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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.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

385 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 385
Hads: 1,778
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 11.08%
Wants: 348
Gots: 239 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States | website

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: 385 | Hads: 1,778
Photo of mschantz
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Light bronze in color with minimal head thT dissipates to a fine lace after a few sips. Nose shows a bit of fruity sweetness with subtle hop notes. Taste is citrusy, maybe fruity pebbles, with a surprising lack of wood flavor. However the wood manifests itself with a dry finish. Very refreshing and drinkable.

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Photo of ediaz
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle Date: 15 Aug 2012. Review Date: 21 Aug 2012.

A: Fluffy white head on a copper body

S: Sweet bitter citrus hops, oak, smoke.

T: really sweet and smooth, the hoppy taste is well-tempered by the oak treatment. smokey on the back end.

M: Medium with low carbonation. At first, i thought more carb would help the beer, but as i drink it i feel like the low carb and decent weight help the taste come through.

O: Fantastic. I will be having this plenty as long as they can keep it in stock! I would recommend seeking this out or trading for it. Definitely on par with the best of them. Much better than the untreated jai alai, not that the untreated version was bad at all.

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

Appearance:

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.

Smell:

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.

Taste:

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.

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Photo of TheDudeRules
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my over sized Founder's snifter.

Liquid is a cloudy amber with a fingers width of off white head. I let it settle a bit before I sniff. A good amount of lacing helplessly clings to my glass. Pleasant smelling. Tropical foot with a wood kick. A huge whiff of stone fruit that is quickly beaten down by a cedar stick. Quite interesting. Wood dominates my palate. Stone fruit slowly follows. The caramel of the malt is in there but the supporting role is very small. A nice hop bite rounds out the sip. The aftertaste is so damn satisfying I pause long in between sips. The carbonation is dialed right in.

If I had more there would be a pile of bottles next to my kitchen sink. This is a winner.

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Photo of mnphish
4.62/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled at the Cigar City Brewery less than a week ago, thanks to my great friends in Florida! 12oz bottle poured into a Snifter.

A: Color is amber gold, head recedes quickly and leaves a little bit of lacing.

S: Here is where this beer dominates. Heavy aromas of grapefruit, oak/wood, citrus, and hints of pineapple, peaches, and coconut. Amazing, i can't wait to indulge.

T: Very nice. All that comes through in the smell translates beautifully in the taste. Lots of grapefruit, well balanced, and the oak adds a one-of-a-kind complexity to this beer.

M: Light carbonation, smooth and light, very drinkable.

O: I am pretty wowed by this beer, never had an IPA with all these tropical flavors. So damn good.

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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.

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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 JebediahScooter
4.97/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

First beer review, here it goes.

Poured out of a bottle into a DFH Signature glass on 12/3/10. 3 White Oak Jai Alai's were part of a lovely birthday mixed six pack--which also included my first PtE, a Founders' Devil Dancer, and a Burton Baton--from my good friend and brahim Moses Mendoza.

Hazy orange/copper hue with a fluffy, pillowy tan two-finger head that subsides to a nice crown with decent lacing. This beer is murky and colorful.

The smell really stands out as absolutely unique. Tropical fruits dominated by mango and coconut are the predominant. Vanilla, wood, and citrusy hops are in there, though more subtle. I've really never smelled a beer like this before, and I didn't expect it to smell like this. It's almost like a hoppy Pina Colada.

The strong bitter hop presence kicks off the first sip, fairly aggressive and similar to the regular Jai Alai. The beer departs from the original version as the bitterness mellows out through the sip into more of the tropical fruit, again dominated by mango and coconut. It's quite different than other IPAs dominated by the citrusy/grapefruit hops like Sculpin, Racer 5, Maharaja, etc, and it's a nice change of pace for an IPA. The vanilla is there, and the wood comes through subtly. It's not overpowering like some other wood aged stuff I've had recently.

Mouthfeel is the perfect balance between a good amount of carbonation up front and a smooth velvety finish. This is how beer should feel when it's all up in your face.

I could drink a 6-pack of these...the fruity flavors just mellow out that heavy hop bitterness of the regular Jai Alai so nicely. This is an extremely unique offering, one that should not be missed if you have an opportunity to lay your hands on some. This is a flat out fantastic beer that's true strength lies in the fact that you've never tasted anything quite like it. It surprises you, pleasantly.

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Photo of mondegreen
4.62/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz into a DFH Signature Glass.

Pours a hazy deep orange. Throws up a giant 3 inch head with nice retention and great lacing. Aroma is sweet citrus hops and lovely wood. Taste follows, with the oak taking center stage. I love what the guys down in Tampa are doing with Jai Alai. This beer is their canvas, and every iteration I have been lucky enough to try is a masterpiece.

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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.

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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.

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Photo of UTCengOwl
4.65/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at CCB. Definitely my favorite thing I had there... and I was a big fan of the Humidor IPA from a previous tasting, too. Just plain interesting. Where can I get some White Oak? Served in a shaker pint glass.

The beer has a creamy, inviting foamy head that just opens my eyes and waters my mouth. Heck yes. You can tell they put a lot of effort into clean glassware here... and since I'm getting it at the brewery, I feel like I can include that in the beer's score. The body itself is a slightly hazy, standard IPA. However, the head alone merits the 4.5.

The IPA was fruity as all get go... and that's how I love my IPAs. They said it was made with a blend of hops and dry hopped with Simcoe. Every one of them added to the smell and taste. It was a veritable mixture of fruits and succulent flavors. The oak itself provides a different kind of fruit flavor. This stuff is addictive and I keep loving every extra sip. In addition to the wonderful flavor, the mouthfeel is solid, but not mindblowing. This isn't exactly a Live Oak beer or anything... but it will do the job.

CCB's experimentation provides some hits and misses, but this hits all over the place. This may be my favorite standard IPA I've had and I'd jump at the chance to have it on tap again.

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Photo of Bobheed
4.14/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Nice copper color with a two and a half finger soapy white head. Head dissipates fairly quickly

S: Tons of earthy hops. Maybe the earthiness is from the oak though because it's a whole different beast than normal jai alai. Still get a lot of that pineapple citrus kind of hops too though

T: Bit of citrus, some pine, then goes into a sweet bready kind of flavor.

M: Very well carbonated. Pretty thick for an IPA and pretty dry

Overall this was quite nice. I liked it much more than the normal Jai Alai IPA

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Photo of fields336
3.96/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: light brown, orange

S: light vanilla, oak wood, dill, tropical fruits, and earthy hops

T: vanilla, dill, pepper, peach, pineapple, mango, oak wood, herbal

M: creamy mouthfeel, not rough at all, almost a nitro mouthfeel

O: this beer tastes very different from jai alai, but in a good way. I like the flavors and the best parts of jai alai shine through

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Photo of mattsdenney
4.66/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Was able to snag some sixers of this one on vacation back in May. Finally getting around to drinking and rating my last one. Was hard to find.

Pours a medium amber, orange color with two things of full, thick head. Cloudy with noticeable specks of material and residue floating around. Not sure what this is, part of the oak possibly? Smells amazing; orange peel, lemon, fresh cut grass, sweet vanilla. Tastes even better. It's hoppy, smooth, malty, sweet, bitter, and all in perfect harmony. The finishing notes of vanilla and oak are perfect and mix well with the hoppy bitterness. The hops are more subdued than in normal Jai Alai as expected. The smoothest, most flavorful IPA I've ever had. Light carbonation, smooth, medium bodied. Perfect consistency. Overall an amazing beer and one that I hope to find every year. I can see why people in FL were buying it up and trying to sell it for 4x the normal price.

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

A: peach fuzz/ amber orange, two finger off white head in perfect pint. cloudy to a point, clears up a little over time.
S: strangely enough, im reminded of the shorts anniversary i had a few nights ago, mainly because i feel like i get some kind of pepper, or peppercorn fairly up front. honeybell oranges and strong, dense citrus dominate, this is a whole different animal.
T: again i feel like i get some kind of peppercorn aspects in the flavor, maybe its the oak. theres grapefruit, blood orange, orange zest, heat, oak... a little bit of everything, except the kitchen sink. damn this thing is intense.
M: an initial moderate carbonation level tapers off to yield a creamy and smooth finish. mild bitterness all the way through, but more just open playing field for intense and solid flavor profile.
D: im finally reviewing this after having a few bottles over a months time, and id drink it again, and again.. and again. really glad i got to experience it, and hopefully theyll do it again. absolutely delicious.

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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.

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Photo of ales4baldo
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Hdelavega for this one in a trade. Thank you sir. Poured in the wonder Cigar City Snifter he also sent.

Presentation-Simple bottle, showing the white oak on the label. Big hop announces the presence what your gonna get.

Presentation-Appearence-Hazy deli mustard coloration. Almost a cloudy and foggy beer than you cant see through. Good head. About a finger and a half of head.

Smell-The white oak gives this beer a really sweet smell. Sugars and wood oak come up really nice. Lots of hops and a bit of tangerine.

Taste-Really nice man. The white oak does wonders to this beer. Grapefruit like youll usually find in an IPA. Sweet lemon notes hide behind the strong presense of hops. A bit of orange and like some red apple as well.

Mouthfull-Get a nice full mouthfull with this beer. Has a lot of body to it and the hops aged with the white oak add a really nice sweet bitter. Carbonation is really nice as always.

Overall-A really nice beer. Really nice. Simple and with a lot of body and flavors. I really like this one.

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Photo of AdamGarcia
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz btl served in a Stella glass

A: Initial pour results in a glass half filled hazy golden orange liquid and the other half with fluffy luxurious cream colored head. Head dissipates into rocky formations as I try to fit the rest of the beer into the glass.

S: Very unique. Soft vanilla aroma. Honey drenched herbal hop scents. Picking up a little fresh mint. Sugary and spicy. The smell is like no IPA I've ever encountered and its tremendous, certainly not typical, but amazing nonetheless.

T: Mirrors scent in a lot of ways. It is clear that Jai Alai is the base beer, but the white oak treatment has made it much better than the original IMHO. Sweet vanilla and woody flavors accentuate some of the strong qualities of the standard brew. Hops are slightly subdued but some citrus, herbal, and spicy notes are present. Sweet fruity flavors are abundant. The finish is very neutral, with a balance between sweet and dry.

M: Has a coating feel. Carbonation is good.

D: I wish I had another bottle or two. This is a unique beer that will hold one's interest.

Enjoyed this much more than the standard Jai Alai. Looking forward to trying other versions.

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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 dmgallag
3.35/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A - light IPA in appearance. Looks light and refreshing in glass.

S - Hop city here with a dash of sweaty old gym sock. Funk Town, USA.

T - kind of disappointing. This is a workout. Albeit, I am not a serious hophead, I do appreciate a good IPA. This thing is a workout. Seriously bitter, I don't see that the oak age mellowed this guy out too much. Lots of bite, I can't see doing more than two of these in a day. If bitter hop taste is your thing, go for it.

M - nothing to see here. Not very memorable.

O - picked this up because I am visiting family in the Tampa area and I had heard positive buzz about cigar city and this beer. I'll pass on this one if I see it again.

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Photo of Justin_Neff
4.04/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to smokinoak for the bottle!

A: Cloudy burnt orange color with a very sticky white head that loses fluffiness quickly but laces the glass for an extended period of time.

S: The overwhelming oak smell creates a pleasant faux coconut whiff. The end of the smell finishes a hoppy and citrus oak-centric smell.

T: Starts really sweet, but the oakiness balances out the sweetness towards the finish. Not a lot of hoppiness, but there is enough hidden in between the oak and smoke that it creates a special taste. This is very unique.

M: Medium body with medium carbonation level. Naturally carbonation dissipates a little as it warms, which only brings more flavor out. Very good balance.

O: The smell says it all with this one. Take a whiff and expect to taste what you're smelling. The oak and smokey flavors tone down the natural sweetness to create a very different experience. Best after sitting for just a few minutes so the flavors can open up and expand. I could drink a whole sixer of this on a summer day. I will actually try to trade for more. THANK YOU SMOKINOAK!

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Photo of Ratman197
4.04/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Doodler (thanks Scott) poured a clear orange amber with a lingering ring of amber foam. Aromas of oak, vanilla, orange, light pine and a hint of carmel. Palate was medium bodied and crisp with a dry finish. Flavors of oak, vanilla, pink grapefruit, light orange and a hint of pine with a crisp dry moderatly bitter lingering oak finish.

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Photo of Chizoad
3.18/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

3rd of the Jai Alai "varietals" I've had now. I really appreciate that Cigar City experiments so much with their beers, and that they do a good job with it on top of the crazy styles.

On-tap at the brewery.

Big deep amber frothy beer. Doesn't really resemble pale ale, and certainly not the pale part of it. Still, a good looking beer.

No mistaking it, this beer smells like an oak tree. Imagine an oaky wine, and how it smells after you've emptied the glass. Make that oak smell slightly more aggressive, and that's what is in this. A little disconcerting in an APA.

The oak unfortunately totally overwhelmed the rest of the beer to the point of making it nearly undrinkable, at least until the beer warmed up and the oak chemicals had a chance to evaporate off or whatever they do. The strong malt backbone was barely there, and hops were also subdued by the majestic oak tree. Less oak = better, and made this one an interesting oddity that I'm glad I had but would never seek out again.

Edit: I just read other people's reviews, and it seems that my experience with this one was not the norm at all. Perhaps I had a different batch?

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Photo of sprat1960
4.76/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Look: Deep golden color; slightly hazy. Pours with a small 1/2 finger white head that dies down leaving a smooth thin layer of foam of the surface if the beer. Lots of small bubbles present.

Smell: Lots of citrus (bold grapefruit, mild lemon); very mild hoppy aroma. Appealing; made me want to take a drink.

Taste: Loads of citrus. Starts off with a bold blend of grapefruit and oranges; progresses to a slightly tart lemon flavor ending with an extremely mild and sightly bitter hoppy finish. Delicious! Perfect.

Feel: Medium body. Smooth,velvety feel; slight tingle from the carbonation; extremely mild dry finish. Perfect.

Overall: Flavorful IPA; absolutely delicious. Refreshing. I could drink this IPA over and over! One of the best ever for me.

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Jai Alai IPA - White Oak from Cigar City Brewing
92 out of 100 based on 385 ratings.