Dismiss Notice
Microbrew Invitational
Join us June 3 + 4 in Boston and help us drink 300+ beers, ciders, kombuchas, meads, sakes and more!

TICKETS: beeradvocate.com/micro/

Jai Alai IPA | Cigar City Brewing

1,350 Reviews
For Trade:

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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,350 | Ratings: 7,218
Photo of Janderson91
3.63/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No bottled on date to be found. Enjoyed on 03/06/11.

A - Nice amber color, slightly hazy with a one finger white head. Leaves little lacing.

S - Fruity, vanilla, sweet malt, woody aroma. Also has somewhat of a wet dog smell to it that I can't seem to get away from.

T - Taste is better than the nose. Sweet up front with an oaky vanilla flavor. Finishes with a crisp hop bitterness and again a woody flavor that lingers for a while. Good tasting beer.

M/D - Mouthfeel is pretty good for the style. Nice and full. Drinkability is pretty average.

Glad to finally see some Cigar City in Alabama. A good beer for sure but not my favorite IPA.

 643 characters

Photo of Waltherpk380
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bought this at total wine in Fort Myers, Fla. Pours a hazy orange. Smell is of lovely hops and grapefruit. Taste is very hoppy, and you can really pick up the fruitiness of the hops, I'm getting some malt coming through too, mouthfeel is definitely thicker than the IPA's I have tried, syrupy but with some carbonation. I love cigar city's brews and I want to drive up there and take a tour, this brew I could probably drink 3 bottles but the ABV packs a punch, Excellent DIPA

 476 characters

Photo of washburnkid
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours cloudy copper with a finger of white head. Aromas are in your face citrus hops. Grapefruit and pine. Flavors follow with a citrusy hop explosion but are balanced out by a perfect amount of caramel malt. Good carbonation, and a sticky residual mouthfeel. This is a solid IPA.

 280 characters

Photo of mooseisloose
4.7/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Gotta love it, strolling through TW and Cigar City catches my eye. Pricey but so far proven. Jai Alai? That's usually rigged, but how do you rig a bottle of brew? it is good or it isn't. On that note, let's give it a whirl. Popping the top this brew has a nice citrus hop note with some arid maltiness. On the pour its a slightly cloudy yellow with a big beige head On the taste this brew is big citrus , starting with a tinge of grapefruit, moving quickly into orange then very quickly into banana then finishes big into a high test licorice . The AC stands out big on the finish but it is very smooth. This is almost like a reverse shot with a chaser, or a pain in the ass with a 151 floater. Extremely unique. Mouthfeel is like silk. I'm drinking this brew at about 62 degrees in a 68 degree climate. Incredible! I see what all the rage is.

 843 characters

Photo of Radome
3.63/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

A - A nice orange color, just slightly hazy. The head is thick, slightly yellow and made of large soap-like bubbles with a slightly oily sheen. Huge mass of bubbles rising constantly through the beer.

S - Piney slightly lemon-like Northwestern hops, but surprisingly muted. No other aromas break through to become noticeable.

T - The hop taste is fresh and clean. There is just a tiny bit of biscuit-like malt in the sweetish aftertaste.

M - Sharp bitterness at a high level, almost soapy. Prickly carbonation. Moderate to heavy body.

D - A drinkable, cleanly made American IPA, but too one-dimensional with focus on the hops to be a great example.

 696 characters

Photo of augustgarage
4.43/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to BPRESTON for the Cigar City haul! Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Deep hazy tangelo liquid with tangerine and amber highlights and a fluffy three finger seashell stand of merengue up top. Thick soapy lacing, and a constant stream of rising bubbles throughout. Superior retention.

Lovely aroma - chock full of citrus-forward hops with fresh orange and pomelo zest dominating the nose. Clean malt and a light herbaceous note round out the scent.

Very faint caramel malt, immediately enveloped in a wave of citrus-y, lightly spicy hops which lead into a moderate bitterness mid-palate growing more fruity suggesting white peach and a touch of mango. Finishes dry and bready with a lasting subtle complexity of mixed hops. Very citrus-forward and flavorful, but remarkably balanced (without being too malty) and without overdoing the bitterness or acids. A true change of pace from many West Coast IPAs, but just as enjoyable as most of them.

Well carbonated, soft, then crisp and refreshing. Each sip demands another as you try to pick out subtle hop notes but are thwarted again and again as the wave of citrus/fruit and gentle caramel wash over you.

Really impressive.

 1,219 characters

Photo of happygnome
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thank you Miamichael2 for this one.

a: pours a hazy orange color with about an inch of pillowy head that disappears semi fast leaving a good amount of lacing resting atop the beer and around the edge of the glass. As I sip, the lacing sticks to the edges of the glass

s: Citrus, Grapefruit, pine hop bitterness. The Citrus is what hits me the hardest, followed by the pine. A little malt sweetness to balance

t: Fruity sweetness. The bitterness is strong. Unlike in the nose, the piny hop bitterness is the dominant flavor

M: medium bodied beer with good carbonation, very nice

overall, this is a really good brew. I am thankful I had the chance

 650 characters

Photo of Rhettroactive
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 2/20/11
*From notes

A big thanks goes out to a great trader for this one - UMCaner74. Cheers Dave!

A: Crazy three finger head on a good pour. The lacing is just ridiculous. Murky, dark and unfiltered amber in color.

S: An absolute citrus bomb. Sweet resin and pine tar.

T: Liquid hops. It's like being shot in the mouth with a (hop) pellet gun. It's biting, tarry and intense. Slightly sweet with a backbone of sturdy malt. As it warms, it becomes a spring bouquet that is so floral and complex, it's like sipping on a sunflower patch.

M: Insanely creamy. It's about perfect - ample weight to compliment the delicious flavor profile of this American IPA.

O: One of the most enjoyable drinking experiences I've had in some time - I love what Cigar City has done with this beer. A part of me wishes I still lived in the Sunshine State, just so I could have access to CCB's suds 24/7.

Seek this one out.

 945 characters

Photo of samyoung
3.73/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beers you find in the random bodegas...
I was heading back from dinner at a friends and stopped into a neighborhood store expecting to get a Sierra Nevada; instead I found a beer I have been wanting to try for months. Picked up a single for $2.39.

A - Cloudy, autumn haze; it looks fantastic.
S - Slight scent of hops, vanilla and citrus; really had to smell hard.
T - Vanilla, pine-cone and bitter oak.
M - Thick and sticky.
D - Very robust and complex; may be hard to have multiple.

I think this one may be an acquired taste. I really like the oak aging idea - it definitely shows in the beer. The vanilla-oaken undertones make this beer unique as far as IPAs are concerned. I want to try it on draft.

 711 characters

Photo of ggilman
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Found a six-pack at ABC in North Port, FL while visiting my Dad this week. Hoping to swing by the brewery in Tampa on my way out of town!

Poured into a brandy snifter.

A - Hazy apricot color with an intially thick foamy head, that subsided quickly, leaving small amounts of sticky lacing.

S - Sweet Candy Malt nose.

T - Rich malt sweetness fully coats your mouth. Grapefruity bitterness lingers in the back.

M & D - Thick & syrupy. Rich, but enough carbonation to cut it. Smooth, but heavy. Like drinking a hop nectar reduction. A couple will fill you up. 7.5% ABV comes through. Finish the 6-pack and you'll be drunk dialing ex-girlfriends.

I'm not sure what defines Imperial or Double vs. a regular IPA, but to me, this is an IIPA! Similar in character to a 90-Minute. This has become my official vacation beer. I'm excited to try more of their beers soon!

 865 characters

Photo of brew3crew
3.58/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-cloudy orange with white head
S-smells like mostly faded hops. Get some pine after it warms up some
T-very malty with almost no hop presence. Doesn't seem like this is very fresh. Ok at best and I think that is the biggest indicator of freshness
M-mediun bodied and smooth.
D-Very drinkable considering the abv. Would like to try a fresh one and see what it tastes like

 371 characters

Photo of BamaViper1
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. I assume this is an early 2011 vintage.

The Jai Alai pours golden amber and slightly opaque into the glass. It forms a half-inch thick, white head that leaves nice whisps of lacing down the side of the glass.

This beer has strong aromas of hops with notes of grass and grapefruit. There are also slight hints of banana and a caramel malt.

This brew is nice with the grassy hops coming through as the beer hits the tongue. That bitter grassiness is the base from which all of the other tastes emerge, those others including hints of grapefruit and orange. The finish is bitter with a hint of bread.

The beer is medium-bodied with good carbonation. The finish is long but a bit too thin. The almost DIPA-like taste screams to me for a DIPA body, but it's an IPA and the mouthfeel fits its style. Just with it were a little bigger.

With lower alcohol and a solid taste, this beer is easily drinkable. I like the Jai Alai a lot, and for now it is probably my favorite Cigar City brew. It's a really hoppy and bitter IPA. You can't really ask for more.

 1,103 characters

Photo of gskitt
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy orange with a tight fluffy head, has some floating sediment in the body. Smells of sweet citrus and pine resins. Something else coming through, can't put my finger on it. Very resiny, oily, citrus component comes through as a sour bitter grapefruit. Has a touch of sweetness at the end. Leaves my mouth puckered and watering. This is a drinkable 7 1/2 %. My first beer from Cigar City, impressive.

 410 characters

Photo of ms11781
3.98/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to sburrough. 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a cloudy, deep orange color with a 1 and half finger, fluffy, off-white head. Great head retention with decent foamy lacing left on the glass.

The nose is pretty balanced. A few different hop aromas are present. Some citrus and grapefruit, and a good amount of pine. The pine is probably more prominent than the others. It's all balanced by an underlying malt sweetness that is probably stronger than it seems if it keeps the hops in check.

Strong hop flavor in the taste as well. Still fruity, but not so much citrusy as in the nose. The sweet malt character is very strong here, balancing the hops nicely. Finishes strong with some bitterness from a piny, resinous bite.

Medium mouthfeel with a lower carbonation give the beer a smooth and creamy mouthfeel all the way through. That being said, it could probably use a bit more carbonation. Sometimes a beer with a good bitter kick at the end doesn't finish all that smooth but that's not the case here.

Good drinkability. Overall a pretty balanced IPA with strong malt and hop flavors. Definitely surprised to see that the ABV is 7.5% because it feels like a beer that you could have a more than a few of. But with an ABV that high it would catch up sooner rather than later.

 1,299 characters

Photo of ThirstyBird
3.95/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep orange/gold color. Nice fluffy cream colored head than slowly descends to a thick blanket. Nice lacing. Smell is malty with tropical hop aroma. A. Lot of tart tropical fruit hop flavors with a malt backbone. Some Carmel notes due to the malt. Long lingering slight bitter aftertaste.
Medium body with nice carbonation. Fairly creamy mouthfeel. Quite smooth. Overall a decent ipa.

 392 characters

Photo of larsenju
3.4/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

No bottle date, batch codes, or best by.

A-Orange body with just a hint of amber, 2 finger solid white nice retention and lacing.

S-Strong citrus, kind of a mix of grapefruit and orange, some peach, and a little bit of a grassy pine character that cuts through everything. Backing up all those hops I got a little honey sweetness and some biscuity malt.

T-Sweeter fruits up front, some mango, peach and just a little bit of lemon. Moving back the malts started to come through, biscuits and bread. Finishing with a kick of bitter and some resin like pine. Starting midway across the palate it got pretty hot and only got worse from there.

M-Kind of on the thin side, medium carb.

D-I have had this before and I was pretty excited about it at the time. I enjoyed it today, but I am almost wondering how fresh this is. The hop flavors are way down from what I remember, and it is unpleasantly hot. The fruit flavors are nice, and the aroma is pretty interesting. I appreciate their deviation from the normal American IPA, but lets get some date codes, and maybe drop the ABV and build some body.

 1,103 characters

Photo of uustal
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours amber-orange with a pearl white one-finger head. Not much lacing, decent head retention. Big hoppy aroma. Tropical and pine hops dominate, also a bit of floral hops, bready malt and alcohol present in the nose. Taste is what you'd expect from the nose. Big citrus hops, a little sweetness from the tropical fruits mix well with bittering pine hops. A little bready malt sweetness on the back end. Pine hops linger a bit into the aftertaste.

 446 characters

Photo of bboelens
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a duvel tulip.

A-Murky orange/copper with flakes of amber and a large frothy 2" white head

S-Spicy Hops, slight malts and citrus

T-The citrus is a bit more pronounce and the hops more subdued in the taste than in the nose, however it certainly works, a slight alcohol infused malty finish wraps up a delicious tasting beer

M-Crisp, medium bodied and well carbonated

D-Loved having a homegrown Florida beer that was absolutely delicious, a great tasting beverage that I'll definitely be having again.

 532 characters

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

First review. Experienced this beer tonight from a 12 oz bottle, given by my girlfriend in a mixed 6 pack. Having lived in Tampa for a few years for college, I have recently found out about the Cigar City Brewery in Ybor city, and I am really excited as its offerings seem to recieve excellent reviews here on BA.

Back to the beer, the Jailai IPA boasts a very well balanced, hoppy nose with an excellent full mouthful, without being too creamy. Hints of hoppy pineyness coupled with citrus and slight orange flavors mingle nicely with caramel malt and a very minimal alcohol flavor(extremely well balanced for its 7.5 ABV profile). Lasting head about 2.5 fingers leaving significant lacing on a pint glass. Very drinkable IPA, can't wait to try more of their offerings.

 772 characters

Photo of DoctorDog
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: From a 12 oz. bottle into a nonic. Thanks to beveritt for hauling some of these back from Florida.

A- Clear amber/copper. Pours with ~2 fingers of rocky off-white head, which fades very, very slowly to a nice cap. Gobs of sticky lacing left as consumed.

S- Starts with hop notes that are a mix of citrus tipped with pine, and fairly quickly gives way to caramel malty sweetness.

T- Citrus hop notes provide a solid, lingering bitterness, backed by a full dose sweet caramel, slightly biscuit-y malt counter-punch.

M- Moderate carbonation and a medium-slightly full feel. Smooth, even a bit creamy.

D- Very good. Solid all around, and extremely drinkable. Not too palate smashing given it's relative heft and hopiness, and easy to envision drinking multiples in a sitting.

Future outlook: Very good beer that doesn't make it here via distribution, so I won't get to have too often...

 902 characters

Photo of tempest
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had a pint at Crescent and Vine. This beer is the gray area between IPA and Imperial IPA, but I like beers in here. They're supremely hoppy but still have a decent malt body without being to sweet or thick. I had my glass also with a cheese plate and this went fantastically with the Irish cheddar and Stilton Blue.

The hop character was less citrusy than I remembered with a bit hit of flowery fruit punch. It's smooth at first and then finishes with peppery grapefruit (ok, there's some citrus). For balance there's a slightly sweet fresh bread malt note. Overall, this a great IPA and something a little different than the rest.

 633 characters

Photo of Drazzamatazz
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was pretty excited when my parents brought me back a sixer of this from their vacation.

A: Cloudy copper hue with a great frothy head that sticks around and won't go away.

S: Hops play into a tangerine, clementine, ruby red grapefruit aroma. Smells so fresh and sweet with a biscuit malt note in the background.

T: Very sweet, its like tangerine and caramel together in the best of ways. There's more malt then some people might care for, but its quickly cut back with a crisp hop bite. Lingering flavor is very much grapefruit.

M: Slightly syrupy for the style. Medium carbonation.

D: Great; flavor has enough to keep you interested, its crisp yet complex, and you'd never guess it was 7.5%. One of the most enjoyable and drinkable American IPA's.

 755 characters

Photo of BennyL1
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received this one in a trade with GallowsThief (Thanks Rich!) Been wanting to give this IPA a shot. Also my first offering from Cigar City.

A - Jai Alai pours a nice cloudy amber color with about a fingers worth of creamy ivory colored head. A good amount of spotty lacing along the glass makes for an inviting appearance.

S - Citrus hop aromas of grapefruit and tangerine up front. A decent amount of pine in there too. Aroma is balanced out with a nice malt scent.

T - Tons of hop flavor up front make for a really nice first sip. Nice and complex with flavors ranging from tropical fruit to pine with a nice toasted biscuit note to boot. Really wonderful all around flavor.

M - Really love the feeling on this one, just nice and smooth with the right amount of carbonation.

D - Great IPA from a great brewery. Can't wait to try the other variations.

 862 characters

Photo of Eriktheipaman
3.85/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured an orange with yellow and a little cloudy. Nice thick white head that fades and brings decent lacing.

The smell is light with pine, alcohol, and spicy malt.

The taste is mostly of pine on the bitter side but has a mandrian orange backing to it as the malt breeps up.

Pretty good IPA and Im very glad I have a few more I received in a trade but nothing that I couldnt live with out.

 391 characters

Photo of sendsilk
4.72/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I paid $11.49 for a six pack of Jai Alai at Sweetbay.

A- Clean. Don't usually drink IPA's but it is my hometown brew so I feel obligated to taste and review it. A really clean orange color that is very appealing.

S- Nicely hopped. The hops are present but not punching you in the face, like Hopslam (which is excellent).

T- Wow, this is a really great IPA. Not my style right now, but, I will always have a place in my heart for IPA's. Clean and crsip with just the right amount of Hoppiness to it.

M- an IPA with great mouthfeel. Easy to swallow down.

D- I am abbreviating this as I only opened it about 10 minutes ago and it is GONE..I should have had another in waiting. What a great beer. I am impressed and will have this again soon.

 744 characters

Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 1,350 ratings.