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

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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 54 | Hads: 96
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 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 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 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 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 Phelps
3.92/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip.

Dark opaque brown, with amber highlights and a fuzzy one-finger head of tan. A thin, silky layer remains, along with sticky tendrils of lace.

The nose: smoky dark chocolate and a large campfire built of vinous French oak. Woodsy, with lots of piney hops.

The flavor begins with tang, cocoa nibs and anise. After the swallow, oak gives way to smoke, which gives way to bitter dark chocolate in a day-long finish. Hints of vanilla peek out as well.

Kind of thin, medium-light body, peppered with active, large-bubbled carbonation and just a hint of fizz. There’s not even a hint of alcohol and some pretty burly bitterness, brought by the sum of bitter chocolate plus hops.

As I make my way through the glass, this beer gets better and better. A nice, smoky blend, with lots of subtle flavors to mull over. Drink it by itself, as food masks the fainter stuff. (889 characters)

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 maximum12
3.97/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Like a broken record (that's really good), this is a long-distance dedication (thanks) to moose3285 (in my best Casey Kasem voice).

Poured into a pair of lovely Cigar City glasses we picked up at the brewery two winters ago. Dark brown that may as well be black, with plenty of bubbles. Smell is a dwarven warhammer of oak to the sinuses; like walking through the doors of an oak desk factory. Bits of malt & smoke peek through the raw wood.

Jose Marti Aged on Oak Spirals is more oak than beer. Wow. Oak strips the taste buds, drying them out in a single motion, leaving splinters in my tongue. After shaking off the two-by-four blow, there's chocolate underneath, good amount of bitterness (seems like hops?) married to hard roast. Tannic! Drier than an oak bonfire. Weirdly appealing, I'm drinking mine at a rather rapid rate. I've always liked wood. Living, dead, drinking it, whatever.

Certainly unique, I can't recall another beer with this much oak in it; I can see how it would be overwhelming. Ultimately, a very good beer, but the split decision is completely understandable. (1,091 characters)

Photo of ShanePB
3.98/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle acquired from the Rare Beer Club. Cigar City's José Martí aged on French Oak Spirals. Very intriguing and if there is one brewery who has master spiral aging, Cigar City would be it. Split with my girlfriend, poured into two snifter glasses.

A: Deep dark brown, almost black, opaque body. A creamy, frothy and bubbly tan head sits atop. There is a great amount of retention all over the surface and around the edges, as well as patches of lacing on the walls.

S: Oak wood, bourbon, cherry, vanilla, chocolate, black bitter coffee beans. A certain sweetness is present throughout the entire aroma that I can't quite put my finger on. I attribute that to the Oak Spirals but it truly does absolute wonders for the nose.

T: Roasted oak wood, very rich and big mocha and espresso notes. These are dominating at first and last well through the entire palate hurdles. A slight alcohol note is detected in the linger as well as finishing a touch hot but very flavorful. It's sweet and fruity, though no tartness which can come sometimes with a port-like quality. Very diverse flavor profile that is executed extremely well.

M: Carbonated but not overly so. It feels thinner, on the lower end of a medium-bodied beer but appropriate for the style. This drinks very smooth even with the active carbonation. An absolute easy drinking beer even for it's caliber of ABV.

I've never had the regular José Martí but this version aged on French Oak Spirals is truly unique and delicious. The fruity qualities that come through on both the nose and palate are enough to set this apart from other American Porters. The oak adds a very nice complexity that perhaps would otherwise be absent. (1,695 characters)

Photo of Hex92
3.99/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Smells amazing when you first pour it. Smells like chocolate and coffee, as it warms that smell changes to mainly hops.

Very hoppy flavor, but not too much. Mouth feel is a little thin.

I am interested to see how it changes after aging for a year or so. (255 characters)

Photo of thagr81us
4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from bottle into a Bell's stemmed tulip. Poured a massively dark brown with a one finger tan head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of roasted malt, sawdust, Lowes, and cedar. The flavor was of sweet malt, roasted malt, wood, and alcohol. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a decent brew. I can honestly tell you to go to the Lowe's/Home Depot lumber section and get a good smell so you can remember. Then go smell this beer. They smelled the exact same to me and I was not the only other person who thought this either. CCB definitely made sure that you knew this brew had seen some wood action in its making. Luckily it did not taste like Lowe's/Home Depot. The wood flavor was definitely present, but not overwhelming as it was in the flavor. The nice roastiness going on in this one really seemed to help carry the brew to a new level. A definite must try if you get the chance or just like the smell of lumber. (1,041 characters)

Photo of lackenhauser
4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep, deep brown in color-nice sized cocoa head on top. Nice espresso and chocolate aroma-not much oak in there. Flavor is of espresso and dark chocolate. Some oak and vanilla come thru as it warms though it is really in the backround on this one. Nice dry cocoa flavor. Smooth and somehwhat creamy body. Very pleasant and drinkable all in. (340 characters)

Photo of FosterJM
4.03/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

675th Review on BA
Bottle to Flute
750 ML

App- A dark dark brown. A lot darker than Bolita and had about the same head. Nice cling and some sheety lace.

Smell- A classic porter smell but not as thin. Dark roasts, a little coffee, some booze, some vanilla.

Taste- In the forefront is a very strong porter with the above nose taking over on the taste. On the backend you get a unique little treat from the barreling of this beer. The roast and chocolate are most upfront with a small vanilla.

Mouth- Medium bodied and medium carbonated. A little bit of the chocolate and oak flavors remain. A little dry.

Drink- This was a unique take on a very classic style. The French barrels really added a new dimension to this tasty beer. This was only my second CCB and it just happened to be a very unique one. (806 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.03/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A rocky beige head caps the fudge brown-colored liquid and delivers an impressive lacing performance

Smell: Strong, oaky aromas underpin black bread, coffee, chocolate and vanilla

Taste: Black bread and molasses, up front, with the coffee, chocolate, vanilla and oak flavors building through the middle; after the swallow, however, the oak dominates though pithy hops also enter the profile; rather tannic in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Although the oak is powerful in this beer, there are a lot of other flavors present and I was rather pleased with the outcome (619 characters)

Photo of metter98
4.05/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is very dark amber (near black) in color and poured with a finger high beige head that has good retention properties and consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: There are strong aromas of chocolate, coffee, oak and roasted malts in the nose along with some hints of vanilla.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste is very complex (due to the barrel aging) with flavors of chocolate and mocha along with notes of vanilla and hints of licorice.
M: It feels relatively full-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of dryness, which is most apparent in the finish.
O: The oak aging definitely adds an interesting level of complexity to this beer, which makes it a nice one to sip and savor. (767 characters)

Photo of babaracas
4.07/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy very dark brown with two finger thick dense khaki head, settles to a quarter inch leaving a sheet down the glass. Smell: mild roast, a little plum, powdery chocolate, quite oaky, earthy hopping, hint of vanilla. Taste: moderate roast, bitter chocolate, plum skin, earthy and slightly citric hopping (toned down vs. the base beer), vanilla. Very nice but the finish is a bit dry and oaky for me. Stamped July 06 2011. (429 characters)

Photo of chugalug06
4.13/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2010

Huge frothy milk chocolate colored head. Brew is pretty dense for a porter. Great lacing

Lots of subtle leather and smoke. Caramely vanilla, tobacco, leather, only thing that detracts is the camp fire aroma.

Definitely loads of vanilla spice. Chewy, robust and deep. Carbonation starts high and has a smooth even finish. Bitterness is spot on, dry, true, earthy. Heat is non-existent.

Something to chew on. Definitely recommended with some time on it. Can't imagine what it's like fresh...intense. (508 characters)

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
José Martí India Porter - French Oak from Cigar City Brewing
82 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.