Cigar City: Jai Alai IPA (USA: IPA: 7.5% ABV)

Visual: Browned bronze. Massive tight and small bubbled head of lemon colour. Reasonable amounts of carbonation.

Nose: Lemon grass and spritzy fresh. Very lemon like in fact. Coriander. Slightly wit beer in style. Pineapple and syrup below.  Honey. Ginger bread.

Body: Honey. Hops and resin. Bitterness is smooth but still kicks home. Grapefruit. Very thick but smooth texture. Peach.

Finish: Bitter. Resin and dry hops. Grapefruit.

Conclusion: You know, I’ve been trying to get more concise in my flavours listed in the main section of these tasting notes. I have a habit of rambling slightly as I try to get a range that describes the experience I have had.

Well this beer’s aroma just ruined that little attempt. Almost sorachi ace style lemongrass to begin with, it then passes through wit beer styling of lemon and coriander into a ginger bread and honey touch as it warms, All wrapped around the usual expected fruity notes and bitterness.

How then hell am I meant to sum that up concisely?

Similarly the slick body takes you on quite a run. The hop bitterness and resin elements are the main show, but it still has quite the fruity range within that.  The excellent thick texture is what really makes the body. It allows the bitterness to be subtle without sacrificing force. You find the beer coating your tongue in a lovely sheen before suddenly the hops kick forth to great effect.

The only real criticisms is the finish which doesn’t move much past dry bitterness and resin. It does at least keep the flavours fresh on each sip but other than that does not add much to the experience.

Frankly excellent. It is so easy to drink yet packed with hop character. The abv is will masked and the aforementioned aroma is massive and wide ranging. This is up there with the best in a highly competitive IPA world.

Background: Cigar City. One of those huge reputation brewers I have never reviewed.  I have drunk their beers before, I think. I’m fairly sure that I tried them at The Great British Beer Festival a few years back.  Of course from the “I Think” you can probably guess that I was not in the most fresh of tastebud and liver states by that point so I hesitate to draw any conclusions from the beers I drank then. This beer was picked up from Brewdogs guest beer section and drunk as part of a relaxing fine sunny day.