Number of Cigars Released: 100 Boxes of 10 Cigars (1,000 Total Cigars)*
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Redux: 1
*As noted above, there is an identical—sans packaging—regular production version of this cigar.
I love the Limited Series bands, I think it works well with the somewhat polarizing revision of the Tatuaje logo. It particularly looks good against the dark reds of the Ecuadorian Habano wrapper on the stout size. Out of the cellophane, the FT114 has the same mixture of leather, cocoa and pepper—all somewhat sweet. This time around there is a noticeable woodsiness, not entirely cedar, but retaining some of the sweetness. The cold draw serves as some forewarning, still full, but a lot smoother mixture of peppers, cedar and leather.
The blast of pepper that began young FT114s is a much more mature and controlled note joined by sweet woods and bread. Unfortunately, the Tatuaje has a loose draw from the first puff, which at times becomes more than just a personal preference issue. Still, the flavors are bold, refined and harmonious. The core is sweet woods, leather, pepper with a touch of cocoa from start to the edge of the final third. At times citrus, peanut, breads and even some grass—all fading in for a few minutes before departing and playing nicely with the core flavors. At the halfway mark, some creaminess develops which compliments the profile incredibly.
Construction is still fair, but it’s far from same place as the Tatuajes I first smoked. While two inches of ash is still achievable, the FT114 at times struggles to stay lit and rarely wanted to burn straight. In addition, the open draw exacerbates all these problems. Strength-wise, the cigar is on the south end of full, but still there. Body is full and flavor is full, both smoother than I recall them in early in 2012.
This is a better cigar than where it was 15 months ago. It's smoother, more complex and yet still quite full. If you've been holding onto a few with a year of rest on them, now's a great time to light up at least one. The drop-off for strength will presumably happen, my recollection of the last original Fausto I smoked said that happened slightly after a year and a half, but each size will presumably be different. Regardless, a good cigar got better.