Best of the Best 2012: Cigars: Tatuaje Fausto

The understated red-and-black band of Tatuaje Fausto (www.tatuajecigars.com, $8 to $8.75) gives no hint of the strength that lurks within its Ecuadoran Habano maduro wrapper. But combined with a Nicaraguan binder and filler, the cigar is like the hair trigger of a high-powered target rifle: With the touch of a flame, it explodes in a burst of strength slightly tamed by an underlying velvety sweetness. Based on the T-110, a limited-production cigar once made for a tobacconist in Honolulu, the Fausto comes in four sizes, of which the 6 x 50 is our top pick.

Photo by Madison McGaw
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