It seems that the more I write about what’s new with Tatuaje, the more I need to reference what’s old with Tatuaje. The reason for that is that Pete Johnson has been dipping into his extensive history of releases more and more, tapping previous releases for re-releases or the inspiration for a new spin on something.

Such is the case with the Tatuaje Cohete, a cigar with roots that date back to 2006 when it originally was released as a store exclusive created for Tower Pipes & Cigars in Sacramento. The first edition was a very limited production, with just 50 boxes of 25 cigars produced. It was also one of a trio of very limited production store exclusives released that year along with the Tatuaje La Maravillas, a 5 5/8 x 46 corona that went to Leaf & Ale in Knoxville, Tenn., and the 4 x 46 Tatuaje Bombazo, which went to  FUMARE in Reno.

 

That first Cohete debuted in 2006 and then returned in 2009 and 2013. Last year, ahead of Tatuaje’s release of a trio of Cohetes—more on that in a moment—500 boxes of the Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial were sent to Tower Pipes & Cigars as part of the buildup to the 2022 release of Cohetes.

The big shipment took place in January 2022, and if you’ve followed Tatuaje’s latest releases, you likely know where this paragraph is going. Johnson took the Cohete blend and released it with three wrapper options: one with an Ecuadorian habano leaf that does not get a secondary band; one with a Connecticut broadleaf wrapper, that gets a black and gold reserva band; and then this one that uses an Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper and wears a white and gold capa especial band.

Each of the three blends uses dual Nicaraguan binders and Nicaragua fillers, measures 4 x 50, has an MSRP of $9 and is offered in 25-count boxes.

  • Tatuaje Cohete 2006 (4 x 50) — Tower Pipes & Cigars Exclusive — 50 Boxes of 25 (1,250 Total Cigars)
  • Tatuaje Cohete 2009 (4 x 50) — Tower Pipes & Cigars Exclusive — 100 Boxes of 25 (2,500 Total Cigars)
  • Tatuaje Cohete 2013 (4 x 50) — Tower Pipes & Cigars Exclusive — 200 Boxes of 25 (5,000 Total Cigars)
  • Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial (2021) (4 x 50) — Tower Pipes & Cigars Exclusive — Undisclosed
  • Tatuaje Cohete 2022 (4 x 50) — Undisclosed
  • Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial (2022) (4 x 50) — Undisclosed
  • Tatuaje Cohete Reserva (4 x 50) — Undisclosed

  • Cigar Reviewed: Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Factory: My Father Cigars S.A.
  • Wrapper: Ecuador (Sumatra)
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Filler: Nicaragua
  • Length: 4 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 50
  • Vitola: Short Robusto
  • MSRP: $9 (Box of 25, $225)
  • Release Date: January 2022
  • Number of Cigars Released: Undisclosed
  • Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3

The Tatuaje Cohetes Capa Especial sports a decently dark brown wrapper that is uniform in color save for some spots around the small, thin veins that are just a shade or two lighter. It has a smooth, slightly oily texture to it, which is interrupted only by the fact that I can feel the veins. The cigar is rolled firmly from a density perspective and well from a visual one, though the cap on one sample isn’t laid flat and sticks up just a bit. The foot has a light aroma that reminds me of watermelon and cucumber, or more specifically a drink that might feature those two ingredients and be served on a warm day. I could even make the case for some fresh mint, an interestingly light fragrance that saves the pepper for the very end of the sniffs. The aroma has some more familiar aromas as well, with one sample particularly rich in toast and light wood, while each sample has a bit of pepper and tries to bring in some earth. The cold draw is a bit firm and not quite as lively as the aroma. I get a flavor that reminds me both of cool pizza dough but also a baked crust that picked up just a bit of char, while there are supporting flavors of peanuts and a bit of wood. A few seconds after those cold draws that my lips tingle fairly intensely from the wrapper leaf.

While the aroma of the Tatuaje Cohetes Capa Especial was fairly unique, the first puffs of the cigar are a bit more familiar, meshing a slightly dry earth, black pepper with a dry, lumberyard woodiness. It’s only a few puffs in and the cigar’s short length sinks in, probably in part because of the secondary band playing a bit of a visual trick on me, but it feels like this cigar won’t take long to get through given how far along the burn line is after just a couple of puffs. There’s an interesting softness to the texture of the smoke in the first inch, though it also seems to have just a bit of chalkiness to it. Also, this is a cigar that definitely rewards a slower smoking rate, as the cooling of the smoke allows a grilled watermelon flavor to come through, and while mellow, is very good. The first retrohale does have a bit of that prelight aroma to it, though those aromas are more tightly intertwined and backed by the earth and pepper, which shifts it into an accent aroma as opposed to a primary one. Even with those softer accents, the smoke through the nose has some heat and pepper, making me spread them out a bit more than I would prefer. The lip tingle that I experienced before lighting the cigar still happens as the first third burns, albeit less and less with time, giving the cigar an added way of stimulating my senses. Construction and combustion are both very good thus far. Flavor is a dry medium-plus, body is medium, and strength is mild.

The second third of the Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial sees the cigar pick up some complexity by way of adding in a bit more of the aromatics from earlier, though now it’s a more pronounced grilled watermelon sensation. There’s a bit of light coffee joining the aroma as well. The flavor, meanwhile begins to move towards a smokier profile, touching on over-roasted black coffee and more earthiness. By the midway point, the cigar is quite enjoyable, though there seems like there’s something that I’ve tasted in other Tatuaje cigars that use the Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper that seems missing here, though I can’t quite put my finger on it. I’ve been tempering and pacing out my retrohales, which forces me to savor each one a bit more. The final retrohale of the second third sees the black pepper take another step forward and gives my nostrils a hearty punch as this section comes to a close. Flavor is medium-full, body is medium-plus, and strength is medium but building. Construction remains very good, with an even burn line, plenty of smoke production and a firm but easy draw.

The first puffs of the final third start off by introducing a fairly pronounced wood flavor square in my tongue before hitting again further back and then evolving into almonds and finishing with espresso. There’s something in the profile that makes me think of red chili peppers, yet I can’ quite sell myself on the idea of that being what it actually is. The profile seems to be getting just a bit lighter as the earthiness tones down. As the final inch approaches and gets underway, the heat of the cigar picks up quite a bit, leading me to second think just how far down I’m going to smoke it. A few puffs ago I was thinking I might get the burn line to touch the lower part of the head, but now I’m thinking I’ll have to be content wrapping things up a bit sooner than that. Flavor is medium-full, body is medium-plus, and strength is medium. Construction and combustion are both very good.

Final Notes

  • The ash on the Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial builds up quite well, enough that I’m thinking if I took the bands off prior to lighting the cigar, there’s a decent shot I could get to the end of it with the vast majority of it intact.
  • Tatuaje has announced a pair of limited editions coming out towards the end of the year: the Tatuaje TAA 2022 and Tatuaje PCA 2022. The blends are similar, with the TAA version using a Connecticut broadleaf wrapper and the PCA 2022 using an Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper.
  • The Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial didn’t hit me with much nicotine strength and it’s far from the most potent Tatuaje cigars that I have smoked.
  • The cigars for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
  • Final smoking time was one hour and 45 minutes on average. I was really surprised by how long I could smoke the cigar, though I have to think that I would smoke it in a shorter time if not smoking this for a review.
  • Site sponsors Atlantic Cigar Co., Corona Cigar Co., Famous Smoke Shop and JR Cigar carry the Tatuaje Cohetes Capa Especial.
88 Overall Score

They say you can have too much of a good thing, and sometimes I think you can have too little. In the case of the Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial, while the 4 x 50 might be conducive to a relatively quick smoking time—my own experience notwithstanding—and offers a good level of complexity, it still feels like it's missing something of other cigars released with the Capa Especial blend. It's not far off from those better examples—I'm thinking of the Tatuaje T110 Capa Especial as a recent example—but it does seem to come up just a bit short. But if you can discipline yourself to smoke this slowly and with some attention to the subtle nuances it offers, you should be able to overlook those differences as the Tatuaje Cohete Capa Especial is still a very good cigar.

Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for MLB.com, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for Examiner.com, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.