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Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Cigar City BrewingCigar City Brewing
BEER AVG
3.94/5
Based on:
322 Beers
8,069 Reviews
Place Score: 100
Reviews: 193
Visits: 596
rAvg: 4.52
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: --
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar ]

3924 W Spruce St
Ste A
Tampa, Florida, 33607-2441
United States
phone: (813) 348-6363

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @cigarcitybeer

Notes:  Master Beer Listing
Place added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-26-2008

No notes at this time.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 193 | Visits: 596
Reviews by blackcoyote13:
Photo of blackcoyote13
4.16/5  rDev -8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

This was my second time at the brewery, with the first being about 2 years ago. I remember a good selection of draft beers back then, along with some very tasty brews on tap (110k+OT, Zhukov's, etc), friendly staff and an open atmosphere and good prices. Things have since changed.

Firstly, Cigar City has expanded a LOT since my first visit. There is an entirely new tasting room, with no less than 24 different beers on tap. Regular offerings, Marshal Zhukov's, nitro stouts with coffee, sours, strange flavors, you name it and they have something for you to try. Talk about variety to choose from! The original room is now primary a retail area and growler filling station, with a few coolers of bottles to pick through. There is a gentleman from Cuba who sits at a station and hand-wraps cigars from imported tobacco leaves, which are taken for aging and then displayed and sold in the tasting room (a synergistic marketing partnership I would say). The tour guide was excellent and had some candid thoughts on the brewery's history, line of thinking, etc. Samples on the tour were generous and it was extremely affordable (~$5), as is most everything in the tasting room. I did have to sit through a list of how many awards they had won and a bit of bitter rumination from the guide about the beers that beat them out in certain competitions. Not fans of losing an award really it seems. I did have the opportunity to meet the owner who was popping open a 4-pk of The Alchemist's Heady Topper in the tasting room. Joey seemed like a nice enough guy and a half glass was happily shared (even when a sip is all that was requested) so I tip my cap to Joey for keeping the "beer is for sharing" philosophy alive, even when its the #1 BA rated beer at stake. What I am noticing though is that, despite saturation issues with product volume in FL, there are other developments with this brewery that mirror the craft beer "black market" snobbery that is so distasteful these days. I also noted some MASSIVE swings in the quality of the brews that Cigar City is putting out, from the fantastic, wooden delight White Oak Jai Alai to the ash tray and cedar pond water that they tapped on cask called a Humidor Marshal Zhukov's. They are pushing the boundaries of beer for sure, but they do not seem to know when to say uncle and toss something that tastes nasty either. I will leave the tasting notes to the beer reviews though.

I guess with success in the craft beer industry comes a bit of nose lifting too. Cigar City keeps a stock of items which are not for sale to the general public until the Catador's have had their share and only if there is anything left over. This is perfectly legit. However, how they handle inquiring minds who are interested in their more esoteric brews says a lot about your brewery too, especially when you have to turn folks down. It is better customer service not to set out a bunch of items in full display to all customers and then to explain that they dont qualify to purchase these items on display. A bit more tactful to seperate these from the retail shop displays, but this is minor. On my last trip by before leaving town, I dropped by to pick up a bottle of the Forgotten Island quad (aged in Rum barrels), of which there were 18-20 left for sale in the fridge earlier in the day (and had been that way all week). I asked if they had any bottles left and was told that the last bottle had been sold today, which is believable I guess, until you see four to five cases of the bottles sitting behind the counter, some of which are sweating from having been pulled from the fridge to make room for the less popular Gentleman's Club co-op with Widmer that was being loaded earlier that day by an employee. When I inquired about those bottles, there was a bit of a snarky "we have no more for sale" reply, and that was the end of that. Several bottles of the 2013 batch of 110k+OT were visibly sitting around, although the bartender/growler filler lady was happy to inform me that all 110k+OT was sold out to Catadors within 20 minutes of release this year and that all of the bottles had been picked up already. I pointed out the four bottles in question and the bartender promptly retrieved them and placed them under the bar. My experiences were at times similar in the tasting room, with Catadors coming in to brag about the beer they had which was being traded to get other brews or sold for massive profits, without any signs of discomfort from the staff. Lots of younger folks coming in with the an air of importance and lots of friends to brag about their "CCB" conquests too. All in all, I was disappointed that the craft beer industry pretention seems to be soaking in to the staff and also the crowd with this brewery, even if the head honcho does not seem to be too caught onto it. Make no mistake though, the brewery is no slouch and their creativity does result in some incredible beers. (4,938 characters)

More User Reviews:
Photo of NickySop
4.49/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

Photo of jrs3994243
4.51/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of schroeder1200
4.88/5  rDev +8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of biggggant
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of davidanastas
4.63/5  rDev +2.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75

Photo of mtvolkens
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This place is awesome. (22 characters)

Photo of razorsdescent
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This place is a legend for a reason, and yes, they now sell cigars. (67 characters)

Photo of shelt11
4.67/5  rDev +3.3%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Such a cool place. I would recommend to anyone in the area. Very large building, tours by the hour, multiple areas to get beer, crowlers readily available, etc. Impressed! (171 characters)

Photo of YodersBeerEmporium
4.65/5  rDev +2.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of tarheels4life23
4.13/5  rDev -8.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

Photo of RonRygs
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of CTAdams
4.57/5  rDev +1.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of lexgoblue
4.6/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Cool place and friendly staff! (30 characters)

Photo of The_Snow_Bird
4.88/5  rDev +8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

This place seems like a pretty cool hang out spot. As soon as you walk in there are coolers full of bottles and 6 pack can for sale. Then there is the growler fill up station, with a large selection to choose from. Past the merchandise area is the main bar, with an even bigger selection at good prices. The staff was quick and was really knowledgeable about their product. (373 characters)

Photo of TrapJaw77
4.36/5  rDev -3.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Photo of Jason_cs
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of cristhre3floyd
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of Valentno7
4.87/5  rDev +7.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of twonder23
5/5  rDev +10.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Photo of Bv590
4.53/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5

Photo of johnwkraft
4.86/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Photo of Gandingo
4.45/5  rDev -1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5

Photo of ArchimedesSox
4.8/5  rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

V: Really informal, parking lot was really empty, showed up at 11:03 for the 11:00 tour. Walked into the tap room and bartender sent me into the area where tours start. Guide was hanging out talking with others before tour started. Allowed me to take my kids along and see the tour.

Q: You can tell quality is what their after. They are a rapidly expanding brewery trying to keep up with the demand for their excellent beer. Tour guide explained that the 15 barrel, tanks in the tour room are the old tanks that were originally used to brew their beer but they have upgraded to larger 30 barrel tanks and put in the newly expanded area. Smaller tanks are now used for smaller batches and used in the tour room so patrons can see the beer being made.

S: Everyone here are very friendly and we loved the tour. As soon as I walked in the bartender was very helpful and said there would be no problem taking my kids along on the tour. We were in Tampa on vacation and this was on my must do list, so we picked a rainy day to leave the beach behind to do the tour and hit the aquarium. Tour guide was excellent and even though this was only his second tour, he was really beer savy and was able to give a wonderful tour. I know the tours will only get better with experience.

S: I have tried all of there widely available beers and was eager to try something new. I was fed a steady diet of their flagship Jai Alai while on the tour but also sampled their Patio Pils at the end. In the taproom the selection was great. Lots of their beers available and I left with a bomber of their latest release, two regular joes imperial stout and a crowler of a really excellent chocolate pumpkin ale called seasonal creep from the tap room. (1,750 characters)

Photo of CHickman
4.59/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

I did not take the tour, spending time in the really nice tasting room/bar. There are 2 bars, the one up front for drinking and growler fills and then one in the back with a bigger selection in the "bar" area. The place has TV's with sports on and the feel of a local tavern.

Very welcoming and relaxed environment with a knowledgeable bartender who was equally attentive, it was an ideal craft beer setting. Cigar City made this place right. It's a craft beer destination and not just a bar; it has the 2 bars where you can get growler fills, fridges to buy 6 packs or single bombers, a gift shop, and electronic beer menus above the bar that tell the basics of each brew and which are available for growler fills and those that are brewpub exclusives. Best feature was the iPad/tablet that had the beer list which the bartender would bring over to discuss with you before offering samples. World class set up. (912 characters)

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Cigar City Brewing in Tampa, FL
100 out of 100 based on 193 ratings.