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Jai Alai IPA - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Jai Alai IPAJai Alai IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,235 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,235
Hads: 6,602
Avg: 4.19
pDev: 10.02%
Wants: 917
Gots: 1,495 | FT: 78
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: 1,235 | Hads: 6,602
Photo of BlackBearForge
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This long awaited beer pours a nice clear golden amber with a foamy white head of suds that leave loads of nice looking laciing.

Wow, the aroma right off the bat smells like bright fresh hops, as if I had just opened a bag to put in the brewpot for one of my homebrews. Tropical fruitiness in the hop aroma arena reigns.

The flavor is hop centric front and center with fresh tropical fruit, citrus and grapefruit lushness delivering a mouthful of bitterness. Pale malts, just slightly tasting of caramel, are just strong enough to provide a sweetish buffer for the hops. The hop profile includes a bit of pine resin character too which I'm very glad for. Warming brings things together very nicely! Alcohol is only barely noted and as such seems an integral part of the flavor structure.

A not too heavy not too light medium mouthfeel makes this a treat to drink, slightly creamy and very smooth. Carbonation seems dialed in to the perfect level.

Living here in Florida you'd think I would have had a chance to try Cigar City beers before now, I just live in the wrong part of Florida apparently. It is a real pleasure to try a world class beer from a Florida brewery (a rarity indeed). Though the bottles carry no freshness information this bottle is as fresh as you could ask for as far as hop flavors go. Excellent beer!

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

12oz bottle into a DFH snifter, no indication of freshness but this was a new arrival at the bottleshop when I visited. Jai Alai appears a hazed orange amber color with about a finger of offwhite, yellowish stained head that forms when the brew is poured slowly down the middle of the glass. It doesn't take long for the creamy foam to dissolve leaving quite a bit of lace all about the glass. Swirling the glass produces just shy of a finger's worth of foam every time which quickly receeds to a thin layering atop this brew.

The aroma of this IPA is sweet, fruity, floral and herbal. A very nice display of all sorts of hop charactistics are present in this brew. Upfront the sweetness of the hops blends with some caramelized malts which highlight the sweetness side of the nose. In the back, the herbal part of the hops come through and mix with some slightly solvent alcohol notes to form a more spicy aspect.

The taste of this brew is very enjoyable displaying a wide range of hop character just like the nose of this brew. The different flavors of the hops settle inside the mouth before the moderate herbal bitterness. Hop flavors tasting of citrusy fruits and a more mellow fruit like mango is there before turning herbal, bitter and clingy. A solid amount of toasty malt flavor backs the bold character of the hops to make a well rounded and very enjoyable experience. All through the back of this brew is a bold alcohol presence that suggests 7 or more percent abv. The alcohol makes no attempt at hiding which is good because it really plays off the other flavors and creates a nice warming sensation in the back of the throat demanding you to take it slow and taste everything this brew has to offer. I can't get over the fact that despite how much hop flavoring there is inside this brew, the toasty malt character comes out just as bold in other sips.

This is a medium bodied brew with a moderate level of carbonation. Even with a very noticeable presence of alcohol, there is no problems finishing this off and looking for another. I fully enjoyed the darker offerings from Cigar City and this IPA has me equally impressed. Very well done.

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Photo of Gosox8787
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz. bottle poured into my Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: Light brown to dark orange in color. Two and a half finger beige, pillowy head. Pretty good retention.

Aroma: Mango and citrus notes are dominant. Pretty strong malt background in the form of caramel notes. A touch of pine in the hops too.

Taste: Smooth mango and citrus notes. Nice, strong malt background of caramel notes. Bitter pine notes after each sip. Bitter hop aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and crisply carbonated. Very smooth.

Drinkability: The ABV is really well hidden and this goes down really easy. Definitely an easy drinking IPA.

Overall, a really nice and balanced IPA. Very easy to drink with a pronounced malt backbone. Also highlights some of the sweeter notes of hops. Recommended.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazed, medium amber-toned body with a tall, frothy, off-white head.

Smell: Caramel-scented maltiness rounded out with fruity, citrusy, spicy hop notes and a sprinkle of booze.

Taste: Pale malts with a slim measure of inherent breadiness and lightly coated in a thin veneer of sweet caramel. JAIPA is laden with citrusy hops with additional accents of fruity mango and resinous pine. Minute hint of aspirin-like astringency lurking in there as well. Moderate bitterness. Some warming alcohol sneaks into the drying, bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A beer that does a decent job of displaying the natural beauty of the hop plant. It's good, though maybe I shouldn't have gone from trying the Cedar-aged and Guava versions to trying this.

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

Reviewed from notes taken on 6/27/10

A - Pours a dark copper with a small khaki-colored head. Moderate lacing.

S - Sweet caramel, grapefruit and pine resin.

T - Very piney with a bitter, earthy finish and a solid caramel malt backbone.

M - Creamy with medium body and carbonation.

D - Very drinkable, would love to try this on tap someday.

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Photo of poonamibaxter
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to the cheesemoose for this one!

A: Copper with a nice fluff fluffy head that drops down to about 1/8"

S: Fresh grapefruit with a hint of malty sweetness, hope it doesn't taste too sweet

T: Hoppy bitter slightly sweet malty goodness. An IPA with a good malt bill. I salute you sir.

M: Goes down almost too easy, could use a bit more carbonation maybe

D: I could suck this down all night, it hides its 7.5% well.

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Photo of Dubber55
3.58/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Copper/orange pour. The color looks similar to raw honey. After a vigorous pour, I still only get maybe a quarter inch of bubbles.

Not getting too much in the way of an aroma. Mostly pine, maybe a little citrus, and a little honey.

Tastes pretty much like chewing on pine needles. I also get a little citrus like grapefruit and some honey.

Mouthfeel seems medium. Seems a bit sticky as well. Not a lot of carbonation either

It is not really hoppy enough for me. I would have liked more citrus and less honey. Its not bad though. The pine flavor is pretty strong so I dont know how many of these I would want to drink.

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Photo of kiddynamite920
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Glad this finally made its way up to PA. Bottled 9/1/2010, so this one is pretty darn fresh.

A: Pours out a burnt copper, dark orange with a really nice and creamy looking head. Looks big and sticky, just how I like my IPA's. A bit darker in appearance then expected.

S: Can tell this one is only around two weeks old. Aroma is huge and pungent. Big grapefruit aromas, but also a peach/nectarine sweetness. Giant hop presence with some being quite bitter and some lending a big juicy fruit aroma. Really outstanding nose on this one. Has a great malt backbone as well, quite nicely balanced.

T: Big, sticky and hoppy. Huge bitter hop flavors pair up with a sweetness that resembles honey. Nice caramel malts up front followed by an escalating hop bitterness. Bitterness seems to stick to the tongue and doesn't really pull at your gums, which is nice. A very hoppy IPA without a doubt.

M: The head on this beer really aided in the creamy mouthfeel I got here. Carbonation is on the lower side as well, just makes for a slick beer. Not a problem at all, quite nice actually.

D: Very easy drinking IPA, will definitely be revisiting this one. Bitter and hoppy, yet sweet and delicate.

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Photo of Onenote81
3.65/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Awesome extra received from Kiefdog in a recent trade! Thanks!

12oz bottle poured into a Surly pint glass. Pours a dark rusty mahogany with a thin beige head on top. Light lace sticks around. Scents of flowers, deep citrus notes, light pine needles. Nice nose.

The body if pretty full. Moderate carbonation balances out the heavy mouth. Not sure when this was bottled, but it seemed to me that the hops had faded quite. The malts came forward much more prominently than I remember from the fresh growler I had previously. Bitterness is still present in a good way, but the fresh sharp hop bite that I enjoyed is hidden now. Still a great beer, but it is *much* better fresh. Thanks for another opportunity, Kevin!

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Photo of philbe311
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Less than a fingers worth slightly fizzy slightly off-white head... Miniml retention gives way to splotchy lace with a thicker portion in the center of the glass and a collar around the edge of the glass... A medium bronze color loaded with lively swirling carbonation throughout... A little bit of lacing clings to the glass...

S - Red grapefuit... Tangerine... Canned peaches... Manadrin oranges... A wonderfully sweet citrusy hop aroma... A thin layer of bready crust and cracker like malts... An overall appealing aroma...

T - Balance is paramount... The palette isn't as citrusy as the nose and is joined by a slight piney hop presence... The sturdy malt base is also more pronounced... Perhaps just the slightest peppery spiciness on finish... The hop bitterness doesn't really kick in until much deeper in the finish...

M - On the thicker side of medium bodied... Lush... Sleek... Slightly creamy... Smooth... Rich... The finish turns slightly dry...

D - A very quaffable American IPA that hides it's 7.5% ABV extremely well... An excellent aroma, terrifc balance, and luxurious mouthfeel combine to make this a standout offering... While I like hoppy offerings, I typically don't like more than one in a sitting... This Cigar City offering is an exception to that as I could enjoy a couple of these in a sitting and I suggest you do the same...

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Photo of thagr81us
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from bottle into a COAST imperial pint. Poured a hazy red-yellow with a one finger off-white head that subsided to minimal quickly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of malt, sweet hops, citrus, and subtle caramel. The flavor was of intense malt upfront that subsided to allow a subtle hop character to come through that intensified as it sat on the palate, and was ended off with a sweet citrus note upon swallowing. It had a medium feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a very nice and smooth IPA. As stated by Jeff (PDXHops) there was no date on the bottle that I could find to confirm freshness. The hop character of this brew was definitely present, but it was not the star of the show. This was a very nicely balanced IPA however that was quite enjoy to drink with dinner. Definitely worth trying if you get the opportunity. Can't wait to try the Humidor version of this one so I can compare.

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Photo of PDXHops
3.03/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. No date info on the bottle. Hazy dark copper body capped with a creamy finger's worth of foam. Retention's pretty good. Patchy lacing

Very east coastish nose, with a hefty dose of caramel and light citrus zest notes underneath. A touch boozy. A thickish brew, with moderate carbonation doing little to lighten up the sweetness. A decent level of bitterness briefly cuts through midswallow. Juicy citrus turns into a mildy pungent leafy hop flavor toward the finish. Malt dialed up to about 8.5.

Overall impression: Not particularly memorable, although I have no idea how old the bottle is. Given this mystery, I'm inclined to give it another shot (will update my review with any new developments).

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Photo of jzeilinger
4.52/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pours a nice, deep copper color with a thin cream colored lacing and moderate carbonation. Looks very good.

S - Floral character with pine, grapefruit, lemon, and some caramel malt with the majority of the nose greeted by some generous hopping. There's a little bit of alcohol in the nose as well.

T - Citrus, citrus, and more citrus. The tongue is greeted with piney floral hop flavoring, migrates to the citrus notes, and ends with some caramel malt on the back end, alot of grapefruit, and a pretty dry finish. There's some alcohol warming on the way down also. This is a single IPA that could easily be mistaken for a D-IPA for the mere fact of it's aroma, assertive taste, and big time borderline D-IPA; at 7.5%, in my book, that's the cut-off before it starts turning into a Double IPA. The bitter dryness of grapefruit slaps the mouth after the sip and leaves you wondering where all your saliva went. The bitterness lingers for several minutes.

M - Heavier side of medium body, very light on the tongue with mild carbonation.

D - Exceptional, hands down. I'd love to sample this beauty of an IPA on tap, it must be fabulous. If a bottle can be this good, then in my opinion, the tap is most likely that much better. DEFINITELY worth a try.

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Photo of mdaschaf
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a trade with korguy123, thanks Matt! Poured into a DFH snifter.

A: Pours a nice amber/copper color with a just off white, 2 finger head. Thick lacing runs down the side of the glass.

S: Citrus and grapfruit, a lot of tropical fruit. Some mango and pineapple, but I also get a lot of strawberry flavor.

T: Nice balance of citrus/hops and a biscuity/doughy malt flavor. It has a nice sweetness and finishes with a nice bitterness.

T- Smooth hop/malt presence, pine, toffee, grapefruit, orange peel. Sweet like candy but not over the top sweet. A really tasty fresh IPA.

M/D: Smooth with a nice bitter finish. Great carbonation. The alcohol isn't noticeable at all. Extremely easy to drink, only wish I had more of it!

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Photo of papat444
3.86/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased at Whole Foods of Orlando and enjoyed it on Sept. 3, 2010 with my supper, tortellini with garlic tomato sauce.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

Appearance: Major foam in my flute. An amber golden body with a very long lasting head and major lacing. Perfect appearance in my books.

Smell: Good dose of hops with fruit but hard to pick up which one because of my partially stuffed nose. Still, the fact i can smell something means the aroma is pretty good.

Taste: Malt-like at first but i'm struck at the fact that it feels very fruit heavy. Peach and grapefruit are the prime players. Not bitter at all except in the lingering aftertaste. I didn't quite like it as first since it seemed the malt and hops were pushed aside with fruit being the biggest component but it grew on me. No hops assault here.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth with a low carbonation. Quite well balanced.

Drinkability: Easy to drink and i would never have pegged it at 7.5%. I would seek it again.

Overall: Not your typical IPA that's for sure. Don't expect a hop bomb but do look for some real flavor. I would have preferred a bit more intensity but i still liked it.

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Photo of Arenbeer
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into a snifter

Thanks to Mavajo for this great brew!

A- Pours a cloudy golden orange with a thinner white head that LLAB.

S- Strong pine hops sit on top of a nice caramel malty backbone with a great amount of citrus and grapefruit.

T- Sweet Grapefruit and citrus with a really nice bitter dry pine hop flavor to compliment. Solid caramel malt background for sure but gets lost in all the hop presence.

M- Medium body with lower to moderate carbonation and a real nice strong bitter finish.

Excellent IPA that could easily stand up to most DIPA's.


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Photo of thetomG
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired in a trade with drowland - thanks!

Gorgeous orange-amber pour with some very nice foamy white head. Minimal lacing, but the color and opacity of the beer are really stunning.

Aroma is a bit underwhelming after the lovely look of the pour - mostly just picking up the hop scents. Flavor is excellent though - floral, citrus, and bitter hop notes all come together very very well.

Carbonation and mouthfeel seem just about perfect. I could drink this all day - if only it was easier to acquire!

Looking forward to my next bottle already...


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

Acquired this from TheManiacalOne so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!

A: This beer pours a clear copper color with a three finger of off white/khaki color head. Head recedes at a moderate pace leaving chunks of sticky lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is of big grapefruit, citrus hops, mild carmale malt notes and a bit of floral hops.

T: Taste starts off with a rather surprising caramel malt presence. The sweetness isn't too overpowering. Then comes the mild floral hop notes, with a touch of piney flavoring. Finish is all about the citrus hops. Big doses of grapefruit and orange zest that linger slightly on the tongue.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, somewhat creamy body with a slightly sticky finish.

D: Goes down easily, mild kick, nice representation of style. I would certainly have a few more of these!

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.8/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

(Served in a tulip glass) thanks to cak999 for this fresh gem A- The hazy glowing orange body has a creamy off-white head that last and last. There are a few strands of microbubbles trailing up the side of the glass.
S- The full juicy citrus hops meld into a spicy green woody hop aroma and a slight fresh cigar tobacco spice blends with a dry yeasty ester hint. There is a faint circus peanut note that comes through in the finish as the beer opens up.
T- The pungent green grapefruit hops take on a faint minty note as the beer opens. They wash into a bigger spicy hop finish. There is a softer fresh pale malt flavor with some spicy fresh tobacco notes that linger in the hops. There is a slight creamy flavor in the hops at the finish.
M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a tight little fizz that boost the hops in the finish. There is no alcohol heat noticed.
D- This beer has big hops but they keep changing throughout each sip. There is a great nose to this beer and it has the flavor to match. The hops are delicious and juicy but there is not a big bitterness to them, making this beer very drinkable. There are hops that support hops and malt that helps tie it together. I think a lot of the great depth of this beer is lost in the cedar aged version.

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Photo of jfh
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Lots of reviews, here's my 2 cents. Try it several times. I was able to get three bottles in a trade and the first sort of turned me off with the spice flavor folks mentioned. But, the third day, I was pretty happy with the unique flavor of the beer. I can't get it locally, but if I could, I'd put it into the rotation. Only fault is Perhaps excessive carbonation, but I'm getting more sensitive to that so maybe it's My problem. I have always liked cask ales.

We usually drink west coast ipa (green flash), lagunitas ipa, torpedo, rubicon (local brewpub ipa), and pliny. Yes we like hops. But each of these beers has different maltiness and a rotation brings that out.

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Photo of korguy123
4.67/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz into my snifter.
Special thanks to my bro nwfodder for bringing this all the way from Florida!

A- Hazy amber/copper hue; like fresh mulled apple cider. One and a half finger eggshell head that sticks around the whole time. Lacing just blankets the sides of the glass as you drink. By the bottom of the glass the whole thing was just blanketed in residual foam.

S- Citrus notes galore; grapefruit, mandarin oranges, pineapple, strawberries, mango, lemon zest and slight piny presence.

T- Smooth hop/malt presence, pine, toffee, grapefruit, orange peel. Sweet like candy but not over the top sweet.

M- Smooth and juicy all the way down, slight bitter kick, perfect carbonation.

Oh man this is good stuff, the alcohol isn't noticeable at all. It's wonderful and smooth and it's the perfect citrus, pine, malt balance I've ever had. I have a feeling this 6er isn't going to last me long.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, thanks Adam!

This was one of the first CCB beers I really enjoyed. Fairly unique for an AIPA, occasionally reminding me of the chewy bread and caramel malt forward body of an aged Imperial Amber except with fresh citrus hops. Color is a darker and cloudier rust amber with a dark cream colored head that never fades away and leaves ample streaks and webs of lacing. Aroma and flavor are both fairly sweet with strong caramel malt backbone and a resiny citrus hop bite. Body is lighter side of medium with moderate carbonation, thin for the style, but works very well with the strong sweetness in the flavor. Not my favorite IPA, but recommended for not just being another face in the crowd.

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Photo of alkemy
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This was an interesting IPA. It mores much cloudier and darker than other IPA's. The color was a golden mahogany with a small off-white head. The remnants of this head stayed throughout the entirety of the glass. Smells really sweet with nuttiness and rich bread. The hops are definitely there, but in a somewhat subdued citrus note. Really fruity with the hops once it hits your mouth. Tastes range from grapefruit to lemon in this department. Then the sweetness hits. You really get a full dose of bready caramel malts on the back-end of this. This is probably the thickest IPA I've had. It really drinks much bigger than a typical IPA...more so than even some DIPA's I've encountered. I really like this beer. It's certainly big for the style, but quite good nonetheless.

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

This is a very BIG beer - it is so hoppy and intense that it simply burns any other flavor away.

With that warning, however, I can say it is awesome.

Pours hazy amber with a sticky white head with nice lacing. The aroma is slight but hoppy. The flavor is very strong and citrusy, with apricot, blood orange, and peach. Very intense, sweet and super hoppy. Mouthfeel is strong and the finish is so hoppy I almost has a menthol feel. It is delicious, but a palate killer.

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Photo of adam42381
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a golden caramel brown with a 2-3 finger foamy off-white head. Nice head retention. Excellent lacing throughout.

Smell: Sweet floral hops with a hint of citrus.

Taste: Sweet citrus up front followed by spice and malt in the middle and grapefruit/lemon zest bitterness with just a hint of alcohol at the finish. Aftertaste is bitter hops with little bit of sweetness. Excellent balance of malt/hops and sweetness/bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: Very high drinkability. It goes down smooth for a beer with a slightly elevated ABV.

Overall: Great IPA. I would recommend this to anyone.

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Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
93 out of 100 based on 1,235 ratings.