Jai Alai IPA | Cigar City Brewing

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Jai Alai IPAJai Alai IPA
8,108 Ratings
Jai Alai IPAJai Alai IPA

Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Pours copper in color with notes of citrus and tropical fruit in the aroma. Flavor has upfront citrus bitterness with a hint of caramel and citrus and tropical fruit hop notes in the finish.

70 IBU

Added by cjgator3 on 12-05-2008

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 8,108 |  Reviews: 1,565
Photo of Dewsby
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

L) Pours a lovely honey amber with a creamy white head. Decent retention and great lacing.

S) The nose is floral, sweet, and sappy. You can get luscious light caramels and spicy citrus zest. It is balanced quite nicely and very inviting.

T) The taste is quite juicy and well balanced as well. Everything present in the nose is on the palate. It has a surprisingly dry finish although some resinous hop notes linger.

F) The brew is quite creamy for the style, and has a perfect medium carbonation. An absolute pleasure to sip.

O) A great six-pack ipa in general. I could knock back pints of this all day.

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Photo of 1800schoenzy
3.6/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of tvv375ia
4.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of gabestpete
4.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Chaoticwallaby
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Photo of novaarch2002
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jesusgorilla
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DW78715816
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

It pours a nice copper orange. It's smells of tropical fruit. Great aroma. Taste is citrus fruit, slightly sweet with a nice hope bitterness. A lot of hype around this IPA and it's very good. But the more I find these the more convinced I am that nothing beats solid local craft fresh off the tap and this can is dated 3/6 so it's fresh.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.92/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Look: orange, semi cloudy, dense head, good lacing. Aroma: passion fruit, mango, flower bed, those chalky heart candies from Valentine's Day. Taste: nice, sharp bitterness up front, passion fruit, grapefruit, mango, pineapple. Finish: dry with lingering bitterness. Mouthfeel: silky texture, lively carbonation. Comments: this is one of the best IPAs I've yet drank.

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Photo of qrazvan
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark-orange colour, cloudy, pouring with a nice head.
Fruity and herbal smell, with some honey on the back.
Tastes initially like sweet caramel with some fruits (peaches, apricots, grapefruit), with a bitter-dry finish. Honey and dried fruits, raisins in the aftertaste. A herbal-hoppy background can be felt during the complete tasting. The alcohol content is completely hidden.
Probably goes well with a spicy food, like recommended on the can.
Very good!

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Photo of AC-Mivsek
4.16/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of SoCal_Matt
4.18/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Can dated 03/01/2018. Pours a copper orange with a bit of white head. Aroma is mostly citrus fruits - tangerine, grapefruit, orange, slight tropical fruit. Taste is similar - dominated by orange, tangerine, grapefruit flesh, clementine. There's also a sweetness that gives it a dried orange slices/orange marmalade note as well. Notes of pine and resin as well but in the background of all the citrus flavors. Feel is slightly thick but I think near perfect for the style, which I would call classically West Coast. Overall, I was excited to see this on the shelf and I'm happy that Cigar City is now distributing to California. This beer definitely lives up to its reputation and I found it very enjoyable.

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Photo of J-Bob
2.55/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I must have gotten a bad can. I love IPA’s. I was very excited when I found this on the shelf. Anyway... not for me, which is surprising! I’m not going to get into the undertones as I only had 1 can and that wouldn’t be fair. Given the reputation, I will try it again someday.

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Photo of KevinOConnor16
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Snowcrash000
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly cloudy, deep amber coloration with a small. fizzy head. Smell is a pleasant mixture of caramel malts and citrus hops, with notes of orange rind, grapefruit and a strong pine aroma. Taste follows the nose, with a very nice balance of caramel, bready malt and resinous, citrus/tropical hops. Quite a resinous character, with notes of orange rind, grapefruit, tangerine and just a tiny hint of pineapple as well. Finishes with a medium/strong bitterness, lots of pine and a little booze. Smooth mouthfeel with a medium body and strong carbonation. This seems like the perfect marriage between and west and east coast IPA with its resinous character, piney bitterness, but also strong maltiness and citrus and slight tropical fruit notes. Probably even nicer when not 4 months old...

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Photo of BlackBeerPirate
3.92/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Taste: crisp, non bitter, balance blend of 6 hops that work together well, mellow clean finish. Fresh and mellow floral hop nose. Amber/gold hue, semi clear,tall foam head with partial ring lattice. Medium body. Easy drinker. 65 IBUs

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Photo of Academymike
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of brian__
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of WhackoMillah93
3.4/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Riik3
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of FishmongerJoe
3.86/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of GoochVa
4.06/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of tilt122
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Let me start by saying I live in Tampa so I am partial to this beer. It is literally at every store, every bar and every party you go to. People in Tampa love it. Joey Redner has created a brewery that everyone in the city is proud of. Damn good beer

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4.11/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

Cigar City Jai Alai

A: The flagship IPA and perhaps the best-known beer from Florida stalwarts Cigar City (except Hunahpu, maybe) pours a brilliantly clear darker orange, the color and clarity of IPAs past and out of vogue at this point. Two-and-a-half fingers of bone white head stick around forever, and the lacing left behind after every sip is also great. Of course, time has sort of passed this look by, but as with everything, a classic (almost) perfected never goes out of style. 4.75/5

A: Orange, grapefruit, orange peel, tangerine, clementine, and pineapple all leap out of the glass alongside an ample piney hop back bone, boht vying for superiority over a mat of sweet malts: caramel, simple syrup, and just general malted barley. The strength of the fruit notes eventually win out, but the greenery never surrenders, and a rindy bitterness even joins its ranks if one digs further. The yeast is certainly contributing some mild-to-moderate fruity esters as well. Alcohol is completely absent in the nose, which is an achievement at 7.5%. The malt is a bit too forward for most West Coast IPAs, perhaps Cigar City's nod to their East Coast location or the influence of classic East Coast IPAs like Dogfish Head 60 Minute and 90 minute. This is old-school, but it does fairly well within that template. 3.75/5

T: The West Coast character really comes out in the flavor with the piney, oniony, dank hops and their pithy allies decisively counterattacking. The tropical flavors that the beer's marketing and aroma evoke are subjugated almost entirely under a torrent of bitter blows. The flavors that do make it out somewhat unscathed are that orange peel, tangerine, clementine, and just a hint of pineapple. Sweet, bready, caramel malts bring balance and juiciness to the second half of the flavor profile. Pleasant biscuit tones, graham cracker, and yeasty dough add a nice depth of flavor. Orange marmalade on toast comes to mind as one steps back to take it all in as the dryness creeps in and takes over with only a citrus syrup stickiness left on the palate along with a little sweet, herbal tobacco. Here, it is evident what many saw in this beer when it was first released and gaining hype. 4.25/5

M: Perhaps it was intentionally ahead of its time, or perhaps it is just a happy coincidence, but the body comes off moderately full, not quite in the New England sense, but one can almost see the progression, intentional or not (maybe it is just the relatively high ABV for a single IPA). Bitterness and dryness are moderately high for a beer with such an obvious malt presence, but it never becomes overwhelming and never oversteps its bounds. The aforementioned stickiness is within the realm of acceptability. Alcohol is unnoticeable. Carbonation is soft, yet active, effervescent even, a brilliant touch. This is the best part of the beer. 4.75/5

O: Cigar City definitely built themselves up on the backs of Jai Alai and Hunahpu, but Jai Alai did (and continues to do) the heavy lifting in the trenches: the market, and it is not hard to see why: this is a friendly IPA with a little something for everyone. The balance is very good (though not as perfect as some greats in the style, namely Bells Two Hearted).. I enjoy the beer well enough, and I think it ticks almost all of the boxes that a beer of this style and a beer of its time should. That said, it really does not set itself apart all that much from, say, Sierra Nevada Torpedo, Bells Two Hearted, Deschutes Fresh Squeezed, and Ballast Point Sculpin, all of which are priced similarly or lower (save for Sculpin). The malt presence and the candied citrus peel/marmalade element are interesting, but is it enough? For me, no. I will buy this from time to time now that it is here, but ultimately, I will probably stick to Two Hearted or a local IPA for even my old-school itch-scratching. Pair with Silverstein's nostalgic comeback album, "Dead Reflection." 3.75/5

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Photo of Taterturnt
4.48/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
Beer rating: 4.28 out of 5 with 8,108 ratings