Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series) - Cigar City Brewing

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Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series)Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series)

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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

914 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 914
Reviews: 451
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 13.55%
Wants: 184
Gots: 89 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our flagship beer in the Humidor Series is Humidor Series India Pale Ale. We start with Jai Alai IPA as a base beer and add the cedar during secondary fermentation. The cedar provides a perfect balance with the assertive hops of Jai Alai to create an entirely new experience.

70 IBU

(Beer added by: tpd975 on 05-26-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 914 | Reviews: 451 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Dreadnaught33
3.38/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Overall, I'm not sure the Cedar really works with this as it's so much cedar and grapefruit all around, but this grew on me as I drank it. Opened this last night with friends thanks to aepb1 for this as an extra in a recent trade.

A: Dark orange with gold highlights, this beer has a nice bubbly ring of white head with good retention and ok lacing.

S: For me, I think the cedar just makes this smell almost like fresh grapefruit juice and grapefruit rinds, but not in a hop way, in the pure bitter fruit way. Lots of cedar pulp, with some smoked malts in there as well. Kind of a weak aroma in terms of how much springs from the glass to me and friends drinking it, definitely unique.

T: Bigger palate and complexity here, again with an abundance of grapefruit pulp and rinds and sweet savory spicy cedar notes, both of those certainly dominating the flavor. Nice citrus and tropical fruit hops behind the grapefruit though and the woodsy smoked malt notes are pleasant. Seems dry and tobaccoish in ways, I can see how this would be good with a cigar as the label states.

M: Very biting grapefruit, it's a little astringent. Smoky charred feel somehow without the RIS like malt or porter char. Bitter finish. Ok.

Overall this is an interesting beer but not one I would ever buy myself, as it seems like a beer to only have with a cigar, by itself it is kind of bizarre and a little off-putting.

Photo of BDLbrewster
3.38/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First off thanks a ton for this goodie, my best to all who participated in the Football and Beer BIF.

Pours a very hazy ripe grain hued orange amber with a large frothy, sticky head. Large bubbles and tons of sticky lacing wrap up this category.

I don't get the huge amounts of cedar that a lot of the other reviews highlight in the smell. Mildly powerful pine resin is my first thought, oh wait. The more I sniff the more wood I get. Ha Ha. Sweet almost fruity malts make up a huge proportion of the odor as well along with a faint spice. Other than that not a whole lot going on here.

The cedar is epic in the flavor, it seems to drag down the plethora of other things going on in here. The spicy, piney hops put up one hell of a fight but ultimately fail in breaking through the woody forefront. The malty backbone is sturdy enough here and releases flavors resembling toffee and earthy grains. I would enjoy this a lot more without the heavy wood taste.

The mouthfeel is good, feels naturally carbonated in your mouth. Very large bubbles and not at all syrupy. This is the best part of this brew so far.

Overall, this beer really makes me want to try the non-cedar aged. I bet it is amazing. This brew is a knockout, but I just don't think that cedar aging is necessarily the best compliment to an already amazing IPA.

Photo of beagle75
3.4/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy, medium amber color with one finger of diminishing white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: A sharp-edged combination carbon dioxide and fresh-cut wood largely masks the presence of malt. Esters are also present, providing a suggestion of sweetness and becoming more pronounced as the beer warms.

T: Begins nearly dry, with volatile wood and robust toasted malt, with a lively coppery taste just under the surface. Carbonic acid soon surges to an aggressive level and stays there, tapering off well into the finish. Hop aromatics are earthy and spicy early, then developing a faint dark citrus quality as the middle elapses. Grainy toasted malt becomes resurgent in the middle, where estery fruit and black pepper may also play a small role. The finish sees the various flavor threads approaching the end like runners whose endurance is flagging--diminished by their journey, but still in it. The cedar, nuanced even at the beginning when it was at its strongest, is relatively unrepresented here, although it may be responsible for the mellowing effect had over the bitterness, which stays mild but with a medicinal quality.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, acidity builds on the palate to the point of distraction, with brisk carbonation.

D/O: Complexity is a quality that cannot usually be attributed to the function of any single ingredient, and neither is it something that is always desired in a beer. Here complexity reigns, and it is probably this beer's best quality. While it struggles with some acidity issues, it produces some very intense and resonant flavors that are challenging to put into words. It is definitely not a typical IPA-drinking experience, and that is irrespective of coasts. This is eminently sippable, with the ability to hold its own against tripels and strong ales.

Photo of jf60657
3.4/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Drank @ work off a cask.

Poured a cloudy yellow with a nice thick head into a standard 4oz tasting glass. Pretty murky for an IPA but thats not a problem. Head was about finger thick and receded quickly.

Nose was of fresh grapefruit and just a tiny bit of wood. I also got some sugary tones like melted watermelon jolly ranchers. If you take the wood out it smelled like every other big, citrusy IPA I've had as of late. There was a slight peaty smell as well.

Tasted it and BANG, HOPS! Pretty much a hoppy grapefruit spritzer mixed with a picket fence. I wanted the candy tones I smelled to come in and rescue this beer but it did not happen. Unbalanced and a little confused, this beer was interesting but by no means great. After a few sips it turned into a yawner. Hops, hops, hops. Yeah, I get it.

Mouthfeel was viscous and warm. A little oily and chewy.

I had 8 oz's of this and I was set. Did not want more

Photo of bigfnjoe
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Victory tulip

A- pours a cloudy shade of orange with a one finger slightly offwhite head. A decent bit of sediment in this one. Huh.

S- the cedar is the primary aroma, with some sweet fruit creeping through as well

T- slight bitterness, decent smoky wood flavor, mild sweetness. It's ok

M- body is actually relatively thick

O- not a huge fan. I know this is one of CCB's staples, but I'm not in love with it

Photo of Reaper16
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle served into a tulip glass

Pours a darkish, burnt orange color. Plenty of murkiness to the body, though you can see some carbonation when you hold the beer to direct light. The carbonation gushes out, forming a two-finger-plus sized head, but it reduces down to a very tight one finger. Plenty of thick-ringed lace is left in its wake.

The dominant aroma I'm getting is caramel malt. Which isn't what I personally want to get as the dominant aroma in an IPA, but I can roll with it. There's green hop notes here, a splash of fruit juice too. There's a different sort of astringency here too which I am attributing to the cedar chips. Slight vanilla comes along with the wood. I've had cedar in beer before (namely Boulevard's discontinued Seeyoulator Dopplebock), and this doesn't at all smell like what I thought it would. The unique character of cedar is diminished on the nose of this bottle. Is it old? I have no reason to think so, but it could be the case.

Tasting the beer leads me to believe that it isn't blindingly fresh but isn't over the hill either. There's a fair amount of peach and orange hop flavor to this bottle. The caramel malt IS stronger than I'd prefer, but it maybe needs to be. The cedar flavor isn't dominant or even particularly strong, and I think the malt is helping a lot to keep the wood in balance. That wood is green and yes, tastes like cedar. Very trace vanilla; mostly green wood.

This beer is on the thicker side of medium-bodied. I typically don't like that attribute, but it works for this beer. There's something pleasing about the textural heft in relation to wood flavor. Usually, wood-aged beers are so thinned-out, so the contrast is unexpected and enjoyable.

Overall, this is an above-average IPA. It is unique and enjoyable, though nothing that I would turn to regularly (or ever again, even). It isn't what I'm looking for in an IPA, but it does succeed in what it wants to do.

Photo of johnnnniee
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden color with a decent sized white head that slowly fades to a ring around the top of my glass. Smells like that old chest at the end of your grandmothers bed. Earthy and woody with a hint of patchouli. There's some citrus in there as well, and maybe some malt, but the cedar is such a powerful aroma its hard to find anything else. It tastes just like it smells. Cedar and citrus with a hint of pepper and malt splashed in for good measure. I'm not sure if I'm imagining this, but after each sip my pallet seems awash with the flavor of cannabis. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet bubbly mouthfeel. The cedar flavor and aroma is quite strong here and the first few sips were rough until my taste buds finally cried uncle. This is not something I would drink often, but I applaud the result.

Photo of TotallyHosed
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks goes to Heatwave33.

The appearance has all the markings of a good brew: thick off-white head, translucent dark amber color, lacing from top to bottom and bubbly.

The smell of this brew is lacking. I certainly smell the cedar wood, but at no time could I smell anything else.

The taste is a little better than the smell. When the brew was cold, I was only able to taste cedar and a little bit of sweetness. As it warmed up I did pick up some hoppy bitterness.

The feel is nice. There's adequate carbonation and light body. The bottle says the brew is unfiltered, but the appearance nor the feel reflected this. I would expect to see some cloudiness and a light-to-medium body. In my opinion, this is simply an observation, not a negative critique.

I do enjoy IPA's that are aged with wood. That extra layer, or layers, of complexity is a welcome change from the usual profile. My only disappointment is that I expected more hops in the nose. Maybe a bottle that is more fresh would deliver this. This is an interesting beer that I recommend you try once. I don't smoke cigars, but I imagine this brew would make a good pair.

Photo of doremite
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of SPRichard
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of tetu
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of enelson
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of gtermi
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of FUwolfpacker
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of Tumble
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of nollie77
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of RBorsato
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of TBlightning
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of emottram
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of Bluecane
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of tswater
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of scoot64
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of kjb32812
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of argock
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 750mL brown bottle into a clear stemmed glass wine goblet. No freshness date. Purchased at Knightly Spirits (Orlando, FL) for $8.99.

A: Burnished amber with dense 1-finger off -white head which leaves a sheet of lace all around the glass.

S: After sampling this immediately following a Jai-Alai unleaded, this brew has no bright aroma signature at all comparatively. There is a dull woody chest of drawers type of aroma but no bright citrus and resin hoppiness like the progenitor ale.

T: The flavor is a little better than the aroma, but overall it is still muted and masked byt he cedar heavy sprucey, woody flavors. Hoppiness is very bitter but not much else.

M: Still very smooth and creamy but the aftertaste is bluntly woody.

D: Cedar aging did no favors for this wonderful brew. THe aroma and flavors are muted and darkened. Not at all a good version compared to the original.

Photo of Holland
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series) from Cigar City Brewing
91 out of 100 based on 914 ratings.