Jai Alai IPA | Cigar City Brewing

7,622 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

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Reviews: 1,448 | Ratings: 7,622
Photo of LeeryLeprechaun
4.34/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer pours a cloudy orange color with a nice sticky white head.

Aroma is mostly of citrus and grapefruit. Very clean in the aroma with little pine, resin, or grass. Nice floral balance to the nose which really lets the citrus notes shine through.

Solid malt body with really helps to balance the beer. It is dry in the finish but not overly bitter, yet still hoppy. No lingering bite.

Mouthfeel is full and medium in body.

This is a great IPA, really debuts what the aroma of an IPA can be. Nice floral and citurs notes, very smooth for 7.5%.

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

Thanks Jayhoop!

Appearance. Pours a hazy gold-amber with half a finger of white head.

Smell. Bitter citrus rinds, some pale malts and floral hops.

Taste. Nice bitter citrus rinds and sweet citrus fruits. A little tropical fruit as well, papaya and pineapples with a nice, somewhat mild bitter citrus rind finish.

Mouthfeel. Medium+ body, below medium carboantion.

Overall. Very nice ipa with well balanced hoppy flavours.

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Photo of ckollias
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this 12oz bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours a copper-orange hue with a thick, frothy, 3-finger, white head that slowly dissipates leaving a nice trail down the slide of the glass and ends in a wispy lace.

S: Strong malty hoppy aroma with some mild citrus and pine hints.

T: Hoppy bitterness meets a caramel sweetness. Hop flavor is dominant but there is a good malt biscuity mix.

M: Very strong and boozy. Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Awesome IPA. Amazing hop and malt character.

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Photo of Etan
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz extra sent by Willcarrera. Thanks! As far as I can tell this was bottled 12 days ago.

A: Pours a darkish orange wit a decent white head.

S: Apricot, pineapple, some caramel malt notes.

T: Plenty of orange and mango, a bit raisiny even. Hefty malt character gives a little dough and butter.

M: Light-bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: A very juicy IPA, could benefit from a bit more dryness but I like the fruity notes coming out of this one.

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Photo of jegross2
3.5/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewing the Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing out of Tampa, Florida.
Score: 84

Bottle is from the 238th day of 2012 (08/26/12), won in a fantasy baseball BIF. Served in a Founders tulip glass and enjoyed on 10/15/12.

Appearance: Pours a dark copper color with a light flurry of finely ground floaties at the bottom. Three full fingers of foamy tan head at pour settles to a thick ring around the glass and big clumpy island of head in the middle surrounded by a moat of beer. Good lacing, retention and legs. 3.5/5

Smell: Tons of grapefruit and orange upfront. On the "back end" of the aroma is a slightly syrupy pineapple juice aroma -- you know, the cheap kind you make those store-bought frozen "just add juice" Jamba Juice smoothies with? That smell. Sweet caramel and pine too. The nose is surprisingly "syrupy sweet" for an IPA. 3.5/5

Taste: Tons of bitter caramel and pineapple flavor present here. The pineapple flavor tastes just like it smells and lingers after the swallow. There's a touch of orange too, but it's mostly caramel and pineapple flavor here -- though it's not what I would call a "malty" beer. There is a nice and smooth bittersweet balance that lends this beer a lot of drinkability. 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-light bodied, low carbonation. Very oily and juicy. Bittersweet. 3.5/5

Overall: Solid, but nothing spectacular. I imagine this one is better fresher. Oh well.

Recommendation: I'd order it on tap, but I would not seek it out again. Would make a good starter IPA for more casual beer drinkers given it's balanced flavors, not in-your-face hoppiness and smooth drinkability.

Pairings: Pretzels and cheese dip.

Cost: $12 for a six pack.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.02/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a hazy deep orange with a small white cao which fades leaving a small dose of white bubbles and light lacing

S: Tropical fruits, mainly pineapple and some citrus.

T: Initial pineapple/tropical fruit, light grapefruit and ornage peel transitions into a subtle hop bite on a light caramel backbone. The finish lends a slightly dry finish with a bit of grass.

M: Medium bodied, well carbonated, tropical fruits, citrus and lingering light biterness

O: Well done.

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Photo of davey101
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz can into a shaped pint glass. First Run, October 04, 2012 making it one week old. Thanks to robinsmv for the cans!!!

A - Clear dark amber body. Super dense off white head with sticky lacing and lasting retention. Right up there appearance wise with the best of them.

S - Dank and resinous hops with some pine and light tropical notes. Just a touch of onions. Caramel heavy malts balance the beer out.

T - Dank hops initially with a creamy resinous pine flavor. The finish is fresh grapefruit and caramel malts. The citrus on the end really works well off of the huge dank hops. Bitterness is lasting but moderate. Balance, balance, balance! Mouth feel is slick and syrupy.

O - Very well made IPA. Great balance between the caramel malts and dank and grapefruit hops.

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Photo of cfrances33
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can thanks to robinsmv. Canned on 8/04/12 (first can date!!). Poured into a teku.

Pour: Clear deep orange with three fingers of super sticky, foamy off white head. Leaves insane lacing, and head sticks around for a while.

Smell: Dank hops with quite a bloom of pine, floral notes, and grapefruit. A nice caramel sweetness in the back lets you know this will be a balanced IPA

Taste: Up front with a nice caramel sweetness that get completely washed over by dank, resinous hops and citrus. Finishes sticky sweet caramel and pine bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Nice bitterness, and very sticky.

Overall: A delicious IPA. Huge thanks to Matt for getting me some more of this beer.!

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Have had this from the can and the bottle. Pours a slightly hazy orange color with a creamy white head on top. Aroma is huge mango and grapefruit, with some bitter pine. Flavor follows with beautifully tropical citrus notes, and a nice hit of bitter pine on the back end. Supported by plenty of malts, and no hint of the abv here. Light and airy, high carbonation, slick, and beautiful. Awesome beer to have regularly.

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Photo of KajII
3.6/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

[Suggested Glassware: Tulip Glass]

The pour was a hazy copper orange with an average (1-2 finger) off white rocky head that had great retention, lasting throughout and producing excellent sheets of lacing.

The aroma was mildly sweet with a grain malt, floral and herbal hops and a sweet yeast with notes of citrus (orange), caramel, pineapple and mango.

The taste was a bit malty sweet with a slight bitter undertone and a hint of caramel and a mild fruit ester early on, but became very hoppy with a bitter citrus peel finish. The flavor lingered for a good long while following consumption, being mostly of a bitter citrus taste.

Mouthfeel was a few steps above light in body and dry in texture with a moderate carbonation.

Overall a well rounded IPA, nice and bitter yet sweet and fruity...


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Photo of jimangie1973
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I don't normally review anything but this beer is phenomenal when served from the bottle (more later on this). It pours a golden color with a very prominent head. It is unfiltered so I pour 3/4ths then agitate sediment and pour remaining. The result is a hazy golden brew with a wonderful head. The smell is dominated by the hops producing an ultra fresh citrus aroma. Upon first taste, the hops is also pronounced but what sets this apart from every other IPA is the wonderful malty taste and full bodied mouthfeel.

I've had this beer on tap and it wasn't the same. It tasted much more like the standard American IPA. The amazing malty balance to the hops wasn't there and the body was lighter. It was also clear so it is likely the keg just wasn't agitated as necessary.

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Photo of Fitwitchik
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a pint goblet.

Beautiful cloudy amber orange with creamy head

Smell is delightful. Just the smells says "this is something good". A malty pine says alot.

Taste is incredible! Plenty of hops tasting fresh with slight grapefruit. A sweet malty flavour makes this exceptional for an India/American Pale Ale.

Mouthfeel is divine. Nice carbonation and smooth going down.

Overall this rocked my socks! Seriously the ONLY brew I have ever wanted to just suck down.

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Photo of gustogasmic
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy copper with a foamy ring; head disappears right away. Medium-heavy even lacing.

Smell is big hop resin, oak, peppery spices, lemon rind, cognac.

The taste and mouthfeel really depend on each other here- it is sticky, sweet, and malty, but the hop bill comes across as a unified and subdued citrus. Great dryness from the hops, a nice toasted marshmallow/ cake batter taste in the leave. Appropriate level of bitterness and a linger that again suggests the toasted marshmallow. The hops contribute to the feel and flavor equally, lending the citrusy/peppery notes and bitterness as well as the dryness. Creamy.

I haven't had anything like it. It is very, very good, a perfect IPA for someone who seeks sweetness in their beer.

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Photo of rfbenavi80
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Obtained through a trade. Thanks miamichael2 for sending them my way.

Bottle kept in fridge. Poured into a nonic pint.

A- Pours a hazy deep gold almost orange in color with 1 finger of off white head that has good retention and leaves some mild lacing.

S- Strong tropical fruits. Overly ripe pineapple, and fresh cut grapefruit. Sweet smelling tangerine citrus.

T- Starts off with a pleasantly sweet tangerine flavor. Then theres a healthy dose of bitterness in the form of pine, and grapefruit flavors from the hops. Finishes with a solid malt backbone that attempts to balance things out. Tasty.

M- Feels kind of creamy on the palate. Goes down good for being 7.5%ABV. Moderate amount of carbonation.

O- My first offering from Cigar City is a hit. Look forward to trying more.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It's been some time since I first tried this one; but that was from a growler. So I'm interested to see how this one ends up.

Pours beautifully and the fragrance is equally impressive. Flavor is citrusy tang on spicy hops. Robust, but still somewhat mature in it's delivery. Bitterness lingers on the tongue. Carbonation does a slight bit too, but provides no flavor interference. An excellent brew.

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Photo of Sunhunters
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving Type: 12 oz bottle poured into .3 L tulip. Bottling date unknown.

Appearance (4.5) - Very handsome. Orange with a tinge of red and a light haziness. One finger of bright white, creamy foam. Head dissipates quickly leaving a fairy substantial icing of super-fine bubbles across the surface of the beer. Tenacious, round lacing on the glass. Effervescent.

Smell (4.0) - Guava and papaya are forward enough stand up in the face of the dominant citrus. Hints of other tropical fruits are detectable as well. The smell is a little faint at 50 degrees but wakes up a bit a touch closer to room temperature.

Taste (4.0) - Full flavored IPA. Grapefruit, orange, a whisper of kiwi and green banana. Big, bold tarry resin bitterness is on the heels of these bright fruits and dominates all but the first bit of the flavor. The bitter aftertaste is palpable and enduring, but is briefly overcome by tropical sweetness with each subsequent swig. Tasty, but the bitterness speaks bit too loudly and masks too much of the delicate fruit.

Mouthfeel (4.5) - Big, round, and dry. The strong cohumulone acids rasp at the tongue and cheeks. A rich, full-bodied ale with balancing creamy carbonation.

Overall (4.0) - Overall a very drinkable, enjoyable IPA with a complex fruit character. Sadly that fruit character is overshadowed by potent bitterness, yet the resinous bitterness is also well done and pleasant so the end result is still a very good, enjoyable beer. Tasty and strong, this is a great one to try.

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Photo of gatorguy
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Typical IPA look. Hazy golden orange with a good white head. Leaves fair lacing.

S - Citrus strong nose, some earthy hops. I can pickup some tropical fruits like mango and pineapple as well.

T - Starts with a nice citrus profile, mainly orange and grapefruit. Hops come in next, and are mostly floral and pine hops. Hop presence is more robust than the nose suggests, almost DIPA like in strength. Malts are portioned well and balance nicely. Tropical fruits come in toward the end, and match the nose. These give the beer a nice contrast to the dime-a-dozen IPAs that are ubiquitous now. Finish is slightly bitter.

M - Light for an IPA, especially one this stout. Carbonation is spot on, and the 7.5% abv is hidden well.

O - Nice IPA, better than most you'll come across and surprisingly easy to throw down.

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Photo of JamesMN
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy to the point of being opaque. Light amber/orange color with a pillowy off-white head that leaves great lacing.

Aroma: Lots of citrus and tropical hops in the nose. Also getting a decent amount of malt in the background. Smells like it'll be robust.

Taste: Lots of great tropical fruit flavors but with a maltyness that you don't usual get in West Coast IPAs. A swirl of pineapple, grapefruit, and lemon flavors sits on top of that caramel malt backbone. There is a good level of flavorful bitterness that is present throughout and then stays on your palate for a little while after each sip. The 7.5% abv is hidden very well.

Mouthfeel: Although I'd call it medium bodied, the malt flavor makes it feel slightly heavier. That's not a bad thing in this case, as it still retains above average drinkability. Also pretty smooth.

Final Thoughts: I liked this one a lot. A nice East Coast/West Coast hybrid. It's got big hop and malt flavor profiles going for it but keeps the palate from becoming overly complex. A very enjoyable IPA.

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Photo of driftlessbrewin
2.56/5  rDev -39%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Thanks Chardlogic for the extra.

A- BOOM!!! the cap exploded off like a cannon blast, No gushing though. Pours a dirty hazy copper color with massive carbonation and lace. Huge head retention, that lasts and lasts and lasts.

S- Brett! out of that gates it is musty band-aid with a finish of old muddled citrus rinds that got moldy. it is actually quite interesting, I feel it may have been better a few weeks ago before the brett had a chance to rip through the dextrine. I feel in a few months this will have that rotten garbage smell.

T- Brett has also invaded the flavors and not in a good way, a bitter citrus used band aid is how I would describe the flavor.

M- This is where the beer is OK, nice smooth carbonation for all that lacing. allows the terrible flavors to be well received.

O- I dont think this is a brett IPA, intentionally. The infection really takes away from what this could have been. Interesting to try something like this though.

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Photo of WillCarrera
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, no bottled-on date, poured into a tulip glass.

A- Pours a hazy golden apricot color, topped with two fingers of creamy white head, good retention, leaves tons of thick lacing on the glass.

S- Fresh pine and a bright juicy tropical fruit aroma, as it warms some caramel, graham cracker, and light peppery notes emerge.

T- Big burst of orange, mango and pineapple, very tropical and juicy, powerful piney hops dominate a bready, caramel malt backbone. Some herbal and peppery flavors come out towards the finish. There's also a fruity aspect to it that I can't quite put my finger on, anyway it's a very interesting, bright, tasty beer.

M- Medium-bodied, smooth feel, moderate carbonation, a bit of warmth from the booze, which is well-masked.

O- A really nice IPA, I'm a big fan of these juicy, tropical hop IPAs, I could easily drink several of these in a sitting without getting bored.

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Photo of julian89
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So I'm sorry that I missed it but on of the top Cigar City guys came to Hop City a couple of Saturdays ago and brought us some fresh bottled Jai Alai, Maduro brown, and some other great stuff I didn't get to try.
Bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a fair yellow color that's slightly hazy with a 1 inch white head with poor retention.

Smell: Light sweet maltiness with a fruity, citrusy, flowery, and spicy hop notes and a little booze. Sooo crisp and fresh.

Taste: So incredible fresh. I feel as though I could drink these all day fresh. I love the crispness and the powerful spice, citrus, and flowery taste to it. Just great and simple.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A simple and fantastic IPA.

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Photo of mcintire78
3.51/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance -- Deep Gold to Pale Amber, little to no lacing. Head dissipates quickly. Little carbonation.

Smell -- Slightly flagrant with a mild smell of hops. A very slight whiff of pineapple.

Taste -- Strong taste of hops upfront, but they fade quickly into a fleeting taste of tropical fruit. The alcohol is well masked.

Mouthfeel -- Very smooth.

Drinkability -- The low carbonation and masked alcohol make it go down easy.

Must be an old bottle. The taste and odor are faded, which is a shame, because what's left seems to suggest it's a real pleasure fresh. Have to try to secure a fresher bottle.

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Photo of bluetravlr
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to Mark and Joan for bringing this back from Florida!

A: Initial head quickly dissipates to nothing. Hazy orange coloration. No lacing.

S: Mango, pineapple and other tropical fruits with a hint of fresh-baked bread. Some caramel coming through also.

T: Very fruity. A bit piney. Papaya really coming through in the middle. Lingering bitterness, but not overwhelming. Perfect amount of breadyness to stand up to the hop assault. Slightly resinous, but the sweetness balances this nicely.

M: Medium body, though the pine resins make it seem a bit heavier. This bottle seems a little under carbonated. Definitely sticky . . . in a good way.

O: I think this bottle took on some stress in transit. The appearance, frankly, sucks. When I got this bottle it seemed to be about 80F. Chilled it right away, but the carbonation seems to have suffered. Mouthfeel and Appearance will be underrated. The taste; however, was spot on. I can only imagine what a fresh, well -kept bottle or pint would taste like. Still, an awesome experience!

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Photo of fields336
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bottled july 10 (8 days old!!) SA PP glass

A: Cloudy as hell, orangey-amber color, not much head but really nice lacing. Carbonation is hard to see but decent. Love the cloudiness, reminds me of where all these craft brewers came from (Homebrewing)

S: mango, fruity, herbal, citrus, slight pine, definitely some simcoe in there, earthy, papaya, pineapple,

T: WOW. Bready and caramel malt is reinforced by a delicious tropical fruit hop burst- mango, pineapple, grapefruit, and earthy flavor hops. just a delicious beer.

M: Medium bodied, don't taste the 7% but is such an easy drinking beer. i can pound down 4 if I'm not paying attention..

O: I will be sad as hell to move away from florida.. COME TO NC CIgar City!!! Great beer, and visit the tap room if you are in or near Tampa!

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Photo of Arithmeticus
4.54/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured chilled in weizen glass

A: cloudy copper orange; small head, but good lacing
S: wonderful, beautiful aroma, with citrus and fruits up front then moving on to malt and bubble gum; long persists
T: Very finely balanced IPA; the hops are gentle and sweet, so they complement and shore up the malts nicely; the extra booze makes this nearly a DIPA.
M: very smooth and rich

Wow, this is a really good IPA

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Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
4.2 out of 5 based on 7,622 ratings.
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