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José Martí India Porter - French Oak | Cigar City Brewing

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54 Reviews
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José Martí India Porter - French OakJosé Martí India Porter - French Oak
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jsanford on 03-21-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Reviews:
54
Ratings:
98
Avg:
3.56
pDev:
19.38%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
27
For Trade:
2
User Reviews
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Reviews: 54 | Ratings: 98
Photo of aasher
1.43/5  rDev -59.8%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

This beer is courtesy of Sean, thanks man! I love trying CC that is new to me.

This one pours a solid dark chocolaty brown in color and medium in body. The aromas are of strange woods, bark, dry wood, an Amish furniture showroom, and forest brush. Dear god its woody. The flavor is worse. You get an unbearable amount of dried wood with a boatload of fresh rubber. It's bonafide undrinkable. Awful stuff. This wood is far too strong to use with this base beer. I'd stay away. This is almost as bad as the Humidor Series Jai Alai. Cedar and Virgin Oak just are not suitable for barrel aging.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
1.64/5  rDev -53.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Pours a sturdy brown-black and is capped with a big umber head; lace is deposited in small spots. The nose is a lot like regular Marti, though I can certainly smell the wood, too. The aroma is of heavily roasted grain, some chalky oat notes and a heavy tannin presence. The first sip is absolutely disgusting. This beer tastes like putting pennies in your mouth, or like licking a copper rail or just eating straight wood tannin. There is a vile and horrendous lingering tannic note that is less pleasant than chewing on a piece of pressure treated lumber. Maybe that is the problem here, they used pressure treated wood? I kid, but something is terrible here; this beer should not have been released, as it falls so far below the CCB standard for quality. This is the worst beer CCB has ever bottled, by a longshot. . The price point of $15 makes this unforgivable. After I suffered through half a glass, I actually had to crack one of my girlfriend's dad's Miller Lites to wash the nasty taste out of my mouth (that really says something when ML is clearly better than a CCB.)

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Photo of stxSS07
2.16/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Reviewed from notes. Split with lookitsmp.

A- Pours a dark brown with a tight finger of head that leaves nice lacing, but recedes to a cap fairly quickly.

S- Huge notes of oak followed by some coffee, sweet milk chocolate, vanilla, and some booze. Extremely wood-forward beer.

T- Huge oak/wood again followed by some roasted notes, but mostly trumped by a plastic taste that permeates the entire beer. If you've ever smelled burning Styrofoam or plastic cups...it tastes like that.

M- Thin and highly carbonated.

O- Strangest porter I've had. Strongest woody/off flavors I've encountered in a brew. Really disappointing since I love Jose Marti so much.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
2.59/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

750 mL bottle poured into a pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Black with a big off-white head. Good retention. Great lacing.

Smell - Hops, coffee, and lots of oak. Serious oak.

Taste - Tastes like regular Jose Marti at first. Hoppy, coffee, chocolate. Then the oak hits. Like a train wreck of oak. Strong, ashy, dry oak. Bad.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied. Terrible finish of oak. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Really ruined by the oak. The oak flavor is overpoweringly bad. The beer starts off good and ends up nearly undrinkable.

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Photo of SFLpunk
2.64/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to cmrillo for this hook-up! 750mL brown glass pry-top.

Pours a deep black with thick fluffy tan head. Nose is dominated by coffee with cream and an odd woody/earthy/dry leaves note. Palate is medium-bodied and pleasantly acidic like a porter should be. Oddly dry and a little burnt tasting. Or like wet charcoal embers.

Notes: I really really enjoy the regular Jose Marti...but I think this was a poor execution. There's burnt flavors and plastic flavors.

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Photo of adam42381
2.8/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from an 750ml bottle into a Cigar City snifter globe.

Appearance: Pours a dark cola brown with a 1 finger bubbly dark tan head. Nice head retention and lacing.

Smell: Sweet roasted malt, vanilla and French oak.

Taste: Very dark roasted malt and a touch of whiskey up front followed by very strong woody notes and the flavor of what I would imagine black tar would taste like in the middle before ending with espresso and bitterness at the finish. Aftertaste is very woody and bitter. Not really enjoyable for me.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. The tannins really dry out the mouth.

Drinkability: Low drinkability. I wouldn't want another glass.

Overall: Below average beer overall. I definitely prefer the original Jose Marti. It's the least drinkable CCB beer I've tried. I can't recommend this one especially since it was $20 for the bottle at CCB this weekend. I feel a little shortchanged.

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Photo of Siggy125
2.82/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

L- Dark cola brown in color. Tons of big bubbly carbonation. Subsided slowly leaving lots of sticky lacing. Light tan head.

S- dried fruits, fig, dates. Smokiness, light hop character, roasted malts, faint oak aroma. No abv on the nose.

T- Taste character similar to the nose, but now the oak is really coming thru. Very pronounced, almost artificial tasting. Warming a bit didn't change the flavors much.

F- solid on the mouthfeel. A bit thin but still enjoyable. The carbonation provides an effervescent feel.

O- I enjoyed everything about the beer but the strong oakiness on the palate. I had a small pour to experience it but didn't want to go back to it.

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Photo of coreyfmcdonald
2.93/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

750ml bottle into a goblet

A: Pours a dark brown with a finger of tan head. Head retention is quite good.

S: Fairly significant floral hop aroma with some roast aroma. Tons of oak - almost like I'm sniffing a log.

T: Very similar to smell. I feel like I'm drinking a piece of wood. It's interesting and certainly not terrible, but it's not one of the better porters I've had. I've never had a beer with this much wood flavor in it.

M: A bit thin, but carbonation is good.

O: I'm a bit disappointed. This is the first time I've been disappointed by CCB. Not worth seeking out.

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Photo of Rhettroactive
2.99/5  rDev -16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From 750mL bottle to Portsmouth glass on 4/5/12
*From notes

A: God damn dark. Rich brown to black hue gives this the appearance of an RIS, not a Porter. A .5 finger creamy head leads to a good collar and solid lacing.

S: Herbaceous. Freshly shoveled earth. Wood chips. A touch of hops circle my nose too, yet it's all a bit one note and not all that appealing.

T: Way too much wood. There's not enough balance or complexity, as the French oak bludgeons the base beer. Jose's typical hop bill is sorta-kinda there, but muted in a really negative way by the tannic and off-putting wood. They don't marry well in the slightest. Even when I'm finished with each sip, I can't get the char out of my mouth.

M: Plenty thick and rich. CCB has a history of top shelf body, and this is no exception.

O: I can't recommend this beer. It's unbalanced in a way that comes off as lazy and uninspired. Maybe a rum barrel or some type of agave nectar infusion would be cool. But as it is, this is most certainly not very good.

A (somewhat) rare miss for CCB.

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Photo of Reagan1984
3/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Big thanks to Chris S. a co-worker of mine from Tampa for picking this up for me. It was one of the advertised stars at a recent Stout/Porter tasting. While it was a little disappointing in it’s flavor and overall appeal, we were still happy to have had the opportunity to try it.

Nothing of real note to point out in it’s visual appeal. More dull in finish vs. having a sheen. Dark with a thick head that showed good retention, but didn’t leave much lace.

Aroma is the first hint of the flaw here. And by flaw I do not mean the beer was defective in any fashion, it was not. Just vs. my preference, and frankly the others in the group. Wood was the main note in the aroma. Other standard Porter notes here, but it was all about what I’ll refer to as “raw” wood. Almost saw dust like.

Flavor sadly followed the aroma. THe overwhelming note here was from the oak spirals. Tons of woody notes that were not well rounded and didn’t mix well with the roasted notes. Almost wanted to add a touch of corn syrup to my glass to add some sweetness to balance the raw notes from the wood.

Frankly was not a fan. This is the 2nd or third Cigar City selection where this was an issue for me. I suppose others like the total wood character, but I just don’t . It should add complexity and bring out new notes, but it should not be about sucking on a piece of wood.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.13/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured out looking much like the regular version, the beer is very dark in color with a creamy looking tan head on top. The retention is thin but hold up nicely, the lacing is also sticky on the glass. The smell of the beer is loaded with French Oak, in all honestly that is all I get on the nose. The taste goes with the flavor... I taste all french oak and nothing else. The mouthfeel is a bit sharp on the carbonation, making this beer a bit on the dry side and it stings to drink. Overall this was a bit of a disappointment, had much higher hopes for this one and was let down.

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Photo of WastingFreetime
3.22/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from tasting notes.

Poured out a dark brown with two cm of tan head on top that lasts for about a minute and a half, minimal lacing.

Smells of garam masala, dark chocolate, black coffee, charred malt, and a touch of licorice.

Tastes of bitter tannic oak, combined with a splash of acidic soy sauce over the typical porter chocolate /coffee. In some ways, the oak wood is almost like a hopping substitute. In other ways, the oak wood is a completely overwhelming force that drowns out many of the other subtle flavors that probably would have existed if the wood wasn't there.

In summary, this one has a bit TOO much wood. Because it has gotten to the point where it is obvious that the wooden flavor is obscuring some of the more delicate nuances of a beer's flavor.

Cellaring note edit : I've come back to this after cellaring at basement temp for a year and it improves dramatically, I'd say to about a 4.25. Tastes are subjective, YMMV, however.

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Photo of HopHead84
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

8/12/2011

Thanks to Jason and Sean for bringing this.

A: Black with a fizzy light brown head.

S: Lots of oak with lots of chocolate. Lightly smoky with a restrained char and a touch of booze. 

T: Dark chocolate with a strong oak presence. Malt has an upper moderate roasted quality. Bitterness is at a moderate level. Tons of oak. Super dry oaken chocolate finish. Did I mention there's a lot of oak?

M: Full body with upper moderate carbonation. 

Overall: More oak than is desirable. A few ounces is more than sufficient.

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Photo of byteme94
3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle I picked up from the brewery at the barrel aged hunahpu release. Thinner in viscosity with a finger of light creamy head which disappeared rather quickly. Drank smooth with roasty hops and a burnt carmely malt. Hides the 8 percent alcohol and finishes very oaky.

Doesn't seem like a rather complex beer but reveals more oak than most. Looking for a nice beer with alot of oak on the end this is your beer. Would drink again when wanting something oaky, but not to show off to a friend. Solid B

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Photo of Florida9
3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Very dark brown, almost black. Forms a dark tan head that eventually reduces down to a thick ring around the edges.

S: Woodsy. Lots of oak. A little coffee and some roasted malts.

T: Wood and lots of it. Tastes like sucking on a piece of furniture (thankfully no varnish, though). Flavor is odd, lightly sweet, not necessarily good. Some coffee and some chocolate, but my god, the strong oak flavor just overpowers everything. Tannic bitterness.

M: Fuller bodied and dry. Appropriate carbonation.

O: Sometimes subtlety and moderation can be appreciated characteristics. However, this beer does not offer either. It is quite in-your-face with the French oak, much more so than I cared for. Jose Marti is a fine beer, but the wood is just too much.

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Photo of comfortablynumb1
3.36/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Big thanks to Andrew for the hookup on this one. Split with Dave and Casey...

Poured from a bomber into a RR snifter...

A - Pours black with a one finger light brown head. Head retention is decent and there is a good amount of sticky lacing to be had...

S - Wow, this one is definitely oak foward. Strong oak notes with a little vanilla in the background...

T - Like the nose, oak dominates here. Vanilla and a little chocolate also make an appearance, but oak comes through very strong, and is a little overwhelming. Not a bad tasting beer per se, but kind of one dimensional...

M - Mdium bodied with a moderate amount of carboantion, and an incredibly dry finish...

O - Way to much oak to be had here. Overpowers the base beer, and makes for a one dimensional oak bomb. First CC beer that has let me down...

Cheers...

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Photo of billab914
3.36/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Rhettroactive for sharing this one. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a tasting glass. It poured black in color thick foamy head. Pretty nice looking beer of the style.

The aroma has a pretty bold, woody oak presence to it. It mixes with some sweeter cocoa and a little hoppiness as well. The French oak seems to dominate a little too much though making it seem too one dimensional.

The taste also shows a lot of the woody oak to it, especially in the finish. A little more sweeter caramel and chocolate to it along with some hoppy, herbal bitterness. Again, the woody oak just seems to dominate it a little too much.

The mouthfeel feels a little thin for the style with moderate carbonation. Overall, it was a decent but not great beer. It felt one dimensional with the oak being the dominant flavor. The oak just didn't compliment it all that well.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.45/5  rDev -3.1%

Had this one, 2011 bottle, at The Porter Bar in Atlanta on 11/23/14. I was pretty excited to get to try this. Pours black just like regular Jose Marti with a fluffy khaki head on top that sits around for a good bit. Lots of oak on the nose, light plastic smells, a bit strange, some weird spiciness, something almost like pine. Flavor follows with some faint chocolate tones, and a massive spicy oak flavor that just envelopes the entire palate, and not really in a good way. Very harsh here, and this thing is 3 years old. Medium bodied, maybe even on the thinner side, with medium carbonation. This was certainly a disappointment, but nonetheless very happy I got a chance to try it. Just too much wood here.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.53/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into something at Jackie O's on 8/27/11

Irresponsible Tick #6

Thanks Chris

Dark brown, but that's it. One finger head. Thin retention, but really good lace. Aroma - tangy, roasted coffee with overtones of lively oak; brighter than I'm accustomed to. Nice earthy hops. Ripe dark fruits. Earthy oak with a lot of dry spiciness. Roasted tones and a modest bitterness. Medium-full body. Puffy carbonation; not bad. Tangy roast and oak finish. Commanding beer.

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Photo of illidurit
3.56/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared at the December iteration of the Santa Cruz tasting series. Pours dark brown with a fluffy khaki head. Fresh-cut wood/sawdust aroma, vague lime fruitiness, and dark chocolate. Biter chocolate flavor, well-married to a very prominent woodiness (cigar box/fireplace notes). Too much wood but not bad.

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Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.58/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle courtesy of blazer06. Into a Deschutes Snifter.

A: Pours a deep brown with 2 inches of tan colored head that doesn't want to go away. Incredibly dense head. Nice rings of lacing that are left behind as the head slowly recedes.

S: Interesting mix of wood, slightly burnt malts and caramel. Some decent notes of coffee and chocolate. Fresh cut wood really dominates the nose.

T: A lot like the base beer, with a huge charred oak presence. Still fairly hoppy with some citrus thrown in the mix. Decent amount of hop resins in here as well. Chocolatey and slightly roasty. All of this lies under a MASSIVE amount of wood. Oak flavors linger on the tongue forever after the swallow. If the oak was knocked back by about 40% it would be so much better.

M: Nice here, medium body with lower carbonation finish is mostly dry which is probably a result of the oak.

O: Just too oaky for my tastes. I like the oak to impart subtle woody characteristics, this just over does it, even more so than the Odell Woodcut beers. Glad I got to try it though!

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Photo of kbutler1
3.58/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Pours a reddish brown color with a tan head. Slight roast in the nose, along with tobacco, dark chocolate, and a slight woodiness that I can only attribute to the french oak spirals. Velvety medium mouthfeel. Nice smooth start that has flavors of oak, roast, dark chocolate, all culminating with a slight oaky bitterness. Medium mouthfeel.

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Photo of corby112
3.65/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to chefmonty for sharing. Poured into an Overlord approved Cigar City snifter.

Pours pitch black with faint mahogany edges and a half finger beige head that quickly settles into a lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Huge toasted oak aroma with a dominating charred wood presence with some roasted dark malts underneath. As the beer warms the maltnotes become more evident.

Medium bodied with a bery prominent dry oak presence that dominates the flavor, lingering into a bone dry finish. As the beer warms and the palate adjusts to all of the oak flavor, there is a nice roasts malt haracter hidden underneath. Hints of dark chocolate, roasted coffee bean, toast and oatmeal. ABV is well masked but this could be tough to drink for those who aren't into virgin oak beers.

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Photo of LethalChickens
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a large Snifter. Light white/tan head with a nice oak aroma. First sip... A hole lot of OAK. It reminds me of the oak flavor from the White Oak Jai Alai. After getting half way through my pour I realized that the oak flavor was getting to be a bit much for me. Its def a solid beer but I don't think oak aged porters are my favorite style. Perhaps some bourbon soaked oak spirals would have been nice.

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Photo of gford217
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle.

Pours very dark brown, darker than most potters, almost stout-like, with a big thick tan head which recedes pretty quickly.

Aroma is very good and definitely favors the oak which has some spiciness and a bit of vanilla. The roasted malts and coffee that I love in the regular version are not as prominent.

The taste is even heavier on the oak with a heavy spiciness and lots of oak character. The underlying beer is very tough to detect which is a bad thing for this one. Wish the taste had more porter character.

The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth with good carbonation, though it's definitely prickly with the barrel notes.

All in all, a good beer but definitely not as good as the base beer for me.

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José Martí India Porter - French Oak from Cigar City Brewing
3.56 out of 5 based on 98 ratings.
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