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 khiasmus
3.37/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

"I'm kind of a big deal, my library smells of rich mahogany..."
So it is with Cigar City, a big deal, small batches, cedar-aged IPAs(really?), the hype monster. So here's the first try at it, sitting in the library of rich mahogany with a puro and a CS Lewis book for good measure.
"I say, what a bit of alright! What of it, chaps?"
"Blimey! White pepper! Bakery-rolls and all, what with a bit of grapefruit to boot!"
"Lightly cloudy and little head, but what of a chance at rain? Heh heh..."
"Crikey! Here, lads, is a load of hops. A bloody monstrous bitter too, I say..."
"Well, after I dropped a bomb on this, I did expect to be gobsmacked, while this is a bit of a disappointment."
"Well I think it's bleeding ace."
"Write your own bloody review then."
"Stonking hopping, bitterness, and lemon-sour, then just a bit of white bread, cedar..."
"I think they made a blatant dog's dinner. What of all the chemical bits?"
"Well, horses for courses, I suppose."
"Low carbonation, watery, astringent, ill-balanced, bitter and spicy. I find little to enjoy in this."
"Well, there's little sense in waffling on and on... I'm a bit squiffy anyway."
"It was a fine piss up. Ta."
"Cheers mate."

 1,186 characters

Photo of beagle75
3.38/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy, medium amber color with one finger of diminishing white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: A sharp-edged combination carbon dioxide and fresh-cut wood largely masks the presence of malt. Esters are also present, providing a suggestion of sweetness and becoming more pronounced as the beer warms.

T: Begins nearly dry, with volatile wood and robust toasted malt, with a lively coppery taste just under the surface. Carbonic acid soon surges to an aggressive level and stays there, tapering off well into the finish. Hop aromatics are earthy and spicy early, then developing a faint dark citrus quality as the middle elapses. Grainy toasted malt becomes resurgent in the middle, where estery fruit and black pepper may also play a small role. The finish sees the various flavor threads approaching the end like runners whose endurance is flagging--diminished by their journey, but still in it. The cedar, nuanced even at the beginning when it was at its strongest, is relatively unrepresented here, although it may be responsible for the mellowing effect had over the bitterness, which stays mild but with a medicinal quality.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, acidity builds on the palate to the point of distraction, with brisk carbonation.

D/O: Complexity is a quality that cannot usually be attributed to the function of any single ingredient, and neither is it something that is always desired in a beer. Here complexity reigns, and it is probably this beer's best quality. While it struggles with some acidity issues, it produces some very intense and resonant flavors that are challenging to put into words. It is definitely not a typical IPA-drinking experience, and that is irrespective of coasts. This is eminently sippable, with the ability to hold its own against tripels and strong ales.

 1,878 characters

Photo of mverity
3.39/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Proof Bottle Shop. Poured into a snifter. Clear amber orange with tiny white chunks suspended throughout. Some white head, thin white collar and poor lacing. Aroma is citrusy, sweet earthy cedar, some caramel, lots of orange, some grapefruit and lemon. Taste is mostly the cedar and orange/grapefruit with a touch of the medium malt. Mouthfeel is slightly under carbonated and a little thin too. I finally sat down to write this review after a few four packs over the past few years. Decent, but I'll take Jai Alai any day of the weeks.

 548 characters

Photo of Reaper16
3.41/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle served into a tulip glass

Pours a darkish, burnt orange color. Plenty of murkiness to the body, though you can see some carbonation when you hold the beer to direct light. The carbonation gushes out, forming a two-finger-plus sized head, but it reduces down to a very tight one finger. Plenty of thick-ringed lace is left in its wake.

The dominant aroma I'm getting is caramel malt. Which isn't what I personally want to get as the dominant aroma in an IPA, but I can roll with it. There's green hop notes here, a splash of fruit juice too. There's a different sort of astringency here too which I am attributing to the cedar chips. Slight vanilla comes along with the wood. I've had cedar in beer before (namely Boulevard's discontinued Seeyoulator Dopplebock), and this doesn't at all smell like what I thought it would. The unique character of cedar is diminished on the nose of this bottle. Is it old? I have no reason to think so, but it could be the case.

Tasting the beer leads me to believe that it isn't blindingly fresh but isn't over the hill either. There's a fair amount of peach and orange hop flavor to this bottle. The caramel malt IS stronger than I'd prefer, but it maybe needs to be. The cedar flavor isn't dominant or even particularly strong, and I think the malt is helping a lot to keep the wood in balance. That wood is green and yes, tastes like cedar. Very trace vanilla; mostly green wood.

This beer is on the thicker side of medium-bodied. I typically don't like that attribute, but it works for this beer. There's something pleasing about the textural heft in relation to wood flavor. Usually, wood-aged beers are so thinned-out, so the contrast is unexpected and enjoyable.

Overall, this is an above-average IPA. It is unique and enjoyable, though nothing that I would turn to regularly (or ever again, even). It isn't what I'm looking for in an IPA, but it does succeed in what it wants to do.

 1,945 characters

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 bigfnjoe
3.42/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Victory tulip

A- pours a cloudy shade of orange with a one finger slightly offwhite head. A decent bit of sediment in this one. Huh.

S- the cedar is the primary aroma, with some sweet fruit creeping through as well

T- slight bitterness, decent smoky wood flavor, mild sweetness. It's ok

M- body is actually relatively thick

O- not a huge fan. I know this is one of CCB's staples, but I'm not in love with it

 440 characters

Photo of TotallyHosed
3.46/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks goes to Heatwave33.

The appearance has all the markings of a good brew: thick off-white head, translucent dark amber color, lacing from top to bottom and bubbly.

The smell of this brew is lacking. I certainly smell the cedar wood, but at no time could I smell anything else.

The taste is a little better than the smell. When the brew was cold, I was only able to taste cedar and a little bit of sweetness. As it warmed up I did pick up some hoppy bitterness.

The feel is nice. There's adequate carbonation and light body. The bottle says the brew is unfiltered, but the appearance nor the feel reflected this. I would expect to see some cloudiness and a light-to-medium body. In my opinion, this is simply an observation, not a negative critique.

I do enjoy IPA's that are aged with wood. That extra layer, or layers, of complexity is a welcome change from the usual profile. My only disappointment is that I expected more hops in the nose. Maybe a bottle that is more fresh would deliver this. This is an interesting beer that I recommend you try once. I don't smoke cigars, but I imagine this brew would make a good pair.

 1,135 characters

Photo of stang02
3.48/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass from a 750ml bottle. Pours an opaque orange that has absolutely no clarity to it. Has a one finger head that is slowly diminishing with great lacing. Smells is overwhelmingly strong from the citrus, namely grapefruit and some orange. There is no cedar in the nose which is disappointing. There is no cedar anywhere which is even more disappointing. If it weren't cedar aged then it would be a pretty good IPA but since it is supposed to be cedar aged it is a little bit underwhelming. That being said, it is still a very good, very drinkable IPA that should be experienced by anyone who likes the hops. The finish is slightly acidic because of the grapefruit taste that dominates the entire body of the beer. It is not balanced with the hops commanding most of the taste, with little regard to malts anywhere in the body of this beer. It has a good mouthfeel but feels oily on the palate afterwards.

I was originally excited to try this beer but it was underwhelming. It is still good to drink but the cedar is not prevalent whatsoever. Good IPA but I wouldn't go too far out of my way to get it.

 1,121 characters

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

Poured from 750mL brown bottle into a clear stemmed glass wine goblet. No freshness date. Purchased at Knightly Spirits (Orlando, FL) for $8.99.

A: Burnished amber with dense 1-finger off -white head which leaves a sheet of lace all around the glass.

S: After sampling this immediately following a Jai-Alai unleaded, this brew has no bright aroma signature at all comparatively. There is a dull woody chest of drawers type of aroma but no bright citrus and resin hoppiness like the progenitor ale.

T: The flavor is a little better than the aroma, but overall it is still muted and masked byt he cedar heavy sprucey, woody flavors. Hoppiness is very bitter but not much else.

M: Still very smooth and creamy but the aftertaste is bluntly woody.

D: Cedar aging did no favors for this wonderful brew. THe aroma and flavors are muted and darkened. Not at all a good version compared to the original.

 900 characters

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

My 200th review, figure I better make it something good. Got this one from a trade with awalk1227. Cheers!

Appearance: Poured from the bottle into my Shorts pint glass, the beer is a nice, barely cloudy, vibrant copper color with a huge amount of not-quite-white head. The retention is impressive, so much so that I have to wait for it to fade away before I can really dig into this beer. As the head slowly dissipates, it leaves behind thick sheets of schtick along the sides of the glass.

Smell: I'm getting more of the cedar aging than I am hops. The smell is muted, most likely a result of the aging. I'm getting the feeling that this brew is suffering from a bit of hop fade. I'm hoping that the aging on the cedar will make up for the lack of bitterness.

Taste: Thankfully, I'm getting me some hops now. The hops bring a bit of pine to the brew, but it's mostly overshadowed by a malty backbone and a subtle hint of wood aging. All the flavors combine to form a pretty balanced brew, but I was hoping for a bit more of an in-your-face hoppy blast.

Mouthfeel: A nice medium body, and ample carbonation.

Drinkability: Not exactly what I expected. Though I guess that an IPA that has been aged is going to be a little muted. Overall, it does have some good flavor. I think the cedar aging does add a nice quality to the beer, but it would be much better if they amped up the hops.

 1,389 characters

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 doremite
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of SPRichard
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of tetu
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of enelson
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of gtermi
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of FUwolfpacker
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of Tumble
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of nollie77
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of RBorsato
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of TBlightning
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of emottram
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of Bluecane
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of tswater
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of scoot64
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

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