otakuden (1616) - Vero Beach, Alabama, USA - AUG 8, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottled beer is great and kegged beer is usually a wee bit greater, but when it comes to freshness reassurance, nothing beats a growler of your favorite brew fresh from the brewery itself. Hand-drawn into your growler of choice, after you bring her home and pop her cherry for the first time, you are immediately transported to the brewery from which she came. Elbows propped on their bar, you haven’t left the seat since your fresh pint was lovingly drawn for you. That is freshness. I am sorely tempted to rant and rave about the ethics and misuse of freshness dating, especially when it comes to macro alcopops, but I will save that for a different day and time. In the meantime, I have sitting before me a pint of Cigar City Jai Ala IPA fresh from the tap at my favorite beer joint, Vine & Barley.
Not too long ago, I supped an IPA at a Rate Beer throwdown which was freshness personified. I didn’t think I would come across another so soon, but I was obviously mistake. Burnished copper, aged amber, and mahogany highlights are capped by a creamy head of velvety softness. Spring is nigh and the forests are decked out in full regalia. As I stand humbly beneath their towering grandeur, I close my eyes and take in every smell with giddy excitement. Pointy green pine needles, gentle firs swaying in the breeze, crushed needles and flora beneath my feet, sweet sticky sap, and dewy wetness lingers with the fresh perfume of a passing rainstorm. While citrus is not usually found in forests, the Jai Ala IPA’s vibrantly fresh citrus acidity fits perfectly, and I indulge myself further in their grapefruit and lemon esters which linger with a waxy finish. At one time I wanted to be a forest ranger when I grew up; I may not be a forest ranger, but my Jai Alai IPA more than makes up for that passed childhood fantasy. Brisk, bracing, and dry with grapefruit and lemon skins, my tastebuds tingle under a prickly assault of pine needles, grass, and fir while my lips are sticky with sweet pine sap. I’m not much of an outdoors person, but I have no doubt that the perfect place to enjoy this fabulously fresh IPA is in the middle of the woods, surrounded by the best Mother Nature has to offer.
The Jai Alai IPA is one of Cigar City Brewing’s regular offerings, wonderful news to beer lovers around the world. As a native Floridian, I of course get the first pickings, but good beer is all about sharing, and I encourage any and all who have an opportunity to try this beer to do so.
lushawn (2645) - Massachusetts, USA - AUG 6, 2009
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
pours a hazy orange. Notes of pineapple, tangerine, and toffee. Flavor is caramel, pine, and biscuity malts. Very smooth. Really looking forward to this bottle of the humidor cedar aged version. pretty good beer.
thill25 (231) - Orlando, Florida, USA - AUG 2, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
On tap at BJs @ The Loop...pours dark amber with a frothy, off-white head. Great head retention and lacing. Grapefruit, and pine on the nose. Very spicy hops, citrus, biscuity malts, and caramel as the primary flavors. Oily mouth feel with a great quick bitter finish...Very enjoyable IPA.
GT2 (5658) - Riverslime, California, USA - AUG 1, 2009
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: OCT 17, 2010 Tap at CCB Tasting Night at Kickback’s in Jax, FL. Pours a slightly hazy orange/light amber with a thin eggshell head that leaves a good layer of sticky lacing. Aroma of orange peel, orange blossom, sour peaches, tangerine. Taste is lots of nutty bitterness, Brazil nut, spicy hops, and though this is not the cedar-aged version I swear I can taste some spicy cedar wood notes showing through. A little disappointing seeing this really has nothing in common with the Humidor Series Jai Alai, which is the best IPA I’ve ever tried. This is very lackluster comparatively. 8/1/2009 6/4/7/4/14=3.5
355mL from the new Cigar City six packs. Pours a clear deeper amber (cloudy orange gold with the yeast) with a very nice, rocky, yellowish head that leave good lace. Aroma is older hops, sweet candies, candy corn, air freshener. Taste is very sweet, loads of honey, nutty bitterness. Drying, spritzy palate. No cloying, but a bit sweet with a thick, syrupy mouthfeel rather than a creamy, refreshing one. My mother after tasting this referred to it for the rest of the night as "that honey syrup beer." 6/4/6/4/13=3.2
Kevster (337) - Bradenton, Florida, USA - JUL 19, 2009
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
On tap @ the Lost Kangaroo in Bradenton. Pours an amber color with a thick off-white head that is mostly lasting leaving nice lacing. Has a hoppy aroma with piney notes and grapefruit. Flavor has a lot of grapefruit with a creamy texture and a typical IPA bitter finish. However, to me this is stronger IPA than most, that Hop Heads will enjoy. Delicious!
after4ever (5283) - Brier, Washington, USA - JUL 19, 2009
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
medicine bottle. thanks, bvc! pours crystal clear medium amber with golden brown highlights. flat and headless. gotta ship these med bottles right! nice piney nose. creamy medium body. nice richly resiny piney mid palate. mild resiny finish. nice ipa.
JohnC (3000) - Mission Viejo, California, USA - JUL 17, 2009
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Growler courtesy of HOPSHUNTER, this pours an opaque bronze/orange with a small head. The favor is very citric hoppy, with very little malt.
DocLock (6789) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 13, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Draft at Bayou in Pinellas. Pours hazy coppery orangy with nose of hops, pineapple, tangerine, black pepper. Tastes rich, caramel malty, fruity, with resiny hops matched by a black peppery, tangeriney flavor. Well balanced with some unique flavors going on. Wish I could have spent more time with this one.
JaBier (3729) - Capital City, Ohio, USA - JUL 7, 2009
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Growler sample at Muckfest 2009 Day 1. Semi-cloudy orange pour with no head. Grapefruit and peach aroma with some sweet malt. Flavor of spice and grapefruit with some pepper and malt before a bitter and fruity finish.
smith4498 (2631) - Miami, Florida, USA - JUL 3, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Draft @ Vine & Barley. Pours orangish color with white head. Pine and grapefruit hop aromas. Flavors of grapefruit and caramel. Medium body with average carbonation.