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In 2014, when Tatuaje shipped the Pudgy Monsters, there were six cigars based off of previously released cigars from the company’s Monster Series and two cigars that were entirely new. They were Tiff and Chuck, based on Don Mancini’s Child’s Play films, more specifically Bride of Chucky.

It’s probably best to look at the two cigars as adopted children in the larger Monster Series family. Every October, Tatuaje releases a limited edition cigar based on a monster character from film or literature. These cigars are generally larger vitolas, oftentimes feature closed feet or modified heads to mimic the appearance of the monster character and packaging that is specifically based on the monster.

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Chuck and Tiff—based on the characters of Chucky and his bride, Tiffany—are so far the only cigars to be released in Monster Series samplers that haven’t had a larger, formal Monster Series release, though until Pete Johnson completes the Monster Series—which was originally slated to see 13 distinct releases—it probably shouldn’t be officially considered a done deal that we won’t see larger versions.

The Pudgy Monsters actually find their roots two years earlier when Tatuaje released the Little Monsters, a 10-count sampler which included smaller versions of the first five Monster Series releases. The blends were the same, though the Little Monsters were all rolled in 2012 and the cigars shrunk.

Tatuaje Monster Series Sampler Boxes

All the cigars kept the same unique looks as their larger counterparts: Baby Face—based on The Face—used a strip of tobacco instead of a paper band, Wolfie kept the brushed foot of The Wolf and the box-pressed original Monster Series cigars translated into box pressing the smaller versions. The one major exception is the Lil’ Drac saw a paper band placed in a traditional manner, whereas The Drac featured an upside-down foot band.

Two years later, Tatuaje released the Pudgy Monsters. These cigars took the same length as the Little Monsters, but used the original ring gauge of the regular Monster Series, meaning the Tatuaje Face was 4 3/8 x 56. Once again, the unique traits of the original Monster Series cigars carried over into the Pudgy versions, a sampler that included the first six Monsters Series releases as well as the aforementioned Chuck and Tiff.

Now, two years later, Tatuaje’s Pete Johnson has a new sampler of smaller Monster Series, this time, Skinny Monsters.

It’s a grand departure from the Little and Pudgy form, with the release largely based off the Tatuaje Black Label Petite Lancero. This time, every cigar in the sampler measures 6 x 38 and is round. The cigars feature a typical parejo shape, instead of a Torpedo for the Skinny versions of The Drac and The Wolfman.

Tatuaje Skinny Monsters Box 1Tatuaje Skinny Monsters Box 2Tatuaje Skinny Monsters Box 3

A total of 10,000 samplers are being produced, containing one of each of the Skinny versions of the first eight Monster Series releases plus Chuck and Tiff. There are also plans to release 400 25-count dress boxes of each Skinny Monster. The dress box concept follows the regular Monster Series releases. Every Monster Series release has featured 666 boxes of 13—shaped like a coffin—that are specially decorated to mimic each release.

While the dress box Skinny Monsters do constitute special packaging, the boxes are based off of the Tatuaje Petite Lancero boxes, a vertical wooden box. In addition, these cigars will be sold at a later date—specifically the IPCPR Convention & Trade Show in late July—as opposed to the regular Monster Series dress boxes, which are allocated largely to 13 different retailers each year with some other retailers receiving small quantities of one to three dress boxes.

In addition, Johnson has said that one of the Skinny Monsters may enter regular production.

With the Skinny Monsters, the Tatuaje Monster Series family now stands at 31 released cigars.

Tatuaje Monster Series Family

There’s not a ton about the Chuck bend other than it uses an Ecuadorian habano wrapper over a Nicaraguan binder and fillers.

Tatuaje Chuck & Skinny Chuck

  • Tatuaje Chuck (4 x 50) — 2014
  • Tatuaje Skinny Chuck (6 x 38) — 2016

Tatuaje Skinny Chuck 1

  • Cigar Reviewed: Tatuaje Skinny Chuck
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Factory: My Father Cigars S.A.
  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Filler: Nicaragua
  • Length: 6 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 38
  • Vitola: Petit Lancero
  • MSRP: $8.50 (Samplers of 10, $85)
  • Release Date: April 15, 2016
  • Number of Cigars Released: 10,000 Samplers of 1 Cigar & 400 Boxes of 25 Cigars (20,000 Total Cigars)
  • Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 

It’s a dark rendition of the Ecuadorian habano wrapper with just a slight bit of reds. There’s a mild amount of veins that get lost in the dark hues of the wrapper. As for the aroma, it’s dominated by a sweeter chocolate over top some leather and barnyard. From the foot, I get cocoa powder, smoked paprika—a fairly good rendition of the chocolate and spicy combination that I find in many Nicaraguan cigars. That’s similar to what I find on the cold draw, though it’s more of a hot chocolate powder, some smoked paprika and citrus. It’s similar, but not with the same even balance I find from the smell of the foot.

Things start with a pantry full of rich flavors: oak, damp earth, rye bread, kosher salt and some black pepper kernels. I sense the Tatuaje Skinny Chuck wants to be much bigger and aggressive than it’s capable of and it admittedly goes through some rougher spots before flavors become quite appetizing. It’s toasty with dry peanuts, earthiness, burnt orange peels, red pepper and some salty chicken stock. When pushed speed-wise, there’s an ability for the toasty bread flavors to really take over. The flavor is medium-full in intensity, a bit rough, while both the body and strength are medium-plus. Smoke production is decent, while the rest of the construction elements are great.

Tatuaje Skinny Chuck 2

It’s pretty challenging to tell flavor-wise when the second third starts and ends. I would say the middle portion is a relatively small part of the cigar flavor-wise, lasting maybe an inch in total, with the other inch invaded to an extended first third. The Skinny Chuck is still quite toasty, now with burnt peaches, faint hints of cocoa and a much more intense pepper. I occasionally get some bready flavors, but they aren’t consistent. The finish, which was almost non-existent in the first third, is now present with wheat, toastiness and red pepper all over the tongue and the back of the throat. Construction remains the same, with me wanting a bit more smoke production from the Tatuaje. Strength begins to creep towards the medium-full level towards the very end of the middle portion of the cigar.

Tatuaje Skinny Chuck 3

And then the pepper goes away. It is extremely short-lived barely making it into the last third, though it’s not the only change towards. While there is still a bready flavor, creaminess and toastiness; there’s also some oregano and lemon. All three samples struggle to remain lit in the final third, even when I spend quite a bit of attention just trying to keep the smoke production levels consistent. I’m not entirely sure what’s to blame, but with a small touch-up I make it through the end of the cigar.

Tatuaje Skinny Chuck 4

Final Notes

  • And for your Patrick Lagreid fact of the day: I’ve never gone by Chuck, though I will respond to it. There are a few people who call me Chuck regardless.
  • Chuck and Tiff are very much part of the Monster Series family, where as the Tatuaje Boris has been adamantly described as not part of the series.
  • I’d peg strength at medium-plus, it does get into medium-full but only for brief moments towards the end of the second third.
  • It is somewhat odd how the flavor progressions went, the first portion lasted nearly half the cigar before the transition that normally signals the second third, after an inch there was another noticeable transition signaling the final third.
  • I’m not thrilled by how the cigar finished from a trying to keep it lit standpoint. The one sample that went out was purged and relit to a not so desirable flavor.
  • Tatuaje advertises on halfwheel.
  • Cigars for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
  • Final smoking time was two hours on average.
  • Site sponsors Atlantic Cigar Co.Cigar HustlerCigar.comCorona CigarJR Cigar, Lone Star State Cigar Co. (972.424.7272) and STOGIES World Class Cigars (713.783.5100) all carry the Skinny Monsters.

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89 Overall Score

While the early parts of the Skinny Chuck were not particularly promising, as the cigar progressed the flavors lengthen themselves out, separated and ultimately turned into something that was more than just toasty and pepper. The obvious question is whether this is better than the original Chucky and the answer for me is no, though I'd rank it to be in the better half of Skinny Monsters.

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Charlie Minato
About the author

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.

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