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Jai Alai IPA | Cigar City Brewing

1,367 Reviews
For Trade:
Jai Alai IPAJai Alai IPA

Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Pours copper in color with notes of citrus and tropical fruit in the aroma. Flavor has upfront citrus bitterness with a hint of caramel and citrus and tropical fruit hop notes in the finish.

70 IBU

Added by cjgator3 on 12-05-2008

User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,367 | Ratings: 7,287
Photo of Roby923
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tasty, full bodied IPA. Deep citrus taste with a malty, toasted caramel backbone. A real highlight out of FLA. Appears on some top 10 beers in USA lists, and for good reason.

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Photo of DosBeerigos
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

C. Clear
H. Gold
N. Strong Citrus Hops

Comments taken from my blog

Yep, Cigar City has done it again. This is not your normal IPA. Jai Alai starts with a nice citrus odor and then slaps you in the face with a great balance of malt and hop bitterness. This is a great tasting and perfect IPA. I have had this beer in bottle and on tap and I can say the fresher that you can get you hands on it, the better it is. This is my type of IPA!

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Photo of BrokenEdge
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this on tap. Hazy orange amber in color with a fluffy white head, left a lot of sticky lacing. Smells resinous, citrusy, and with some malty sweetness. Taste is more malt forward than I expected, with the hop flavor and bitterness developing across the palette. Big orange, tangerine, and mango flavors, sweet enough to counteract the strong hop presence. Feel is smooth with a sticky aftertaste, lots of lingering bitterness on the finish. Overall this was a good IPA. I don't think it QUITE lived up to the hype for me, it wasn't the runaway winner of the "best IPA in my life" award. But it's still a very good beer. Somewhat hard to find in PA, so I probably wouldn't go out of my way to have another.

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Photo of olfolxholme
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


12 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip (thanks, hdelavega!)

A - Very cloudy copper color. Pours with about 1 finger of white head. Not much retention or lacing, but some. Bottle artwork shows a Jai Alai player throwing a hop cone. There's a brief explanation of why they chose the name, food pairing suggestions, and a bottling date of Dec 2011.

S - First impression is great - smells fantastic even in the bottle. "Classic American hop aroma" that reminds me of Lagunitas. Something metallic/"dusty" in the background occasionally.

T - Classic, resiny, American hops. Super smooth. Perfect balance with the malts. Crazy delicious at first, but did acquire a little of that metallic/"dusty" flavor after it warmed up, and also some pine needle flavor. Still, great tasting overall.

M - Nice medium weight mouthfeel, refreshing for sure.

O - I really enjoyed this. It's really easy to drink fast, and as long as you are being careful, I think that's the way to drink it. There were a few little metallic notes that crept in here and there - I think that this would be more pronounced if you were sipping slowly, writing a review for some website. Bottle was shipped from Florida, so that may have affected it. All in all, quite glad I got to try this. Definitely recommended!

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Photo of prg1976
3.78/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

No bottling date that I could find, so I don't know how fresh it is.

Poured into my DFH snifter, a slightly hazy pale amber color. Decent whitish head. No lacing, slight retention.

Smell is citrusy hops. Grapefruit, but not very prominant. There's definitely a malty presence, so I'm leaning towards this being a couple months old at least.

Taste is a little more malty with some citrus hops. I can still get the gist of the hops, it's still very good.

Mouthfeel is pretty light, not super carbonated. Pretty smooth.

Great drinkability. the 7.5% is not detectable. Could definitely have a few of these in a sitting.

I wish I could tell how fresh it was....PUT DATES ON YOUR BOTTLES!!!

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Photo of beersensei305
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This IPA pours a honey gold in color with a perfect one inch white head with great sticky lacing. Very aromatic, sweet and hoppy with hints of herbal citrus. The taste is sweet from honey, loaded with hop, and has a good citrus bite. This IPA has a medium body a bit syrupy. This is IPA is great, one of my favorites and a great example of what IPAs should be.

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Photo of LI_PO12
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Can into tulip

Appearance- hazy deep gold/orange, good head retention

Aroma- Big juicy hops, grapefruit, citrus, tropical notes of pineapple, mango, pine a touch of malt in the background.

Flavor- grapefruit, pine, firm bitterness, but with very juicy hop component, tropical notes not as powerful here but still there, very drinkable

Mouthfeel- medium, good carbonation, no alcohol heat

Overall- I haven't had this in a while and just started seeing it in cans, its probably in my top 5 American IPA, just juicy hop goodness.

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Photo of Brackh
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%

Beautiful amber color pour. Awesome citrus smell. Fruity, hoppy and freaking delicious. I love this beer. So well balanced. Not too bitter. Super easy to drink. Smooth from start to finish. The only problem with this beer is that I don't drink often enough.

Wife's Review: "Tastes like you accidentally ate something you weren't supposed to. You know like nature."

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Photo of HopintheSouth
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

From a can- brought back from Orlando by a friend.

Smell of apricot, orange and tangerine and a slight sweetness of malt. Unfiltered as poured in a glass, looks like rusty orange- almost what you see as the sun rises on a hazy day.

At first taste, hop flow of delicious citrus fruits, bitterness well pronounced and a lingering aftertaste of slight alcohol and orange/grapefruit rind. Sweet malt backbone and medium body.

Like many have said this is a solid IPA. Very tasty, I can almost feel like I'm in Florida drinking it. I would replace my OJ in the morning with this beer every day. Very solid- I hope to try more from Cigar City

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Photo of evanforbeer
4.41/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Can date 5/13/14- pours lovely clean orange with foamy white head.

Nose- stone fruits and citrus, herbal hop spice and pine, bready malt

Taste- smooth and lush fruity hops with nectarines, peaches, tangerines, tropical fruit up front, o touch of hop spice underneath, a little bready/caramel malt with a slight trace of vanilla mint on the back end with more juicy stone fruit,citrus and pine lingering on

Feel- smooth, juicy, fresh, zesty, medium-full bodied

A great IPA. Great flavor profile and perfectly balanced and drinkable. Glad I ha an extended layover in Miami and could snag some

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Photo of ctylinebeer
4.8/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz. can poured into a tulip glass. Canned in Feb 2016.

L - Nice amber color with two finger head. Ring of foam around the glass. Lacing gripping to glass.

S - No surprise but orange is the dominant aroma. Little bit of orange pulp and peel. Not too aromatic.

T - Orange-pine taste. Citrus almost comes off as the bitterness. Finishes like an acidic aftertaste of orange juice. WOW!

F - No alcohol taste at all. Medium-light body with very little aftertaste. Easy drinking.

O - I would reccommend this to someone who wants to be introduced to IPAs. Deserves to be one of the best IPAs in the country. Must-try, do not put it off!

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Photo of firkinhophead
4.19/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

32-oz growler pour from wine world in pcb.

pours a slightly hazy orange-brown. decent head settles out to thin film with some spotty lace. sheets cling to the side and fall back with each sip.

aroma of herbal, woody funk. this shit is dank. some light brown sugar and tropical fruit as well.

mascerated pineapple, papaya, and woody sap are like a tropical brandy. big hit of orange oil. grapefruit bitterness rises late. dirty sock funkiness is unique and pleasing. bitterness lingers but doesnt bite too hard. lots of complex, resiny hop flavors, with a solid cotton candy sweetness and caramel underneath. bit of alcohol warmth in the back of the throat.

medium bodied and sticky, with just the right carbonation. mouth coating and a bit heavy after a while.

definitely a sipper, but does not overwhelm the palate. well done. seems like another step forward for big ipas.

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Photo of ELS
4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was surprisingly impressed by this IPA. Living in Florida I've had total access to CCB's line up of beers. I have to say that I don't love them all but Jai Alai Is my kind of IPA. The color is very golden and pure. The aroma is a terrific citrus smell with the familiar pine presence as well. The taste follows the nose with a up front citrus presence followed by the hops to back it up. Just the right amount of hops without getting out of control but enough to keep the hop heads happy. Excellent balance with the 7% abv completely hidden and all you can think about is popping another beer. Overall this is an excellent IPA and is now part of my regular rotation. I only wish it were a little less expensive.

Three years later and this beer is always in my refrigerator. It's the best consistently distributed IPA in Florida.

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Photo of GregA135
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured a nice orange amber color with a white head. A great IPA that has awesome citrus and tropical fruit notes! I definitely need to get me a six pack of this great brew!

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Photo of hayesez
3.58/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A big thanks to HeyOhhh for including this extra in a recent trade. It's a perfect time of year for drinking some IPAs! Getting ready for a trip and figured I'd crack open a few beers to help me along. Call this "number one of several."

Pours a medium colored apricot leaving a reasonable one-finger eggshell head. This doesn't stay around long but leaves some clumped lace all over the glass...kinda makes me thing I'm taking a Rorschach test..."I see...an elephant!" (actually, it really does kind of look like an elephant with really big ears). The head reduces quickly to wispy white cap with an outlined elipse-turned-kidney bean sitting in the middle - cool. Bubbles continue to rise from the bottom of my DGH signature glass throughout the session.

Definitely leans toward the sweet, fruity side of the IPA spectrum. Actually, this is quite sweet with varying tropical fruits spanning all the way to mild cotton candy. A slight floral smell peaks out every now and then as well. Few bitter hops on the nose - this one sure is inviting.

Well the hops are definitely in there! Not nearly as subtle on the palate as they were on the nose. Actually quite a bit more hoppy than I would have suspected - they dominate the flavor profile. The sweetness is not nearly as conspicuous as it was in the smell, although there is a caramel maltiness once you get past the hops. This leaves a lingering bitterness but is still quite dry. Medium-bodied and middle of the road "creaminess," I'd still consider this a decent IPA.

Definitely not one of my all-time favorite IPAs, but decent. I wish the taste had a bit more of the citrusy sweetness that the nose suggested it might.

Consumed: 6/19/2010

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Photo of FunkyFibes
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- A beautiful copper/caramel color that is perfectly transparent. Off white head with a ton of lacing down the glass that clings on pretty much forever, as far as I can tell.

S- Huge grapefruit with a lot of citrus and pine in the background. The smell feels like Florida, which CCB seems to incorporate into beer frequently.

T- There is a ton of hop flavor in this beer. Lots of grapefruit and more of a resin/pine flavor in the middle than was evident in the nose. The hop bitterness is very prevalent, but the malt background keep it from getting offensive. The bitterness sticks around reminding you to hurry up and take another sip.

M- The ample amount of carbonation ties in with the medium body. It is crisp and refreshing all the way through.

O- This beer is a great IPA that really impresses me. I am a little burnt out on IPA's right now, but I would drink this again frequently, but not in large volume. Even if this wasn't local, I would still be as thrilled with this beer.

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Photo of COBeerBuff
3.8/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle received from Tanger in Secret Santa 2010, and poured into a Free State pint glass.

Appearance: Poured a very hazy, dark amberish color with a finger of billowy soft head that shows awesome retention. This beer is a lot darker than I had imagined, and it's also a lot cloudier than expected as well.

Smell: Surprisingly malty for an IPA, but not so surprising based on the appearance of this brew. A litte bit of hop bitterness (citrus and a bit of pine), but the most prevalent portion of the nose is reserved for the sweet breadier malts. Some grains of paradise and a bit of toasted wheat also show.

Taste: Exactly like the nose suggest, this is a very solid and filling beer. Initial citrical bitterness is quickly replaced with a heavy bready malt flavor, and rounded out with a sharp pine aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is very heavy. I was picturing a nice crisp IPA, and what I've gotten is a, to say the least, a mouthful. It coats the tongue and palate, and it tries to finish clean, but the residual sweetness creates an aftertaste that is both bitter and sweet.

Drinkability: As good as this beer is, I'm not sure that I could have more than 1 or 2 in a sitting. The heaviness and the bit of alcohol warming makes me glad I opened this up on the coldest evening of the year, and I'm definitely thankful to Jon for giving me a chance to try this beer. If I'm somewhere CC distributes, I'll definitely seek this out again.

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Photo of hdelavega
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A regular favorite of mine I'm just now getting around to review.

Poured with a little aggression this golden copper brew yields about a one inch head of tight tiny bubbles that simmers down pretty quickly leaving a thin white film on top of the beer all the way down.
Nose is full of citrus and tropical fruit with a little bit of woody pine.
The taste is nice and full. Lots of sweet and bitter hops.
Mouth feel could be a little more smooth, but the hop flavors resonate for awhile which is nice.
Overall I stick with the fact that this is the best IPA I can get readily at a good price and will keep giving cigar city my money.

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Photo of kaips1
4.77/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

An extra from CaptianRedBeard thanks man, 12oz into an av snifter
A-dark murky orange with a lively one finger frothy head, my gf says it looks good so that's a plus, on closer inspection it still has a good amount of bubbles forming
S-lots of citrus, possibly some grapefruit, smells delicious
T-lots of hops upfront,amazing, very citrusy a lot like the smell, it's delicious
M-lots of bitter and tingle all over the place except the end of the drink, the wet finish was a bit of a surprise
O/d- it's a great lite session type of ipa, maybe not an all dayer for most but I'd like to spend a whole day drinking this.

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Photo of MONKandTUCK
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I've avoided evaluating bottled versions of IPAs because it is a style that needs to be enjoyed fresh. Being that bottled beer seldom reaches the drinking glass fresh, I can't consider my tastings fair source for evaluation. This is an exception.

A - Light gold. Nice head. Has the same makings as a good girlfriend.

A - simcoe is prevalent, but not offensive. Citrus and pine flush the senses. This beer is noticed from across the table.

T - juicy, oily, soft caramel sweetness. Enough said. The citrus isn't rind bitter, the pine isn't scalding hot. There's no cat piss. Flavorful, while inoffensive.

M - its as strong as it is because it finishes dry. Of course It's not grainy or too thin.

O - Not my favorite beer ever, but got dayum ... Is love to have this one in tap.

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Photo of julian89
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So I'm sorry that I missed it but on of the top Cigar City guys came to Hop City a couple of Saturdays ago and brought us some fresh bottled Jai Alai, Maduro brown, and some other great stuff I didn't get to try.
Bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a fair yellow color that's slightly hazy with a 1 inch white head with poor retention.

Smell: Light sweet maltiness with a fruity, citrusy, flowery, and spicy hop notes and a little booze. Sooo crisp and fresh.

Taste: So incredible fresh. I feel as though I could drink these all day fresh. I love the crispness and the powerful spice, citrus, and flowery taste to it. Just great and simple.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A simple and fantastic IPA.

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Photo of pmorey
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Gently poured (as instructed!) from a June 5th 12oz can into shaker glass. Deep copper-orange but due to the pour, very slight one-finger head though that ring did leave some lacing right to the bottom. Light on the nose with hints of cracker, citrus, wildflowers and grass.

Expected hoppy pine bitterness was definitely there but very drinkable. Remember chewing on a long blade of grass when you were a kid? A little bit of that taste and a hint of sweetness. Very smooth finish with no overpowering bitterness. Couldn't wait to grab another. Not my favorite what with Zombie Dust and Daisy Cutter in my neck of the woods, but very, very good. Liked it better than Two Hearted.

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Photo of RobbDogg
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wow. Best IPA I've had in a while, well crafted, and a great take on the style. Glad to finally get to try it on a trip to the Keys. Spent two weeks getting to know this gem. Pours a dark honey with a half inch creamy head, and great lacing. A big nose of tropical fruit and hops. Taste is plenty of fruit, mango, pineapple, and tangerine, with a great hop presence and a nice bitter finish. A touch of caramel malt balance it out nicely. Not boozy, but full bodied. A truly great IPA that I will look forward to on my next trip to Florida. Room for some in my suitcase home for sure.

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Photo of Bierlerner
4.58/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. What great IPA!

A- hazy copper. Gorgeous color. Small head and a little lacing.

S- smell is pretty average. Exactly what I'd expect from an IPA or IIPA. Definitely some citrus and pine. But it's not strong.

T- wow. Lots of malt and hop. Caramel, tropical mix of fruits, etc. A great zing in my mouth. Small biscuity lingering from the malts. Love it!

M- medium body with a great playfulness from the carbonation. Not too much. Dances on my tongue.

O- like I said....wow. Way to go, Cigar City. This is an oustanding IPA! I need more, like right now!

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Photo of Aiptasia
3.62/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

A: Appearance is nice. A rich dark yellow beer with little or no foaming. Lacing was similar to cat spit (but in a good way) and didn't hang around long.

S: Not much at all on the nose. Some wet biscuit and malty goodness but little else. I was expecting a lot more aromatics out of an IPA.

T: What it lacks in scent, it makes up for in taste. Very pleasing frontal earthy floral hops drip all over the tongue; lasting approximately five minutes on one pull of the glass. After which, the middle flavors of plum and apricot emerge and do a little dance with biscuity yeast undertones while the alcohol warms the sides of your mouth. The finish is dry, warm and fruity.

M: Ultra smooth due to little carbonation. A nice creamy wetness blankets the mouth, then fades to a fruited, sunny dryness.

O: Love it. On the first smell, I wasn't sure i'd like this beer at all because it has literally no hops smell. It's not an aroma hopped beer, but I think they dumped a ton of fresh hops in the boil.

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Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 1,367 ratings.