Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Jai Alai IPA - White Oak - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Jai Alai IPA - White OakJai Alai IPA - White Oak

Educational use only; do not reuse.

377 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 377
Hads: 1,730
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 23.86%
Wants: 344
Gots: 222 | FT: 13
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: tpd975 on 06-13-2010

This is an American White Oak-aged version of Jai Alai India Pale Ale. The white oak adds smoothing notes of vanilla and slight hints of dill to the aroma and flavor profile. The finish is elegantly dry due to the light tannin notes from oak aging and though still loaded with hop flavor, hop bitterness is more restrained.

70 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 377 | Hads: 1,730
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazy, dark but dull orange-hued body with a medium-sized, frothy, white head.

Smell: A mild-tempered pale malt base giving rise to bolder notes of fresh, juicy citrus fruits and zestful, raw oak wood.

Taste: Pale malts, very faintly bready and with a flash flash of sweet caramel before the beer becomes dry. Quite dry, in fact, as the tannic qualities from the oak being to take hold. Teensy, tiny hints of peach and apricot. Hops bring in the citrus goodness with a moderate bitterness. Drying, bitterish finish with some lingering fruitiness and late-arriving vanilla hints.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Overall: A enjoyable, well-executed rendition, though I'd still lean towards the cedar variety. That's just me, though!

 768 characters

Photo of HopBomb515
4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange with copper hues, off white thick head and tons of lacing. Big nose brings tropical and citrus notes and a vanilla to the backbone. Taste follows through with sweet tropical fruit, mango, orange, grapefruit and a vanilla cloak wraps it together and rounds off the bitter edge. Medium feel, little sticky on the feel and semi dry finish. Interesting new dynamic to these IPA flavors.

 393 characters

Photo of Thur123
4.01/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a deep hazy red orange color with one finger of off white head. Looks a little darker than regular Jai Alai. The smell is stifled it seems, it's not coming off as very aromatic, which is unexpected. A slight hop presence with something like fresh cut wet wood coming through very faintly. Maybe a bit of vanilla.

Glug glug glug

The oaky flavor is complex, with wood, vanilla, crème, meshing with typical big IPA flavors like bitter grapefruit, orange, and herbal resin. Coconut and maybe at the very initial contact between beer and tongue, something like mango too. Overall a very interesting beer that could use a bit less of the oaky aspect but it does taste fresh and 'real' if that makes since. At least compared to other oak IPAs. The flavor is a bit big and complex for great drinkability but this is mostly just great beer. Mouth feel is fine.

 871 characters

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

Thanks to mrpepino for this extra, cheers! June bottling.

Appearance – Pours a hazy, cloudy orange into a tulip. About a half finger of slight off white head is achieved with a moderate pour.

Smell – Pale malts, slight oak and vanilla, caramel, and just a hint of hops.

Taste – I’m assuming this might be a bit past its prime. The flavors start off with quite a bit of oak and vanilla. A hint of smokiness is present midway through. As the beer warms more bitterness comes through which is a bit odd. The beer finishes with a heavy caramel, toffee backbone.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, moderate carbonation.

Overall – A decent IPA. Even though it may be a bit past its prime, it is still quite tasty.

 716 characters

Photo of david18
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on a recent trip to Orlando at the World of Beer, which is a very good place. The beer was recommended to me by the bartender and it was good. Not great but very good. The combination of cask conditioning with the oak and other IPA characteristics made for an interesting beer.

Appearance was a dark hazy orange with a surprising amount of carbonation, especially considering that it was on cask.

Aroma was a great combination of hops, maltiness and oak.

Flavor was also quite complex featuring all the qualities that went into making the beer.

Overall a good beer that I would recommend to anyone who can find it.

 632 characters

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

12oz Bottle from Rollin Oats Market Tampa FL for 3$

Appearance - Hazy copper with an average size fizzy off-white coloured head. It's too hazy to make out the amount of carbonation showing and there is some great lacing. The head lasted for around 3 minutes.

Smell - Hops, malts, caramel/butterscotch, pineapple

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel/butterscotch, malts, and hops. There is also some grapefruit and some pineapple mixed with a hint of vanilla and oak. It ends with a malty sweet and slight bitter aftertaste.

Overall – Couldn't find a date on my bottle, but it didn't have as much of an Oak aspect as I was expecting. Still a very good beer that has a lot of interesting flavours going on. I tried their Cedar aged version as well, and the wood was very prominent with that one.

 844 characters

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

First had: on tap at Cigar City, Tampa, FL

Hazy copper pour, with a small but solid cap of frothy white head that retained well and left soapy lacing on the glass. Fresh hops in the aroma, juicy citrus, woody, notes of sweet biscuity malts just barely coming through. Citrusy malts were the dominant factor in the taste, a big hit of grapefruit greeted me, lesser notes of biscuity malts, cane sugar, crisp oak and just a hint of vegetal vanilla bean. Medium body, effervescent carbonation, quite good overall.

 511 characters

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

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: dark orange hue with a moderate haze and tons of little floaties. There also appears to be a moderately strong effervescence. Head is a thick finger of frothy ivory foam. Pretty attractive!

Smell: the sweet & citrusy hops combine with the vanilla and oak character create something that's enticing but hard to categorize. At first my nose said diacetyl, but it's somehow got the same initial piercing character without the nasty fake butter character. I'm also getting notes of peppermint ... wtf? Fascinating, to be sure!

Taste: kind of like the aroma, a bizarre mélange of citrusy hops, woody vanilla and rich, sweet malt. It's muddled, but the flavors really work well together. Weird, but it actually works.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good, rich smoothness and a good level of creaminess, especially for an IPA. I like it.

Overall: while I wouldn't call this a super-drinkable beer, it is very flavorful and is a very satisfying quaff. Kind of a weird animal, it's definitely worth a try if you have a chance.

 1,077 characters

Photo of brentk56
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a cloudy apricot color with a finger of foam; webs a bit of lacing

Smell: Tropical fruit, citrus, pine, caramel and vanilla; the wood leaves a firm impression, as well

Taste: The bitterness unfolds as soon as the liquid hits the tongue, with the tropical fruit, pithy citrus and pine flavors adding depth; the caramel backbone also provides sweetness by mid-palate; after the swallow, the oak and vanilla add another dimension, though the finish is predominately bitter

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a rather spritzy level of carbonation

Overall: Though I am not the biggest fan of wood-aged IPAs, this is nicely done

 637 characters

Photo of AgentMunky
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a brandy snifter.

A: Hazy-clear with some carbonation, short-lived head, and sticky lace.

S: Fruit. Pear? White grapes? Very interesting. Hints of what smells suspiciously like wild yeast. Very soft. No hops (maybe a musky earthiness?).

T: Initially quite sweet. The (white) grape juice still is most evident. Too sweet, with very little hops. Almost certainly not an IPA, unless it's very old (no date stamp). Especially on the aftertaste, the oak aging becomes apparent. Obvious vanilla, subtle tannins, and funky yeast.

M: Very smooth and understated.

O: Weird but good. Really good. Recommended, but probably would not have again over the normal Jai Alai.

 699 characters

Photo of Stevedore
4/5  rDev -3.6%

A- Looks just like regular Jai Alai. Clear orange body, two finger white head with good retention time. Lots of lacing.

S- Smells like peaches and oak. I think the vanilla from the oak is combining with the tropical fruit aromas from the hops to create a peach-like nose. It's definitely a nice twist on regular Jai Alai, and smells great.

F- Vanilla comes out a bit more, with the oak which kind of overwhelms the base Jai Alai and its hops. Its kind of weird, almost cloying if that makes sense. Still, the peach flavour is very nice so I can't complain that much.

M- Medium bodied, lower in carbonation than regular Jai Alai. Solid drinker, I wouldn't try to dome this due to the almost cloying sweetness.

O- Nice take on the base Jai Alai. Would recommend trying a 4-pack and seeing how it evolves over time, but overall I would just go for the original Jai Alai if you had to choose.

 892 characters

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

Thanks to sendsilk for hooking this bottle up in a trade.

A - Poured a copper color with an off white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Has a sweet nose with vanilla and oak the hops are light for an IPA

T - Like the nose starts off sweet and oaky with vanilla finishes with some hop flavor

M - This beer has a fuller body with medium carbonation to it

O - I'm enjoying this one quite a bit I really like the flavors the oak has added to this beer very easy to drink worth getting if you ever have the chance

 514 characters

Photo of Halfbrother83
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from can into a tulip glass.

A - Dark amber with a creamy white head that eventually dissipates, leaving a thick lacing around the top of the glass

S - Sweet vanilla, caramel, followed by tropical fruit notes, maybe some coconut as well

T - Creamy, sweet vanilla and oak, with a dry pine finish

M - Medium body, smooth and crisp, really nice

O - I'm a fan. I actually may be in the minority here for thinking the oak aging and vanilla character enhance the characteristics of the base Jai Alai; I actually like this version much better for the vanilla notes it contains. Definitely an original flavor profile.

 621 characters

Photo of beer2day
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Honey gold pour, a little richer and earthier than the regular Jai Alai. Towering rich 3-finger head. Great lace.

Definite woody nose, lots and lots of oak. Just can't decide if that's a good thing. Getting a little juniper, too. Might be a mix of the hops and the wood. Very different.

Very interesting tastes here. Vanilla strikes me first, but that develops into a pepper-wood flavor. More carbonated than the regular Jai Alai, too. Faint hop bite in the finish.

Slightly malty for the style.

Definitely an acquired taste.

 532 characters

Photo of Bmoyer0301
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Upon pulling off the cap, I only noticed a slight amount of hissing coming from the tiny 12oz bottle neck. I poured this into my English Imperial pint glass and was left with a surprising three finger thick tan head that slowly diminished to just a trace after a few moments. As I hold my glass up to the light there is a deep amber appearance almost a toast color with some haziness. On the swirl there is a decent amount of lacing that is slowly creeping down the walls of my glass.


Right off the start something reminds me of a Orange Julius. Very bright citrus with some creamy undertones and a huge nose of wood pencils. I am guessing the creamy smells come from the wood which can impart vanilla.


Oranges are front and center here with lots of woody earthy notes that blend together very well. Very clean and fresh tasting with tropical fruits, vanilla, and Chinese food duck sauce. A delicious long finish that is semi-sweet and makes me keep coming back for more. This is a nice spin on a old beer good job CCB.

 1,050 characters

Photo of punkrkr27
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler shared by FlandersNed at the June '10 Metro Detroit tasting. Gold colored pour with a loose white head. The aroma is white pine, oak and toffee. Amazingly fragrant. Like smelling an evergreen forest. The flavor is big citrus with lots of juniper, pine and faint honey. Creamy, medium body with low carbonation.

 318 characters

Photo of phichifiji00
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glass (Sept. 2011 bottling).

Appearance: Amber, slightly darker than the regular Jai Alai. It has the same thick off white head that fades slowly. Minimal lacing.

Smell: Lots of oak, vanilla, sweet, hardly any hops.

Taste: Lots of oak, vanilla, leather, subtle hoppiness and a bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, good carbonation, smooth.

Overall: A good, very drinkable beer. The IPA is almost completely overwhelmed by the oak. Not what I was expecting, but pleasantly surprised.

 512 characters

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

Courtesy of xpdrinker. Thank you!

Back-logged circa 12/28/2011

Appearance: Golden flecked orange hue with residuale white froth lace.

Smell: Smoke, oak, open flame. Faint light malts and an appealing combination of grass and citrus hops.

Taste: Citrus, resin pine, hop nectar laced with vanilla and smoked oak. A slight malt sweetness plays host.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and deceptivly drinkable.

Overall: I've never had the pleasure of sampling the original Jai Alai but this wood version is exceptional.

 505 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.99/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Allow the flirtation to commence. The tease that Cigar City has with wood leads us to the footsteps of the famed Jai Alai IPA as it embarks upon a spicy white oak slumber. Though the wood alters the classic flavors of IPA, their added complexity gives unique and curious taste.

Its moderate haze and bright golden-orange glow precedes the buildup of a tall column of white foam. The bright perfume of freshly shaven oak weaves into the juicy tropical and citrus hop tones. And as that juicy elixir greets the tongue, it does so with caramel, biscuit and honey sweetness.

And as the hoppy middle palate quickly snatches the balance from the fleeting caramelized malts, the bright and tangy taste of tangerine, apricot and mango lead the way in a hoppy and estery melange. Somewhat jammy to taste, the malts linger with just enough sweetness for support. But as the taste turns the corner, heading toward finish, the bitterness of herb, leaf and citrus peel builds and the oak spices begin to dry the palate with its powdery textures.

And as the medium-bodied beer closes, it does so with ample dextrin richness and biscuity resolve. Resisting the classic fade of malt and the utter dominance from hops, the finish is more evenly balanced as the oak assists the alcohol and hops with its own tannic spice and dryness. While complex and interesting, the oak character proves overwhelming and interferes with the more desirable aspects of the original Jai Alai.

 1,460 characters

Photo of jhawth
3.99/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured into tulip. Pours a mostly clear dirty orange with lace-y, off-white two-finger head.

Aroma: Interesting and intense aroma. I don't think I've encountered anything quite like this before. Tropical fruit hop notes are noticeable but are enveloped by a very potent woodiness, which, as the can says, presents a dill-like (or even, buttered popcorn?) aroma.

Taste: Follows nose but balance of hops to woodiness is reversed--tropical fruit hop flavors and bitterness shine through pleasant, spicy woodiness, transitioning to pleasantly sweet malt presence.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, light carbonation, smooth.

Overall: Very interesting take on an already superlative IPA. I can't say that I would pick this over regular Jai Alai, but it is a well-made and intriguing beer nonetheless.

 803 characters

Photo of billab914
3.99/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Cigar City pint glass. It poured a murky, orange/amber color with a dense and rocky head overflowing from the glass. Fantastic head retention to it, as a thick foam was there throughout drinking it. Very nice lacing as well. Pretty much a perfect looking beer of the style for me.

The aroma has a very nice and juicy hoppiness to it. I get a lot of grapefruit flavor out of it, wit ha little mango and peach as well. The oak is also there and adds some vanilla and moderate woody flavors. The oak is very well done and enhances the flavors instead of overpowering them.

The taste shows more of the oak than the nose did. I get a little vanilla mixed wit ha pretty big earthy, woody flavor. The juicy, grapefruit like hop flavors are also there. The finish mixes some moderate bitterness with some of the sweeter, juicy, and woody flavors. Very nice hoppiness to it and the wood flavors really enhanced the flavors for me without being too overbearing.

The mouthfeel is a bit heavy for an IPA, with carbonation being moderate. The heavy mouthfeel makes it seem even juicier and almost pulpy. It actually fit the beer pretty nicely. Overall, I really liked this beer. I liked it a lot better then the cedar one as well. The oak was very nice in it, but still allowed the hops to shine. I'm not usually one for wood treatments to IPA's so this one surprised me a bit. Very solid beer overall.

 1,428 characters

Photo of siege06nd
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks, Jared, for this one!

A. A dense, cloudy, deep gold color. Good two fingers of off-white head that settles down to a half finger but lingers there on. Very thick and consistent lacing that leaves sticky, sudsy gobs on the sides of the glass. Quite a few floaties but that could be chill haze from the back of the fridge.

S. Citrus-forward with some pungent dank notes on the back-end. Lots of tropical fruit, particularly pineapple and mango. Some spicy sweetness from the wood...very interesting, adds some nice earthy quality and a pretty neat undertone to the hops.

T. Nectarine, tangerine, pineapple juice. This quickly gives way to waves of oakiness, which presents with tannic and spicy qualities. The wood and bittering hops combine for an assertive and slightly drying finish. However, the tropical fruit balances this dry finish fairly well, leaving a finish that, while woody, is pretty close to standard Jai Alai.

M. Very nicely balanced and a good use of the wood.

O. I'm not the biggest wood-aged IPA fan, but this is better than most. The White Oak compliments Jai Alai well, and there is a very interesting interplay of tropical and earthy flavors. While not a personal style preference of mine, I must say CCB has a nice beer here.

 1,261 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.97/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Canned on date of 05/13/14

Appearance- Pours a clear golden amber with bits of yeast(?) sediment floating around and a big, off-white 2 finger head. great retention, resulting in a thin layer of surface suds and a thick film of lacing around the glass that holds quite nicely.

Smell - Sharp on the nose, hitting on tropical notes of pineapple, tangerine and mango offset by some oak and grape character. Vanilla creeps in as the brew warms.

Taste - Tropical notes as found in the aroma, mellowed by the woody oak character. Touches of coconut and red grape. Hints of vanilla. Finishes with more oak and coconut and a light citrus pith.

Mouthfeel - Medium in body with fair, tingly carbonation. Super smooth, with a semi-dry finish.

Overall - Good, really good, but I prefer the original. If it ain't broke, don't fix it or, in this case, if it's one of the best IPAs in the World, don't touch it! Okay, maybe that's being too dramatic, but as good as this is, I'd never choose it over the OG Classic!

 1,005 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.97/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks GEOGRANDE. Spicey IPA. Medium golden coloured body with enormous head that leaves a half inch of white head. The aroma is unuual as it has the cooked oak, interesting. Medium plus mouthfeel. Decent drinkability, but I could not drink a second bottle of this too soon.

 274 characters

Photo of fear025
3.97/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma:Sweet cotton candy, subtle fruit, oak in the nose.

Appearance:A deep shade of amber, nice white fluffy head, good retention.

Taste:Lots of oak on the first sip, along with some great candylike sweetness. A fair amount of bittering hops, but the specific hop flavors are hidden with all of that oak. There is a very slight tart flavor on the foretaste too. The oak lingers long into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel:This beer has a refreshing bite to it, great carbonation.

Drinkability:This is a great alternative to your average IPA, very unique in flavor.

 560 characters

Jai Alai IPA - White Oak from Cigar City Brewing
92 out of 100 based on 377 ratings.