Quick Draw Episode 4
Well it’s been a couple weeks since we posted a Quick Draw so here we are with our latest iteration of this new series. In today’s episode we are visiting a fairly old member of the Tatuaje Monster Series, the Frank, and a somewhat new blend from Alec Bradley, The American Classic.
In case you missed any of our other Quick Draws, here are the links and the cigars contained:
- Quick Draw Episode 1 – Gran Habano Connecticut #1 and Cohiba Siglo VI
- Quick Draw Episode 2 – P. Benitez Connecticut and Padron’s Serie 1926 #6
- Quick Draw Episode 3 – Quesada Oktoberfest Bavaria and Cohiba Maduro 5 Secretos
If you haven’t read one of our Quick Draws before, it’s basically a quick review of a cigar we’ve recently had. Perhaps revisiting an old one, trying a new one, something we didn’t intend to review but surprised us, or whatever other reason we can think of. Without any more blabbering, let’s just jump right in.
Tatuaje Monster Series #1 – The Frank – Tony
It’s been a while since I personally have done a Quick Draw. Mainly because, well I don’t know really. It’s been a crazy last couple of weeks. Busy at home, work, you get the idea. Anyways, recently I was lucky enough to fire up one of the most sought after cigars in the country. Tatuaje’s Monster Series #1, the infamous Frank.
I know some of you wanted a review of this, but quite FRANKly (rimshot), there really is no point. This isn’t a cigar you will be able to find unless you already have a few lying around, or you have a really awesome friend (right Daniel?). There is some good news though. Recently Pete Johnson rumored that he might be making a “mini monster” series. Smaller vitola versions of the current line-up. And rumored to be amongst those blends is the mini-Frank, or whatever he called it. So keep a look out for those.
Anyways, I was a HUGE fan of the Boris. In fact, I think that was one of the best blends Pete has ever released. And the Frank is supposed to be the same blend, only with a Connecticut Broadleaf Wrapper. I’m a sucker for Broadleaf so you know I jumped all over that. Anyways, the cigar is a monster (double rimshot). Seriously, this thing is a huge. Beautiful looking deep, dark, toothy wrapper. I was surprised that almost 4 years later it still had so much oil! The flavors were exactly what I had imagined, some very, very sweet tobacco, lots of chocolate, woodsy and even some maple flavors with a splash of spice. After only a few puffs in I could totally taste the resemblance to the Boris, except, it seemed very subtle and washed out. The more I smoked this cigar the more flat it became. I really wish I had smoked one of these at it’s initial release so that I could make a comparison, but I think that all the age on this cigar worked against it. That’s not the first time that has happened to me. Not all cigars age well, and through all the hype I would have to imagine this was another blend that fell into that category.
Ahh well. At least Boris’s are still around through trades (I smoked the heck out of mine), and if the mini-monster series of this does get released I can make a solid judgment on it.
Alec Bradley American Classic Blend – Daniel
The weather in Toronto continues to be totally wacky lately, just 2 weeks ago we were wearing shorts in awesome high 70’s temps and just yesterday we had freezing rain. It makes no sense! But luckily the temps have been somewhat favorable for cigar smoking outside so I try to make the most of it. I’m always looking for new sticks to try and even revisit old brands I may not have had good luck with. Today I’ll be hitting up the Alec Bradley American Classic Blend.
The AB is a beefy looking cigar with it’s thick 60-ring gauge and at 6 inches, it’s not the faint at heart smoker. Be prepared for a nice long smoking session when you choose this stick. The cigar itself offers up a nice smooth wrapper and fairly springy consistency when squeezed, even though the foot appears to be quite well packed. The cap clipped easily and the foot toasted up nicely using my favorite culinary/creme brulee torch (get one of these if you don’t have one, I love mine!)
The cigar itself I felt was another classic Alec Bradley. I seem to have mostly the same opinion when it comes to Alec Bradleys and this is how it went. I started off the cigar with a nice mix of medium body flavors including a bit of woodsiness, leather and a touch of earthy flavors. There was some spice that snuck in now and then as well. Now my biggest gripe here was that those flavors didn’t really change much through the whole time I smoked this. A massive 6×60 cigar that is fairly one-dimensional gets boring for me very fast. That’s not to say the flavors were bad, they were fine but I needed and wanted a change up within the first third. That seems to be a continual event with me and Alec Bradley sticks. So a shorter vitola probably would have held my attention but in this monster size, I got bored pretty quick. I might pick a smaller vitola of this blend one day but I don’t think it’ll be on my primary shopping list any time soon. 🙁
Now I need to point out that the brew I paired this cigar with was damn fantastic! It was a Tripel from La Trappe breweries, a traditional Trappist ale. Seems like Tony has something right about this Belgian brews. IT was full of a mix of dark and light fruity flavors, everything from citrus to a nice deep blackberry, mixed with a ton of malt and even a touch of toffee or caramel. Definitely worth picking this up if you can find some!