Eleven years after debuting onto the premium cigar scene, Tatuaje’s Monster Series—one of the most ambitious limited-edition cigar sagas ever attempted—has come to a close. The series has seen its fair share of plot twists over the years, originally planned to be mirrored by an Actor Series (with cigars named after the actors that most famously represented the monsters in the Monster Series) and the intent for the collection to span 12 years from start to finish, among others.

The latter change involves the 2019 launch of both the Chuck and Tiff cigars, being listed as the 11th and 12th cigars in the 13-piece series, respectively. Both cigars were first released in 2014 as part of Tatuaje’s spinoff Pudgy Monsters collection, where the first six cigars in the Monster Series were offered in short/stout expressions of their full-sized counterparts. But the Pudgy Monsters release also contained two new blends: Chuck and Tiff. These blends would go on to be included in additional spinoffs over the years (Skinny Monsters, Skinny Monsters Cazadores Edition, and Skinny Monsters Lancero Edition), but it wasn’t clear until 2017 as to whether the blends would be included in the primary Monster Series. Most likely due to concerns with impending FDA regulation, Tatuaje owner, Pete Johnson, announced the series’ close at the 2017 IPCPR trade show, showcasing The Michael as the 10th release and announcing Chuck as the 11th, Tiff as the 12th, and The Bride as the 13th release. Skipping the Chuck and Tiff cigars, Johnson released the 13th Monster in 2018, as Chuck and Tiff were planned to be released sans dress box. But Johnson was later persuaded by fans of the series and debuted both cigars in dress (and non-dress) boxes in October 2019.

Tatuaje Cigars Monster Series dress boxes IPCPR 2019

Tatuaje Monster Series

MonsterWrapperDimensionsRelease
The FrankConnecticut Broadleaf7⅝” × 492008
The DracHabano Ecuador Maduro6¾” x 522009
The FaceMexican San Andrés6⅜” × 562010
The WolfmanEcuadorian Sumatra7½” × 522011
The MummyNicaraguan Sun Grown Criollo7¾” × 472012
JV13Connecticut Broadleaf7½” × 522013
JekyllEcuadorian Sancti Spiritus7″ × 492014
HydeEcuadorian Sumatra7″ × 492015
The KruegerMexican San Andrés7¼” × 482016
The MichaelEcuadorian Habano6⅛″ × 522017
ChuckEcuadorian Habano5⅞” x 522019
TiffEcuadorian Connecticut5⅞” x 522019
The BrideConnecticut Broadleaf7⅛” x 482018

Chuck No. 11 Breakdown

  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
  • Binder: Nicaraguan
  • Filler: Nicaraguan
  • Factory: My Father Cigars S.A. (Nicaragua)
  • Production: Limited Edition (2,190 boxes of 10 | 666 boxes of 13)
  • Vitola: 5⅞” x 52 (Toro)
  • Price: $13.00 (MSRP)

The Chuck cigar features an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper over all-Nicaraguan binder/fillers. Despite The Michael offering the same stats (at least on paper), Chuck is technically the first Monster cigar to feature such a recipe. Chuck has now been featured in the following formats over the years:

  • Davidoff Placencia
  • Cigar of the month club
  • Pappy Van Winkle Cigar
  • Adventure Awaits AVO Cigars
  • Perdomo Cigars
  • Joya de Nicaragua cigars
  • Distillery Edition Cigars
  • Neptune Cigars
  • Davidoff black label cigars
  • Undercrown DOGMA
  • Cabanas Cigar
  • 4″ x 50 | Pudgy Monsters (2014)
  • 6″ x 38 | Skinny Monsters (2016)
  • 6⅜” x 43 | Skinny Monsters Cazadores Edition (2017)
  • 7½” x 38 | Skinny Monsters Lancero Edition (2017)
  • 5⅞” x 52 | Monster Series (2019)

Appearance

The Chuck packaging is made to be paired with Tiff, with each featuring jigsaw artwork themed around the Child’s Play film series. Additionally, the coffin-style boxes have a tongue-and-groove side that allows the Chuck and Tiff to interconnect, with each box’s artwork being completed when connected. The cigar itself is the shortest full-sized Monster (along with Tiff) in the series, with many of the others hovering around Churchill formats. The cigar appears well-made from the outset, boasting triple-cap construction, minimal veins, and a medium-plus bunch. The wrapper is fairly oily when held to sunlight, having a hue that is nearly maduro in shade.

Chuck’s wrapper shows only light aromas, with notes of tangy musk. On the foot there are notes of cedar, peppercorn, and earth. With a straight cut the toro shows a medium-firm resistance and light flavors of mineral and fresh gardening soil.

Click images below for full resolution

Smoking Experience

The cigar wastes no time in developing an enjoyable mixture of flavors following ignition. Peppercorn zips through the nostrils, being zesty without crossing the line. There are also loads of sourdough, a very distinct Oreo chocolate, and campfire-like charcoal sensations. This combination makes for a brilliant pairing with bourbon, bringing out more of the toasted wood components and ramped up sweetnesses of vanilla and caramel. The cigar’s first half is rounded out with a darker chocolate note, an exceptional toasted marshmallow sweetness, and cherry lingering in the background.

Tatuaje Chuck No. 11 cigar smoking

Chuck shows a much better smoking draw than the pre-light experience, being virtually perfect (perhaps a hair too firm, if anything) and backed by medium bursts of smoke on each puff. The burn is straight, revealing a semi-flakey, dull gray ash—which holds for nearly two inches. Throughout the first half, the cigar is roughly medium-full in flavor, medium in strength, and medium-plus in overall body.

Halfway and beyond, there is a noticeable downturn in flavor output. A punchy spice is followed by an overdose of hardwoods (a combination of charred oak and hickory), being almost barbecue-like when combined. The dark chocolate morphs into a thick Hershey’s syrup, with cinnamon and molasses trailing along into the toro’s final moments.

Tatuaje Chuck No. 11 cigar ash

Would I Smoke This Cigar Again?

It may not be an emphatic yes, but it’s a yes nonetheless. In my opinion, Chuck easily outperformed the only other Ecuadorian Habano-wrapped cigar in the Monster Series (The Michael). In fact, the first half of my smoking experiences with Chuck had me thinking it could be one of the best Monsters to date. But the lackluster second half smoked like a shell of the cigar’s former self. I think it’s worth having a few of these lying around though—age may help to balance this smoke out.

Additional Info
  • Chuck and Tiff were released slightly differently than former Monster cigars. While Tatuaje typically offers the bulk of the 666 dress boxes to a new selection of 13 retailers each year (with 31 boxes being shipped to each of the “Unlucky 13” retailers), this year’s release was instead offered to an Unlucky 26, shipping 13 boxes of both the Chuck and Tiff to these stores and reserving the rest for other retailers across the country. This is in addition to the much larger shipment of 10-count non-dress boxes made available to Tatuaje retailers across the country.
  • Both Chuck and Tiff show jigsaw puzzle artwork on the dress box’s front, with the various puzzle pieces forming imagery of Chucky and Tiffany (aka the Bride of Chucky). When the two boxes are connected, the two puzzles connect to form one larger image. Pete Johnson indicated to Cigar Dojo that the jigsaw artwork doesn’t have meaning associated with the film franchise—being incorporated simply to allow the two boxes to connect visually.
  • While this year’s releases are likely the last new blends in the series, Johnson has stated that the series will go on, most likely running through the 13 cigars in a looped fashion (i.e. the 2020 release is slated to see the return of the original The Frank cigar, etc.).
  • Pete Johnson elaborated on the continuation of the Monster Series in an interview with Cigar Dojo at the 2019 IPCPR trade show (seen at roughly the 7:20 mark in the video).
  • Technically, there were 700 dress boxes made (differing from the 666 released), as Johnson reserves an additional 34 boxes each year for his personal collection, where they may be used for charity, etc.

Profile
  • Flavor: Medium-plus
  • Strength: Medium
  • Body: Medium-plus
Core Flavors
  • Peppercorn
  • Chocolate
  • Hardwoods
  • Campfire
Tips
  • Smoke Time: 1 hour, 25 minutes
  • Pairing Recommendation: Rye-based bourbon | Oreos | Trick-or-treating | Child’s Play (1988)
  • Purchase Recommendation: 3-pack

Tatuaje Chuck No. 11 cigar nub finished

Chuck
Chuck and Tiff may have been somewhat of an anticlimactic finale to one of the most exciting cigar sagas ever released, but cigar fans and collectors should be satisfied, nonetheless. From the collector's standpoint, the mere fact that each cigar received a proper dress box (sufficiently completing the advertised 13 dress boxes) is compensatory, as it had once been said that these cigars would be released sans coffin packaging. For the enthusiast, the overall smoking experiences are both fun and somewhat unique. Personally, I found the Tiff to be much more enjoyable from start to finish, but the Chuck had more enjoyable flavors at its peak. This included standout flavors of campfire, toasted marshmallow, and a very distinct Oreo cookie note throughout the cigar's first third. If the cigar's second half matched the first, Chuck may have contended with some of the top-ranking Monsters in this fan-favorite series.
Appearance91%
Burn/Construction91%
Draw92%
Flavor90%
Complexity87%
Price/Value85%
Pros
  • Explosive, highly flavorful first half
  • Great draw
  • Works very well with bourbon pairing
Cons
  • Drop off of flavor in second half
  • Somewhat short-burning for size and price point
89%Wanna Smoke?
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