Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...

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.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

366 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 366
Hads: 1,690
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 10.17%
Wants: 335
Gots: 220 | 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: 366 | Hads: 1,690
Photo of Brez07
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A: Looks like your standard IPA. Dark orange, slightly cloudy. Leaves 1 finger of head with the pour that recedes to a thin layer.

S: Nice light citrus smell at first. There is some spice here as well, like cardamom or something similar. Definitely an earthy, tree scent (assuming oak). The combination is very unique

T: Just like the nose. Starts with a nice citrus hop profile, then comes the earthy, spicy flavors. I get almost like a vanilla orange combo. Very interesting

M: Medium bodied. Good active carbonation. Leaves a bitterness on the tongue. Dry finish

D: Very different but tasty IPA. The white oak adds some interesting flavors. Definitely want to drink this one again (726 characters)

Photo of facundoCNB
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a murky orange with 2 fingers of bright white head (leaving behind tons of lacing). smells of citrusy grapefruit, vanilla, a smell of tangerine/mango.. very tropical.. definitely loving the way this smells. the flavor is a malty, citrusy (again tangerine/mango with slight grapefruit) oak bomb. working at a wood shop for many years can make you either love or hate the smell of certain woods. this is a very nice flavor, which surprises me because this was one of the worst smelling woods we worked with (due to it burning so quickly when cutting it since it's such a hard wood). a lovely flavor profile, and honestly nothing like jai alai. a medium body with low carbonation, very nice and sticky on the lips.

a complete different beast than jai alai. it's nice to JUST have an oak flavor in a beer, instead of bourbon barrel oak. i've worked with wood for many years, as a carpenter, in a shop, and in construction.. a nasty splintery wood to work with and smells terrible once it starts burning on the blade.. but here, here it works nicely. (1,046 characters)

Photo of axeman9182
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, a great extra from djmichaelk. It was poured into my petite Duvel tulip.

White Oak Jai Alai pours a fairly hazy orange, lightening plenty towards tangerine when held up to light. Three fingers or so of fluffy white foam comes together to top the beer. Head retention is very good, and some solid chunks of lacing are left attached around the inside of the glass. The nose is very fragrant, and features a nice blend of grapefruit and lemon zests, and a distinct dill aroma. Just a little bit of oakiness is appreciable as well. The flavor takes things up a notch, and everything really comes together nicely. A soft caramel sweetness opens, bolstered by some vanilla from the oak. A fairly noticeable bitterness greets my palate next, along with some earthy, spicy oak flavors. That same dill presence from the aroma acts as a bridge to the traditional citrus finish. Ideally I'd like the grapefruit and pineapple flavors to pop just a little bit more, but the balance really is almost perfect. I don't know if it's the tannins from the oak, but the body just feels a little full to me. It's partnered with a plenty active level of carbonation though. I've had regular Jai Alai before and enjoyed it without thinking it particularly stood out from the pack as far as IPAs go, but this oaked version is a fantastic twist on one of the more popular craft beer styles. (1,380 characters)

Photo of readbaron
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy golden orange with a nice foamy head with excellent retention.

You can definitely smell the oak - plenty of piny hops as well as a hint of fruit, and a generous sweet honey aroma.

Taste is very good - the oak blends nicely with the hops - but somewhat overpowers them, and mellows out the IPA bitterness a bit. As with the smell - there is a hint of tropical fruitiness in the taste, and a typical bitter finish.

M - medium body, nicely carbonated

D - I wish I had more to drink (496 characters)

Photo of GJ40
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled from a 12oz bottle received in a trade with surge1311. No date on the bottle.

A - Golden with a haze and lot of sediment. A moderate beige head. Good lacing.

S - Oak and tropical fruit that grows as it warms. Very exotic and very unique.

T - A very interesting mix of flavors. I don't normally like wood influenced IPAs but this was very unique and well done. The mild bitterness really let the tropical fruit and oak notes play off each other. The wood was firm but not overdone.

M - A moderate consistency and carbonation that let the flavors take the lead.

O - Not one I'd drink often but one I'm very glad a tried. (631 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours orange and a bit cloudy with small to medium head. Dank aroma of pine, orange citrus, and definite oak and vanilla presence. Very complex. Flavor has the nice bitter front end with a mellowing vanilla finish. A lot of times these are overly dry and oaky, but CCB did a very nice job with this one. Slick mouthfeel and very smooth finish. I really wish this was more easily accessible, but CCB goes so quick even down here in FL. This is an absolute must try and better than the regular version. (500 characters)

Photo of meatyard
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy, amber orange with a large, dense, pillowy white head. Retention is excellent and so is the lacing. A very pretty looking beer.

The smell is oak with some pine quickly following. It really is an unusual aroma for an IPA yet doesn't take anything away from it.

The taste is, again, oak up front followed by pine hops, some sweet malt and finishes with more oak.

Mouthfeel is full, nicely carbonated and has just a faint hint of bitterness.

This is a very drinkable IPA. The hops don't blister your tongue, ABV is only moderately high and drinking one leaves you wanting another. (594 characters)

Photo of ksimons
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
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 (385 characters)

Photo of MusicaleMike
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours with a peach-colored sea foam-like head that tops a very murky, cloudy, indeed almost chunky, deep orange-colored body. Head looks sturdy, and appears to lace well. It does very well actually.

Excellent oak aroma mixed at just the right amount with the hops. Resinous, piney, grapefruit like hops sit immediately underneath this woody, warm, beautiful oak aroma, lending hints of sweet honeydew melon as it mixes with the hops.

Very nice first sip, which comes off as an IPA first and foremost, with a standard bitter profile (though not too bitter), accompanied by a distinct oak exhale. This is quickly followed by a trace of sourness on the palette, close to the finish. The aftertaste is splendid, all white oak and a lingering bitterness. The following sips provide more of the same, though the sourness I perceived at first seems to dissipate. Here, the beer is an IPA given a very nice treatment in oak. I really love the combination of IPA with barrel aging. The oak helps in the way of balancing the bitterness. There isn't much sweetness here, though the aroma indicates that. The malt comes to play in the finish and at the swallow, leaving a caramel like flavor to accompany the oak.

The carbonation is good, though might be a touch more lively than I would like to see it. And the body is a hefty one, feeling quite full bodied. The finish is semi-dry, astringent from the excess of hops.

In contrast to the barrel aged 10-10-10 that I had last night, this is clearly a more refined beer. The bourbon notes overpowered the hops a bit too much. Here, without the sweet bourbon, the oak provides a flavor complexity, without "sweetening" the IPA. I'm not sure what the alcohol is here, but it was more appropriate for the 10% beer to have a bourbon treatment. This wouldn't work here. I think that White Oak Jai Alai is a phenomenal IPA and I would say this only deepens my love for Florida beers. (1,922 characters)

Photo of Aml42000
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Speiglau IPA glass. Slightly cloudy copper with a snowy off white head.

The aromatics are amazing here- a mix of coconut & vanilla from the oak which one could smell for days. Secondarily, citrus lingers about as well.

This enters on the sweet/oaky side with very pronounced vanilla, but moves seamlessly into featuring the hops which present in a more subdued manner than a traditional IPA, but definitely do not let you forget what type of beer this is.

Unlike many oak-aged IPA's, this is balanced in the mouth with refreshing effervescence and a soft overall feel. Medium bodied.

This is an excellent version of oak aged IPA. Wonderfully complex, one to slow down & savor, but still a clean, refreshing drink. Would enjoy this anytime. (760 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

thanks to Maltzilla for the chance to taste this beer -poured chilled into a willybecker.

A deep apricot shade w/ towering rocky ecru cap w/ whipped topography, mildly hazy -yet visibly carbonated with spacious bubbles and spotty lace pattern. The smell is very fruity with a lot of oaky resin odor and the nose has a bit more pine cone hop scent than floral but a slight citrus accent is there. The feel is good, w/ very oaky and astringent accents lives up to the name w/ moderate bitterness and light sweetness w/ a bit of creamy and oaky texture almost. The finish is drying and oily with hop resin and the body is medium with a moderately low amount of carbonation.

The taste is very good with a balance of bitter and spicy hops with the sweetness of the gentle oak taste and malt. The yeast is there w/ no doubt as it blends in well w/ the astringency of the hops. the hops have a nice citrus quality which also seems to add some piney. The oak comes off as an ingredient that is well integrated here - you aren't sure if you are tasting hops or the oak at times. A nice caramel maltiness adds to the mystery -am I getting vanilla from the oak or is the malt what I am tasting? It cushions the acidity of the hops but lends astringency where it is needed with a mild toasted taste from the malt. there is a subtle wood and herbal blend of slightly lemony flavors that linger after the taste. Overall I enjoyed this IPA a lot It is treated very well w/ the oak not dominating like the cedar version I tasted. It adds a layer of complexity and I would certainly not mind having this again. (1,597 characters)

Photo of argock
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a clear stemmed glass wine goblet. No freshness date. Single purchased at Knightly Spirits (Orlando, FL) for $2.99.

A: Hazy amber with 1-finger of malted milk colored head with decent retention and nice trails of lace.

S: The oak notes are readily apparent, lending a pleasant sharp woody note to the aroma. This seems to enhance the tropical fruit hops notes significantly more, as the resinous character is reduced but the mango, pineapple, passionfruit components are bigger.

T: The flavor is less rounded for the oak aging but still very interesting and enjoyable with plenty of floral, citrus fruit hoppiness to go ahead with a thread of pine running through it all. The maltiness is even and not too sweet, less so than the base brew.

M: Slick and coating with medium carbonation and a woody aftertaste.

D: An interesting experiment, but I still like the original better as the flavors work well and the pine aspect has more muscle with more resinous notes than this brew. White Oak Jai Alai is still a really good beer. (1,066 characters)

Photo of dbossman
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Amber hue with a huge, bright and steady head; bubbles move slowly and steadily up the glass; lacing is wonderful

S: A balance of grapefruit hops and slightly sweet toffee and caramel like malts; a black pepper spice underneath the malts and hops; also a subtle grainy and woody back end to the aromas

T: Wow! I did not expect that bitter hop explosion after the somewhat subtle aromas; besides the obvious grapefruit and citrus from the hops there is a black pepper spice and obvious oaky quality that so nicely complements the hops and helps them blend so well with the strong malted backbone; this is a good tasting beer that I wish didn't have such a dry finish, but all in all this tastes awesome

F: The beer does quickly vanish from the back of the mouth--the dryness is probably due to the oak, but it does distract from the beer just a bit; it just doesn't have that oily stickiness that I prefer from a hoppy IPA

O: This is a darn good oak-aged IPA; I generally like wood aged IPAs and this might be right up there with the best of them; the dry aftertaste does take away a tad from the overall beer but all in all this is a great beer from Cigar City (1,167 characters)

Photo of chefhatt
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Can served at paradise by the slice.
Poured into a glass, it has a burnt orange color body with a small head. The aroma has a pine, citrus hints to it. The taste is oak and vanilla up front with piney hoppy ness to it. Also has a sweetness to it.
The mouthfeel is smooth and overall it is a great beer. (303 characters)

Photo of kbutler1
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Pours a slightly hazed copper amber orange color with a very small bubbled tight antique white head. The aroma is very different than most IPA's I have ever smelled with notes of pineapple, coconut, mango, and some citrus. The oak must really have an effect on the aroma. Medium mouthfeel with a nice amojnt of carbonation. The taste is sweet tropical fruit flavor followed by a nice hop bitterness in the end that lingers on for a while. Nice lace left on the glass as I drink this. The oak shows through in the beginning as well. It still amazes me all the things CCB does with a great base beer as the White Oak version is great! (640 characters)

Photo of MbpBugeye
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was the beer that got me most excited in a birthday box from Mikesgroove. Now I can call myself a real member of this site, having gotten beer from Mikesgroove.

A- Damn, they dont get too much better looking than this. Its a glowing burnt orange with an ever so light haze. The head is absolutely towering. One of the kinds of heads that will stick out above the rim of the glass and taunt you. It makes you wait to finish pouring and then wait some more to drink it. Lacing? There must be a better word for it than lacing.

S- This is a whole new beast. Very, very, very woody. If you thought Palo Santo was the most woodsy, check yo head. Fresh wood pulp, sap, pine bough, juniper berries. Its very intense and woodsy. Like the drippings from a wood chipper.

T- This tastes as much like a national park as it smells. The oak brings deciduous wood flavors and the hops bring the coniferous. There is pine sap, wood pulp, the moisture from green saplings. Hops also carry a citrus profile, mostly of sweet nectarine. This stuff is very, very sweet. There is no bitterness at the end and the finish feels almost empty.

M- The carbonation is quite high. Huh, who would have guessed a beer with meringue for a head had some carbonation? Its very dry with a full body.

D- I liked this stuff very much but Im left questioning some things. I certainly wouldnt be drinking this stuff in succession like other IPAs, but I would like having it on hand. (1,456 characters)

Photo of TotallyHosed
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Heatwave33 for the bottle.

Poured into a highball glass.

Has a slightly off-white head, about a finger thick, that leaves some nice lace on the glass. The color reminds me of bright apple cider that's opaque enough to hide the bubbles.

The smell is full of sweet oak with a little bit of hops hiding behind. It makes my mouth water, so I dove right in.

The taste matches the smell at the start: oaky sweetness. The oak subsides a bit and allows some hoppy bitterness. The bitter steps aside and all that's left is a creamy oak flavor.

For an oak aged beer, I'm surprised with the carbonated feel, especially considering other wood barreled beers that I've had. This is a nice surprise.

Overall I really enjoyed this brew. I've had a few other oaked IPA's in the past and was disappointed. I never detected any of the alcohol, which for me is always impressive.

Recommended (889 characters)

Photo of cfrances33
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle thanks to johnyb. Poured into a tulip.

Pour: Hazy deep orange with two fingers of off white soapy head. Head sticks around and leaves moderate lacing.

Smell: Wow. I get a huge burst of citrusy hops, followed by a mellow coconut. Some caramel rounds out the nose. Unlike anything I've smelled before. Huge surprise.

Taste: Another first. Never tasted anything like this. A sweet caramel upfront leads into a citrusy coconut. Some vanilla mingles in there as well. This was really nice.

Mouthfeel: Super juicy, and yet very dry. I think the flavor profile cuts down on the drinkability for me. I would only have one of these at any one time.

Overall: Really curious, and a very good beer. I would consider this a nightcap of an IPA, not for the ABV, but the intense, different flavor profile. (802 characters)

Photo of Yimosan
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Cigar City.

A - Cloudy and honey-like in color. Nice head retention and sticky lacing.

S - Citrus and pine as an IPA should smell, but there is also a nice hint of vanilla and tropical fruits.

T - Citrusy but not pungent. I think the oak aging mellows out the Jai Alai base and makes it more drinkable, IMO.

M - Beautiful carbonation and creaminess throughout the session.

D - A very smooth and easy drinking IPA. I think the oak adds a gorgeous complexity to the aroma and palate.

Definitely A Winner...move over Humidor!!

Salud!! (550 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to ericandersnavy for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a yellow-orange color with a white head. The aroma is the pine and citrus that I expect from Jai Alai, but it is accented with some oaked notes.

The flavor is more of the same. There is a light oak flavor that compliments the pine, citrus and pineapple notes. I think the oak cuts the bitterness, which is lower than I remember from the regular Jai Alai. Very well done.

Medium mouthfeel and medium mouthfeel. (479 characters)

Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Delivered to the table in a Belgium style stemmed glass. Glowing murky gold body hosts a full inch of off white creamy foam head. The normal Jai Lai nose is dominated by the fresh rustic white oak. Normal I'm not a huge fan of oak but it is beautiful here. Oak is resin based on the flavor profile. The oak actually brings out the grapefruit in the overall flavor very strongly. Paints the mouth with the oak and grapefruit leaving a very pleasant mouthfeel. A solid version but I like the original a bit more. (510 characters)

Photo of Vec2267
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: orange with white lace that maintains throughout the glass

S: floral, piny, wood

T: wood and hops, the oak is definitely front and center, but in a very complimentary, mellow manner it balances the bitter of the hops, dry

M: on the creamy side for the style without becoming syrupy

D: 12 ounces is about the right amount, it is very enjoyable wow this is different, but I would not want more than one in a session, but I certainly enjoyed the one (453 characters)

Photo of kkipple
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Todes and Bobby8402 for hauling some of this up fer me!

12oz bottle, no bottled on date, says: "India Pale Ale aged on American White Oak". Okay!

A. A very pretty head on this baby, dense and fluffy, long lasting and solid. Tiny amounts of lace and active carbonation beautify my Sam Adams pint glass. The dull mandarin orange brew seriously needs drinking.

S. Smells just like Jai Alai but with a bunch of dry, spicy oak! Woodsy and reminds me of an oaky white wine. The IPA here is no slouch either: a sweet-sticky grapefruit hop presence with a significant floral orange note. A delightful take on an already good nose.

T. Flavor is solid, a tasty, sticky well-balanced (and high abv...) IPA with added characterful wood. The oak works well here, and Cigar City made the right call by not going with a heavy toasted oak, as I feel it would have been too much. The oak here also dries this out a little in the finish and wraps the hop bitterness up and tames it a little -- I think this is honestly an improvement on the base beer! In fact, as I drink more of it, I'm quite confident in saying so.

M / D. Adequate carbonation here, medium bodied mouthfeel, honey-hop bitterness with that dash of smug oak again in the finish. There really is no escaping it.

White Oak Jai Alai is really great, and a fun take on an already above-average East Coast IPA. Highly recommended, and I hope Cigar City makes this a seasonal offering. Delicious! (1,459 characters)

Photo of CuttDeez
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A - Copper mixed with a yellow orange colored bodied. The head was substantial and white and it faded quickly but left a good lace.

S - Great balance of piney and citrus hops. The Smeel lends itself to vanilla and oak on the back end as well.

T & M & D - A huge cirtus and piney hop bomb in the front that opens to great malt sweetness. The sweetness in the middle opens itself to vanilla. Then a great oak profile comes in and brings together the complexity of the taste. Great smooth medium bodied mouthfeel that coats the palate. Very drinkable.

O - An awesome oak aged IPA that has complex flavors and is incredibly drinkable. Love it

- Cheers (693 characters)

Photo of dubinsky
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this bottle in a trade with mondegreen. 12oz bottle poured into a C&B Bruges snifter.

A - Pours a hazy orange with a a huge foamy off white, bone color head with great retention and lacing.

S - The aroma is really unusual. The white oak is hugely dominant. There is some sweet fruitiness that i cant identify. I am not really smelling any hops or citrus as others have noted. I'm mostly smelling white oak, and in all fairness, i really enjoy the aroma.

T - The taste is just as unusual as the smell, however in this category i am tasting the great hops which make this the IPA that it is. The flavor starts of with some great pine resin and slightly grassy hop flavors. The middle is slightly malty, but the finish, is where this beer separates it from the others in the category. The oakiness is truly spectacular. Its dominant in a great way. It dominates the aftertaste profile, but it blends very well in this style.

M - The beer is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D - This is a very drinkable and enjoyable IPA, that is really different. I wish i could buy this in California. It actually really reminds me of my first home brewed beer, a RR Blind Pig clone recipe which was aged on white oak. At the time i thought the beer was off, but as it aged, it became very good and the oakiness was very similar. I think i should try that recipe again. (1,377 characters)

Jai Alai IPA - White Oak from Cigar City Brewing
92 out of 100 based on 366 ratings.