Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series) | Cigar City Brewing

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Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series)Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States
cigarcitybrewing.com

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our flagship beer in the Humidor Series is Humidor Series India Pale Ale. We start with Jai Alai IPA as a base beer and add the cedar during secondary fermentation. The cedar provides a perfect balance with the assertive hops of Jai Alai to create an entirely new experience.

70 IBU

Added by tpd975 on 05-26-2009

BEER STATS
Ratings:
925
Reviews:
449
Avg:
4.03
pDev:
13.65%
 
 
Wants:
193
Gots:
84
For Trade:
1
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 925 |  Reviews: 449
Photo of Rifugium
1.5/5  rDev -62.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

First had: firkin from Capone's, Norristown, PA

I hate to do this really, but I'm going to review this beer, even though I'm very sure it was a bad pour, and/or infected, and/or most likely the very bottom of the barrel, so to speak. It was so bad, I actually showed it to the waitress and got my money back for it. Hopefully I can try this one again, and actually have a good sampling.

Poured an ugly, murky chocolate milk color, almost looked like tea with milk in it. I knew something was wrong right away. No carbonation, no head; ugly stains on the sides of the glass. The smell was very hoppy, with tones of guava and grapefruit, but mostly, it smelled like old paint cans. Yikes. Actually the first thought that came to my mind was: this smells like the homes I used to do maintenance on in Camden when I was working with my grandfather during my high school years. Ah, memories...bad ones.

A cautious sip yielded an extremely intense hoppy taste, thick and very bitter, heavy with cedar. My wife looked at me with loving disgust as I ventured another sip, but that was it for this one. After a while, it started to settle as it sat, with most of the murk sinking to the bottom half, and something that could have been an IPA rising to the top, but again, I wasn't going for it again. Well, now at least I know what the bottom of a firkin tastes like. Either that, or cedar is not something beer should be aged in. Still better than Budweiser.

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Photo of XmnwildX12
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of mendvicdog
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of billab914
3.49/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into my Russian River tulip glass. Poured a murky copper orange color with a big frothy three finger off-white head. The head had some very good retention and left a lot of lacing on the glass as I drank it.

The aroma starts off with some hoppy citrus flavors but then the big cedar, dry, woody flavor hits you. It really smells like you walked into a humidor. It's kind of hard to pick up any of the beer flavors through the strong cedar.

The taste shows a little more of the hoppy, citrus & pine IPA flavor then the nose did, but it also has a pretty strong woody cedar taste to it. The finish leaves a nice long lasting bitterness on the palate. The ceder might just be overpowering the taste too much in my opinion though.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is decent, you really have to enjoy the wood flavor for it to be drinkable though.

Overall this was a very interesting beer, it was a cool idea and I'm glad I got to try it. The cedar is just too overpowering in it though in my opinion and the wood flavor is hard to get past. This is probably the most extreme "wood" flavored beer I've ever had and I'm not sure how I feel about cedar as a beer flavor. It didn't seem to lend itself to beer as well as say Oak does in my opinion.

 1,305 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.28/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazed, deep copper body with an inch of long-lasting, whitish foam.

Smell: Pale maltiness with a sweet-scented brushing of light caramel coupled with a spicy, peppery cedar aroma and peppy hop notes of tangy citrus and grass.

Taste: Pale malts with a touch of fresh grains and a sweet mingling of light caramel and toffee. Brightly hoppy with a bold hit of juicy citrus fruits and a slight grassy overtone. Moderate bitterness. Ah, then there's the cedar wood delivering a distinct taste of finely-ground white pepper for a nice layer of spiciness. Sure, it finishes dry and fairly bitter, but it's that lingering zesty cedar wood that really sends you back for another and another sip.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Slight hefty, chewiness to the mouthfeel though.

Drinkability: Very enjoyable. While it would be a fine, balanced India Pale Ale in its own right, it's the addition of cedar wood that really sells it for me.

 964 characters

Photo of russpowell
4.59/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 750 ml bottle in Brandon FL, had some at the tap room too, liked it a lot...

Pours a chill hazed amber with 2 fingers of rocky cream colored head. Superior head retention & average lacing

S: Much woodyness & some grapefruiit & peppery notes. I LOVE the nose on this!

T: Follows the nose, some honey malt & breadyness as well. Grapefruit, honey malt & cedar woodyness are the main players as this warms, some pineyness too at the back of the throat. Finishes woody, dry, grapefruiity & wth some honey sweetness, plus just a hint of booze warmth

MF: Medium biodied creamy, nice balance & warming sensation

I like the way this is drinking, have had some cedar aged beers like Boulevard's Seeyoulater dopplebock, where I wasn't thrilled with the results. This is a nice variant on the straight up jai lai, which is also top notch in my book as well. I think this presented much better as a bottled beer for that's worth... This one really worked for me

 965 characters

Photo of vfgccp
4.68/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cigar city recently expanded their brewing capacity, and the 750ml bottle of Humidor series IPA that I got to try in Long Island NY is a direct result of that. THANK YOU!

I absolutely loved this IPA.

A - A stunning mahogany-apricot. Smooth and creamy head with great retention. One of the best looking IPA's I've ever seen.

S - Grapefruit laced with light resiny cedar

T - Bursting with citrus. I can't believe how clear the flavors are. The profile includes some bitter-boozy Campari, but is dominated by sweet white grapefruit and blood orange. Clean cedar flavors play a supporting role and avoid the "in your face because I'm on the label" cliches. Smooth malt shows up early in the mid profile and hangs around to tie everything together. Very well done.

M - Smooth, medium body. Mild effervescence with a light boozy feel.

D - Very drinkable for the style. IPA's can wear out your palate in a hurry, but the juicy citrus of the beer kept me coming back for more.

O - A delicious, edgy IPA that pushes the style in directions other than the IBU arms race that's dominated American IPAs over the past few years. Cigar City - keep up the good work!

 1,162 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes 2/11/11. Thanks to THECPJ for sharing.

A: Pours a hazy orange with two fingers of thick foam on top. Great retention and lacing!

S: A little woody, nice citrus - I get some papaya, pink grapefruit, and maybe some guava.

T: A little oaky with a nice hop bite. The citrus fruits return and are extremely pronounced. Crisp finish, not very bitter.

M/D: Medium bodied with great carbonation. A really good beer, very impressed with the fruit flavors that come forward in this beer. Cigar city ipas continue to impress me.

 539 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.91/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Barely blurry apricot with polished gold edges and an outstanding looking crown of bone colored mousse. These guys nail appearance much more often than not. The foam is finely pitting, softly rocky and impressively sticky. We're off to a great start.

With each sniff, I'm instantly transported back to my childhood and the cedar chest in my mom's sewing room. The nose is incredibly aromatic with respect to that pungent, almost incense-like wood, not so much in terms of hops. While it's pleasant enough, a lack of lupulins is a liability in an American IPA.

Thankfully, the flavor is less cedar-centric, because this would have been a long 750 ml if JACAIPA tasted like it smells. There's still wall-to-wall wood. However, the base beer is incredibly fresh and bitingly bitter. Well... at least as fresh and bitingly bitter as an ale that has been aged can be.

Specifics include multiple planks of perfumy cedar, lightly toasted bread, and loads of white grapefruit and orange. A hop bill that supposedly includes Simcoe, Amarillo and Centennial makes sense as soon as one lets beer wash over taste buds. Something is giving this offering an almost cardamom and white pepper spiciness that is different, interesting and enjoyable. The next highest taste score was a serious consideration.

No second thoughts about appearance... it's out of this world on subsequent pours and after. The mouthfeel is classic AIPA. It's light-medium for the breed and the bubbles are both fine and dandy. Great for ease of drinkability.

While I wouldn't want to drink cedar-aged IPAs every day, this Cigar City Humidor Series ale is different enough (and hoppy enough) to hold my interest. Thanks to ktrillionaire for yet another delicious Sunshine State brew.

 1,748 characters

Photo of duceswild
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of millerbuffoon
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh growler sent straight up from Florida, I cracked this puppy open on Saturday afternoon and watched Avatar and ate Pizza while I enjoyed it. Consumed on 04/24/2010.

Nice pour here, mellow amber in color with a nice head of white that caps it off quite well leaving some nice lacing down the sides of the glass. Aroma is citrus, mango, lots of cedar and tobacco notes. Very nice and complex. Smooth, very rich creamy feel really lets the flavor settle in very nicely. Rich notes of cedar dominate here but letting them breathe lets the hops come through and leave the mark. Rich follow though with hints of pine, light herbs, touch of grassy notes, but the wood and tobacco dominate here for sure. Really easy to drink, I would not have even guessed this was 7.5 percent to be honest. Easily polishd off the growler and was looking for more.

Overall I really liked this, it worked well for me, then again I really liked wood aged IPAs.

 941 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.59/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is one of the most unique cask beers I think I have had the chance to try. I had a 10oz half pint at cask temp.

A - The color is a murky hazed (due to lack of cask finings) color of apricot with smallish head of cream

S - The smell is a strange but pleasant blend of piney hops and cedary woodiness w/ a light fruit ester

M - The mouthfeel is intensely hopped upfront with a astringent/resinous cedar bark texture which leaves the palate dry - medium body, a bit on the thin side of 7.5%

T - The taste is good, but not great as the hops are sligthly overpowered by the cedar, there is a nice Ipa flavor with mild fruit and subtle citrus of the hops, but it seems like they just went overboard with the cedar to prove to you that this is Really REALLY a cedar beer and IPA second. I love the experimentation, but when in balance with the total beer in mind

D - I will sum up here with a good, but not great along the lines of the taste portion of the review. I could probably only handle a 1/2 pint to be honest. I like the way cedar smells and Jai Alai is a decent IPA, but the combination seems to detract slightly for me rather enhance the drinking experience -just my .02

 1,185 characters

Photo of mdfb79
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From 5/21 notes. Had at a local DC tasting thanks to nimbleprop.

a - Pours a golden amber color with two inches of white head and light carbonation.

s - Smells of citrus, pepper, cedar, and some smooth caramel malts.

t - Taste is similiar to the nose; pepper, citrus and piney hops, smooth malts.

m - Medium body and light carbonation. Smooth and easy to drink.

d - I thought this was a pretty good IPA that was very easy to drink. Some nice citrus hops in the smell and taste. Didn't really taste any cedar but could smell it. Would definitely try again.

 560 characters

Photo of womencantsail
1.57/5  rDev -61%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

I've had this one a couple occasions now. Both out of the growler and out of the bottle. Both have been the same...

A: The pour is a nice looking hazy golden orange color with a white foam on top.

S: The nose is not a good start to the beer. Cedar and spicy mothballs. The hops try to peak through with just a bit of citrus, but the attempt is futile.

T: Just when I thought the nose couldn't get worse, I drank the beer. Incredibly astringent and spicy notes from the cedar with tobacco and a flavor that I would assume is how mothballs taste (judging from the smell).

M: A medium body with a moderate carbonation. Unfortunately, that spiciness sits on the tongue and is only tolerable for a period of time.

D: I really don't get this beer or the raves about it. I suppose the cedar aging might work for other styles of beer, but get it out of the IPAs.

 859 characters

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Reviewed from notes from 2012.

Appearance - Light copper colored. White head. Sticky looking with a ton of lace.

Smell - Tons of grapefruit hops. The cedar aroma adds to the pungency of the grapefruit. Some caramel malts.

Taste - Fresh grapefruit hops. Intense cedar. The cedar pairs very well with the grapefruit hops. Slightly sweet pale malt in the back. Bitter finish with an intense woody cedar lingering aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Medium carbonation. A little bit creamy.

Overall - I don't really like cedar in most beers, but this works well.

 601 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Devil's Backbone willibecher.

Got a couple o' these guys in trades with some righteous Floridians. Thanks go out to HeyOhhh for this particular bottle!

Heading into this brew, I've come to learn (and assume for the future) that wood-aging makes beers good, great, even excellent. Never before, though, has the wood been cedar. And, starting off, it hasn't affected the look much: still a clear amber-orange with more than enough sudsy foam toward the top (I'm told this position is normal, but I have no way to prove it). The cedar does come through in the nose. I've gotta admit, I'm surprised; normally the wood isn't this pronounced this quickly. Not content to live alone (wuss) the cedar is joined by a horde of piney hops, citrus peels, and some mild menthol. It's clear that the wood pays most of the bills, but the hops spend the most time in the taste, constantly gabbin' away on the phone, eatin' up all the chips (and chewing so damn loudly!), and always usin' up all the hot water. This means there's a helluva lotta piney bitterness, with some minor orange rind aftershocks, an intimation of buttery caramel, and, of course, the mild nag of the cedar, always hanging in the background. Luckily for these "Real World" rejects, they get along smoothly (after all, why do you think they were rejected?), even if they're not all that bubbly. This is probably the most drinkable wood-aged brew yet, especially considering the lack of alcoholic burn. Bring on more cedar, baby!

 1,498 characters

Photo of atlbravsrno1
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of thatoneguymike
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by afdempse. Thanks Adam!

The beer is transparent and orange colored, sporting a half inch of white head. Lasting retention and ample lacing.

The aroma is unique and wonderful. A bold scent of freshly lit cigars and cigar smoke take center stage, followed by floral hops.

The taste is not quite as delectable and intriguing as the aroma, but well balanced and enjoyable nonetheless. I can understand why some may dislike this beer, as it is certainly not for everyone. When viewed solely as an IPA or DIPA, this will not hold its own when matched against the upper tier brews of this ilk. That said, Humidor IPA is a complex, unique, and creative brew to be sipped and savored. I applaud Cigar City for this "outside the box" beer. While I was not expecting to enjoy this nearly as much as I did, I would certainly have this again. Recommended.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.41/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden color with a decent sized white head that slowly fades to a ring around the top of my glass. Smells like that old chest at the end of your grandmothers bed. Earthy and woody with a hint of patchouli. There's some citrus in there as well, and maybe some malt, but the cedar is such a powerful aroma its hard to find anything else. It tastes just like it smells. Cedar and citrus with a hint of pepper and malt splashed in for good measure. I'm not sure if I'm imagining this, but after each sip my pallet seems awash with the flavor of cannabis. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet bubbly mouthfeel. The cedar flavor and aroma is quite strong here and the first few sips were rough until my taste buds finally cried uncle. This is not something I would drink often, but I applaud the result.

 836 characters

Photo of BMart
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of InspectorBob
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of stakem
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Review from notes taken on 11/20/10. The label is different from what is listed but I'm assuming this is the same brew. No indication on the bottle that the base brew is Jai Alai but this is the only listing for a cedar aged IPA so it's probably the same.

Poured into a snifter this brew appears a beautiful perfectly clear light orange color with 2 fingers of fluffy yellowish stained, creamy head. It retains well and leaves a leggy pattern of lace around the glass.

The aroma of this brew is sweet floral hops mixed with some light indications of vanilla. Some citrus, pine and spicy character is evident. A light tingle of the alcohol is felt in the nose through the back along with a seemingly candy sugary sweetness.

The taste is herbal hops mixed with a woodsy flavor that unsurprisingly tastes like cedar with some spiciness. Some oily bitterness clings with some resine like orange rind. A light toasted grain sweetness balances out the flavor of the hops and cedar.

This is a medium bodied brew with a moderate level of carbonation. The alcohol is noticeable with a bit of a perfume-like flavor and warmth. The hops last inside the mouth long after each sip. This would be a well balanced brew except the cedar flavor really stood out and sort of clashed a bit. Nonetheless it was an interesting experience and I would drink it again but maybe with a different take on the hops or with a less aggressive cedar flavor.

 1,431 characters

Photo of dfhhead25
2.5/5  rDev -38%

Jai Alai IPA - Cedar Aged (Humidor Series) from Cigar City Brewing
4.03 out of 5 based on 925 ratings.
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