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Jai Alai IPA - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Jai Alai IPAJai Alai IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,257 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,257
Hads: 6,749
Avg: 4.19
pDev: 23.15%
Wants: 932
Gots: 1,593 | FT: 81
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cjgator3 on 12-05-2008

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
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Jai Alai IPA Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,257 | Hads: 6,749
Photo of ne0m00re
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Live review of a 12 oz bottle courtesy SamuelJackson45.
A: A dark amber copper, it poured with a mild head that died to a cream collar and slight film.
S: Creamy vanilla macadamia nuts haunt the background of an odd bitterness, which is almost metallic. A very mild smell overall, and not very pleasant at first.
T: Deep caramel and toffee with a mild green leafy hops finish. Again, vanilla and macadamia nuts are present, with a kind of oaky bourbon alcohol. Interesting. It grows on you.
M: Thicker and undercarbonated. It kind of matches the taste, though.
D: Pretty good.

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Photo of wisrarebeer
4.06/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased at Ward's in Gainesville for $8.99/6 pack.

A: light brown color, great rocky head
S: nice grapefruit/pine American IPA with malt backbone
T: nice IPA for a drinker that doesn't particularly like over-hopped beers, a bit strong in citric bite but all-in-all good, good malt balance but hops could be a bit less, just a few notches below Sculpin, after initial hop hit the taste became more balanced
M: good with malt and hop balance
D: very nice

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Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a hazy copper, with a finger of creamy looking slightly off-white head. This maintains a nice frothy richness to it, leaving back lacing that sticks to the sides of the glass in a creamy cascade. The aroma is sharp, with grapefruit and pine cutting through the nose. This is softened somewhat by notes of tropical fruit, herbal accents, and some toasted grains in the back. Alcohol undercuts the flavors but isn't coming off as overly stiff or stinging.

The taste is once again, fairly sharp and aggressive, being bitter with grapefruit, earth, and pine, which sits against a backbone of rigid grains and some more sweeter feeling tropical character that comes out in a flush from behind the malts. This finishes strong with spice, resins, and bitter rind that linger with a steady dryness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, being crisp on the edges but then mostly smooth and oily throughout the rest of the body. This is a little warming feeling from the alcohol straight out of the fridge but the balance opens up as this warms and helps cover most of the ABV up.

This is a solid staple American IPA from Cigar City, with an aggressive, yet well balanced, hop presence and a body that maintains a smooth feel despite the ABV being on the higher side for the style. This was nice but I really need to give this a shot on draft as well.

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Photo of jhtipton
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pumpkin golden in my tasting glass with a generous creamy head. Enjoying it with - A Cigar - Hoyo de Monterey Palmas Extra. It holds its own with a cigar, wonderful smell - piney and citrusy - plenty of grapefruit. Lots of mounds in the creamy head, still. Nice hoppy grapefruit tast with some creaminess - not sure if I should call it hop con leche or not, but it is a splendid flavour. Sweet, low on bitterness but the hops keep it toned down. Alcohol seem lower than advertised, but I'll press the I believe button. Mouthfeel is great, I like the creaminess to the texture, I would say medium bodied. Very drinkable but will wait to see what the alcohol does before I pound a few more. I'll try again!

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Photo of Chaney
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Special thanks to Pittsky for sending this in a trade. Thanks Jesse!

A: Poured a cloudy red-orange color, with about a four finger head that stayed a creamy froth until what seemed like a freeze-over of hell.

S: The fruit of choice for this one was... orange! I mean, this was one fruity, orangy mama jama! A bit of pine in the mix, but not in a West Coast IPA sort of way.

T: Sweet, a bit sugary, but not in an offensive way.... more like Florida citrus orange juice way. This one tasted eerily similar to Clipper City's (Heavy Sea's) "Loose Cannon." The finish was very smooth and had a high-end filtered water quality.

M: The sugar content was explosive for sure, and the lacing was extreme, almost to the point of ridiculous. However, the balance between the sugar, fruit, and alcohol was perfect and downright delicious.

D: I have only had one other Cigar City brew beside this one up to this point. They sure have made a great impression so far. Highly drinkable!

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Photo of EgadBananas
3.96/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky, yellowish orange with splotches of red thrown in there. Light beige head that leaves sh*t-tons of webby lacing down the side. It looks great, and it looks like I'm going to smell some citrus in a second!

And I do smell some citrus and grapefruit. Some grassy, earthy hops are in there too and a fair amount of accompanying sweet/caramel malts. There's plenty going on, but it's a bit too much on the subtle side to be anything out of the ordinary.

The taste does some nice make up. Initial stark, grassy bitterness, with some citrus/grapefruit. Ends with a nice subtle malt backbone with a hint of bitter linger. Very nice.

The feel is good, creamy, but also a bit crisp. Carbonation is good, and feel is upper-light in body.

Drinkability is good and solid.

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Photo of Cmack15
3.77/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was really excited to try this beer because it is not available in New England. Unfortunately after a lot of hype this beer did not live up to my expectations. The hops were not as in my face as I wanted and the malt notes came through more then I care for in an ipa. Having said all that tho I did enjoy this beer and would drink it again.

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Photo of AdamBear
4.94/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A-dark gold, almost reddish. good amount of cream colored head

S-mmm good fresh hops and pineapple! also a little bit of a cigar scent with spice. good strength. smells absolutely delicious.

T-intial hit is pretty bold with pineapple, citrus spices, and some hops. its such a rare an amazing taste.. the ending is a tab bit more hoppy. not very bitter at all, its mostly creamy. the after-taste is citrusy with a cigar spice to it.

M-medium to low carbonation but is very soft to the mouth. extremely creamy

D-honestly, the more you drink it, the better it tastes.this might be my favorite go to beer in the world actually. one thing about this...i always make it my last drink. for some reason when i have it first, it tastes almost mediocre. but if its my last drink of the night, i always find it to be my favorite.

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Photo of psuKinger
3.15/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle acquired via trade with jchow79. Poured into standard curved shaker pint glass.

A: Pours a deep hazy orange with a nice 1-finger head.

S: The nose has some bitter hops and citrus.

T: The malts are dominating here, to the point where I have to question if this guy is *struggling* on the freshness front. I've had this beer once on tap before, and I don't remember this kind of malt presence. It starts with a very mild presence of grapefruit. I'd like to see more *punch* up front. The flavor profile turns almost entirely malt in the middle, with a thick syrupy malt taste. It finishes with some dry bittering hops, but once again, I would like more of a *punch* here to.

M: Great carbonation here, it's light and tingly at first, and falls apart nicely on my tongue as I move it around.

D: Drinkability isn't very high here. The malty-syrupy flavors are dominant... there's just no where near enough hops in this.

I think this guy probably wasn't fresh. Normally I wouldn't submit my review given these circumstances, but as I acquired this via trade and I believe this isn't readily available here at my bottle shop, I'm stuck in kind of a tough spot here. I will revisit this brew another time, and if a re-rating is appropriate I will do so.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jai Alai IPA has a copper-colored body with just a little bit of haze to it. Many strands of carbonation bubbles rise to the top where they create a thick looking, tan head. Good retention and pretty good lacing too.

A hint of pale malt, and maybe some caramel malt are the first scents I notice, but they give way to the scent of hops in the form of a powerful aroma of tropical fruits.

Jai Alai is one of those IPAs that manages to bring a ton of fruity hop flavor with only a moderate amount of bitterness. It leads off with flavors of mango, apricot, grapefruit, and generally a cornicopia of tropical fruits. A little bit of bitterness comes with these hop flavors, but not much, and certainly not the type of tongue-biting bitterness that large amounts of American hops often produce. Besides the hops there is a malt backbone that, as the aroma suggests, seems to be mostly pale malt with a bit of caramel malt thrown in. Enough malt to balance, but not so much as to overwhelm the hops.

Mouthfeel is good, with enough body and a good amount of carbonation.

Jai Alai is a pretty tasty IPA, especially for beer lovers who really like big fruity hop flavors as opposed to more resinous, bitter-tasting IPAs. I'm also a little bit surprised to see that the ABV is over 7%, so the alcohol is well-disguised.

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Photo of drewba
3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - hazy, translucent blood orange. Pours a two finger head with big, frothy bubbles. Lots of lacing.

S - Colossal aroma that doesn't fade during the duration of the beer. There is so much pine and lemon zest coming off this beer, i it's hard to smell much else. Ok, I am getting a little bread , ethyl alcohol and nutty character from the aroma.

T - Flavors are huge - from the hops, I'm getting a heavy dose of grapefruit fruityness which is adding a bulk of the bitter, also lots o grass and pine. There is an unusual dry, spicyness to this. Almost like a cedar or cinnamon. The malt is definitely here, notes of caramel sweetness, molasses and sourdough bread.

M - really satisfying, sticky, sweet medium-thick mouthfeel. Really light carbonation, I wish it was a touch higher, but I'm still liking the mouthfeel.

D - The cedar/cinnamon flavor I picked up in the taste is bothering me, because I can't exactly pinpoint it, plus it's sticking around. But, the tropical fruityness is keeping me interested and wanting more. Overall this is an unusual ipa, but still a tasty beer.

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Photo of OneDropSoup
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Excited to see more Cigar City offerings on tap at House of 1000 Beers in New Kensington, PA.

Poured into a tulip pint: Copper orange body with bright gold highlights, finger of creamy beige head, transparent body. Leaves tendrils of lacing.

Smells of fresh grapefruit, very clean but with a clear, leafy, fresh smell. Nothing unexpected, but pretty great, crisp.

Tastes of moderate citrus hoppiness, grapefruit zest, slight sugary back-up, though not necessarily "malty." Some lemon in the finish. A little sugary but very hop-forward, just how I like IPAs. Lingering piny bitterness in the the aftertaste, some tea.

Medium-bodied with some resiny stickiness & a bitterness that pierces through but is not overly abrasive. Nice tingle, ends crisp.

Very good, tasty & refreshing. Again, nothing new or unexpected here, just a common style done very well.

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Photo of wallaceandvomit
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a- very dark (for an ipa) brown/amber, hazy, large head that lasts forever, a nice thin layer of lacing
s- sweet malt, citrusy hops, some floral notes, very bright pleasant smell
t- nice piney/citrusy hops and sweet malts, nicely balanced but the hops take a front seat, very good
m- sorta thin but a little oily and creamy with nice carbonation
d- awesome beer, proud that it's from my state

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Photo of Stigs
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle, i stumbled upon while doing some beer shopping this weekend. Cigar City in the 'burgh!

A - pours with a fingers-worth of tight and creamy, tan colored foam. the beer is a bit hazy, dark gold in color. some light and spotty, wet lacing left around the glass.

S - big and bright, piney hops...turns slightly citrusy in the second half with some pineapple, and grapefruit. malts are present, adding a sweet layer of caramel.

T - assertive bitterness right out of the gate, taking hold on the back of the tongue. tastes very piney with some wet grass thrown in as well. again, citrus waits a little bit to make itself known with some grapefruit and apricot. (an attempt at being) well balanced, rich caramel malt sits underneath, before being burned away by a hint of booze.

M - exceptionally dry from the first sip and lingering through the swallow. light bodied yet with nice playful, tight and prickly carbonation - works extremely well with these flavors. finishes with lingering grassy bitterness, and a light alcohol burn.

D - not usually a huge fan of these types of IPA's but this works quite well, I actually enjoy it a bit more than the Cedar-aged version. big bold and hoppy, yet interesting with a wel perceived malt backbone. well done.

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Photo of timtim
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

very very nice, and a good example of AIPA. kind of straddles the line between east coast and west coast, and definitely has a Florida vibe to it. dark amber with an off-white head that holds forever and leaves tons of lace. nose is soft-caramel, citrus, flower, pine and a touch of tropical fruit. just like an ipa should be. extremely well-balanced, juicy and delicious, with pine and citrus rind coming through in the finish. just the tiniest hint of alchohol (which is remarkable, considering the 7.5abv) and a very cleansing kind of feel to it. great brewery doing things proper in a relative beer wasteland. can't wait to try the mango grove...

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Photo of LiquidBread219
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= Nice amber color really dark, Nice foamy head and nice amount of lacing.

S= Nose was kind of weak to me, but you can smell a little bit of citrus hops.

T= The taste to me was a little some citrus hops but the pine hops really came out and was a little bitter. Nice malt backbone.

M= Nice medium bodied beer. Right amount of carbonation.

D= Really nice beer I really enjoyed it and would like to drink this one again.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Amber colored hue with gold shining through on the sides. Finger of frothy head with lots of lacing. Nice!

S: A little faint, but the aromas are interesting...overall not the hoppiest smell but still alluring: Sugary malt mixed with citrus, hop resin, and flowery perfume hops all covered with a definite grainy malt character.

T: Caramel, sugary citrus tropical fruit, hop bitters, toffee and some flowery hops. Lots of malty grain character for an IPA, not a bad flavor by any means, but maybe not exactly what one would expect in terms of hops, more of an exact balance of hop to malt than an edge to hops.

M: Good level of carbonation and smooth overall with a lingering bitter finish.

D: This is a different beer, but its definitely good. Easy drinker and solid beer overall.

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Photo of armock
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a copper color with an off white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is a nose full of grapefruit hops

T - Follows the nose its like drinking grapefruit hop juice

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

D - This is a beer for the hop heads out there its a good tasting hop bomb for sure worth hunting down to try sometime

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Photo of beerman207
4.26/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First off - thanks to Bamadog for the hookup with this single from Cigar City. I had the cedar version of this prior and didn't get a chance to review it but thoroughly enjoyed it.

A: Cloudy orange with a nice fluffy head that sticks around forever. Amazing look.

S: Interesting nose - smells of faint citrus but may have some element of melon present?

T: Wow. Bitter up front, Pine hops linger a while giving way to the malt back. Very nice balance in the flavor.

M: Great carbonation

D: All night long. I need more of this IPA.

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Photo of mattsdenney
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Purchased in DeLand, FL (home of Abbey) while visiting in-laws for Thanksgiving. Poured into pint glass.

A: Pours w/ a thick foamy head, hazy amber color.

S: Hops, not overly strong but crisp and fresh.

T: Not sure what type of hops are used but tastes amazing. Slight fruitiness with a mild lingering bitterness. Extremely tasty.

M: Creamy, medium body.

D: Higher than normal ABV and extremely drinkable.

If you make your way to FL be sure to pick up this beer. Wish we had in TN!

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Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A really pretty hazy cherry wood amber color with moderate head and some nice lacing. Smell is a bit sweet, malt forward, a little weak. Taste is decent, though this is a far more balanced IPA than I was hoping for. Decent piney hop bill on top of a spicy amber malt (and maybe some rye?) bill. Medium body, nice for an IPA, not over-carbonated like so many out there. Good drinkability, not my favorite IPA, but glad to be able to try it.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at the Whole Foods on Houston St. in New York City. I heard that these guys were up-and-coming and this was the only offering that I was able to get when I last passed through there two weeks ago. Although I like my IPA's nice and hoppy, this one fit the bill as well. Without a doubt, this had to be the smoothest IPA that I've ever had and if anyone wanted to try this style for the first time, this would be the perfect beer for that!

Nice pour to this - a light copper hue, decent head, and a good amount of lacing could be seen throughout my somewhat quick downing of this beer. This is hoppy with metallic, orange, and light lemon zest notes to it. Doesn't burn in a dry-hopped way and it's crafted so well, that the mouthfeel is light and still feels totally natural. Only the flavor lingers in the back after each sip, the hops slowly easing away until the next sip.

Don't be fooled by the 7.50 ABV%! It's there but you won't even notice it and this could easily sneak up on you if you decided to have more than one sitting. I don't do the whole cigar thing but if these guys have the pairing of that with their beers down as well as they crafted this, then they're onto something. Damn shame I can't find more offerings from them up here in the northeast!

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Photo of bamadog
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I received this in a recent trade with sorelenator, and am quite grateful for it as this is really a great IPA. Review is from notes taken on 11/17/2010 and poured from the bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: Pour is a standard orange/coppery color; starts with a big 2 and 1/2 finger, slightly off-white head with great retention; body shows just a slight haze and lots of fast moving, strong carbonation; nice webs of lacing are left behind as the head fades to a very full, yet uneven and frothy cap.

Smell: Super solid and mouthwatering; lots of bitter grapefruit and lemony citrus zest; ever so slight sweet malt scent in the back; very straightforward, robust and good.

Taste: Very much like the smell -- lots of up front hop bitterness that is citric in nature (grapefruit and that same lemony zest); bit of a dry, cracked grainy bitterness in there as well, but overall, the hops really rule this one and they're pretty great.

Mouthfeel: Body is between light and medium in weight, but closer to light; strong carbonation that is good and just shy of sharp -- really provides some nice liveliness to push those great bitter flavors around the mouth; the gums are left a little tingly from the action and ABV; a dry, thin stickiness is left all over the mouth.

Drinkability: This is really an all-day kind of IPA, despite the 7.5% ABV; great flavors that are refreshing that accompany a body that isn't going to sit heavy at all -- I would gladly have 3 or 4 of these over the course of any day.

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Photo of MADhombrewer
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Jai alai from Cigar City Brewery. Tampa, Florida

12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance- Hazy straw colored with a thick off white head. Nice lacing as I drink it.

Smell- Musty, piney, hops accompanied with grapefruit and maybe some citrus rind of some kind.

Taste- Nice balance of hops and malt. Wait..did I just say that? I usually prefer very dry IPAs but I really like this one. The piney hops stick around nicely in my mouth. Still has the grapefruit from the aroma and the musty hops, in a good way. The alcohol starts to come out as it warms.

Mouthfeel- A little thicker than I think IPAs should be, but that doesn't take away from the beer at all.

Drinkability- This is a good beer but I like it in small doses. I am glad this is a 12oz serving and not a bomber. The hops start to get hairy and too much after awhile. I think this would be better with a 6.5 abv than a 7.5.

I was glad I got to try this. If it was available in my area I would pick it up from time to time but this is one that I would have to be in the mood for.
Got this one from beandip.

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Photo of Shaw
4.65/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From a growler I got yesterday at the brewery.

A beautiful deep amber in color with a short, but solid off-white head.

The aroma is unique: It smells of tropical fruits and hops. Fantastic.

The taste is excellent. It's hoppy and fruity and bitter with notes of malt sweetness. I've noticed that the hop flavors fade rather quickly, so make sure you have this beer when it's fresh; otherwise it's a more muted beer.

Glassy and smooth body that just glides around in my mouth.

It almost feels like Cigar City brewed this beer just for me. Stop reading this review and go drink some Jai Alai.

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Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
93 out of 100 based on 1,257 ratings.