Tatuaje means "tattoo" in Spanish, and the name reflects owner Pete Johnson's tattoos. The brand was developed through a joint collaboration between Pete and Don Pepin.
The three vitolas in the Cojonu range are full-bodied cigars. Beginning in August 2006, the wrapper was changed to a ligero from a viso wrapper. In addition to the regular Tatuaje band, there is a second, gold band with the year of that vitola's introduction in black. The year in the model name refers to the year of introduction. Thus, the Cojonu 2006 was introduced in 2006. Plans are to introduce a new model every three years.
The chocolate and cinnamon scents oozing from the wrapper, this dark Nicaraguan puro gives prelude to the flavors to come. The wrapper was a nice natural color, with few veins and an oily sheen. We didn't really care for the gold 2006 band which doesn't really match the standard brown and white, but it does identify the stick as shapes and flavors change from year to year with the Cojonu. The cigar was firm with no noticeable soft spots.
Upon clipping, the cold draw was easy with a chocolatey flavor. The wrapper was noticeably fruity sweet on the lips.
Some of the previous sticks have had construction issues leading to burn problems, but our sample was acceptable. No razor sharp burn line here though, as it did tend to wander. The ash was furrowed and medium gray.
A creamy nuttiness starts off the Cojonu, with a mild pepper tingle at the back of the throat. Flavors of caramel, vanilla and cinnamon appeared in little pockets throughout the first third, making the experience pleasant.
As the burn progressed into the middle, the sweet flavors gave way to deeper coffee and cocoa notes, with some leather and sweet spices coming on.
Finally, more cocoa and leather with some hints of cinnamon or cedar carried the cigar into the end. Overall a pleasant, sweet, never harsh flavor profile with enough transitions to keep it interesting.