Here’s something that always seems to poke its hoppy head into beer boxes that I receive as extras. Either this is falling all off of shelves in Florida or someone loves me. I would assume the former. Enough jibber jabber about states with electoral issues, let’s open this hop IED in today’s Hop Locker.
Cigar City, Jai Alai, IPA, 7.5% abv
A: This beer seemed pretty tame out of the glass, no radiant Marcelous Wallace glow, no Ark of the Covenant face melting hops, just a nice gentle IPA, here to stay a moment and spin some yarns. It is a mild orange with yellowing. Nice carbonation and some haunted house webbing on the glass. Only, no one touches your no no.
S: Strangely, I don’t get a huge acidity, sure there’s some obligatory mild orange zest but mostly it smells sweet and crackery like a warm cornbread. Not par for the course in IPAs at all. Not bad, just like a watered down version of Hop Slam with more honey.
T: This doesn’t have a huge citrus profile to it, it goes a route of middle ground non-offensiveness. It begins with a nice hop bite that retreats like an abused terrier, giving you a bit of pine and grassiness and, that’s about it. The honey notes provide a solid maltiness that washes away quickly.
M: The mouthfeel is crisp and light and lends to the session ability of this beer. It isn’t as filling as a Tim Allen stand up special, but unlike that, you aren’t bloated afterwards. No hop resins set up shop and it is like that tame worker who comes in, does his 9-5 and doesn’t ask any questions.
D: This is where this beer shines. Maybe it just isn’t hot enough in LA but, this beer seems like it would be great to drink while putting some sick flame decals from Pep Boys on my 93 Monte Carlo, you know, Florida shit. I’d love to knock a few of these back and then enter a voting booth, maybe build a home in the way of recurrent storms; we’ve all been there. But in all seriousness, this is a solid IPA, not bad in any respect just not that citrus bomb that I love to rub along my gumline.
Narrative: Roger Bellows had a serious dilemma. Did he abandon his lifelong dream of owning an apiary farm and propose to the girl of his dreams? Or follow his dreams and hope that, amongst those bees he would find true love. “ROGER! I said just pick one, come on!” Kaitlynn called to him down the halogen white aisle. He picked the highest grade honey he could find and shuddered at the agave nectar section, “but how will I explain this to her?” he ruminated, glancing furtively to the bee set in amber on his ring. “I JUST….I LOVE FUCKING BEES!” he cried to her in the frozen foods section. “Ex- excuse me?” she stammered. “Well, not fucking bees, I love, I just love them. I need you to know that.” Kaitlynn rocked heel to toe and furled her brow like a worn button box. “Ok? And, I love you HONEY!” her writhing index finger left something to be wanted of a stinger as her pantomime fell flat. “Oh great, puns, my DREAM IS A PUN TO HER!” “Yeah, I’m all buzzed about, it,” he trailed off looking at the many varieties of Cool Whip. “God, you are such a bitter, forgettable drone, WHY CANT YOU STAND UP FOR YOURSELF!?” His amber bee ring dug into his palm when Kaitlynn cried “ROGER! Three things of honey? Come on!”