Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale
Cigar City Brewing

Cubano-Style Espresso Brown AleCubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale
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Brown Ale - English
Ranked #1
Ranked #3,166
4.13 | pDev: 9.2%
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States
Cubano-Style Espresso Brown AleCubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale
Notes: This rich brown ale is redolent with Cuban-style roasted espresso beans, sweet caramel and toffee and hints of dry nuttiness. Cuban Espresso is a popular drink in the Cigar City of Tampa owing to its many Sicilian and Cuban immigrants. The beans for Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale are roasted locally by Mazzaro's Italian Market and Deli in St. Petersburg to our exact specifications.

25 IBU
Reviews: 383 | Ratings: 1,534 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of sulldaddy
sulldaddy from Connecticut

4.38/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Sampling a cellar temp 12 oz can of this beer poured into my snifter. Canned on 11/09/2020...WHOA! didnt notice that when I bought the single.....oh well too late now. Part of the online Brown Ales tasting event.
The beer pours a rich cola brown color with a soft pillowy beige head of about 1.5 cm. This foam remains as a sturdy edge layer throughout the sampling. I do get dense, short lived lattice on a swirl of my glass.
The aroma on this brew is very coffee forward, but not astringent, much more of a light and sweet coffee note. Very roasty and some dark chocolate too. Nose is appealing and suits the goal of the beer to mimic Cuban coffee.
First sip reveals a medium to lighter body with silky smooth texture and soft rolling carbonation. Physical traits of this beer are very nice. Beer drinks real easy and my glass is almost empty before I finish this review.
Flavor follows the nose. I get roasted malt and dark chocolate but smooth coffee dominates but is not overly bitter anywhere. Definitely a sweeter coffee flavor profile.
I really do enjoy this beer, even though Im not really a coffee drinker. Glad to have picked this up and one year in the can. Worth a pick up if you see this around, even a little less than fresh IMO.

Nov 14, 2021
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Jack_14 from Italy

3.55/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

33 cl. Can, October 2021.
Notes of coffee and chocolate on the nose. Delicate toasting.
Deep brown color, dense. Abundant, creamy and tasty foam.
In the mouth the body is extremely drinkable and slides off easily. Moderate carbonation.
In the mouth the hints of cappuccino dominate (for the delicacy of the toasted hints and creaminess that pervades the taste of the coffee) and of milk chocolate, but also of almond, walnut and a final sweet touch that almost recalls the whipped cream that is put in some variants of espresso (for example our local "Moroccan coffee").
Light malty caramel notes emerge in the background and remain in the background.
Easy to drink but absolutely satisfying: soft and that releases all the characterizing elements in a decidedly balanced way.
Perhaps with a slightly more structured body I would have appreciated it even more, but considering that it professes itself as a Brown Ale it is absolutely in line with the structure of the historical British model.

Oct 14, 2021
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Bitterbill from Wyoming

3.92/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Canned October 14th 2020.

Pours black but I see some reddish highlights, nice finger of tannish foam.

The smell is split between coffee and cocoa nibs with vanilla just behind.

Wow, the coffee is still prominent even though it is close to being 8 months old. Cool. Cocoa nibs are almost as noticeable, vanilla is there. Foremost bitter because of the coffee, some malty sweet notes because of the cocoa. I did not expect things turning out this way given the age. It's only 5.5%abv.

Smooth mouthfeel, the carbonation is a tad light at this stage.

Very nice.

Jun 02, 2021
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Sigmund from Norway

3.78/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

355 ml can, shared by my son Steinar. ABV is 5.5%. Dark brown colour, beige head. Aroma of coffee and brown malts, also notes of chocolate, hints of vanilla. Slightly sweet flavour with the same ingredients, smooth and pleasant to drink.

Apr 24, 2021
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Pivopijak from Washington

3.83/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

can into glass
Great, undulating tan, meringue like head of medium thickness and longevity. Very murky dark brown color with golden brunette hue at the edges of glass. Charred barrel and coffee aroma, anyone ?! A rather thin flavored coffee tinged brown ale with the charred wood showing itself. Good

Apr 02, 2021
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Peach63 from New York

4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours deep copper with a 1 inch tan head, which dissipates. Moderate lacing.

Aroma of coffee, chocolate, wood, roast malts.

Taste is coffee, tobacco, chocolate, toffee, ash. Astringent.

Full bodied, lively carbonation. Dry, astringent finish.

This is a very good coffee flavored beer.

Mar 24, 2021
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Dfeinman1 from Florida

4.07/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Like the sweet coffee aromatics that emanated from this beer. Perfect balance of of ABV espresso chocolate and sweetness with a solid carbonation and mouthfeel. Great beer.

Mar 03, 2021
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SABERG from Massachusetts

4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz can dated 11/30/2020 into the test glass.
A - Mahagony color, excellent tight knit mocha cap. Foam retention is quite good, displaying lovely lacing thoughout the experience.
S - Espresso, cocoa, roast malt with a subtle smokiness, a kiss of caramel.
T- Caramel up front, then the coffee begins to march in, with a milk sugar mixer from the lactose, "coffee lite on he cream please" comes to mind, There is also a lovely cocoa bite in there.
M - Semi sweet start, then a move toward the bitter, finish is neatral and quite nice
O - A very good coffee brown ale. the lactose use is delicate and adds to the heft and texture.
really well done

Feb 28, 2021
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woodchipper from Connecticut

3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz can dated 11/09/20 to a Nonic.
Dark brown body with red highlights on the edges of the glass. Creamy head really invokes the "espresso" in the name.
Aroma is a mild, musty malt smell. Really faint sense of the coffee to come.
Taste is a big hit of coffee with a sweet back-bone. There is a sense that the caffeine content is high.
Medium body with proper carbonation to remind you that you're not drinking a chilled coffee, its a brown ale.
Overall a well executed beer given that the goal was to replicate a certain style of espresso. Unfortunately for me, its a little sweeter than I like but I'm not holding that against CCB.

Feb 13, 2021
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flyingpig from Scotland

4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

355ml can from Curious Liquids, Glasgow (£4.00):
Deep mahogany with an opaque body that's not far off black & a tan, creamy head about 1cm tall that slowly fades to a very fine lacing over the surface. The nose is strong with espresso notes & chocolate upfront, it's relatively sweet with lactose & sugars coming through on top of an earthy, bread malt base that seems quite creamy too. Coffee & light roasted malts carry over the to taste with the chocolate sweetness showing as well; it's a smooth, very creamy beer with some earthy flavours & lactose towards the end. It was medium to full bodied, softly carbonated & silky smooth with a great balance too; a solid brown ale that wasn't far off a sweet stout.

Feb 13, 2021
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Suds from Missouri

3.97/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

My wife picked up this beer for us to try. From a twelve ounce can, this one is a dark, black color with a thick and frothy head. It is like the crema on an actual espresso. The aroma has a coffee and lightly roasted malt note. The taste is slightly sweet, wtih an underlying coffee bitterness and flavor. Not bad.

Jan 24, 2021
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dcotom from Iowa

4.49/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12-ounce can into a Willi Becher glass, canning date 10/14/20. Cola-colored body, with reddish-orange highlights and a good three fingers of dense tan head that lingers for a while before disappearing. Big burst of espresso upon opening the can, a promise of the goodness to follow. Tons of sweet and slightly-charred coffee bean on the palate. Pleasant mouthfeel, with enough body to satisfy. The sweetness lingers on the palate, with a tinge of fruity sourness and some coffee-bean bitterness. This is as easy-drinking as it gets.

Jan 20, 2021
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BEERMILER12 from Maine

4.14/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a deep brown color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a thin cap

S: Toasted malt, espresso, caramel, vanilla, and dark cocoa

T: Follows the nose. Toasted malt, caramel, espresso, and some lactose up front. Cocoa and vanilla come in shortly after. Finishes with lingering smooth espresso, caramel, and mild lactose sweetness

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth

O: A nice brown with plenty of coffee/espresso. Lactose and cocoa add another nice layer and make it super drinkable. Worth a drink

Jan 03, 2021
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Greywulfken from New York

4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Color me impressed, this was a good one - great coffee taste, rich but not too sweet, remarkably low abv (5.5%) - can says "English-style brown ale" with "Cuban-style espresso beans from Tampa's Buddy Brew Coffee" - also features cacao and lactose... I'd get it again for sure...

Dec 27, 2020
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Mindcrime1000 from South Dakota

4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a tulip.

Pours dark reddish-brown, with a nice foamy/creamy head and good lacing.

Great aromas of dark chocolate, dark coffee, caramel malt and cashew.

Caramel malt sweetness gives way quickly to dark coffee, dark chocolate, cashew, faint char and smoke, vanilla, and toffee. The finish is a bit of leather and roast with a touch of spice. Bold flavors overall. The sweetness and bitterness are in perfect balance and harmony.

The brew is just beyond medium bodied, but well carbonated and creamy-smooth.

Excellent brew.

Dec 12, 2020
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StJamesGate from New York

3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chestnut with tall, creamy taupe head; stale coffee, pipe tobacco + hazelnuts on the nose; brown soda loaf, carob, espresso grounds, red berries + walnuts; creamy + clean. Demerara as it warms.

4 4 3.75 4 4

This is a tough one.
There are some rich brown malt notes to start, but once you add the beans, coffee + cacao both, an acidic sharpness starts to creep in - only the lactose keeps this from feeling like a thin beer. Some of the best reviews for this beer are pre-Canarchy, when they used a different roastery - that could explain a lot.
Then it shifts gears as it opens to get a lot of sweetness, like iced coffee with brown sugar. I’m not sure it ever gets balanced - just a tension between extremes.
Either bump up the malts + make a proper coffee brown or kill the lactose + make a crisp, coffee session beer.

Not what I want out of a brown ale or a coffee beer.

Nov 26, 2020
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mikeinportc from New York

4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Canned 10/14/20.

Not-quite-black, very dark brown , with one finger of fine tan head.

Smell is black coffee, dark chocolate , and earthy charred wood.

Taste is coffee,cola, nutty roast malt, and slight woody tang.

Feel is light, but not watery, with moderate carbonation tingle.

Nice, lighter, coffee-forward brown.

Nov 19, 2020
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clayrock81 from Florida

4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a black-brown body with almost no head and very little lace going down the glass. The aroma is basically coffee along with some nuttiness and not much else. Smooth beer, nutty, a slightly sweet lactic taste works with a mild coffee flavor (Espresso) that makes for an easy sipping beer that has a snap on the finish.

Sep 18, 2020
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vette2006c5r from Minnesota

4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale pours a dark brown color, with a very small, lacing head. Rich aroma, sweet,hints of dry chocolate and coffee. Flavor is rich, sweet, dry dark chocolate notes, sweeter coffee notes as well, hints of toffee. Great creamy feel. Overall, very rich, very tasty, full of sweet coffee flavors.

Jun 18, 2020
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Hopheadjeffery from Illinois

4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled in a taster from draft at Whole Foods Market on December 31, 2019. Brewed with a heaping amount of Cubano-style espresso beans, vanilla and cacao nibs. Rich coffee notes dominate this beer, while it finds balance with a smooth malty backbone. Pairs well with arroz con leche and, of course, a delicate shot of Cubano espresso. Made with a proprietary blend of coffee beans produced in tandem with Buddy Brew Coffee in Tampa, Florida.

Mar 05, 2020
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bankboy66 from New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown with coffee and chocolate on the nose. Light to medium body with coffee up front. You get sweetness at first but I thought it was a bit bitter on the finish. Overall a very good beer.

Feb 29, 2020
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Thankin_Hank from Texas

4.47/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown in color with a minimal head. Smells of alcoholic coffee and somewhat nutty. The coffee comes on strong with some nice chocolate flavor too. Smooth as silk and wonderful on the palate. I will buy these when I find them in the store. Very nice brew. On draft at the Meddlesome Moth.

Feb 28, 2020
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mushroomcloud from Texas

3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz canned 9-4-19. Opened 1-19-20.
1 finger sand colored head, falls to 1/4" and holds steady there.
Dark brown, clear and clean when held to the light. Spotty lacing.
Bold espresso notes dominate the nose early. Dark rich coffee grounds and subtle smoky malt.
The flavor is espresso with just a hint of sweetness and a touch of cream. Roasted / nutty malt holds up the coffee.
Light to medium body with medium level of carbonation. Decent length on a malt and coffee-full finish.
Very good, drinkability is high. Borders on becoming sweet but hangs in there. Held up very well for 4 months old, espresso is still strong.

Jan 20, 2020
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zeff80 from Missouri

4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can. Poured out a clear, brown color with a small, light brown head of foam. It smelled of coffee, chocolate and roasted malt. Great roast coffee taste with chocolate and toffee.

Jan 11, 2020
Photo of Magnificent_Bastard

4.48/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had this from a fresh can. Pretty much does what it says on the label and does it well. thich brownish head. Nose is all about coffee. freshly ground coffee beans, brewed espresso, molasse, vanilla, raw cacao beans. palate is fresh and with a vibrant acidic note through it, as well as with plenty of carbonation. taste profile is similar to a stout , but this being a lighter England style brown ale, it is more sweet and less dense. finish with caramel, toffee, vanilla pudding, and chocolate covered coffee beens

Jan 03, 2020
Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale from Cigar City Brewing
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 1534 ratings