Jai Alai IPA | Cigar City Brewing

1,414 Reviews
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: 1,414 | Ratings: 7,508
Photo of StLThrash
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into my Lakefront Brewery pint glass. Not distributed here, so received in trade from urwithdave. Thanks Dave!

A - Slightly aggressive pour yielded a one finger frothy head that lingered for awhile. Slightly hazy yellowish-orange and left lots of lacing.

S - Wow. Hop bomb. Holy hops, Batman. I get an array of aromas - obviously citrus (grapefruit), pine, tobacco, and I also get a bit of bourbon for some reason. Really nice on the nose.

T & M - The hop bitterness grabs ahold of your tastebuds and squeezes the hell out of them! Lots of hops up front, some sweet malts and nice carbonation.

Overall - CCB does it again. I've had 3 or 4 of their beers so far, and have yet to be disappointed. An excellent IPA that is close to being a DIPA / Imperial... one of my favorites.

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

Poured from 12oz bottle into a tulip glass. Pours a hazy golden amber, with one finger frothy off-white head that retains its lacing throughout. Aroma is of pine, pineapple, grapefruit, and spruce hops, with a bit of caramel malts. Taste is sweet resin from the start; caramel malt is more pronounced here, and the pineapple flavor of the citrus hops really stands out. Nice bitter aftertaste from the hops balances things out. Thin, smooth body with medium to high carbonation. Overall, a solid sessionable IPA.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tumbler at ChurchKey on tap.

Small off cream white head with a golden amber body that is slightly cloudy, leaves some good lacing. It doesn't appear as suspended as it's bottle counterpart. Still good none the less

Bouquet on this is a soft fleshy fruit, specificaly a pulpy grapefruit sense. There seems to hint at some density and thickness coming. Very enjoyable.

Taste is a big malt hop and orange at first. But what sticks out is the mouthfeel, just killer. Pillow softness mixed with lingering aftertastes of incredibly light LIGHT brown sugars and the most tolerable bitterness. Airy lingering grapefruit citrus finish that lasts and lasts and lasts. Wood component out of the bottle for me seems to be missing.

Overall though an extremely quaffable GREAT feeling IPA on tap.

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Photo of kingcrowing
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured Into a cigar city sniffer.

Pours a really nice dark amber to ruby red. There is a nice fruityango nose with a bit of pine and tart fruit.

Taste is really bitter and sharp but fruity and smooth, super mellow and creamy with a smooth mouhfeel. It's super tasty dam drinkable.

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Photo of Brent
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cigar City doesn't distribute in my neck of the woods, so I was pleased to have a chance to sample something from this brewery. A very nicely done American IPA - emphasis on fruity/citrus hops, with a well-moderated bittering throughout and a clean, hoppy finish. A touch of sweetness toward the end is pleasant. Big abv is well integrated with little alchohol evident.

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Photo of Marty30
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into A Duvel tulip at fridge temp.

A. Hazy dark orange body with a two finger off white head that recedes pretty quickly.Good lacing sticking to the glass.Great carbonation.

S. Big tropical fruit notes peach,mango,pineapple, as well as some pine and some earthy tones.

T. The smell is spot on with this one.Awesome tasting IPA,very well balenced just how I like it.

M. Good creamy medium mouth,good carbonation.Doesnt leave that big after taste that alot of IPA's do.

Overall this might be my favorite IPA! This is one nicely crafted brew.A must try,its just a shame I cant get it were I live.

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Photo of erosier
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Pours a nice amber color with a medium sized and medium bodied off-white colored head that laces the glass on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet malts, then some orange, grapefruit, citrus aromas followed by a nice citrus/earthy hop aroma.
T: Tastes of sweet roasted malts with a nice citrus (mainly grapefruit and orange with some lemon as well) flavor nest followed by a nice citrus/pine/earthy hop finish.
M: Crisp, refreshing, perfect amount of carbonation, medium bodied.
D: Very drinkable, this was a great take on the IPA.

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Photo of Matt1516
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this one up on a lark on holiday. What a find!

Pours a cloudy golden with a generous head that lingers and lots of lacing remains on the sides. Smells of cloves and grapefruit.

Taste explodes with hops, maltiness--even tobacco. Strong on the fruity taste (esp. grapefruit) but not overly much.

There's a carbonated bite on the tongue and a nice bitter finish.


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Photo of Sideswipe
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into my Bruery tulip.

Down the middle pour yields a two finger head of dense white foam. The head recedes leaving wispy remnants floating atop a hazy amber body. The nose is sweet biscuity malt and citrus. Taste is orange and mango hoppiness backed up by a very nice pale malt backbone. There is a pleasant bitterness that is well balanced by the malt making this an easy drinking and refreshing IPA. Not over the top bitter like many IPAs that I enjoy immensely, but a very solid take on the style and one I'd have again if it was local. Recommended.

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Photo of liamt07
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (and 6 pack) provided by my girlfriend from a recent trip down to Florida. Into a pint glass.

Pours a dark orange, with some reddish-amber hues. A few fingers of super creamy white head is produced, with some big sticky lace left. The head retention here was particularly unique I found, as this creamy 'mocha'-style head remained, and almost looked like a batter because of how thick and dense it was. Nose has lots of tropical notes, pineapple and mango come to mind initially. Sweet, with some light caramel as well. Taste has more orange and mango, with a nice malt profile to support it. Malt base adds to a great full mouthfeel and a moderate bitterness that's almost fruity in nature; juicy and real tropical fruitiness to be found throughout. Medium to full mouthfeel, a solid but not substantial bitterness and fantastic drinkability for the alcohol. Thank God for the rest of this 6 pack.

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Photo of Bamabrew22
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This IPA will knock your socks off! Delicious! One of the best IPAs I've had in awhile. Probably the best since my trip to Minneapolis and Masala Mama several years back. Excellent example of the style. Poured a beatiful coppery/golden hue with great foamy head and retention to the last sip. Aroma gave me chills, as I felt as though I'd been dropped in a pine thicket, or grapefruit grove. Taste is earthy, piney, citrusy, with just a hint of malt sweetness to balance it out. A great beer for hop lovers and hopheads. Definitely one of my go to IPAs for now. Great brew!

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Photo of Bennettrox
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Dolfan84 for this one!

A - Dark amber with one finger head.

S - Very much key to east coast style. Citrus, grapefruit, maybe a little orange and pineapple. Very crisp

T - Shining point for me. Citrus up front with a surprising pine element that I couldn't find in the nose. Stick grapefruit and caramel finishes off strong.

M - Medium carbonation, very easy to drink.

O - Another great beer from CCB. Fresh, this is a great IPA and a very drinkable one. Can't wait to try more

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Photo of chilly460
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a cloudy, dull amber color. A finger of white head sticks around nicely, soapy looking lacing.

S - A light, citrusy hop smell balanced nicely with basic caramel malt. Not as pungent as others, but very "juicy" aroma.

T - Follows the nose, sweet sort of citrusy taste with a little bit of pine thrown in. Tastes like tangerine, bitter and sweet at the same time. Didn't really pick up much of the oak flavor, maybe some of the sweetness is contributed.

M - Good carbonation, nice medium body.

O - Nice balanced IPA, nothing out of place. Hops are a bit muted to make it higher rated IMO.

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Photo of saison19
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a murky copper with fluffy white head, nice lacing and the head sticks around for the duration. Smell is hoppy with hints of tropical fruit. Taste is perfectly bitter sweet with hops, guava, papaya, grapefruit, pineapple, and molasses...complex. Medium mouthfeel, balanced carbonation, semi-dry finish that begs for the next sip.

I prefer drinking this one as it warms up so the strong malt presence shines through. This is pretty damn close to being a DIPA, and better than many DIPAs.


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Photo of ChugginOil
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Jai Alai IPA

Thanks to GallowsTheif for the extra!

Poured from 12oz bottle into a SA Perfect Pint glass.

Pours golden and rests a dark, hazy, orangish amber. A fingers worth of off white head sits shortly before dissipating. Tiny spots of lacing.

The nose offers some malt and light citrus notes.

The taste is a bit malty and then presents a bitter apricots taste with a bit of honey. There is a good amount of malt sweetness balanced with the bitterness.

The mouthfeel starts smooth and ends very dry. Its a good presentation.

Overall, a different spin on an IPA, or maybe it is a bit old? The malt has much more presence over the hops but the hop bitterness remains to pack a punch.

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Photo of jimixr
3.91/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours an orangw copper color. Around a finger and a half of fluffy white head. Very goodhead retention. Once the head falls the beer shows a lot of lacing.

S- A lot of grapefruit and citrus. Some floral and a little malt.

T- Very refreshing. Not as hoppy as some, but has a very pronounced hop bitterness. Some carmel comes through as well. Alcohol is well hidden.

M- Just a little carbonation is apperent. Easy to drink and very smooth.

O- Very good. Ive had the beer several times, but it has been a while since I last had it. I had forgotten how much I like it. Much better to me than the cedar version.

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Photo of wino47
3.46/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pour is a hazy copper tone with a nice white lacing on the glass. Aromas of citrus upfront with a bready, malt component as well.
Medium in body with a slightly creamy texture of malt, light carbonation helping the balance. Citrus and tropical notes are well balanced with the malty caramel background. This one leaves me wanting more hop bite but I don't feel it comes across too malty or sweet. Very different from what I expected, more tropical fruit notes than citrusy hop bite. Overall a good beer but my expectations left me a little underwhelmed.

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Photo of oline73
4.06/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with two fingers of fluffy off white head that leaves some very nice lacing.

Smell: Pine and citrus hops with some malt sweetness. The hops smell very fresh.

Taste: Bitter citrus peel and pine hops hit the tongue pretty hard. There is a strong sweet malt flavor in the background. As the sweetness fades the bitterness clings to your tongue through the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with smooth carbonation. The finish is quite dry.

Overall: I enjoyed this beer quite a bit. This is the second time I've had it, and the first must have been from a not so fresh bottle, much more impressed from the tap. I'd definitely have it again. I enjoy the malt sweetness along with the bitter hops.

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

Poured from 32oz growler. Thanks to Andrew (betsona) for bringing this one over.

A- Pours a light amber color with orange hues. One and a half finger white head shows really good retention staying most of the beer. Nice sheety/streaky lacing left on the glass itself.

S- Citrus hops dominate the aroma at first with grapefruits coming on first followed by a light orangey citrus scent. Some light caramel malts and hints of grassy earthy hops. The citrus hops come back into the forefront and crush most other aromas. Hint of alcohol in the tailend.

T- Citrus hops steamroll the palate with a nice layer of orange and grapefruit combo. This kind of stays with you until about the middle which shows a nice underbody that has a good caramel balance to it. Bitter earthy piney hop bite in the backend with a light alcohol flavor. This beer is simple yet very well made for the style.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Citrus hops and light caramel malts are left on the palate. Aftertaste is light alcohol, piney hops, and a ever so light caramel malt base. Flavors were very well balanced for the style with the sweetness and bitterness being a even half and half. No off flavors at all when drinking this beer. Medium alcohol drying on the palate.

O- This beer was a very nice drinker. A good beer that shows a nice balance between sweetness and bitterness. The ABV really doesn't show itself which could be a dangerous thing if you drink this too fast. I would love to get my hands on more of this stuff!

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

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- Thick rocky offwhite, orange tinted head mounds on top of a amber and copper colored brew. A closer look reveals tiny champagne like bubbles racing to the surface. Some lacing here and there is left on sides of glass.

S- Ohhhh wow, this smell is gooood. Fruity, tropical hops. Kiwi, mango, pineapple, and other tropical fruits enlighten the nose. Some grassy, dank hop aroma's. The dry hopping with simcoe probably brought out most of these.

T- This is probably the fruitiest tasting IPA I've had as the flavor follows suit with the nose, very tropical flavors. The hops have a nice bitterness rounding out the taste. No date on the bottle, but even if this was old it would be hard to pick out the caramel malts.

M- Mouth is medium bodied with good carbonation. Very refreshing, and naturally sweet on the palatte. I am left smacking my lips from combination of sweetness/bitterness.

O- This IPA impressed me. I wasn't sure what to expect. Not the best tasting IPA but deffinitely in my top 10. I would highly recommend and will look for again. I'm bumping up my overall because this IPA will be good no matter very fresh or aged for some time.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottled poured into an awkwardly small glass at Grease in WPB.

Appearance - Due to the size of the glass, I had to pour very slowly to fit as much of the bottle as possible into the glass. Pours amber with, in my case, almost no head and good lacing.

Smell - Citrus hops with a strong malt aroma. Smells nutty with some caramel.

Taste - The taste follows the smell. Citrus hops with a nutty malt backbone. There is a faint sweetness and a slightly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Hardly a thick beer, but it's got a good body. Somewhat low carbonation for the style, but it isn't offensively low.

Overall - Good IPA. Barely this side of a DIPA. If it were a bit hoppier, it could be a DIPA.

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Photo of olmatty
3.35/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance-Pours an exceptionally clear (very good) light amber color with a very low head (not so good). It took a very aggressive to get any head.

Smell-Hop bitterness, but very light. More spicy than anything else.

Taste-After a dubious opening this beer gets down to business with some pretty interesting flavor. A deep but unidimensional malt flavor laden with lots of spicy and vegetal hop flavor with a dry finish and bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel-chunky and palate filling.

Overall-The right a amount of hops, but this beer would be so much better if some of these bittering hops were pushed into the later stage of the boil, producing a more aromatic and flavorful hop presence with less raw, harsh bitterness.

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Photo of HopHead84
3.53/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An extra received in a trade with swellbrewer, thanks! Poured vigorously from the bottle into a snifter.

A: The body is transparent medium orange in color with a big frothy off white head. Retention is nice and some scattered lacing is evident on the sides of the glass. The head recedes to a lingering bubbly coating that remains for some time.

S: After letting the beer open up a bit, the most prominent hop characteristic is navel orange flesh with a little grapefruit and tangelo. The malt is just as pronounced as the hops, so I guess I'd call it balanced. The malt reminds me of a cross between caramel and baked bread. It's only slightly sweet. There's an earthy note that's redolent of spruce, with accompanying floral aromatics.

T: Moderately bitter up front, with a nice orange and tangerine presence. Malt adds a bit of balance, imparting caramel, biscuit, and faint bread notes. Hops are somewhat resinous, but that characteristic isn't as pronounced as the citrus. Bitterness waxes a bit in the drying finish that exhibits a little spiciness, alcohol, and lingering orange and tangerine. Smooth throughout, with no harshness or astringency.

M: Lower medium in body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is dry, sticky, and smooth.

Overall: A pretty nice IPA, though too heavy on the malt for my taste. Unfortunately, I have no way of knowing the freshness of this bottle, but it doesn't seem too old.

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

Hazy golden color with a nice white head and very good lacing. Very nice aromas of hops, citrus and some malt. Medium bodied with nice bitter citrusy hop flavors balanced by malt, citrus fruit and some sweetness.

The amazing thing about this beer is that it always stays in balance with a lush mouthfeel and the hops always winning out in the flavor battle. CCB has done something few brewers can do, they have crammed all the flavors of an Imperial IPA into their regular bottling. This is without a doubt one of the best IPA's available.

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

Jai Alai (said like "hi lie") is a game with origins traced back to Basque and was once a big part of florida. This brew pours a deep copper with a medium head of bone color. Lacing is top notch, excellent. Smell is enticing, to say the least, with great attributes being sweet, fruity, spicy HOPPINESS! The taste is clean and fresh with huge floral hoppy notes. Its bitter but the best kind of bitter. I liken it to wasabi(the heat is intense but leaves quick without a trace). Doesn't linger around on the palate like some other well known IPAs. Feel is incredibly smooth, refreshing with a perfect light carbonation. I can't say enough about this beer, easily the best IPA I've had to date. Highly recommended to anyone who likes hops and even those who don't.

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Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
4.2 out of 5 based on 7,508 ratings.
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