Let's see. Nice wine-bottle presentation as usual. As I mentioned above, this is a new label for their Humidor Series of beers, with a big and decorative "H" in front of an old-time Tampa scene. This Series ages their beers on Spanish Cedar, rotating which one is next for the "cigar box" treatment.
Malty aroma, grass and soft wood. Not a very powerful aroma, though it does get a little more tropical and fruity as it reaches room temperature. Bitter lemon and grapefruit flavors power the beginning. A definite Cedar component is right there. "But how do you know how Cedar smells and tastes?" Excellent question. The house I grew up in had a Cedar Closet in it for my mother's wardrobe. We called it the "Cedar Closet" and it had an incredibly distinct smell that I will never forget despite not being there for 20 years. Oh and those Cedar blocks and hangars used to keep the insects away, well, I've crossed paths with them as well--stupid ex-girlfriends.
Next flavors include pine and some black pepper spice. A sharp little alcohol bite also works with the medium plus carbonation to make sure you're paying attention. More citrus, more wood. Very lemony and more closet. My buddy Mike from MikeLovesBeer said that the Cedar used to be "in your face" in previous editions of this beer. Personally, not being a (beer) wood guy, I like the subtlety presented here and think there are plenty of Cedar characteristics. And I like the Cedar more than other woods. Warmth brings slightly more tropical flavors as well, but in the end, this is Jai Alai dressed in Cedar, nothing more. I really enjoyed Jai Alai, and think this twist is interesting and worthy of a try. The price of this Humidor beer is significantly more considering I can buy a six pack of normal Jai Alai for $10 or this wine bottle for the same price, but OK, once in a while.
Update 10/18/2010: Here is a "question" and "answer" exchange from Twitter today that might explain the lack of Cedar flavor that Mike mentioned above. "Brewkkake" is the same Joel that commented already below. Oh, and he is ALWAYS tactful!
CigarCityBeer @Brewkkake The company switched wood thickness which effected pitch size and we didn't adjust. It was 1 batch and corrected.
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