Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale - Cigar City Brewing

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Cubano-Style Espresso Brown AleCubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale

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1,179 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,179
Reviews: 299
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 9.73%
Wants: 298
Gots: 186 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: tpd975 on 05-26-2009

This rich brown ale is redolent with Cuban-style roasted espresso beans, sweet caramel and toffee and hints of dry nuttiness. Cuban Espresso is a popular drink in the Cigar City of Tampa owing to its many Sicilian and Cuban immigrants. The beans for Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale are roasted locally by Mazzaro's Italian Market and Deli in St. Petersburg to our exact specifications.

25 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,179 | Reviews: 299
Reviews by Floydster:
Photo of Floydster
4.64/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

32 ounce growler from tpd975, thanks again for our first trade Greg, poured into an oversized vanilla version, shared with Ben, Bob, and Danny last night, color is medium brown with dark red edges, one inch beige head that is rather creamy, decent retention, some lacing at first, aroma consists of heavily roasted espresso beans, chicory, roasted malts, cream, dark chocolate, burned almonds, toasted caramel, and maybe a little vanilla, starts off very dry with a huge coffee component, unlike any coffee beer I have had as far as the consistency and feel, it almost felt like there was actual grounds in the beer, finish has more coffee and a good amount of charred nuttiness, there are not many brews out there other than weasel that make coffee work this well in beer, such a different taste with the freshest and most roasted taste imaginable, super dry, very roasted, and almost chewy mouthfeel, medium bodied, moderate carbonation that allowed this beer to feel absolutely perfect on the senses, taste lingers for a very very long time, could have drank this and another growler,amazing drinkability for a coffee infused beer, very light, would like some with my breakfast in the morning, smooth and crisp, this was hands down my favorite of the Maduros and if this stuff becomes widely available, this brewery is going to make an even bigger name for myself, this stuff is awesome, highly recommended

More User Reviews:
Photo of infinitebruner
3.77/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

October 26, 2014

12 oz can, hotel water glass

A – Medium brown, very high clarity, some opacity but generally can see through it pretty well. Red tints where the light shines more directly. An inch of deep tan foamy head, with low retention.

S – Straight dark roast coffee and almost nothing else. A hint of malty, roasted, toasted black bread, and very light hop bitterness.

T – Dark roasted coffee with a dollop of cream, silky French vanilla. The vanilla shows through more as the beer warms. Light gourmet chocolate syrup. Malt mostly supports the rest, some roasted notes are there. Any hop bitterness is overwhelmed by the coffee and roasted malt bitterness.

M – Fairly light body, not much heavier than iced coffee. Carbonation is moderate, and helps to balance the roasted coffee flavors.

O – Certainly a well-made coffee beer, but pretty straightforward with no real surprises. But there’s a lot to be said for doing this style well.

Photo of tjk135
4.06/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma and flavor of coffee, a touch of vanilla and burnt toffee. A very coffee forward beer.

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.97/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A growler of Maduro versus a bottle of this. For coffee lovers.
Dark brown color with a small tan head.
Strong coffee aroma. Caramel. Earthy, tobacco-like.
Espresso taste, some chocolate. Hint of tobacco. Late herbal hops.
A nice enough beer. Definitely for the coffeeholic. Have to say I prefer the regular Maduro.

Photo of warnerry
4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 6/16/11

A - Pours a clear reddish dark brown, though light does pass through the pint glass. Huge tan head has excellent retention and leaves a lot of lacing.

S - Coffee and a bit of chocolate, along with some roasted malt.

T - Roasted malt up front, quickly followed by a nice coffee presence. Quite creamy as well. The coffee here plays a supporting role instead of dominating. Finishes semi-dry with a light bitterness.

M -- Medium creamy mouthfeel with an earthy dryness on the finish.

O - A solid brown ale with a very nice coffee presence. Nice balance of flavors and a creamy mouthfeel make this easy drinking.

Photo of barhoc11
4.58/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: Looks like a brown ale

S: Sweet coffee and malt aroma

T: Sweet at first but then you get a sweet coffee taste followed by a smokey malt.

M: Nice and full

O: This beer is outstanding, one of the best done coffee beers I have had. I would not of expected a brown coffee ale to be so complete but Cigar City did a great job. Wish I could get it in MI.

Photo of mverity
4.52/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Best espresso aroma of any beer I've had! Pours a deep brown with very little cream colored head. The aroma is so good. Deep, rich coffee aroma, with sweet malt and a rich earthiness. The taste is heavy on the coffee/toffee front with a back sweetness from the malt. It almost has the superb mouth feel of Maduro, where I think there might be some rolled oats to increase the creaminess, but I get much less oat than I do in Maduro. Really enjoy this beer when it comes out. Finally got around to reviewing it instead of just crushing the 4 pack in a few days.

Photo of Richie_Inman
3.89/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of CCB's best IMO. A brew that lures you with it's smell, and satisfies with it roasty espresso flavor.

Photo of Billolick
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler pour from Decicco's, Ardsley, NY. Pours darkest of browns, light black, dark tan head, plentiful and thicker sheeting and bands of elegent lace. Coffee grounds come to mind upon the sniff. Flavorful Brown, some light chocolate, gets overtaken by waves of more coffee. Not overpowering, just flavorful and coffealicious in its approach. Well crafted and enjoyable in all its facets...looking forward to more Cigar City brews in the NYC/CT/NJ/NY suburbs...and cant wait to check em out whenever I'm lucky enough to get back down to Tampa, F.L.A.

Photo of codysjb
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my DFH Signature glass.
A: Pours a brown black with little head that dissipates in a minute or so.
Looks really cool for a brown ale (like a stout).
S: Coffee, espresso and some chocolate (maybe a little vanilla), but this pretty much smells like a
Starbucks truck collided with a Cigar City van.
T: Yum, coffee and more coffee with some minor caramel and vanilla notes.
M: Smooth, not heavy like a stout but a massive amount of flavor here that’s almost all coffee and beer.
O: This is great; I’d drink this a lot if I could find it. It’s really an awesome beer that brings coffee into a smooth, lighter beer that’s not heavy like a stout.

Photo of Homebrew35
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a half fingers worth of an off white head. Good lacing and retention as usual with CCB. Cloudy brown body looks like a Trappist.

Smells like an awesome iced coffee. Coffee and sweet bready malts shine in this one.

Tastes like coffee and a nice brown ale. Flavors come together quite well. Like roasted malts and a slight hop bitterness on the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium thin and lightly carbonated. This beer is very soft on the palate, like a very balanced cup of coffee.

Overall this is a very full flavored highly drinkable beer. This is a coffee lovers beer for sure.

$7 a 4 pack.

Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to someone for sharing this bottle at the Flying Saucer Beer Tasting.

The beer pours a brownish color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the bitter coffee and bitter chocolate with a little bit of roasted malt mixed in.

The flavor is more of the same. I get a lot of milk chocolate notes, with a good amount of coffee also mixed in. I also get some vanilla and hazelnut notes, as well as a little bit of cream.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of standardcherry
4.29/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at CCB takeover at OTC.

A: Dark brown color with small tan head. No lacing.
S: This smells like a cup of coffee. Not much else. It's just a huge kick of coffee. A tiny bit of vanilla and nuttiness.
T: Huge coffee flavor as expected from both the name and the smell. A bit of a nutty flavor. Hint of maple syrup as well. Very tasty beer.
M: I feel like these flavors would go well with a thick, full-bodied beer. The mouthfeel is a bit thinner than I expected. Everything is well balanced though, with a nice roasty bitterness at the end.
O: This is a great beer for coffee lovers, I suggest seeking this out. Another great beer by Cigar City.

Photo of CaptinRedBeard
4.72/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to urwithdave for hooking me up with a growler of this. Poured from the growler into a Cigar City snifter.

A: Pours a nice amber hued dark brown color with about a finger of a light tan foam head. The head stays around for a while accompanied by some moderate lacing.

S: smells like some fresh brewed coffee in the morning. Subtle hints of vanilla and chocolate bring up the tail end of the aroma.

T: More coffee, lots of coffee. Sweet but with just a touch of bitterness in the finish. Again here some vanilla and just a touch of chocolate interplay with the coffee. There is a bit of roasted malt in there as well but the coffee is clearly the star here.

M: a perfect level of carbonation paired with a nice medium body make this one real smooth on the palate.

D: At 5.50% this might not qualify as a "session" beer but it sure is drinkable. This growler will be empty in no time flat. I could drink this with a nice breakfast, or anytime really. It's great that this is gonna be on full time at Cigar City. Now if they would only bottle it as well. This is absoutely one of my favorite beers.

Photo of Franziskaner
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown in color with little penetration to light. A fingernail of beige is around the rim and a trace otherwise appears on top. A massive amount of expresso, chocolate , and vanilla. I taste deep dark expresso, chocolate, vanilla, and leather. The mouth is thick, chewy, and lightly sticky.

Photo of TKEbeerman
3.92/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured into my pint glass, this brew pours an almond brown (a shade lighter than Maduro Brown), with some orange/ruby highlights. The head is way to bubbly, and disappears almost instantly.

S: The aroma consists of fresh roasted coffee, with pleasant chocolate notes. Light on the malt, and no hops in sight.

T: This is a good brew. Refreshing, and lots of coffee. The chocolate notes that I loved in Maduro. A light roasty background and some caramel notes round out the taste.

MF: Mouthfeel is a little light, and this brew is a little too bubbly.

D: Drinkability is great, I am completely enjoying this brew!

Photo of jeonseh
3.65/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a FFF mug

A - Dark, espresso black with a massive root beer float like head that sits on top throughout. Nice and rocky. It also had a ton of a carbonation which created a giant head with even a very light pour

A - Roasted coffee, slight wet coffee grounds and vanilla fill the nose. The wet coffee grounds give it a slight mustiness in the nose. I was surprised by how much the vanilla made itself known.

T - Light roasted espresso with a nice hint of vanilla to it. The vanilla lingers on a bit in the finish as does a slight espresso and coffee bitterness

MF - Medium body but, unsurprisingly, highly carbonated to give it a very full and slightly creamy mouth feel

O - A good,but not great coffe beer from Cigar City. It reminds me a bit of a lighter version of Coffee bender. Overall, I did think the vanilla added a nice sweetness to the beer that prevented it from having too much bitterness from the espresso.

Photo of glid02
4.27/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared by Quinlan - thanks!

Pours a deep chestnut brown color with a thin off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of robust and smooth coffee with mild roasted and chocolate malt undertones. Also present are very slight amounts of tobacco - one of the reasons I like this base beer so much.

Tastes similar to how it smells, although not quite as intense. Lightly roasted malt flavors kick things off and are sweetened a bit by good amounts of toasted malt and dark chocolate flavors. Midway through the sip huge hits of coffee come into play and carry through to a solidly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a nice thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is also very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have a few more.

Overall this is another tasty iteration of the Maduro series - well worth a shot and I look forward to trying others.

Photo of CloudStrife
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz pour into a snifter.

A: Pours a clear brownish dark ruby with a minimal slightly yellowed head. A spot or two of lacing.

S: Strong coffee aroma is the first thing I notice. Fresh coffee grounds. Also a pronounced chocolate character as it warms.

T: Smooth balanced taste with a blend of coffee and nuttiness. Not much bittering at the end. Lots of flavor for a lower ABV coffee brew.

M: Medium body appropriate for a brown ale. Good smoothness to this, and a clean finish. Nice and easy drinking.

Overall another great Cigar City beer. They make some damn good brown ales and this is right on par. A must try for any coffee beer fan, a good change from the stronger stouts.

Photo of brians52
3/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Outlier detected. Justify rating with a review.

Photo of ONovoMexicano
3.7/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter from a can.

Black would be more accurate than brown; this beer is pitch black. A creamy, foamy, light-khaki head sits a finger thick atop the body and sits there comfortably for a while. Lace forms a wall as the head recedes. A few bubbles are visible in the abyss that is this beer's body.

Huge coffee notes, but I get so much dark chocolate that I'm thinking mocha more than espresso. There's some burnt aroma and fresh grounds that add to the potency. I'd say there's a hint of caramel too.

Flavor-wise, this is practically coffee. I can almost taste dark roast beans. Light chocolate notes come in and out, but they are dominated by cafe.

A thin body with a strong feel of carbonation make this a little less enjoyable than I'd like. This brew's almost as watery as coffee at times, or so it feels.

I think the appearance and aroma of this beer set it up for failure. I had high expectations after each, but the body and flavor couldn't quite match. It's a decent beer.

Photo of TheSixthRing
4.09/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a deep brown with auburn highlights and a finger's worth of khaki head. Fair retention, resulting in a broken layer of surface suds. Leaves a decent amount of lacing around the glass, though most slides .

Smell - Freshly roasted coffee ground aroma, backed by a lesser scent of caramel. Light cream with faint chocolate notes.

Taste - Follows the nose. Big, natural coffee flavor. Caramel finds a nice niche, while hints of vanilla and cream bounce off the middling roasty attributes. Touches of nuttiness and chocolate in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied with lively carbonation. Nice, smooth finish.

Overall - Really solid coffee-infused brew. Delivers more than just a 'cold coffee' experience. My heart tells me a deeper roasted flavor would be nice, but my brain tells me this is a brown, so I shouldn't expect that. A fine brown it is.

Photo of Mar02x
3.6/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this beer with thanks to the Brander.

A - At first its a decent looking brown ale, with a nice off white head and a hazy brown fluid.

S - Strange smell, pretty unique. Its a strong smell of wood and a slight scent of burned coffee beans.

T - The coffee is really present in this one. Its more like a coffee beer. One has to be a coffee bean lover to appreciate this. I am not unfortunately. The beer itself is also rather dry.

M - The carbonation is good and fits the taste. A little bitter finish.

O - Not a bad brown ale but like I said one has to be a coffee lover.

Photo of Sammy
3.97/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Cigar City takes NYC event at Rattle 'N' Hum. I am not a coffee drinker but this is very good coffee that comes right through the taste buds. Its Dark with virtually no head. Roasted coffee aromas.Way above average for a brown style.
Certainly not retired

Photo of tdm168
3.94/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a moderate caramel color with a ton of head. When I started to pour there was immediately 2" of head without a vigorous pour. The head didn't go away any time soon. It took several minutes to get the full beer into the pint glass. The nose has notes of caramel, brown sugar, chocolate, tobacco, and smoke. The flavor coffee-like up front with some smoky, earthy, woody notes. There are also some faint citrusy notes in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and a moderately carbonated.

This is a decent beer. It's a nice play on a brown ale. The flavor is complex but I'm not sure if I would want more than one of these at any given time.

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Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale from Cigar City Brewing
92 out of 100 based on 1,179 ratings.