Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

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.

54 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 54
Hads: 96
Avg: 3.56
pDev: 19.66%
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
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 54 | Hads: 96
Photo of kbutler1
3.58/5  rDev +0.6%
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 byteme94
3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
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 gford217
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
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 SFLpunk
2.64/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to cmrillo for this hook-up! 750mL brown glass pry-top.

Pours a deep black with thick fluffy tan head. Nose is dominated by coffee with cream and an odd woody/earthy/dry leaves note. Palate is medium-bodied and pleasantly acidic like a porter should be. Oddly dry and a little burnt tasting. Or like wet charcoal embers.

Notes: I really really enjoy the regular Jose Marti...but I think this was a poor execution. There's burnt flavors and plastic flavors.

 466 characters

Photo of babaracas
4.07/5  rDev +14.3%
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 adam42381
2.8/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from an 750ml bottle into a Cigar City snifter globe.

Appearance: Pours a dark cola brown with a 1 finger bubbly dark tan head. Nice head retention and lacing.

Smell: Sweet roasted malt, vanilla and French oak.

Taste: Very dark roasted malt and a touch of whiskey up front followed by very strong woody notes and the flavor of what I would imagine black tar would taste like in the middle before ending with espresso and bitterness at the finish. Aftertaste is very woody and bitter. Not really enjoyable for me.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. The tannins really dry out the mouth.

Drinkability: Low drinkability. I wouldn't want another glass.

Overall: Below average beer overall. I definitely prefer the original Jose Marti. It's the least drinkable CCB beer I've tried. I can't recommend this one especially since it was $20 for the bottle at CCB this weekend. I feel a little shortchanged.

 938 characters

Photo of lackenhauser
4/5  rDev +12.4%
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 ElmerBruisery
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at the tasting room probably about a month ago. Poured into my CC snifter

Very dark brown with light brown creamy head that slowly fades leaving solid lacing. Looks great. 

Nose is an excellent blend of dark chocolate espresso and oaky vanillin. with warming the oak starts to take over.

The first sip starts with a burst of espresso beans quickly becomes smooth chocolate with a hint of oak in the finish. Reminds me of chewing on a bitter chocolate covered espresso bean. As it warms the French oak becomes much more prominent and some slight funky acidity as it hits the tongue. 

The body is thick but slighlty oily; thinner than the bold flavors with moderator carbonation.

Overall this is an excellent Porter and the oak is adds a great new dimension. The oak spirals seem to create more of a "harsh" oak flavor than a barrel, but this is not a flaw. The richness and robustness of the porter can handle the oak spirals and create an extra flavor dimension that is very enjoyable.  I bet this will become even better with some age. If only I had more.

 1,080 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.15/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

dark brown in color with no light cracking through this one at all. A smallish head, maybe a half an inch in height coming up over the top, never really did fade away as it kept that nice layer there throughout the session.

The aroma was just rife with whiskey and oak. roasted malts and chocolate like notes hiding right under its surface. Letting it warm really let the oak and vanilla start to become dominant, and a hint of alcohol started to present itself in the back end. The flavor was more of the same, rich, full bodied, I would have swore this was a stout in a blind tasting, but no, this indeed was apparently a robust porter. Luscious, velvet like feel in the carbonation never gave way. The flavor started with that warm influx of vanilla and whiskey, lots of caramelized malts and a light roasted or smoky note to it. This then rolled over with nice touches of chocolate rippling throughout

 907 characters

Photo of Phelps
3.92/5  rDev +10.1%
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 Reagan1984
3/5  rDev -15.7%
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

Photo of Patrick999
4.18/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the 750ml bottle, I pour this dark brown liquid into my trusty snifter. Good pour - dark but not quite opaque. Solid foam retention - carbonation looks pretty near perfect.

My first impression sniffing this was "hops" rather than oak or roastiness, not unlike a Black IPA aroma. Brief impression, though, as there's more than that, thankfully. With just a little warming, it overwhelmingly turns to vanilla from the oak - oh yeah, definitely a super-oaky beer. I would probably guess American Oak, but French Oak it is. Those spirals have done their work for sure.

Somehow I wasn't expecting this to be as breezy a drink as it is. I have been critical of some CCB beers in the past for being too boozy, but 8% this one seems to have it spot-on, almost drinking like a 6% porter. Oh, it's oaked to hell and back, sure - so if that's not your thing I'd probably pass on this one. Lot of vanilla and a dry, flinty pine bitterness reminding you that underneath all the wood, this is a pretty hoppy porter.

If I'm throwing minor criticisms, I could actually do with it being less hoppy...so I'm probably going to sit on my other bottle for a few months.

 1,159 characters

Photo of rdickey
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
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 HopHead84
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


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 LethalChickens
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
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 Hex92
3.99/5  rDev +12.1%
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 rfgetz
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
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 ottovon
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to phelps for sharing this.

A: a dark ruby, brown with a brown head. left some lacing.

S: nice aromas of dark chocolate, cocoa nibs, and smoke. i get some burnt sugar, roasted malt, and vanilla and oak. there is some sweetness in the aroma as well.

T: a nice mix of sweetness and roasty bitterness. a lot of the aroma comes through. dark chocolate, smoke, and roasted malt. there is some malty sweetness at the front, and then it finishes bitter with flavors of coffee, dark chocolate, and burnt malts. there is some toffee, oak, and vanilla notes.

M: medium-thin with decent carb.

O: this is a great beer. easy drinker, and very delicious.

 657 characters

Photo of wscaffe
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
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 metter98
4.05/5  rDev +13.8%
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 palma
4.35/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

awesome porter here. great bittersweet chocolate flavor. mild coffee notes. robust yet not too strong of a roasted taste. barrel ageing adds layers of oak and wine flavor that is subtle. not way strong a beer but still packs a punch with a cautionable abv at 8% and a lot of complex flavors. extremely smooth with a full mouthfeel. an excellent complex porter that is very unique yet very approachable. one of the best new style porters out there.

 447 characters

Photo of Florida9
3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
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 ChainGangGuy
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
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 ShanePB
3.98/5  rDev +11.8%
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 FosterJM
4.03/5  rDev +13.2%
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

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