Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale | Cigar City Brewing

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Cubano-Style Espresso Brown AleCubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by tpd975 on 05-26-2009

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Reviews: 305 | Ratings: 1,320
Photo of c28nole
4.85/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Perhaps my favorite offering from Cigar City, one of the best breweries in the Southeast. Very coffee-forward. A strong coffee taste that you'd expect from a coffee stout, but with the drinkability of a brown ale. World class.

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Photo of JohnQVD
4.77/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a deep ruby brown with a light, bubbly head that quickly dissipates to a thin layer. Smell is Cuban coffee: dark espresso with sugar, with a touch of chocolate. Body is medium with high carbonation. It definitely feels substantial for a 5.5% brown ale. Taste is espresso with a hint of roasted grain in the background with a definite espresso aftertaste. It's drier than expected from the sweetness in the smell.

This is unique among the coffee beers I've had in that it's not a stout and the coffee is Cuban coffee. It's a really good combination of two of my favorite drinks and is the beer that originally made me take notice of Cigar City a couple of years ago.

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Photo of RashyGrillCook
4.74/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale
Those with adverse effects to caffeine need not apply. Color is reddish brown and pours very clear despite the yeast sediment. Head is minimal but leaves a pretty pattern of lacing. Smell is PURE espresso!!! Has a creamy feel with a medium weight that just glides effortlessly across the palate. Taste is again PURE espresso! There is some hops and malts in the finish. A fantastic brew that'll leave you running laps around the house(hello espresso!!). This is definitely one of my new favorite brews. Perfect for those lazy sunday mornings.

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Photo of CaptinRedBeard
4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to urwithdave for hooking me up with a growler of this. Poured from the growler into a Cigar City snifter.

A: Pours a nice amber hued dark brown color with about a finger of a light tan foam head. The head stays around for a while accompanied by some moderate lacing.

S: smells like some fresh brewed coffee in the morning. Subtle hints of vanilla and chocolate bring up the tail end of the aroma.

T: More coffee, lots of coffee. Sweet but with just a touch of bitterness in the finish. Again here some vanilla and just a touch of chocolate interplay with the coffee. There is a bit of roasted malt in there as well but the coffee is clearly the star here.

M: a perfect level of carbonation paired with a nice medium body make this one real smooth on the palate.

D: At 5.50% this might not qualify as a "session" beer but it sure is drinkable. This growler will be empty in no time flat. I could drink this with a nice breakfast, or anytime really. It's great that this is gonna be on full time at Cigar City. Now if they would only bottle it as well. This is absoutely one of my favorite beers.

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Photo of JISurfer
4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow, this was one amazing beer! After going to Miami and actually having legit Cafe Cubanos in Calle Ocho, I had an idea what I was looking for. I honestly don't think you could get any closer of a representation in a beer, it was spot on. The smell has that sweet, roasted bean body to it, unreal. Taste was similar, maybe a little more vanilla, still amazes me how close to the real thing it is. The closer it got to room temperature, the better it got.

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Photo of beldin96
4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: It was a very dark brown color. Very little light getting thru almost like a stout or a porter. It has a very small head that did not last long.

Smell: You get lots of great espresso on the nose right off. Under that you get some great malt and some caramel or chocolate. There is some light sweetness to the nose.

Taste: You get what you smell. The espresso is right up front. You get some of that bitterness that you would expect from coffee or espresso. The bitterness smoothes out quickly, and you get the great malts that you would expect from a good brown ale.

Feel: Solid mouth feel. Nice and full bodied.

Drinkability: I think that is has great drinkability. I would session this beer even though it is just over the ABV level. It was all around very enjoyable.

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Photo of AgingWarrior
4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed on tap at Cigar City Tap Room.

Pours a dark brown with about a finger of dark tan head. The head dissipates into a layer rather quickly, but hangs around until the very end.

Smell is incredible! Is this Starbucks?!? Strong espresso in the nose, with some hints of brown sugar.

Taste is as good as the smell. Strong coffee taste on the front, but with a slight vanilla taste and some bitterness on the end.

Tastes ever so smooth and creamy.

This is a very drinkable brew and at 5.5% abv you can enjoy several.

Highly recommend!

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Photo of saintk9
4.71/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Was in Tampa today and went by CCB. Had this beer fresh on tap.

WOW is all i have to say. This beer was tops for me. I love the espresso finish to it. Could stand to have a little stronger nose.

Could only get it in pints. Wanted to buy a growler but they would not let us.

If your in Tampa area go to CCB and have some beers!!

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Photo of Paincane
4.7/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Medium brown color with one finger tan head poured into pint glass. Head leaves behind a bit of lace, not much though.
S: Roasted coffee beans, espresso and malt are very evident from the start and do persist throughout.
T: Delicious Cuban coffee taste with a touch of sweet and malt.
M: Medium bodied with good carbonation.
O: Smooth and very drinkable. I am of Cuban origin and it is a familiar taste worked into a delicous beer. Will have to hunt more down ASAP.

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Photo of Goldfish19
4.69/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

~ Purchased this 32 oz growler from Big Z Beverage in Huntington, NY. Appearance is dark brown with a small tan head. Wow! This beer has such an amazing and intoxicating smell. It's like sticking your nose inside a can of Folgers Ground Coffee. And for the've guessed it - more coffee. This beer is really delicious and went down smoother than anything I have ever tasted before. I polished off all 32 ounces in record time, and now, I wish I had more. If you are a coffee lover - this is a must have.

Every once in a while a beer will come along and knock me off my feet - this is one of those beers.

Cigar City, congratulations on a job well done!

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Photo of ordybill
4.67/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from the tap into a pint glass. The appearance is a clear dark brown with red highlights and has a large tan head. The aroma is all coffee with some chocolate and malt. The taste is simply a great coffee flavor. Outstanding.

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Photo of DosBeerigos
4.67/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

C. Clear
H. Dark Brown
N. Smells like straight espresso coffee

Ok this is another one of those I think I might accidentally attempt to order this beer at Starbucks instead of at a bar. Straight coffee on this one, although it is very refreshing and light bodied. Unlike the Wake N' Bake from Terrapin this beer is smooth, light, and not very filling. There is a hint of brown sugar and cinnamon lingering around the taste of the beer. This bee is pretty dangerous.

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Photo of Floydster
4.64/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

32 ounce growler from tpd975, thanks again for our first trade Greg, poured into an oversized vanilla version, shared with Ben, Bob, and Danny last night, color is medium brown with dark red edges, one inch beige head that is rather creamy, decent retention, some lacing at first, aroma consists of heavily roasted espresso beans, chicory, roasted malts, cream, dark chocolate, burned almonds, toasted caramel, and maybe a little vanilla, starts off very dry with a huge coffee component, unlike any coffee beer I have had as far as the consistency and feel, it almost felt like there was actual grounds in the beer, finish has more coffee and a good amount of charred nuttiness, there are not many brews out there other than weasel that make coffee work this well in beer, such a different taste with the freshest and most roasted taste imaginable, super dry, very roasted, and almost chewy mouthfeel, medium bodied, moderate carbonation that allowed this beer to feel absolutely perfect on the senses, taste lingers for a very very long time, could have drank this and another growler,amazing drinkability for a coffee infused beer, very light, would like some with my breakfast in the morning, smooth and crisp, this was hands down my favorite of the Maduros and if this stuff becomes widely available, this brewery is going to make an even bigger name for myself, this stuff is awesome, highly recommended

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Photo of IrishHockey
4.64/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a can into a CCB hunahpu snifter (the only glass besides paper coffee cups in the hotel room)

Smell: vanilla, chocolate, and loads of coffee. Damn this smells great

Appearance: looks good! Brown with some red in it when I hold it to the light.

Taste: wow! Smell is dead on to the taste. The vanilla and coffee dominate, but the chocolate is there. It's soooo good! Little dry on the back end, but almost perfect.

Mouthfeel: very creamy and smooth. Little thicker than most brown ales. Almost into porter/stout range with how thick this is. Love it

Overall: hands down, one of the best coffee beers that I've ever had. So damn tasty!

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Photo of Immortale25
4.63/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an Evolution Brewing pint glass.

A- Pours a dark, dark almost opaque brown with a full inch of off-white head that retains a bit before slipping down to an 1/8 inch ring around the edge of the glass. A good amount of surface foam and minimal lacing.

S- Dark, roasted espresso with plenty of chocolate and caramel notes. Smells just like the way I enjoy my iced coffee. The espresso becomes more apparent when the glass is swirled and the carbonation is released.

T- Just as amazing as the first time I ever had it on tap. Heavy espresso that gives way to sweet chocolate in a pure and fully balanced delivery. Slightly bitter finish with hints of caramel, cinnamon, raisin and rice pudding (as the label suggests for a food pairing).

M- Thick, creamy and chewy. Medium-high carbonation.

O- Cigar City. Reinventing beer one project at a time.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from tap into a Dogfish Head stout glass, enjoyed with JackTheBear on a recent trip to Athens, GA. Poured a deep dark brown with a one finger tan head. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of BIG espresso, coffee, and cream. The flavor was of roasted malt, espresso, coffee beans, cream, and chocolate. It had a medium-heavy feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this brew was quite excellent. Since I personally don't drink coffee, I could see this as being a damn fine substitute. Had an excellent aroma and flavor on this one. Very well balanced even for a non-coffee drinker. The aroma was almost intoxicating it was so rich. Also it went down nice and smooth leaving you craving more. Very nice brew CCB!

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax. Poured into a Unibroue tulip. Nice beige head sticks around for just a moment. Aroma is strong of dark, toasted malts and coffee, coffee and more coffee. Taste follows suit, with some mild sweetness somewhere in the background. Great balance upon tasting, not too over the top on the coffee and just a great balanced brown with a twist along with the typical Cigar City complexity. The Cuban espresso treatment is delicious and wonderful. I'm still waiting for Cigar City to make a less than world class beer. It may never happen.

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Photo of BucBasil
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap at the Cigar City tap room in Tampa.

A: Dark brown with a light tan head. Surprising bright and clear. Some read notes coming in on the sides.

S: Very roasty. Cafe au lait. Creamy caramel. Heavenly note almost like a good chocolate ice cream.

T: Creamy coffee. Super smooth. Chocolate and mocha. I love this beer.

Fantastic. Smooth. Everything I want in a brown ale. Recommended.

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Photo of CampusCrew
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: deep dark brown with a loaded head and good retention. Had it poured in a unibroue tulip.

smell: a coffee delight... loaded and I was scared that the taste would be overpowering after taking a nice whiff.

taste: coffee was extremely balanced and a had a smooth rich flavor. Unlike a coffee stout, I think the subtle roasted malt went very well with this beer. Best coffee beer that I have had and probably by far.

mouthfeel: medium bodied

drinkability: I'm still waiting for CC to miss on a beer. Seems like they are perfect!

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Photo of jonwiseman
4.61/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

One of the finest examples of the style that I've ever tried. I expect nothing less from cigar city. Look is almost black. Smell is chocolate coffee. Taste is sweet mocha. Mouthfeel is light cream. Excellent porter

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Photo of Gtreid
4.61/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Growler, poured into a standard pint glass.

A: Dark auburn color, the pour produces one finger of tannish color head that leaves nice rings of lace.

A: Huge coffee and espresso, and I mean huge! Great earthness to the hops. The malts have a little chocolatey sweetness to them. Great nose.

T: Wow, coffee all the way. Just like a fresh brewed cup. Grassy hops, a touch of chocolate, and a few roasted nuts. But the malts are just great in this brew.

M: Lighter in body, but increadibly smooth. Just a perfect amount of carbonation.

D and overall impression: I am a coffee lover, so I think the drinkability is impressive. Non-coffee lovers will disagree given the sheer amount of espresso beans in this one. Overall, this is another great beer by Wayne and Joey over at CCB. So smooth and at 5.5%, breakfast is a great spot for this one. As far as the American Brown Ales I have tried, this one ranks right at the top! Great! Skal.

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Photo of socon67
4.59/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Brown pour with a cola colored foam. Nice lacing and a slight carbonation.

s - The smell of coffee bean is incredible. Easily among the best I've ever come across. Rich coffee beans that beckon back to coffeehouses. Roasted bean, caramel malt, and a bit of english toffee. Intoxicating.

T - Smooth as silk. Tasted slightly like tiramisu. Coffee flavor was akin to a good cigar (no irony there). Reserved taste, roasty flavor. Could pass for a nice latte.

M - Another positive is how mellow this beer is. not heavy, not overpowering, and well balanced. I had a couple of these and would love to session this on a late night. Heck, maybe some caffeine in this.

O - Mightbe my new favorite from CCB. If bottles make their way up here I'm in. Coffee lovers need to try this one.

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Photo of Danny1217
4.59/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a Cigar City pint glass. Enjoyed in a hotel room in Tampa where I got the beer and the glass from the nearby brewery.

Pours a very dark brown color, almost porter like in appearance. Nice tan head that doesn't stick around for too long. Decent lacing. It smells of toasted malts and coffee beans. Lots of coffee, as expected. Cigar City makes the best smelling beers. Tastes of oats, nuts, and coffee. A fairly sweet beer with a strong coffee finish. Tastes very much like a cuban espresso at the end. Delicious. Medium body and medium to high carbonation.

Cigar City has yet another delicious brown ale, with a nice Floridian twist. This is a delicious brew.

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Photo of barhoc11
4.58/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: Looks like a brown ale

S: Sweet coffee and malt aroma

T: Sweet at first but then you get a sweet coffee taste followed by a smokey malt.

M: Nice and full

O: This beer is outstanding, one of the best done coffee beers I have had. I would not of expected a brown coffee ale to be so complete but Cigar City did a great job. Wish I could get it in MI.

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Photo of PostRockandCats
4.58/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a can to a nonic.

L: Medium brown. Somewhat clear. No head; just a thin, khaki ring.

S: Medium roast Coffee beans (not dark; I have some old school Bustello here and that's WAY darker. But that's fine- it works well with the beer.) with some medium, nutty malt. A wee bit of hops at the end, but very little. Some pleasant light burnt notes at the tail end, as well. A nice amount of creamy vanilla throughout.

T: Nutty coffee with some burnt notes at the end. A little malty. Not at all hoppy. Just sweet enough to make for a balanced beer without being actively sweet. Nice bit of chocolate bitterness from the cacao nibs at the back with some fruity vanilla throughout. There's kind of an instant coffee taste in here.

F: Medium feel with a med-high carbonation.

O: Lovely. Wish it were year round.

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Cubano-Style Espresso Brown Ale from Cigar City Brewing
4.08 out of 5 based on 1,320 ratings.
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