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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.

374 Reviews
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(Send Samples)
Reviews: 374
Hads: 1,716
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 11.08%
Wants: 342
Gots: 218 | FT: 12
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
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Reviews: 374 | Hads: 1,716
Photo of cbutova
3.51/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Thanks Kimmy for hooking me up with this.

A- For the purpose of the review, poured from the 12oz can to a small tumbler glass. The body is a orange-dark gold and pretty much clear of any haze. Small white cap forms to about one finger with decent retention. Thick lace sheets at the top and it seemingly coats a majority of the whole glass.

S- Tropical and citrus hops off the top but not quite as pungent as I remember Jai Alai being, just a bit restrained aromatically. Tangerine, mango, oranges and floral notes come to mind. Hints of oak wood, light caramel sweets and some yeast fruits.

T- Oak really comes out in the taste. It is hard to describe as anything other than lightly toasted, fresh woody oak flavor. Slight vanilla but mostly the woody earthy oak feel. Hops are still the main flavor component with notes of tangerines, stone fruits, citrus zest, grapefruit, floral and slight pine. Slight tannins. Malts are here in a light strength with caramel and some sweetness.

MF- Light bodied and crisp IPA feel. Carbonation at a moderately high level helping those hop flavors pop on the taste buds. Finishes with a medium bitterness lingering on the palate.

I am not sure how much the oak flavor and slight vanilla sweetness does for me here. I think I prefer the normal Jai Alai to this one but that is not to say this is much worse. I think the oak is a bit abrasive at times and maybe a bit too much is used. Still a solid beer I would have again.

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Photo of ksimons
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-a clear bright amber with two fingers worth of light cream colored head

S-pale bready malt, light vanilla sweetness, and citrus and pine hops

T-pale malt backbone with citric and piney hop bitterness, tropical fruits, and vanilla

M-medium body, moderate carbonation, bitter finish

Overall an interesting take on the original version, vanilla gives it a little something different

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Photo of tikk
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Holy vanilla Batman.
Thanks to Abriggs1.

Pours a light tan with a light head, leaves some lacing as it goes.

Smell is vanilla oak, almost too much vanilla for this much oak.

Taste strong vanilla, some sweetness and oakiness, get that hop bitterness at the end, a vanilla oaky citrus overall.

Something doesn't feel right on the mouthfeel, just a little too lite for me.

Overall I love this beer, would I go for two in a session? No way. I would have more over time? Oh yeah.

Highly recommended

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Photo of BierJager89
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice opaque golden/copper color with a white head.

S: Pear, grape, what I imagine wine must smells like, earthy/funky Belgian yeast and just a touch of oak in the nose.

T: In a word, odd. Caramel, citrus, brettanomyces, somewhat earthy. Sweet and nectary.

M: Very smooth for an IPA and medium bodied.

O: Dear Cigar City, aging Jai Alai on white oak is trying to fix something that's not broken, and ending up breaking it. Is it good? Yes, but it's nowhere near as good as the regular jai alai. Still recommended, but between this and the regular Jai Alai, I'd always choose regular.

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Photo of deebo
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had several of these on a recent trip to Tampa and really liked what the white oak aging did to this beer. Review of a can (1/10/14)
A-Poured into a widemouth glass there is a finger of white rocky head on top of that common IPA appearance of a clear light orange brew. Sticky head.

S-The grassy, piney notes of Jai Alai are more subdued and the tropical fruit aroma is more prevalent with the addition of vanilla and a definite oak aroma. Very nice. Definitely preferred over Jai Alai.

T-The oak aging really adds a unique flavor profile to this beer. It is sweet, the malt in Jai Alai is sweet but now the hops are also sweet. I get lots of pineapple and some apple and cherry on top of the significant vanilla oak character. Really unique beer. Shit even some orange. Lots of good flavors going on.

M-Less bitterness and drier than Jai Alai, a big improvement for someone who is sensitive to the real bitter IPAs. I really like the taste profile of this beer. Oaked IPAs-nice idea!

O-I really am liking this beer. The oak really mellow out the bitter quality, adds some new flavors and cleans up the finish.

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Photo of Omnium
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Can > Pint Glass

A - Mostly clear orange amber with two finger of fluffy white head, a little medium lacing
S - Very unique floral hops, dank, grassy, and there's a really unique woody, obviously oaky aroma.
T - Floral hops, very smooth rich oak flavor, vanilla, grass, a little citrus peel.
M - Crisp and smooth, dry but not dehydrating.
O - Very unique and excellent IPA, love the oak complexity. Wouldnt get a case, but a few cans for sure.

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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.

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Photo of Spider889
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to sendsilk for this.

I'm not into re-reviewing beers on here anymore, but I hated to drop a full review for an updated "had" so here we are...

As Cigar City expands, all of their product is looking much better, tasting cleaner, etc. I feel like this beer is either dialed in moreso than my 3.7 review of years back, or else it's simply much better extremely fresh (these cans are under 20 days old as of my drinking).

Lovely clarity and bone white head on a light copper colored brew. Leaves nice lacing.

Smells wonderful yet cheeky at the same time. The oak is prevalent off the bat, very heavy notes of fresh cut wood (one person I shared this with said it reminded them of wood shop in High School). There are notes of vanilla and a lot of floral character from the oak. The hops are fruity and bold, but the interaction with the oak is where the beer gets quite unique. At times the aroma is of fresh juicy tropical hops, and at others you can smell bubblegum and smarties.

The flavor follows in line with immense hop flavor and heavy but welcome oak. The bitterness is somewhat mellowed by the oak yet the perceived alcohol seems higher than regular Jai Alai.

Creamy mouthfeel with ample carbonation. Overall a great take on their flagship IPA. Recommended.

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Photo of itsscience
4.61/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Pours dark copper with two fingers of white fluffy head. Darker than Jai Alai with some big soapy bubbles that aren't typical of the original. The smell is mango, orange juice, and tangerine, coming off quite a bit sweeter and riper than original Jai Alai. I have to try pretty hard to pick up on the smell of oak. The taste is sweet vanilla up front, followed by a grapefruit bite and an earthy oak finish. The beer has a superb balance that attenuates any bitterness. This is miles ahead of the smoky mess that is the Humidor Series Jai Alai and I dare say that I like it more than original Jai Alai, which is my go-to IPA.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz, 1/11/14
DFH IPA glass

A: Very pretty appearance in the glass. Crystal clear deep orange color. Nice frothy off white head with sticky lacing sheeting which starts immediately. Good carbonation.

S: Definitely pulling some of those vanilla woody notes right away. It meshes well with the more earthly hop notes of pine and muted citrus. Actually getting more of a melon character. Some of that dill is there.

T: Much like the nose. You get that nice touch of vanilla on the tip of the tongue. Then some of that earthy pine and muted citrus. Oak dryness. Slightly tannic. I do get that flavor of dill in there. That vanilla really works so well with the bitterness. It's not as lingeringly bitter on the back end.

M: Medium bodied. Soft mouthfeel, which is extremely pleasant.



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Photo of Axnjxn
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

can into a pint glass. canned Jan 3rd 2014

pours a very dark rustic tan with a nice inch thick head. an aroma of lots of vanilla and oak and hops, nice! the taste is so awesome. oak at first but very mellow and it blends so well with the base beer, just super smooth and drinkable. mild bodied with good carbonation.

overall better than regular jai alai. love this beer!

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Photo of stakem
3.87/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz can, canned only 6 days ago into a matching CCB snifter. The brew pours a perfectly clear copper color with a finger of tan head. The cap fades to a thin film leaving spotty lace on the glass.

The aroma has lots of fruity and floral hop quality with some citrus like orange zest and strong fresh grapefruit juice. As it is smelled more a little bit of buttery toffee comes out with a very strong woodiness.

The taste is bitter with herbal hops, a little piney and dank with zest, rind and pith like orange/grapefruit juice. However, there is also a brash oaked quality that tastes very woody and neutral that almost has a spice faintly like cedar. The woodiness just doesnt seem to work, it clashes and has a slight buttery flavor into the aftertaste that was unexpected and even more strange.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is about as fresh as I could imagine ever getting shy of being at the brewery when it was released. Sadly, the oak clashes and distracts instead of complimenting. Worth a try but this just didnt do it for me. I'll take normal jai alai every time over this.

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Photo of Johnbenco34
4.37/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- copper ale pours well with a light tanny brown head and a delightful bouquet

S- a light note of diacetyl and a nice oaky, tropical and fresh cut pine pine aroma with an undertone of vanilla notes

T-Citrus and tropical taste lends towards grapefruity and sweet vanilla also a light touch of dill( I honestly didn't taste the dill as much as the vanilla and tropical pine). Good characteristic of resin and earthy.

M- Medium to full body. About a finger of foam with a good retention and lacing. Carbonation id low to medium( nothing like a Belgium lol). Ends with a mellow to dry finish

O- Slightly sweet ipa with a perfectly balanced oak and hop character. Great beer for any great time

paire well with(pww)-steak and chicken with spices like curry, red peppers, banana peppers.and excellent with a roast beer sandwich.

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Photo of homebrew311
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Having had Jai Alai and the humidors variant the last two nights, it's time to tick the white oak version thanks to extras from dipaguy. Appearance is more cloudy than the regular Jai Alai with sparse white head and a deeper honey color. The nose starts with plenty of citrus hops and quite a unique character from the white oak. The white oak almost lends a spicy component to the base beer and almost hints towards notes of cinnamon. The taste starts sweeter than its counterparts, but that sweetness is quickly taken over by heavy oak and hop bitterness. This tastes like an entirely different beer than the other. The white oak seems to accentuate the hop bitterness at the end. Mouthfeel is a tad heavy for style with moderate carbonation. Overall, the white oak makes for a very unique and flavorful IPA. This would be fun to experiment with different hop profiles. Quite enjoyable indeed.

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Photo of maxcoinage
4.44/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to @velcrogrip for this (extra!)

Poured 12oz bottle ( no date ) into tulip - there was a huge head on this, but it could be due to the fact that it arrived on my doorstep several hours ago. Fluffy white head that took it's time to settle down. Some noticeable bubbles rising from the bottom. Color of the beer is a darker orangish brown.

Aroma has some good citrus notes, oak, vanilla, bready

Taste is amazing! The hoppines and malt flavor are balanced perfectly. Big citrus, some floral notes, toasted coconut and that finish definitely has an oak flavor where I'd normally expect it to be a bitter finish

Mouthfeel is smooth for sure, nice medium body and carb, and somewhat creamy.

Overall this is a really nice variation of an IPA. It's definitely worth seeking out, will have to try to score some again soon. It recommended spicy food on the bottle, so I broke out some spicy hummus and veggies/crackers and must say it's definitely a good pairing

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Photo of lurpy1
3.16/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Reviewing from memory, and thanks to the ever-generous Three Fishes for sending this along. So many winners in that box. Unfortunately, this one tended towards the back of the pack. Can't beat the Jai Alai backbone, but I picked up on a strong tropical smell evocative of Coppertone. Can't say I know what Coppertone tastes like, but i have to think the coconut oil aftertaste White Oak delivers has to be pretty close. The beer still managed to be refreshing and suitable for summer. Perhaps paired with the right food would have provided a major a-ha moment, but as it was, it was merely OK.

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Photo of arizcards
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received two bottles on 10-3-13 from Lets Pour for $6.50 each. Bottled on 9/3/13.

Beer poured orange with chunks of yeast. Head was OK but dissipated quickly.

Nose is wonderful, tropical hops dominate.

Taste was initially was big on vanilla notes with tropical hops dominating in the end.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and fairly lively from the carbonation.

Overall this is good. I am not crazy about oaking an IPA so i recommend hanging with the regular Jai Alai.

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Photo of Ri0
4.37/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured 12oz bottle into snifter. bottled 9/3/13

A - Dark muddy orange with suspended floaties throughout the liquid. A 1.5 finger eggshell white head with fair retention, drops to nothing more than a thin ring. Lacing is small and spotty.

S - This smells unique and awesome! Oak, vanilla, sweet citrus, and some type of sweet baked bread quality. The aroma is very nice.

T - First and foremost I get a quick, sweet taste of baked bread and vanilla, with some oak notes. This is quickly cast aside to let the bitter citrus hops into play, with grapefruit and some pine most dominant. This is a very complex and interesting IPA.

M - Medium body with a slick, oily feel. There is definitely a bitter quality from the hops and oak.

O - A creative and complex IPA that stands out. CC is sure having a fun time coming up with awesome beer.

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Photo of RoamingGnome
4.14/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From 10/12/13 tasting notes.

Jai Alai India Pale Ale aged on white Oak

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Served chilled. Split this one. Thanks Jeff...

A ) Cloudy pale amber with some sediment floating about as well. About a half finger of head. Decent retention.

S) I found quite a bit of grapefruit in the aroma, but not overly bitter. There is a nice balance created by the oak in use here. A whiff of vanilla sweetness too.

T) My initial thought was, this is like enjoying a halved grapefruit with a little dusting of sugar. Light tropical fruit as well, but this is mainly about the citrus. I also really appreciated the white oak, creating a slightly woody flavor, with a touch of vanilla.

M) Medium bodied, and quite smooth. The carbonation was not to lively, but had enough. Nice finish + aftertaste.

O) If forced to choose, I'd stick with regular Jai Alai, but this is really a unique and tasty brew. Guess it's a good thing I won't be forced to choose. Glad to recommend...,

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Photo of JohnG190
4.46/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy orange color with a thin, off-white head. Good retention and lacing. Strong aroma of oak followed by tropical fruit, citrus, and sweet malt. Great fruit palate with a strong malt backbone. Vanilla, coconut and oak notes come out mid palate and linger through the finish. If this were a blind tasting, I'd never guess that the base of this beer was Jai Alai. Smooth mouthfeel, with a nice dry finish. Decent carbonation. Overall, this is one of the finest wood aged IPAs I've ever tasted! CCB doesn't disappoint!

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Photo of taylor714914
4.78/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow, CCB NAILED this one. What a phenomenal beer.

Pours a slightly darker straw color than expected, perhaps from the oak.
Smells of intense hops, vanilla, and biscuit malts.

Taste is where this excels. Pungent hops and sweet biscuit malts play perfectly against one another with the white oak adding vanilla similar to cream soda. The finish is spot on with the light tannins of the oak and the vanilla a well.

Overall, perhaps one of the best IPAs I've ever had.

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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.

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Photo of timc100
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Fantastic aroma - a great blend of barrel and dank hoppiness. Oaky vanilla and coconut come out strongly - great organic woodiness. The citrus and pine comes through and really blend well with the oak. The taste is more bitter than the nose suggesteed with grapefruit being the prominent flavor. The oak is very smooth - vanilla.

Awesome oak aged IPA - takes the base up a notch

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Photo of blackcoyote13
4.49/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Forewarning, you better be in the mood to drink a Christmas tree when you order this one up. A recurring theme with Cigar City is that some of their flavoring processes will completely dominate and/or steamroll over the flavors of the base beer. In some cases, this creates a whole new beast (like with this White Oak Jai Alai) and in other cases it results in a nigh undrinkable brew. Fortunately, I am a fan of the flavor combination and the earthen, pine forest saturation in this variant is intoxicating. You can certainly tell that the delicious Jai Alai base is there and it melds well with the oak, which takes the base IPA by the hops and leads it away. Four stars on this one, a very tasty beverage that I thoroughly enjoyed.

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Photo of aMILESupreme
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: Jai ALai, deep copper, unfiltered.

S: A deep complex jai alai with a nice oak nose. the hops blend nicely with this oaked vibe.

T: Delicious, you get the same old tasty Jai Alai but with a wonderful oak complexity. You get an almost dill and vanilla like after taste. really nice oaked brew.

O: I love this beer and found my self quickly buying a case the second they made it available in bottle. but still probably prefer the Humidor Series Jai Alai.

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Jai Alai IPA - White Oak from Cigar City Brewing
92 out of 100 based on 374 ratings.