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José Martí India Porter - French Oak - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
José Martí India Porter - French OakJosé Martí India Porter - French Oak

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

54 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 54
Hads: 96
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 13.41%
Wants: 7
Gots: 28 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jsanford on 03-21-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 54 | Hads: 96
Photo of mothman
3.92/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Kevin for sharing this one.

Pours a tan head. Color is a caramel brown.

Aroma: A lot of oak. French oak to be specific. It is very dominate. A little chocolate and caramel. Warming.

Taste: Very unique. The French oak dominates this beer. A little bit of roast. Caramel and coffee.

Mouthfeel: Slight warming and a little roasty. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends dry.

Overall, good stuff, but a little overdose on the oak. Still, pretty drinkable and enjoyable. (494 characters)

Photo of phichifiji00
3.92/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: Dark brown/black. Pours one finger of tan head which quickly fades. Almost no lacing.

Smell: Oak, spices, cinnamon, cloves, tobacco, vanilla, leather.

Taste: Oak, malty, subtle spices, leather, vanilla, tobacco. A cigar aftertaste that is a bit overpowering, and offputting.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, smooth, moderate carbonation.

Overall: Very complex. The tobacco, oak, leather aromas/flavors work quite well together. A very drinkable beer. (483 characters)

Photo of KickInTheChalice
3.92/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

From notes. Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a tasting glass.

Like the base beer, French Oak José Martí has a rich, chocolatey appearance. The full and viscous body is topped by a smaller mocha head that fades over the course of the glass.

The aroma maintains the chocolate, roasted malt, and coffee notes, while the hoppy presence is a little bit reduced when compared to the base beer. In its stead, there is a modest woody oak presence.

Oak flavor overlays the rest of the flavors, but it does not dominate or dry the beer out too much. On occasion Cigar City wood treated beers have been too intensely woody or dry, but this is not the case. Dark chocolate, espresso and cream, and roasted malt are more noticeable on a relative basis, with the orange zest citrus and spicy pine playing more of a supporting role. There are some pepper and spice notes throughout that I also attribute to the oak aging. The finish is more mellow, less bitter than the base beer.

The body feels more solidly medium than the medium to full body of the base beer, and the carbonation is creamy and smooth, about the same. There are definitely some drying effects from the oak on the overall mouthfeel.

Overall I thought this was a nice treatment, although I liked it a little bit less than the original beer. (1,300 characters)

Photo of wscaffe
3.8/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a tulip

A - Dark brown almost black in color. One finger tan/beige head. Beer leaves a decent lacing on the glass.

S - Oak aromas coupled with some malt sweetness. I get some dark fruit, chocolate, and hints of vanilla as well.

T - Some chocolate. Get some pleasant burnt and roast notes as well from the oak. Some alcohol but it smooths out once the beer warms up. I get some dark fruit in the taste as well. Hints of chocolate, coffee, and vanilla as well.

M - Medium to heavy bodied. Fairly smooth with a good level of carbonation. A little heat from the alcohol.

Overall I think CCB did a good job with this beer. I would definitely cellar a bottle and let it mellow out. Glad I got to try it. Not the best oak aged beer I have had but far from the worse. (790 characters)

Photo of rdickey
3.8/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It’s a very deep, dark brown – almost black. A deliberately rough pour produces a smallish tan head featuring a mix of small and large bubbles, which dissipates pretty quickly.

Smell: Big licorice smell dominates the nose, joined with coffee and notes of chocolate and vanilla (presumably from the oak). The ABV comes through pretty clearly.

Taste: This one is really interesting on the palate due to the oak. The expected coffee and chocolate, presaged in the nose, hit first, although the oak and vanilla is also pretty damn prominent. Licorice comes back in for the finish, along with more bitter chocolate. I’m not sure I’d want every big porter to bring the wood like this one, but it’s definitely an enjoyable brew.

Mouthfeel: As you’d expect from the style, this is a pretty huge beer in the mouth.

Drinkability: The style, the ABV and the oak make this one a slow sipper. (907 characters)

Photo of rfgetz
3.8/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown, near black without light behind it and a wonderful cap of dense khaki colored creamy head - long lasting and good lacing. Scent leads with roasted grain and bitter cocoa powder before unleashing a big plume of oak, interesting notes of fragrant spice and dark fruit on the end. Taste quickly leads with heavily roasted, lightly charred grain, bitter cocoa and very quickly moves to a very heavily tannic and drying oak... almost like sucking on a unfinished oak plank. Taste changes directions a bit and brings it back to where light coffee notes, dark stone fruit, some earthiness and interesting spice profile (from the hops or additions?) can be found. Lighter side of medium bodied, very dry. The amount of oak involved on this screamed for a bigger flavor profile and heftier body... maybe the oak was best saved for a stout. Has some decent qualities and is interesting like everything else Cigar City does, but not a favorite. (953 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
3.8/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

After several months of relative nothing, finally a potentially good beer comes along in the Rare Beer of the Month Club. It pours a straight black-brown topped by a finger of tan foam. The nose comprises pine, roasted malts, oak, chocolate syrup, and light coffee. The taste holds notes of oak, pine, roasted malts, and bitter dark chocolate. The oak is quite present, presenting a nice foil for the more traditional porter qualities. It's a bit hard to get used to, though. The body is a straight medium, with a very light moderate carbonation, a smooth feel, and a dry finish. Overall, a very nice porter, one that took to the oak-aging rather nicely, if not quite perfectly. (723 characters)

Photo of Dope
3.72/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No bottle date that I can see. I got this through the Rare Beer club probably a year ago. I heard it was extremely oaky so I let it sit for a year.

A: Very dark brown pour. Enormous fluffy light brown head. Takes forever to fade away, leaving a nice island behind. Nice swath of lacing everywhere.

S: Smoke, roasted malt with some char and chocolate. Charred oak. Decent amount of anise.

T: Smoky up front with lots of meatiness too. A little char and chocolate. Intense wave of oak in the middle, like chewing a 2x4. Anise and smoked meat in the finish.

M: Medium bodied, smooth.

O: Hmph. Hopefully the oak has faded a bit with age but it's still very woody. It's also quite smoky with lots of meat. I was really reaching to get some roasted malt, it was mainly just smoked meat, oak, then more smoked meat. If you're a fan of beers like this you will probably love it. As for me I'm not a fan of smoked beers or intensely oaky beers either (see, Great Divide anniversary series). This was a little rough for me as a result. (1,031 characters)

Photo of LethalChickens
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a large Snifter. Light white/tan head with a nice oak aroma. First sip... A hole lot of OAK. It reminds me of the oak flavor from the White Oak Jai Alai. After getting half way through my pour I realized that the oak flavor was getting to be a bit much for me. Its def a solid beer but I don't think oak aged porters are my favorite style. Perhaps some bourbon soaked oak spirals would have been nice. (413 characters)

Photo of gford217
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle.

Pours very dark brown, darker than most potters, almost stout-like, with a big thick tan head which recedes pretty quickly.

Aroma is very good and definitely favors the oak which has some spiciness and a bit of vanilla. The roasted malts and coffee that I love in the regular version are not as prominent.

The taste is even heavier on the oak with a heavy spiciness and lots of oak character. The underlying beer is very tough to detect which is a bad thing for this one. Wish the taste had more porter character.

The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth with good carbonation, though it's definitely prickly with the barrel notes.

All in all, a good beer but definitely not as good as the base beer for me. (720 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours out a very dark brown body with a solid inch of tan-hued foam.

Smell: Well-roasted malts with a scent of bittersweet chocolate and an underlying chalky quality before the pronounced oak character hits you with its striking woodiness and accents of oregano and summer savory.

Taste: The roastiness and chocolate are carrying over from the aroma with a fast blip of curt sweetness, and, as expected from the nose, it's strongly oaky with a ripplingly blitz of accompanying tannins. Again, there're those peppery, savory aspects. Some small touches of char and smoke signal smoke are felt. Vague hint of vanilla. A belt of cold coffee, with more of the tannic oakiness on the dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. The mouthfeel, friends, is smooth.

Overall: José M is abundantly oak-induced without, thankfully, turning into a truly ganky mess, making for an overall interesting brew. (927 characters)

Photo of corby112
3.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to chefmonty for sharing. Poured into an Overlord approved Cigar City snifter.

Pours pitch black with faint mahogany edges and a half finger beige head that quickly settles into a lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Huge toasted oak aroma with a dominating charred wood presence with some roasted dark malts underneath. As the beer warms the maltnotes become more evident.

Medium bodied with a bery prominent dry oak presence that dominates the flavor, lingering into a bone dry finish. As the beer warms and the palate adjusts to all of the oak flavor, there is a nice roasts malt haracter hidden underneath. Hints of dark chocolate, roasted coffee bean, toast and oatmeal. ABV is well masked but this could be tough to drink for those who aren't into virgin oak beers. (788 characters)

Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle courtesy of blazer06. Into a Deschutes Snifter.

A: Pours a deep brown with 2 inches of tan colored head that doesn't want to go away. Incredibly dense head. Nice rings of lacing that are left behind as the head slowly recedes.

S: Interesting mix of wood, slightly burnt malts and caramel. Some decent notes of coffee and chocolate. Fresh cut wood really dominates the nose.

T: A lot like the base beer, with a huge charred oak presence. Still fairly hoppy with some citrus thrown in the mix. Decent amount of hop resins in here as well. Chocolatey and slightly roasty. All of this lies under a MASSIVE amount of wood. Oak flavors linger on the tongue forever after the swallow. If the oak was knocked back by about 40% it would be so much better.

M: Nice here, medium body with lower carbonation finish is mostly dry which is probably a result of the oak.

O: Just too oaky for my tastes. I like the oak to impart subtle woody characteristics, this just over does it, even more so than the Odell Woodcut beers. Glad I got to try it though! (1,061 characters)

Photo of kbutler1
3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Pours a reddish brown color with a tan head. Slight roast in the nose, along with tobacco, dark chocolate, and a slight woodiness that I can only attribute to the french oak spirals. Velvety medium mouthfeel. Nice smooth start that has flavors of oak, roast, dark chocolate, all culminating with a slight oaky bitterness. Medium mouthfeel. (347 characters)

Photo of illidurit
3.56/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared at the December iteration of the Santa Cruz tasting series. Pours dark brown with a fluffy khaki head. Fresh-cut wood/sawdust aroma, vague lime fruitiness, and dark chocolate. Biter chocolate flavor, well-married to a very prominent woodiness (cigar box/fireplace notes). Too much wood but not bad. (312 characters)

Photo of Ryan011235
3.53/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into something at Jackie O's on 8/27/11

Irresponsible Tick #6

Thanks Chris

Dark brown, but that's it. One finger head. Thin retention, but really good lace. Aroma - tangy, roasted coffee with overtones of lively oak; brighter than I'm accustomed to. Nice earthy hops. Ripe dark fruits. Earthy oak with a lot of dry spiciness. Roasted tones and a modest bitterness. Medium-full body. Puffy carbonation; not bad. Tangy roast and oak finish. Commanding beer. (465 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
3.45/5  rDev -3.6%

Had this one, 2011 bottle, at The Porter Bar in Atlanta on 11/23/14. I was pretty excited to get to try this. Pours black just like regular Jose Marti with a fluffy khaki head on top that sits around for a good bit. Lots of oak on the nose, light plastic smells, a bit strange, some weird spiciness, something almost like pine. Flavor follows with some faint chocolate tones, and a massive spicy oak flavor that just envelopes the entire palate, and not really in a good way. Very harsh here, and this thing is 3 years old. Medium bodied, maybe even on the thinner side, with medium carbonation. This was certainly a disappointment, but nonetheless very happy I got a chance to try it. Just too much wood here. (710 characters)

Photo of comfortablynumb1
3.36/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Big thanks to Andrew for the hookup on this one. Split with Dave and Casey...

Poured from a bomber into a RR snifter...

A - Pours black with a one finger light brown head. Head retention is decent and there is a good amount of sticky lacing to be had...

S - Wow, this one is definitely oak foward. Strong oak notes with a little vanilla in the background...

T - Like the nose, oak dominates here. Vanilla and a little chocolate also make an appearance, but oak comes through very strong, and is a little overwhelming. Not a bad tasting beer per se, but kind of one dimensional...

M - Mdium bodied with a moderate amount of carboantion, and an incredibly dry finish...

O - Way to much oak to be had here. Overpowers the base beer, and makes for a one dimensional oak bomb. First CC beer that has let me down...

Cheers... (826 characters)

Photo of billab914
3.36/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Rhettroactive for sharing this one. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a tasting glass. It poured black in color thick foamy head. Pretty nice looking beer of the style.

The aroma has a pretty bold, woody oak presence to it. It mixes with some sweeter cocoa and a little hoppiness as well. The French oak seems to dominate a little too much though making it seem too one dimensional.

The taste also shows a lot of the woody oak to it, especially in the finish. A little more sweeter caramel and chocolate to it along with some hoppy, herbal bitterness. Again, the woody oak just seems to dominate it a little too much.

The mouthfeel feels a little thin for the style with moderate carbonation. Overall, it was a decent but not great beer. It felt one dimensional with the oak being the dominant flavor. The oak just didn't compliment it all that well. (858 characters)

Photo of byteme94
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle I picked up from the brewery at the barrel aged hunahpu release. Thinner in viscosity with a finger of light creamy head which disappeared rather quickly. Drank smooth with roasty hops and a burnt carmely malt. Hides the 8 percent alcohol and finishes very oaky.

Doesn't seem like a rather complex beer but reveals more oak than most. Looking for a nice beer with alot of oak on the end this is your beer. Would drink again when wanting something oaky, but not to show off to a friend. Solid B (516 characters)

Photo of Florida9
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Very dark brown, almost black. Forms a dark tan head that eventually reduces down to a thick ring around the edges.

S: Woodsy. Lots of oak. A little coffee and some roasted malts.

T: Wood and lots of it. Tastes like sucking on a piece of furniture (thankfully no varnish, though). Flavor is odd, lightly sweet, not necessarily good. Some coffee and some chocolate, but my god, the strong oak flavor just overpowers everything. Tannic bitterness.

M: Fuller bodied and dry. Appropriate carbonation.

O: Sometimes subtlety and moderation can be appreciated characteristics. However, this beer does not offer either. It is quite in-your-face with the French oak, much more so than I cared for. Jose Marti is a fine beer, but the wood is just too much. (756 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
3.23/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

8/12/2011

Thanks to Jason and Sean for bringing this.

A: Black with a fizzy light brown head.

S: Lots of oak with lots of chocolate. Lightly smoky with a restrained char and a touch of booze. 

T: Dark chocolate with a strong oak presence. Malt has an upper moderate roasted quality. Bitterness is at a moderate level. Tons of oak. Super dry oaken chocolate finish. Did I mention there's a lot of oak?

M: Full body with upper moderate carbonation. 

Overall: More oak than is desirable. A few ounces is more than sufficient. (530 characters)

Photo of WastingFreetime
3.22/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from tasting notes.

Poured out a dark brown with two cm of tan head on top that lasts for about a minute and a half, minimal lacing.

Smells of garam masala, dark chocolate, black coffee, charred malt, and a touch of licorice.

Tastes of bitter tannic oak, combined with a splash of acidic soy sauce over the typical porter chocolate /coffee. In some ways, the oak wood is almost like a hopping substitute. In other ways, the oak wood is a completely overwhelming force that drowns out many of the other subtle flavors that probably would have existed if the wood wasn't there.

In summary, this one has a bit TOO much wood. Because it has gotten to the point where it is obvious that the wooden flavor is obscuring some of the more delicate nuances of a beer's flavor.

Cellaring note edit : I've come back to this after cellaring at basement temp for a year and it improves dramatically, I'd say to about a 4.25. Tastes are subjective, YMMV, however. (963 characters)

Photo of Knapp85
3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured out looking much like the regular version, the beer is very dark in color with a creamy looking tan head on top. The retention is thin but hold up nicely, the lacing is also sticky on the glass. The smell of the beer is loaded with French Oak, in all honestly that is all I get on the nose. The taste goes with the flavor... I taste all french oak and nothing else. The mouthfeel is a bit sharp on the carbonation, making this beer a bit on the dry side and it stings to drink. Overall this was a bit of a disappointment, had much higher hopes for this one and was let down. (581 characters)

Photo of Reagan1984
3/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Big thanks to Chris S. a co-worker of mine from Tampa for picking this up for me. It was one of the advertised stars at a recent Stout/Porter tasting. While it was a little disappointing in it’s flavor and overall appeal, we were still happy to have had the opportunity to try it.

Nothing of real note to point out in it’s visual appeal. More dull in finish vs. having a sheen. Dark with a thick head that showed good retention, but didn’t leave much lace.

Aroma is the first hint of the flaw here. And by flaw I do not mean the beer was defective in any fashion, it was not. Just vs. my preference, and frankly the others in the group. Wood was the main note in the aroma. Other standard Porter notes here, but it was all about what I’ll refer to as “raw” wood. Almost saw dust like.

Flavor sadly followed the aroma. THe overwhelming note here was from the oak spirals. Tons of woody notes that were not well rounded and didn’t mix well with the roasted notes. Almost wanted to add a touch of corn syrup to my glass to add some sweetness to balance the raw notes from the wood.

Frankly was not a fan. This is the 2nd or third Cigar City selection where this was an issue for me. I suppose others like the total wood character, but I just don’t . It should add complexity and bring out new notes, but it should not be about sucking on a piece of wood. (1,371 characters)

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José Martí India Porter - French Oak from Cigar City Brewing
82 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.