Jai Alai IPA | Cigar City Brewing

1,446 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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User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,446 | Ratings: 7,618
Photo of larryi86
4.27/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- A nice deep hazy orange with a one finger head

S- Very tropical/fruity hops, get some piney hops and hint of citrus, nice malt backbone.

T- Tropical/fruit hops stand out right away and go nicely with the big bitter pine finish, malts are very sweet and make the beer a little too sweet.

M- Smooth, crisp, medium body.

O- I am really happy that I was able to get a six pack when I was in Florida. This is a solid IPA, a little sweet, but very enjoyable on a hot summer day. I wish they solid it near me.

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

12oz bottle, trade from seeswo - thanks mang!

pours a slightly cloudy copper. very fine white head, excellent retention.

nose is a great - nice mix of pine, grapefruit/citrus and bready malt. pretty big hop bomb; again, tons of pine and citrus. just enough sweetness to round it out. clean finish, the mouthfeel is exceptional.

loved, loved, loved this beer. wish it was on the shelves in the west coast.

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Photo of dpasotti
3.78/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Dead-on copper color, an inch of frothy cream-colored foam, and a bit of haze gives Jai Alai an almost perfect IPA appearance in my book. Not to mention some of the best lacing you can find. This beer looks beautiful. Simcoe hops are definitely dominant in the nose, with a noticeable aroma of sweet malt. As the glass empties, there's a slight soapiness, but not in an unpleasant way.

Taste has plenty of hop complexity: tropical/pineapple and pine character surely from the Simcoe, and some lighter and sweet-ish citrus notes. Maybe a little too heavy on the crystal malts; there's a sweetness that is a little more on the caramelly side than most IPAs, even on this side of the Mississippi. Light bready malt undertones. The balance is not quite there, and I can't really put a finger on it. It's not overly bitter or sweet, but it's like the malty sweetness jumps into the cancha a bit too soon. It is not way out of whack by any means, but something just feels a little wobbly. I think the noticeable alcohol may play a big part in this perception. Bumping it down a percentage point could go a long way in the smoothness department, and for the beer overall.

The "fastest sport in the world" is heavy on the palate... in a great way. A medium-full body may not encourage a session of this beer, but it does make for an unexpectedly velvety-textured IPA. All in all, Jai Alai is a good beer, but isn't quite there in my book. I would buy it again (if I didn't have to drive 700 miles to get it), but the last sip doesn't pull me to the fridge for another one, like so many other great IPAs.

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Photo of Spider889
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to sendsilk for this bottle.

Poured into my stange style GLBC Christmas Ale glass.

A deep ripened nectarine color. At first I was thinking that there was going to be no head, and that maybe it was just a CBC thing. Luckily the head did finally appear, a little less than a finger's worth of semi-large soapy bubbles. While the better part of it receded rather fast, a nice smearing of tapioca pearl bubbles floated around the top of the glass. Plenty of visible rising carbonation and the beer left a decent amount of lace.

Smells both juicy and piney. I like this combination. Pineapple, mango, and red grapefruit meet with floral pine notes.

The flavor is quite juicy indeed. More pineapple and a much bigger punch of pine with just a bit of lemon pith mixed in there. Slightly sweet and maltier than I was expecting for some reason, this is a tasty IPA.

As for the mouthfeel it is a bit coating, and exhibits a medium dryness.

Overall I am more impressed than I was expecting. I can easily see this beer re-emerging again and again with fruit and other additives. Hope the White Oak version waiting to be opened this weekend is just as good, and I hope to try a fruited version on my trip to FL coming up.

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Photo of MrOH
3.89/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy orangish gold, white head. Decent lace.

Sour berries, grapes, tropical fruits, a bit of pine. Caramel in the background, touch o' funk.

Tropical fruits remain, some piney notes, caramel, oh, and barnyardy sourness. Hoppy bitterness at the end. But it's still really good.

Light bodied, very dry, but still has a fruity caramel sweetness.

Overall, quite a tasty brew. Wouldn't mind having this on a regular basis.

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Photo of BeerLover99
4.63/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: deep burnt orange/semi-cloudy, 1 finger head, wonderous lacing

S: BIG peach, apricot, almost marmaladesque

T: sweet peach pine, sold malty/bread, maybe light caramel,
long bitter sticky finish

M: med/heavy, big sticky/oily mouth (nearly Imp IPA level)

O: OH MY WORD! My 1st Cigar City experience
and really want to try more....amazing beer.
Big sipper; so delicious want to gulp it down.
ABV is like a flavor trojan, the warmth will get ya.


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Photo of StaveHooks
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours an clear amber copper with a 1 finger off-white head. Minimal lacing.

S - Spicy green pine hops, caramel malt, anise

T - Tropical and citrus burst out of the gate, green spicy pine resin creeps in with a sugary crystal and caramel-like malt. Strawberries, lemon, pepper. The spice grows until after the finish.

M - Medium bodied, average carbonation, very dry.

This is a spicy herbal treat. I like the leafy greenness of he hops. Good malt bill as well. Alcohol shows up a tad but is mostly covered by the hops. This packs a punch with the hops.

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Photo of domtronzero
4.14/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Hazy golden orange copper colored with an average lasting, whitish head. Little lacing.

S - Piney, citrusy hops, light apricots and some nice bready malt sweetness. A touch of alcohol is noticeable but not detracting.

F/M - Sweet bready malts up front, followed by a nice hop balance. Typical IPA hop flavors of pine, light resinous flavor, and citrus fruits. Moderately firm bitterness and moderate carbobation help this medium bodied beer finish quite dry. Lingering resinous hop flavors.

O - This is a pretty solid IPA. Easy drinking, flavorful and nicely bittered, its quite easy to put down a few of these in a night.

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

My first CCB brew made possible by trade w/ Alieniloquium. Thanks Bro!

Bottle dated 04/13/11

A: Jai Alai pours a hazy caramel candy color that gets deeper in hue towards the center. Perfect 2 finger cap of egg white frothy foam with interval waves of lace along the glass.

S: Fruity bursts emerge right after popping the top. Mostly pineapple and mango like aromas with a slight spiciness to it. Some tarter yeast esters present.

T: This is good. Juicy fruit and floral flavors with a somewhat sweet caramel malt. Tropical fruits and botanicals with a slight but distinct earthy spice. Really nice hop flavors and aromas but rather light or void even on the overall bitterness to the palate. Finishes light, dry and crisp with a mild ABV detection. Very refreshing.

M: Slightly sticky and slick mf but overall a super creamy light bodied brew that is just so delicate on the palate. I imagine this brew is amazing off of a cask.

D: Damn good drinkin IPA! A really nice fruity IPA that is incredibly light and smooth in body with no offensive sharp hop bitterness at all.

As my first intro to this brewery I am excited to get through the rest of my box and hopefully many more in the future. Nicely done!

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Photo of beerdown77
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This pours very cloudy dark orange and has nice fluffy head with good retention and lacing. The smell is citrusy and slightly malty…you can almost smell the tartness. The taste has a unique fruitiness that I have not quite had before. There seems to be a robust tea-like presence in the flavor, and I can detect some peppery hops as well. There is quite a bit of flavor going on here, and the body is medium-heavy. There is a pleasant crispness that allows this beer to finish pretty smooth, just as you expect it to linger and be overly syrupy. I’m drawn back to this beers unique complexity again and again. One drink begat another, and so on…

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Jai Alai on tap at Valhalla, Hell's Kitchen, NYC.

Appearance: Served in a 12-oz goblet, Jai Alai looks mighty nice for a regular IPA, what with the solid finger of foamy white head topped by an ocean of soapy bubbles. Great retention and lacing. Color is a hazy orange/deep amber, slightly transparent. Like the golden glow of the orange trees in Sevilla.

Smell: Tea leaves, orange pekoe. Very aromatic! Tea fields in Sri Lanka. Some spice, lemon peel/lemon thyme. Orange zest, a tad of pineapple sweetness.

Taste: A tad of rose and flower. Nice spice. Delicious sweetness, pineapple syrup. Coconut cake, soap and dry hops at the end.

Mouthfeel: Gorgeous! Full body, flavor and medium and perfect carbonation. Spicy, made me sneeze! Well balanced and enticing, so close to being the perfect IPA.

Overall: Sickly drinkable, such a pleasure! Beautiful flavors and aromas. Sessionable, alcohol is not too noticeable. One of the best IPA's in America.

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Photo of STKPICR0720
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Okay I just have to say that I am glad this beer has made it to Alabama and in bottle form. I know it is in keg form also but I have not tried it out of a keg yet. I grabbed a bottle the other day when I got my delivery at the store and love it. I have been drinking Bells Two Hearted and SN Torpedo alot lately. This brew was awesome. The pour was a light golden haze and right away I could smell the hops and grapefruit. The taste was smooth and hops were upfront the finish was full of citrus and grapefruit and then smooth after taste. I love this brew and will be drinking more very soon. My new go too.

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Photo of SDDanC
3.56/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from bottle into standard pint glass. lots of wonderful soft head. about two fingers (i was aggressive). pours a beautiful golden haze. nose is all malt, tid bit of hops. taste is malty caramel up front then a solid hop finish. not much citrus in this one. if i had to pin-point, id match some subtle grapefruit. mouthfeel is great, awesome and refreshing. overall, great beer. i would drink it again, and again and again. i would definitely like to try it fresh!

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

a: a murky golden-coppery color with a very thin lacing left to settle on the top

s: sweet, citrusy hops... fruit... bit of subtle malt flavor mixed in their...

t: citrus hops all the way... grapefruit and faint touch of piney hops....just enough malt to be there.

m: bit lighter, but seemingly pretty standard feel for an IPA

o: I'd love having a fridge full of this waiting for me after a long day of work..

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Photo of Yagman3000
3.53/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from a bottle into a snifter.

Has a really nice orange glow to it with a touch of orange but there appears to be some floating matter in it. Are we unfiltered? A quarter inch of foam rests on top.

Smells A bit sweet and fruity. A little heavy. A touch of malt without too much bitterness from hops.

Tastes less of hops than I was hoping. Again I taste some swetness and feel like there's some over-ripe banana in (and not in the hefeweizen sense).

Mouthfeel is uneventful. Aclittle creamy up front without too much going on.

Overall I'm not so impressed with this. I feel line it doesn't carry the weight I thought it would. This is my first cigar city and I had heard good things but I am let down by this.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured on-tap at the Cigar City Brewing tasting room in Tampa. The beer was served in a pint glass, and it poured a light, yellow-copper coloring with a light, fluffy head. Aromas of fresh fir trees, slight citrus, and fresh cut grass. The beer has a great lacing as you drink. Flavors are light, citrus sweet malt and a heavy foundation of fresh, peppery hops. Very well balanced. The aftertaste is crisp hops and grapefruit, with a dry and bitter finish. Tasty and light!

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Photo of ajcobb24
3.41/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours orangey tan with a moderate amount of head. About one finger of head with an aggressive pour into a snifter glass. Carbonation sticks to sides as the beer is swirled around.

Smell - Slight citrus smell with a heavier spice smell. Some floral notes can be detected with some real effort.

Taste - Perhaps I am spoiled with the Hopslam IPA I love so much, but the Jai Alai just didn't taste nearly as good. Less citrus than I had hoped for and spice notes that were way too strong. Some floral notes detected with some serious retro-nasal breathing.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium bodied with some carbonation notes can be detected as I swirl this brew around my mouth.

Overall - Slightly above average beer. It is fairly easy and cheap to get where I live so it would be my choice over mainstream beers, but not the best craft IPA I have had. I would have liked to be greeted with stronger citrus notes than I was with this beer.

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Photo of Lillie1128
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Magic Hat "I toured the brewery & artifactory and won this pint glass" pint glass.

A - Pours a deep amber color with an almost nonexistent white head. Would have expected a bit of a darker color

S -citrus and spice

T - A really unique ipa! Very citrusy with some floral and pine notes and hoppy throughout

M - a little thin, really carbonated

D - high!! Um, delicious.

When I picked this up at 5 points, I asked one of the guys what it was like and he described it as "just...good." That's really what this beer is. I love this.

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Photo of seeswo
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a malty-orangish, golden-light-brown (or maybe the light is low in here). Has a real nice egg-shell head on it. The nose is hops, malt. I get big simcoe and pretty big, sweet malt. The taste is big, sugar malt balancing a nice hop flavor. There is a definite simcoe presence (which I firmly believe makes an ipa taste horrible when old), but this beer is evidently fresh. More sweet than hoppy, this really drinks like a lower ABV DIPA. There is a touch of piney-hop flavor that I think brings this beer around and elevates it from an average IPA. Mouthfeel is sugary and thick (for the style) hanging on the tongue. Overall, I actually really enjoy this beer, but when I break it down it sounds less positive than it is. This is a good one and really nice to try next to the cigar box one (5 nose!) and the white oak one. In fact, this beer comes off like it was designed to be put in barrels. Oh well, I like it.

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

Grabbed a sixer at the local Bev Barn. Being the only beer at all from Cigar City in the place, this either sold out really fast, or has been sitting there for a while. My money is on the latter, but I bought it anyway, having always wanted to check out something from this brewery.

Pours a deep copper orange with a solid two fingers of sticky white head that leaves a whopping amount of lacing behind. Sweet.

Nose is full of grassy pine and fruit citrus hops. Some sweet maltiness in the background as well. Smells just as any IPA worth anything should.

Hops aren't as biting as I'd hoped, but that's probably due to over aging. Caramel maltiness takes the lead here, but there is still some fruity citrus presence in the front. Alcohol is also apparent in the back end, emitting some warming sensations to finish it off. Pretty damn good.

Medium mouthfeel with adequate carbonation. Real easy drinking for an IPA, especially one that clocks in at 7.5%.

Overall, a real solid brew. Just wish I could have gotten some fresh. I'll have to be on the lookout for some more later.

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Photo of projectflam86
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My buddy brought this one back from FL for me. Cheers!

A- Pours a golden color with orange highlights. A thick white foam head that leaves nice lacing.

S- Citrusy hops and some pine wood like aromas.

T- Very bitter initially with a decent dose of alcohol in the finish. The malt back bone does all that is possibly trying to balance the tongue bruising hoppy bitterness but it is fighting a losing battle! Not for the faint of hop...err...heart.

M- Medium bodied with nice carbonation. The bitterness makes it difficult to pick out much else.

O- This is a Florida IPA that certainly has its roots from the west coast.

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Photo of richkrull
4.68/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep hazy copper color with quite a bit of beige head on it.

Smell is fantastic citrus and floral hops.

Taste is really great as well. Some citrus and spice up front with a bitter hop finish.

Mouthfeel is light-medium and goes down smooth and easy.

Overall a really great IPA. Glad I finally got a chance to try it.

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Photo of Noxious26
4.27/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown bottle with pry off cap poured in a pint glass. Purchased at Knightly Spirits in Orlando.

Soapy, off-white head is 1/4 inch on the pour and recedes to a few islands. Traces of lacing here and there. Cloudy, orange-copper colour.

Fruity, sweet and citrusy nose. Bursting with aroma. Light malts and caramel in the background. Absolutely enticing!

Evenhanded hopping in the start makes it nicely balanced between caramel-malty and ctirus-pine hops. The long finish is bitter hops of citrus, pine, flowers and hints of metallic twang. Alcohol becomes more apparent as it warms.

Medium bodied with a bit of an oily mouthfeel. Lightly carbonated.

Dangerously drinkable for a 7.5% ale. Excellent, but just a hair's breadth from world class. Look for this when you're in the area!

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Photo of RodneyX
3.41/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy orange color with a big foamy head that left behind some good lacing. It smells of hops with some sugar and malts. The taste is slightly better, there is kind of a weird wood to this but it isn't a bad thing. Mostly citrus and pine hops on the malts. Mouthfeel is fine for the style. This beer is a pretty easy drinker and not bad, but not great.

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Photo of Tilley4
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a fresh sixer at Chan's in Destin...

Earthy piney dank aromas roll off of this brew poured into a nonic glass... Malts make a brief appearance but are quickly drowned out by these grassy hops...

Excellent blend of base malts and grassy earthy hops with the bitter hops winning by a large majority... Bracingly bitter in spots much like a chewed up aspirin... Not unpleasant but not ideal...

Solid IPA...

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Jai Alai IPA from Cigar City Brewing
4.2 out of 5 based on 7,618 ratings.
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