Cigar City Brewing (Tampa, Florida) has officially announced that it will begin shipping 12 oz. cans of Jai Alai IPA and several other offerings to North Carolina effective immediately.
Ever since Cigar City Brewing was founded in 2009, the brewery has always taken a very cautious and selective approach when it has come to expansion of distribution. Considering that the brewers have crafted their award-winning beers with priorities set on quality, fine ingredients and freshness, the folks at Cigar City certainly do their due diligence to ensure that their offerings can be properly represented in any prospective market.
With that said, the news that North Carolina has now been officially chosen as the eighth state – and only the second new state in over four years – to see distribution from Cigar City Brewing should be that much sweeter to the craft beer community of the Tar Heel State. The brewery has signed with numerous distribution partners (Skyland Distributing Co., United Beverages of North Carolina, R.H. Barringer Distributing Company, Long Beverage Inc., Carolina Distributing LLC, Healy Wholesale Co Inc., Atlantic Shores Distributors, Coastal Beverage Co. and City Beverage Co Inc.) to supply the state of North Carolina with the following five beer offerings:
- Florida Cracker Belgian-style White Ale – Citrus aromas of oranges and lime leaves mingle with bubblegum and dried flowers on the nose of this hazy and refreshing Belgian-style White Ale. High carbonation and herbaceous bitterness quench the thirst while lemon-lime esters and flavors of Valencia orange add unique depth of flavor and complexity. ABV – 5.5% IBUs – 18
- Invasion Pale Ale – Tropical aromas dominate the nose of this approachable, low alcohol pale ale with distinct notes of mango, tangerine and soursop. On the palate, a moderate bitterness is tempered by flavors of navel orange and clementine and a dry, bread-like malt quality that makes this Pale Ale at once approachable and incredibly flavorful. IBUs – 5% IBUs – 36
- Jai Alai IPA – An intense bouquet of tangerine and candied orange peel entice the nose while flavors of clementines, Valencia orange and subtle caramel provide counterpoint to an assertive bitterness and rich malt character. Bold hop flavor and aroma from six different hop varietals is front and center in this flavorful American IPA. ABV – 7.5% IBUs – 70
- Maduro Brown Ale – Maduro is a Northern English-style Brown Ale with some American affectations. Maduro is higher in alcohol than the common English Brown Ale and features flaked oats in the malt bill which imparts a silky body and works to mesh the roasted, toasted and chocolate components together in Maduro’s complex malt profile. The end result is a remarkably full-flavored yet approachable Brown Ale that pairs well with mild to medium cigars. ABV – 5.5% IBUs – 25
- Tampa-style Lager – Inspired by traditional German lagers, our Tampa-style Lager is brewed with German malted barley, Hallertauer hops and an authentic Bavarian lager yeast. We combine these ingredients to create a style that’s quite unique to our hometown of Tampa, Florida but will find admirers wherever a crisp, dry and flavorful lager is called for. Familiar to generations, it’s truly a beer that’s made for drinkin’. ABV – 4.5% IBUs – 22
The beers listed above will be available in 12 oz. cans at launch with draft beer expected to follow shortly behind.
To properly introduce themselves to craft beer fans in North Carolina, “numerous Cigar City Brewing representatives . . ., including Cigar City Brewing’s El Lector Neil Callaghan and Brand Manager Lucas Widrick,” will attend a series of launch events beginning the week of March 20 (apologies for being a bit late, but full list of event dates and locations available below). Be sure to check out one of the many events over the next week or so to give Cigar City Brewing a hearty welcome to North Carolina. Prost!
Cigar City Brewing’s North Carolina Launch Events
Raleigh, North Carolina
- Tuesday, March 21 – Tyler’s Durham
- Wednesday, March 22 – Raleigh Times
- Thursday, March 23 – Raleigh Beer Garden
Brevard, North Carolina
- Saturday, March 25 – Official Launch Party at Oskar Blues Brewery’s Tasty Weasel Taproom in Brevard
Asheville, North Carolina
- Monday, March 27 – Barley’s Taproom & Pizzeria
- Tuesday, March 28 – Creekside Taphouse
- Wednesday, March 29 – Black Rose (Hendersonville)
Charlotte, North Carolina
- Tuesday, March 28 – Brawley’s Beverage
- Wednesday, March 29 – Duckworth’s Grill & Taphouse (Huntersville)
- Thursday, March 30 – Pub Crawl — Harris Teeter #11, Growler USA, Kit’s Trackside Crafts, and The Fillmore Charlotte (for The Flaming Lips show)