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José Martí American Porter - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
José Martí American PorterJosé Martí American Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

903 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 903
Reviews: 256
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 10.59%
Wants: 104
Gots: 122 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mcallister on 08-11-2010

This is a heavily hopped high gravity porter featuring the hopping levels of an India Pale Ale with the rich and roasty malt profile of a robust porter. Heavy hop rates, while uncommon in today's porters were not unknown historically and recipes from the British porter producers of the 1800's evidence hopping rates far in excess of what is common for the style today.

65 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 903 | Reviews: 256
Photo of MartzMimic
4.34/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours black from the bottle with a finger of foamy light brown head. It dissipates quickly, leaving very little lacing. Smells of chocolate, breadymalt malts and roasted coffee. The taste is all that, but so much bigger. Dark chocolate, roasted, smokey coffee and a nice hoppy bitterness on the end. Several have compared it to a black IPA, but it's definitely a porter first-and-foremost. Medium thick mouth that's fairly oily. I really, really like this one.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cigar City Brewing "José Martí India-style Porter"
22 oz. brown glass bottle, Bottled on 10/14/14
$9.99 @ Total Wine & More #901, Tampa, FL (less than a half mile from the brewery - I should have went there and paid less!).

So is it "American Porter" or "India-style Porter"? Well there is no "India-style Porter" and there never was, but as they point out on the label, many beers in the 1800's were produced with far higher hop rates than today. The question is how much bitterness was extracted? Were they really as bitter as the beers we're making today, or were they just using more, but less potent, hops. But I digress... it doesn't really matter what it's called, and it doesn't really matter how bitter it is as long as it's balanced - and it is.

The nose suggests a very rich dark chocolate maltiness, and the flavor confirms it. It's chocolatey with dark chocolate, cocoa, bittersweet chocolate, and just a hint of burnt sugar. It's also a touch nutty, and that combined with the roasted side of the chocolate suggests coffee - strong black coffee. It doesn't suffer from being overly malty to get that richness, however. In fact, it's simply medium to medium-full in body. It's just intense.

And what of the hops? It's bitter, yes, boldly so, but within such roasty and chocolatey richness you don't notice it as much. It's like drinking coffee, you expect the bitterness so it doesn't particularly seem that bitter. Of course it's got to be around 70 IBUs, and if you put that into a golden ale it'll stick out!

What I find the most interesting, and what I think really makes the beer work, is that they've held back on hop flavor to allow the chocolatey and roasty flavors to shine. I'm assuming they've used mostly English hops (or an equivalent) as they're mainly leafy and grassy with just a hint of citrus coming through. They back the chocolate/roast and give it a background edge but don't really show until the finish, which is bitter, dry, herbal, leafy, and grassy with just a spritz of clementine.

An impressive beer to say the least. It has aggression, but it's throttled back. It harkens back to an older time but still makes progress in the new age. Without a deft hand in both formulation and production a beer of this magnitude could easily jump the tracks. If you're a fan of roast and chocolatey beers this one's worth seeking out!

Photo of zeronumber
3.23/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

you know, coffee is coffee, a roasted beverage that on its own uses bitterness and roast taste to fine advantage. Jose Marti does the same. but my only complaint is the roast malt taste is too pronounced. its like a char rather than a toast. kudos to Cigar City for a fine brew, but not a favorite for me. I enjoy the hops but, honestly it just make me crave a guiness instead. More hops! Less Roast! please

Photo of zac16125
3.82/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a pint glass
no bottling dates

A: Opaque black, 3 fingers of tan colored head, tons of brown speckle floaties. Head has great retention and leaves lots of nice lacing. 4.25

S: As expected, there are roasted malts, cocoa, and coffee. Unexpectedly , there is a big hop presence, with lots of piney and citrus rind notes. Almost like a black IPA. Not what I was expecting, and ok, but not great. The different components don’t complacent one another very nicely. 3.5

T: Taste is more traditional porter, and is better than the aroma. Strong roasted malt and bitter black coffee. Subtle cocoa. Hops are much more restrained, with just a hint of piney bitterness. 4

M/D: Fuller side of medium body, carbonation on the higher end but appropriate, drinks like a lower ABV beer, drinkability is good. 3.75

O: Pretty good, but nothing special. Not something to avoid but I wouldn’t seek it out. 3.75

Photo of infinitebruner
4.02/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

November 15, 2014

22 oz. bomber, snifter

A – Black, possibly with the slightest hint of brown. A small, dark tan head on top with moderate retention.

S – Reminds me of barrel aged character, with vanilla, light molasses, some oakiness. Malt is also sweet with a very roasty, slightly charred or chicory backbone. American hops, spic with somewhat piney notes.

T – Very sweet upfront, followed by a wallop of roasty, slightly charred bitterness and hop bitterness. Hops are spicy again, even peppery, mostly contributing bitterness though. Vanilla and chocolate extremely mild in the background. This one has a bite.

M – Thinner than it looks, but in keeping with a porter. Mild to moderate carbonation, definitely noticeable. And bitter, bitter, bitter.

O – Has the build of a traditional porter, but with the bitterness of a hard American Imperial stout. Interesting and memorable, and a tough one to break down, as well as a tough one to drink easily.

Photo of micromaniac129
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Pours with a tall very thick head. The body is deep and dark with light passing just at the edge of my glass.
Aroma is of roasted burnt malts with a bold slightly more pronounced hop smell.
The taste features a heavy ashen and roasted nearly burnt malt bill.
The hops themselvies aren't very pronounced. I thought they would be a bit more bolder.

Photo of floridadrift
4/5  rDev -1.5%

A: Brownish

T: Very hoppy, could be a porter, could be a Black IPA if it was a little less thick

M: Medium and very smooth

O: Worth it if you like fresh hops

Photo of Jon_Rueben
4.01/5  rDev -1.2%

Hoppy but balanced!

Photo of gcamparone
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter. Acquired in a trade

A- pours a deep brown translucent body with a 2 finger off white head the reduces slowly to frothy foam.

S - molasses, toffee, heavy bread and pine, resin, slight roasted coffee. Very aromatic

T- starts off with toffee, fresh coffee, the follow through is pretty hoppy with resin and pine, the finish is roasty malt, biscuity, and toasty.

M- medium body and carbonation

Overall a nicely crafted porter. I'd put it more in the black IPA category.

Photo of lochef81
4.04/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This outstanding porter pours a near black with an almost tan head that gives way to a nice film and lacing. The nose is very dark and roasty with notes of coffee and chocolate offset by a pleasing hop presence. The mouth is rich and creamy with a very full body given the style. The flavor is a delicious blend of hops, coffee, and chocolate. Very well balanced and pleasantly warming with its alcohol presence. This is an awesome porter, obe of the best that I've had. I just wish I could get it more often and easily.

Photo of cpetrone84
3.73/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pour is black with tons of tight tan head and a thick lacing. Nose has a robust malt up front of milk chocolate and roasted malt. Aggressively hopped citrus behind and hop resin behind. Taste is heavier roast, still fairly rich and malty, some citrus hop and a hint of an herbal note. Silky smooth body with an assertive carbonation and a fairly dry chalky finish.

Photo of portia99
3.81/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle (no date that I can find...definitely has a couple of months in my fridge on it minimum and I assume it was fresh when purchased) poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours so brown in the glass that it is almost black in color. Some mild translucence shows ample carbonation and a bit of floating particulate in the body of the beer. A nice one finger cap of densely bubbled foam of a deep tan color resides on top for a minute or so and slowly falls leaving behind some foamy lace on the glass.

S - Berry like fruity-ness with mild astringency on first smell followed by some charred, deep roasted malt, molasses and dark caramelized sugar, a bit of yeasty-ness and some grassy hops although hops are at a low level, especially for a "robustly hopped" porter.

T - Charcoal, burnt and a bit astringent with a lingering smokiness. Green, grassy hops - more assertive than in the aroma - but I still would not classify as robust. Lots of dark roasty flavors, touch of tobacco, burnt toast.

M - Medium body with a lowish medium carbonation that provides plenty of life but light on the tingly/prickly sensation in the mouth. Finely bubbled and smooth in feel. Mild caramelly sweetness. Lingering char/smokiness after the swallow.

O - Nice beer though not memorable. I could easily drink more of this without complaint. It just doesn't stand out as something special. Somewhere between a porter and a black IPA - probably more black IPA. Very drinkable - scary to think this is an 8% beer - really doesn't make the alcohol presence known at all.

Photo of gueuzedreg
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A- Pitch black, translucent around the edges. Minimal lacing no legs.

S- Nice malty backbone, vanilla, toffee some dark fruit. Nice hop character. Def like this style

T- I am getting some vanilla, the malt backbone along with the big hop character.

M- Somewhat thick, perfect amount of carb

O- I love CCB. Great job again guys!

Photo of Kendo
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes following a FL vacation.

A: Poured from the bottle into a pint glass. Body is dark brown with a half-finger tan head.

S: Pleasant porter nose - chocolate malt and roasted malt.

T: Roasted barley malt, chocolate malt and piney hops at the finish. Touch of coffee but it's not overwhelming.

M: Medium in heft, good carbonation and overall feel.

O: Good stuff. I had a bunch of Cigar City beers while in FL and this was one of my favorites.

Photo of DMXLOX22
3.84/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a single of this brew at my local establishment, Civerta's Deli in Drexel Hill, PA. Let's see how this matches up. Heard a few good things about it. Worth a try.

Appearance: Pours a dark, robust, stout-like, but perfect for a porter color and has some lacing that follows down. Not too bad. Quite inviting.

Smell: Caramel aromas are the first noticeable flavors. Some coffee and slight chocolate scents are the second in line. Very quaint aroma of citrus-y flavors. Not too bad. Kind of uninspiring.

Taste: Dark roasted malts are definitely the first noticeable. Coffee is also a quite strong flavor that helps to bring in the malts and a slight flavor of citrus. Dark chocolate rounds out the flavor department. Kind of typical of from the looks of it. Good, rounded out, well-balanced flavors, but nothing that grasps.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a somewhat dry aftertaste. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Coming into this, I was really into it, but couldn't help but lose interest towards the end. Uninspiring like I said. Not a bad porter. Almost perfect introduction if your new to the category, but something I most likely wouldn't try again. Cheers!

Photo of woodychandler
3.69/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I just scored a bottle of this at The Fridge a couple of days ago and I am between IPA reviews right now, so I figured that this might make a nice bridge between Founders Centennial and Cigar City's Jai Alai White Oak Aged. We shall see.

From the bottle: "A grain of poetry suffices to season a century. - Jose Marti"; "I wish to leave the world/By its natural door:/In my tomb of green leaves/They are to carry me to die./Do not put me in the dark/To die like a traitor:/I am good, and like a good thing/I will die with my face to the sun[.] "A Morir [To Die] (1894)".

Wow, poetry incorporated with beer?!? I am both stunned and ecstatic! I have become immersed in poetry since becoming a high school English teacher over a decade ago, but usually Bukowski goes with beer.

My initial, heavy handed pour resulted in a pseudo-cascade which created three fingers od dense, deep-brown head with great retention. Color was a deep, dark-brown (SRM = 44) with garnet highlights. Nose smelled more of dark things - tar, charcoal, tobacco, dark chocolate, dried dark fruits, leather than of hops, but the proof of the pudding is in the tasting. My first sip filled my mouth with a big, thick dollop of dark chocolate pudding. No, I mean, beer, but it was like a Jell-O pudding cup and I thought about inviting Bill Cosby over to share this with him. It had a bitterness, to be sure, but it went more towards enhancing the coffee-like inherent bitterness than making it "American" in terms of its hops. I was reminded of the fact that I am not a fan of Black IPAs for almost the same reason. The dark malts get in the way of the hops, almost wasting the hops, as opposed to showcasing them. This was not quite as much of a turn-off for me, but I have also had Porters that I enjoyed much more. The finish was dry and bitter, but whether due to the malts, to the hops or a combination thereof, I could not discern. If they decide to CAN this beer, I will revisit it, but otherwise, this was a one-and-done.

Photo of rlee1390
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A-Black in the glass, clear brown when pouring. One finger off white head that leaves some lacing.

S-Roasted malt, chocolate, not much coffee or hop presence.

T-Roasted malt and chocolate, but the balance isn't exactly there. Slight coffee. Some hops that have an earthy tone.

M-Lighter to medium in body, a tad watery.

O-The beer isn't as fresh as it could have been, but still the balance wasn't were it should have been.

Photo of KYGunner
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Deepest and darkest of browns this poured a significant head with moderate thickness and decent retention.

The nose has nice character with Graham Cracker, tobacco, chocolate malt, and a a spicy pepper.

The flavor takes the nose and amps it up. Huge chocolate and Graham Cracker mixes with peppery capsaicin and a soft tobacco.

The feel is properly full but dry and the higher ABV is disguised by the capsaicin heat.

This has a ton of personality and originality and I found this to be yet again a triumph for CC.

Photo of seavercm
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Dark chocolate brown. Tan, creamy head that was somewhat thick but dissolved quickly.

Smell: A sweet combination of caramel, citrus hops and coffee. Every time I smelled it I picked up something different, which was also the case with the taste.

Taste: A rich malty caramel is quickly followed by citrus and hops. There was smoke, chocolate and some roasted/burnt notes. A lot going on here but it was very unique and balanced. Definitely not your typical porter.

Mouthfeel - Great carbonation, a little thick and sticky. Smooth and drinkable.

Overall: I'm actually not a fan of overly hoppy beers but really enjoyed this one. There are so many different flavors here yet its very enjoyable and quite drinkable. I really like how well the porter and hops played well together. Another solid outing from Cigar City.

Photo of ItsMe
4.14/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aggressively poured from a 12 oz bottle into the trusty ol' snifter.

Appearance - Two finger off white head that dissipates quickly into a thin ring of lacing. Nice alcohol legs sticking to the glass.

Smell - Huge roasted malts, lots of red wine, the earthiness of beets, and Oolong tea. The usual coffee/chocolate characteristics are in there somewhere, but not in the forefront.

Taste - HOPS! Nice bitterness upfront is met with a burnt/roasted malt characteristic. A nice coffee flavor near the back end with an almost smoky finish.

MF- Wow! This is my favorite part of this beer, in my humble opinion. It's so smooth and velvety. Medium body with a nice light carbonation.

Overall - This is my first offering from CCB and it did not disappoint. I feel like this would be the quintessential Porter for IPA fans.

Photo of JackMcAwesome
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Look: A dark bottle with that shiny CCB label I'm coming to know and love. Pours a solid black that shows very little light through the glass. The head, with a moderately aggressive pour, was fairly thin. The lacing is almost non-existent. I'm always a a fan of lacing, just because it looks awesome, but at the end of the day, meh, who cares.

Smell: A very woody smell. like it's been aged in a barrel. (For all I know, it has.) The usual suspects show up here, cocoa, coffee and the like. Also a bit of "greeness" to it as well. Perhaps the hops the claim have robustly filled it? The smell unfortunately fell off quite a bit after the pour, so I wasn't able to pick up much else, or enjoy what I initially picked up.

Taste: BAMM! This packed a lot of punch. Again, I'm getting the "aged in a barrel" taste. Wood is there to go along with a strong cocoa presence. There's definitely something else there, I will assume it's the hops. It's making for an interesting combo. I wish I was a bit more refined so I could pick it out, but this is very great!

Feel: Medium bodied, light on the carbonation. The ABV is hidden quite well, and there isn't any heat at all. Which I kind of prefer, but with the added bitterness to it, makes me think this would be a perfect summer porter.

Overall: Very impressed with this offering. I like most of the CCB stuff, and figured this would be top notch as well, but it really surprised me, and could very well be my favorite porter. It kills me there stuff isn't more available. C'mon CCB, step it up. I want to roll into a store and buy a six of this any time I want. Otherwise, I just go with someone else.

Photo of BubalooBrewMaster
3.27/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 22 ouncer

A:dark like an espresso bean.

S:espresso,toffee,hops.

T:pretty much the same as smell.

M:chewy but smooth.

O:Very nice spin on a porter.I've never had a porter that was so hop forward.I really like the toffe and hop flavor I'm getting.I would deff drink again and would recommend if you like porters and IPA's.

Photo of CaptCleveland
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Guest tap at Ft Pierce, FL, Sailfish brewing.

Dark brown to black elixir, tan head, thick lacing.

Caramel, molasses, chocolate, pine, earth.

Really comes through on the taste: smooth pine hops, mild char mixed with baker's chocolate.

Medium thick mouthfeel, smooth hop bitterness lingers, well carbonated.

Different take on the traditional porter I am accustomed to--GLBC's Eddy Fitz, but wonderful in its own right.

Photo of jdb288
3.44/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Pours dark brown with minimal tan head. Nice lacing. Aroma is pine needle, grass, chocolate.

Taste is bitter, resin, dark chocolate, burnt coffee. Long bitter finish. Lots of carbonation here. A unique porter for sure. I'd never had a porter that was so hop forward; wasn't bad but wasn't something I had expected.

Photo of itsscience
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Pours dark brown with two fingers of tan head that dissipates slowly.

Smell: Initially the smell is dominated by herbal hops, but chocolate comes through slightly. As the head goes down, the smells of chocolate and roasted malt come out along with a hint of coffee and vanilla.

Taste: Very earthy, reminiscent of a tea. The hop bitterness is met with chocolate and roasted malt notes to provide a unique and satisfying overall taste. Has a nice roasty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation. More carbonated than similarly dark porters or stouts that I've tried.

Overall: A distinctive beer to say the least, Jose Marti balances a big hop presence with big chocolate and roasty characteristics and against all odds makes it work seamlessly. It's a highly drinkable porter that hides its alcohol content well.

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José Martí American Porter from Cigar City Brewing
91 out of 100 based on 903 ratings.