Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series) - Cigar City Brewing
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Ratings: 901 | Reviews: 450 | Display Reviews Only:
4.03/5 rDev -0.7%
Into a Duvel tulip, this IPA has an ample head of foam, with spotty lacing and good retention. It's a murky, opaque orange that glows in the sunlight. An island of larger bubbles cluster together on the surface.
Sweet caramel malt aromas, toffee, mild citrus rind, without much noticeable cedar presence to me (in the nose anyway).
Dry and bitter, an initial flash of toffee sweetness gives way to bitter grapefruit pith, lemon zest, and a dry woody finish. The combination of flavors is nice, though the dryness is dominating, and it's moderately bitter and resiny. Pretty smooth and fairly full bodied. We split the 750 a few ways, I probably wouldn't tackle one myself, though it probably could be done.
05-30-2010 16:15:55 | More by emerge077
3.58/5 rDev -11.8%
A - Poured out a clear, orange color with golden highlights. It had a small, white head of foam that left some nice rings of lace.
S - It smelled of cedar and citrus - mostly orange. There are some hidden notes of caramel, too.
T - Lots of spicy flavor and lots of cedar flavor, maybe too much cedar. The caramel and malt is mild and sweet.
M - Very crisp and sharp. A smooth finishing ale that is medium bodied.
D - I've only had a handful of cedar aged beers, but this one was a little too strong on the cedar.
08-01-2010 03:37:47 | More by zeff80
2/5 rDev -50.7%
Appearance: Murky amber with a sticky white head. Good lacing, good retention, clarity could be much improved.
Smell: Intensely woody with a bit of citrusy hops beneath. Some oxidation as well. A cedar overload.
Taste/mouthfeel: Woody, tannic, borderline astringent cedar overpowers the hops and malts both. I get a bit of citrusy hops mid-palate, and no malt to speak of. Bitter tannic finish, it seems like the astringency comes from the wood more than the hops, and there's a noticeable lingering wet paper flavor. Decent, not great.
09-14-2009 03:25:57 | More by largadeer
4.3/5 rDev +5.9%
I wasn't sure what this was when I bought it as there's really no marking on the bottle. It just has the Humidor series label. Luckily BA had all of the information I needed!
It poured a golden-amber body with a slight haze beneath a creamy head of off-white foam. The head retention was excellent, and it displayed some very good lacing.
The aroma was initially malty with a bit of caramel, and then leafy and slightly herbal hops (or does it appear herbal because of the cedar?). Then the nose adjusted and the cedar became quite clear. It was kind of perfumey, and I guess a little bit like cedarwood as well.
In the mouth it was full-bodied, creamy, and smooth with a very fine-bubbled median carbonation due to bottle conditioning.
The flavor was malty and gently caramelish with a toasty edge, and minty and spicy hops (or, again, is that the cedar peeking through?). A rock-solid bitterness anchored it, leading into a dry finish. The cedar came on at the swallow, and then lingered nicely, but faded before the hop flavors and bitterness did.
Not having had the Jai Alai before, I'm not sure how different this beer really is. My guess is that the standard Jai is a fairly basic and drinkable English-style IPA. The cedar was interesting, however, and I found it quite intriguing, and a bit charming. I didn't find it to be a quaffer though, I found myself treating it more like a sipping beer. I would enjoy a taste or two and then put it down for a bit. Again, not having ever tasted the Jai Alai, I have no point of reference, but I will say this: I'd gladly buy another couple bottles to enjoy, and possibly age a bit.
09-18-2009 22:19:14 | More by NeroFiddled
4.03/5 rDev -0.7%
Barrel aging IPAs can be a very dangerous thing in my opinion. So much risk of obliterating character and just wrecking the ship. This one works for me. There are the IPA tones that area clear and evident with the barrel influences that combine to provide a nice drinking experience. It's a little boozy at times, but it works for me. P.S. Mild gusher here and a whole lotta head too.
08-17-2012 03:49:21 | More by RblWthACoz
4.35/5 rDev +7.1%
Poured from a 750ml bottle into an imperial pint glass.
A: The beer is a deep murky amber color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.
S: The aroma is of fruity citrus, grassy hops, caramelized malts and earthy notes that come from the cedar aging.
T: The taste starts out with a burst of mint-like spice that is quickly followed by a strong hops bitterness. Then some caramel and citrus sweetness comes in along with a hearty malt character to provide a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy. As compared to the regular Jai Alai IPA, the cedar aging seems to add spiciness, mellow out the hops and bring out the sweetness.
M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.
D: Very tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, good kick, very good representation of style, although this is a nice beer and the cedar aging adds some complexity I feel like if it ain't broke don't fix it. I loved the regular Jai Alai IPA and think that it's better without the cedar aging.
08-07-2010 23:29:05 | More by TheManiacalOne
4.28/5 rDev +5.4%
A - One and a half fingers of off-white head on a moderately hazy, copper-brown body. The thick, creamy head settles slowly and the lace is appropriately dense on the walls of the glass.
S - Lots of hop aroma, very fruity with pineapple notes and a hint of orange. Malty background, toast and a bit of caramel. Can't say I am getting any cedar yet, though it could easily hide within this hop character.
T - Pungent hops up front with some spicy, woody character up front. Pine and grapefruit with toasty, toffee like malt. Bitterness begins to kick in the middle and notes of pepper and grapefruit come out. The wood begins to assert itself in the finish, there is a subtle, incense like cedar note and quite a bit of spicy tobacco flavor. A strong, grapefruit-like astringency lingers on the palate.
M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet, somewhat astringent finish.
D - Pretty drinkable with a huge hop character. The cedar seems to be very subtle, and may have contributed to a slightly medicinal aftertaste, but it does seem to augment the hops. Clearly the base beer is a very nice, robust IPA and while I haven't had a chance to try it yet, it is on my list.
07-19-2009 03:37:04 | More by nickfl
4.58/5 rDev +12.8%
Picked up a 750 ml bottle in Brandon FL, had some at the tap room too, liked it a lot...
Pours a chill hazed amber with 2 fingers of rocky cream colored head. Superior head retention & average lacing
S: Much woodyness & some grapefruiit & peppery notes. I LOVE the nose on this!
T: Follows the nose, some honey malt & breadyness as well. Grapefruit, honey malt & cedar woodyness are the main players as this warms, some pineyness too at the back of the throat. Finishes woody, dry, grapefruiity & wth some honey sweetness, plus just a hint of booze warmth
MF: Medium biodied creamy, nice balance & warming sensation
I like the way this is drinking, have had some cedar aged beers like Boulevard's Seeyoulater dopplebock, where I wasn't thrilled with the results. This is a nice variant on the straight up jai lai, which is also top notch in my book as well. I think this presented much better as a bottled beer for that's worth... This one really worked for me
06-22-2010 03:58:55 | More by russpowell
4.22/5 rDev +3.9%
Big thanks to Dave (dukedevil0) for busting this out for New Beer "Saturday". Served in an Upland pint glass.
A - A couple fingers of darker blonde foam that dissipates and leaves some patchy lacing and a nice cap. Really dark and hazy glowing red-orange color - perhaps one of the darkest IPAs I've had in a while.
S - The smell is super-intense and full of cedar and ripe Valencia orange. I'm a little confused - the smell reminds me of cedar chests, orange wood polish, and tobacco, which I generally wouldn't associate with beer, but somehow it's good nonetheless. I think the hops and humidor have combined to create a dank earthy character which I also enjoy. I think the wood presence might be a little to aggressive at the expense of the IPA flavors.
T - The taste, while still having plenty of cedar, is less woody and more orange peel, tropical fruits, and piney hops. There's some nice doughy malt presence the balances things out. Some nice mild bitterness in the finish - I get the sense that most of the hop flavor has been imparted from dry-hopping, which has keep the alpha acids down.
M - The mouthfeel is similar to many of my other favorite IPAs - lower carbonation with only a touch of zing, chewy medium body, soft texture, and lots of residual resins.
D - The cedar flavor builds a little bit keeping this from being a super session beer, but the other qualities are eminently drinkable - great ABV, carbonation, solid taste. I'd have one of these to mix things up, but it would never be my go-to brew.
I'm guessing I'll like regular Jai Alai a little more, but this was an excellent brew nonetheless.
07-18-2009 21:56:55 | More by MasterSki
4.25/5 rDev +4.7%
750 ml capped bottle into a couple of tulip glasses.
Pours a crystal clear copper, with 2 fingers of foamy slightly off-white colored head that has a bit of a shine on it! This retains with about a 1/3 of a finger or so of rich froth, which coats the sides of the glass with a creamy cascade that settles into thick patches of lace. That Spanish cedar jumps out immediately, with a woody spiciness that mingles effortlessly with the floral, piney, and slightly herbal smelling tones of the hops. Bright citric hops sits underneath, both bitter and more sweet with fruit, while the malts give this a toasted biscuit presence underneath that props the hops up nicely.
The taste is bitter with grapefruit and light sticky resins, along with some juicy tropical fruit that is all backed up by caramel sweetness and the bready grains of the malts. The cedar is felt throughout and actually helps mellow the overall profile while coming out strongly in the finish with a satisfying spiciness that lingers with some bitter leafiness and pine. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a REALLY smooth and mellow feel that has just enough sharpness to it to stay crisp. Some very light warmth hangs in the throat but the alcohol is hid very well here and really keeps this drinking nicely.
I enjoyed this. The cedar was prominent but not overpowering, while that well balanced lush hop character still shined brightly and it was all wrapped up in a smooth and very easy drinking body. I liked this much more than the regular Jai Alai.
12-07-2010 18:14:40 | More by Kegatron
4.25/5 rDev +4.7%
Served in a 24 oz. wine bottle at a local beer bar, I had to try due solely to its uniqueness and the fact that I will never be able to get this beer again. Served in a Watou goblet.
Beer was relatively clear, aged on cedar it gave it an interesting depth that I had not tasted in other beers. I am not usually a fan of Oak-aged beers, but I know they are aged to mellow them, the cedar imparted an interesting, albeit good, smoothness to this beer. It would not be fair to classify this beer as a hop bomb, although the bar tender could not tell me the ABV, I assumed it was in the 8% range. I was feeling no pain by the end. Head was steady and persistent to the end. An impressive beer all around. It is a shame that I have not gotten to explore Cigar City more.
07-21-2009 16:46:39 | More by drabmuh
3.58/5 rDev -11.8%
This is one of the most unique cask beers I think I have had the chance to try. I had a 10oz half pint at cask temp.
A - The color is a murky hazed (due to lack of cask finings) color of apricot with smallish head of cream
S - The smell is a strange but pleasant blend of piney hops and cedary woodiness w/ a light fruit ester
M - The mouthfeel is intensely hopped upfront with a astringent/resinous cedar bark texture which leaves the palate dry - medium body, a bit on the thin side of 7.5%
T - The taste is good, but not great as the hops are sligthly overpowered by the cedar, there is a nice Ipa flavor with mild fruit and subtle citrus of the hops, but it seems like they just went overboard with the cedar to prove to you that this is Really REALLY a cedar beer and IPA second. I love the experimentation, but when in balance with the total beer in mind
D - I will sum up here with a good, but not great along the lines of the taste portion of the review. I could probably only handle a 1/2 pint to be honest. I like the way cedar smells and Jai Alai is a decent IPA, but the combination seems to detract slightly for me rather enhance the drinking experience -just my .02
03-25-2010 16:36:30 | More by Slatetank
4.2/5 rDev +3.4%
The beer pours a very hazy/cloudy golden/orange color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a very nice pale, Munich, and biscuit malt scent along with an excellent piney hop nose. The cedar adds another layer of complexity. It's light, yet noticeable. The taste is good. It has a nice bitter, hop bite up front along with a complex malt bill that adds some bready notes and a solid pale malt base. The cedar is more aggressive in the taste. The wood compliments the maltiness of the beer. This is an east coast IPA; a perfect choice for the wood aging. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn fine beer. I like the use of cedar instead of oak. It's lighter and seems to just compliment the beer instead of overpowering it.
01-16-2011 19:08:14 | More by WesWes
1.5/5 rDev -63.1%
First had: firkin from Capone's, Norristown, PA
I hate to do this really, but I'm going to review this beer, even though I'm very sure it was a bad pour, and/or infected, and/or most likely the very bottom of the barrel, so to speak. It was so bad, I actually showed it to the waitress and got my money back for it. Hopefully I can try this one again, and actually have a good sampling.
Poured an ugly, murky chocolate milk color, almost looked like tea with milk in it. I knew something was wrong right away. No carbonation, no head; ugly stains on the sides of the glass. The smell was very hoppy, with tones of guava and grapefruit, but mostly, it smelled like old paint cans. Yikes. Actually the first thought that came to my mind was: this smells like the homes I used to do maintenance on in Camden when I was working with my grandfather during my high school years. Ah, memories...bad ones.
A cautious sip yielded an extremely intense hoppy taste, thick and very bitter, heavy with cedar. My wife looked at me with loving disgust as I ventured another sip, but that was it for this one. After a while, it started to settle as it sat, with most of the murk sinking to the bottom half, and something that could have been an IPA rising to the top, but again, I wasn't going for it again. Well, now at least I know what the bottom of a firkin tastes like. Either that, or cedar is not something beer should be aged in. Still better than Budweiser.
06-10-2011 13:44:38 | More by Rifugium
4.2/5 rDev +3.4%
Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.
Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber with a hint of orange. Has one finger of off white head that leaves nice lacing and a ring around the edge of the glass.
Smell: Some sweet malt with a citrus peel hop bitterness. There is just a hint of wood.
Taste: Citrus peel hop bitterness is the dominant flavor. There is some malt sweetness and a spicy note. The cedar has a great flavor that compliments the hops very well. A very well thought out beer. Tastes much better than the smell.
Mouthfeel: Medium body with smooth carbonation. The finish seems like it should be dry, but it never gets there.
Overall: I really enjoyed this one, even more than I thought I would. The cedar is very nice. I would love to have more.
06-30-2011 00:38:26 | More by oline73
4.22/5 rDev +3.9%
Thanks to ktrillionaire for sending this bottle my way.
The beer pours a hazy orange-amber color with a white head. The aroma is very heavy on the cedar with some mixed citrus fruit (mainly pineapple) and pepper mixed in. The flavor is dominated with cedar notes. There are some orange and pine hops in the flavor and the aftertaste is a mix of cedar and orange. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.
06-19-2010 04:56:32 | More by Mora2000
4.15/5 rDev +2.2%
From 5/21 notes. Had at a local DC tasting thanks to nimbleprop.
a - Pours a golden amber color with two inches of white head and light carbonation.
s - Smells of citrus, pepper, cedar, and some smooth caramel malts.
t - Taste is similiar to the nose; pepper, citrus and piney hops, smooth malts.
m - Medium body and light carbonation. Smooth and easy to drink.
d - I thought this was a pretty good IPA that was very easy to drink. Some nice citrus hops in the smell and taste. Didn't really taste any cedar but could smell it. Would definitely try again.
05-31-2010 19:21:26 | More by mdfb79
4.47/5 rDev +10.1%
This is quite well carbonated as a soft pour produces a three-finger thick, lightly tan colored head. The beer is a nice red-amber hue that shows a slight haze and a red-copper hue to it when held up to the light. As I pour this aromas of bright tangelo and ripe-sweet ruby-red grapefruit are noticeable, but a closer inspection yields the spicy, woody, characteristic cedar character. The cedar actually mixes very well with the ample hop character; both are here in an equal amount too. The cedar serves as the balance that ample hop-pine character and it actually accentuates the pine notes in the nose. The cedar, just really works here, it is almost hop like in its herbaceous spiciness.
Served at around 60*F at first, as it first hits my tongue it feels a lot lighter than I was expecting for some reason; quaffable with a light-medium body and a certain viscous heft, but well within the drinkable limits that I like my IPAs to be in. The cedar is definitely noticeable, but, as in the nose, is played masterfully here such that it integrates within the flavor profile of this IPA like some new, exotic hop would. The hop character in this beer contributes flavors of tangerine, bright orange oil, kumquat, herbaceous pine, ample lychee, apricot and a certain "dankness" that is mightily accentuated by the cedar notes. This finishes with a biting bitterness that is accentuated by an almost astringent character from the cedar and green hop character. It is interesting how the essential oils from the cedar mimics some of the more dank and herbaceous notes that can be found in hops.
Wow, this is really nice, I wasn't really sure what to expect from this beer, but this has definitely been a surprise and in the best way possible. The cedar is more prominent in the aroma than it is in the flavor, which actually is what I want from this beer (even though I didn't know what to expect coming into this beer). Very nice, extremely tasty and in the end it is the incredible balance between the hops, cedar and supporting malt that makes this beer so good. Well, said another way the use of cedar here is just so well done, so well integrated with the base beer, and the base beer really seems like a very well made IPA in its own right.
06-28-2010 03:01:24 | More by Gueuzedude
3.9/5 rDev -3.9%
Pours a dark hazy golden orange/amber color with a 1.5 finger frothy, pillowy off-white head. Good retention with soapy chunks of lacing.
Citrus earthy hop aroma. Floral and citrusy with an excellent biscuity malt backbone with a subtle cedar smokey tobacco presence.
Creamy medium body with soft carbonation. Citrus hops, light fruit up front followed by a nice citrus hop bitterness and a nice roasty cedary wooden tobacco presence that leads into a very bitter hop finish. Burnt wood tobacco aftertaste is present with a little too much of a mat backbone for my liking but otherwise very unique, complex and drinkable.
08-23-2009 07:44:00 | More by corby112
District of Columbia
4.08/5 rDev +0.5%
750 mL bottle with new Humidor label. Split into snifters.
Appearance is similar to regular Jai Alai, except has a slightly more copper tinge to the golden amber color and the frothy cream colored head has much longer retention. Aroma is woodsy and vegetative, with a slightly tropical and floral hoppy presence. Flavor is less sweet than the Jai Alai, with a strong cedar taste up front and a drier, bitter finish. Very little booze and I think the wood complements the maltier flavors of the IPA nicely. For the price and availability, I highly recommend this for a very unique take on an already notable east coast IPA.
01-24-2011 01:18:08 | More by yourefragile
4.43/5 rDev +9.1%
I believe this is my first beer from Florida. I hope I've picked a good one—certainly a cedar-aged IPA sounds great. The only other I've had is Kiuchi's Hitachino Nest Japanese Classic Ale, one of my very favourite beers.
This one pours pleasantly hazed and deep orange, with an enormous and frothy head of white-sand coloured foam. Lacing is magnificently anarchic. Body has a little weight behind it, but otherwise looks pretty fluid. Pretty gorgeous looking brew.
Nose is just phenomenal. Beautifully blended sharp, resiny cedar character realised with citric hops giving touches of lemon and underripe peach. The wood is the main event, but the cedar is such a lovely sharp (almost "hoppy") character that it's like just another extremely aromatic and fragrant hop variety itself. On top of this, the sheer strength of it is phenomenal.
Taste is a lot milder—the basis of malt is noticeable here, giving it a smoothness and a slight underlying caramel note. There are still hops, but not a lot of bitterness, just a cleansing vector through the centre. In some senses, it feels a little underhopped on the palate, just because the cedar gives such a powerful punch of resin and bite on the nose that you expect more.
Wow. There's no denying that this is a really, really lovely, refreshing and exceptionally drinkable brew. The characters are extremely intense, but they give such a lovely heady flavour and aroma to the brew.
Oh yes, I picked a good first Floridan beer. This is a sensational brew, and one that gives the JCA (remember, one of my favourite beers) a run for its money.
08-20-2011 02:03:38 | More by lacqueredmouse
Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series) from Cigar City Brewing
91 out of 100 based on 901 ratings.