Sail the Seas with Carnival and Cigar City Brewing

Craft beer lovers who enjoy cruising on Carnival Cruise Lines out of Florida just got a bit happier or should I say hoppier? Carnival recently announced that they would now serve Cigar City Beer on their 13 ships that set sail from Florida ports.  

The celebration of this collaboration took place this past Sunday in Tampa aboard Carnival's Legend.
Carnival Cruise Ship Legend in the Port of Tampa
The Red Frog Pub on the ship was where the festivities took place.  Cans of Invasion Pale Ale & Florida Cracker were passed among the guests. These are some great tasting beers. They are a bit on the lighter side making it nice to enjoy while you are on your cruise. The Invasion Pale Ale is a citrusy hoppy session beer coming in at 5% ABV. The Florida Cracker gets its name from the Cracker Cowboys of the colonial-era settlers who came to Florida. This white ale has a hint of orange peel, coriander and vanilla making for a refreshing beer to enjoy in the sun.
Cigar City Beer on the Carnival Cruise Ship Legend
Invasion Pale Ale
Cigar City Craft beer in cans

Ice Sculpture on Carnival Cruise Ship Legend
Each year two million guests board on Carnival Cruise ships that leave from Florida ports.  This is a wonderful opportunity to expose travelers to Florida craft beer. Cigar City Brewing is a favorite among the locals, and tourists will now get a chance to see why.

Cigar City Beer & Carnival Cruise Ships pouring beer over ice sculpture

Cigar City Beer on Carnival Cruise Ships
Invasion Pale Ale
While we were here for the beer we also got to enjoy a little exploring of the Legend afterward.  This is a beautiful ship!  Everywhere I looked was a visual delight. With many dining options, entertainment, a casino, spa, kid's activities and more you will have a great time while you're at sea. Everyone in your group will enjoy discovering what fun this ship has to offer.
Lobby of the Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

Steakhouse on Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

Dining room at Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

Gambling on Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

Lounge on Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

Lounge on Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

Waterslides on Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

View of Tampa Skyline from Carnival Cruise Ship Legend
Lovely skyline view of Tampa
Lounge seating on the deck of Carnival Cruise Ship Legend

Redfrog Pub on Carnival Cruise Ship Legend
Once the media event had come to a close a few of us decided to head over to Cigar City Brewing for a brewery tour. I have been to the brewery a handful of times, but I have never gone on the tour. You can register ahead for a tour online. We were winging it that day and showed up to the brewery just in time for the last tour of the day. They were able to fit us in, so we paid our $5 and got our souvenir pint glass filled with beer. I went with the Experimental Hop ADHA #527. It was a solid IPA perfect to take along on the tour.
Craft Beer at Cigar City Brewing
Experimental Hop ADHA #527 IPA
You'll have to put your "beer' goggles on. It you are wearing open toe shoes you will need to slip on the blue stylin' booties. A word of caution there is no air conditioning on the tour and 4:00pm in the afternoon is hot in Tampa. Make sure you don't drink all your beer before the tour starts because you will want something to quench your thirst from the heat.
Brewery Tour at Cigar City

Our tour guide did a great job explaining the beer process. We even enjoyed smelling the various hops, wood, and grains that help add flavor to the beers. We got to sample a taste of the Tocobaga Red Ale during the tour.  The tour took about thirty minutes. There was time to get questions asked that you may have about the brewery or the process of how they make the beer. The tour was fun to do with friends and I'd recommend it for anyone coming to visit the brewery.
Brewery Tour at Cigar City Brewing

Vats at Brewery Tour at Cigar City Brewing

Bike at Brewery Tour at Cigar City Brewing
Once we wrapped up with the tour I got a flight of beers to sample.  I have had the Cucumber Saison and the Cubano Espresso before.  Both of these beers are some of my favorites that Cigar City puts out.  I love the cucumber taste for a saison and the Cubano is wonderful with it's vanilla, coffee & cocoa nibs. The Peach was an American Sour Ale I felt needed a tad more peach flavor to balance the sour taste. The Cinnamon Apple IPA smelled and tasted like a fall candle.  I wasn't into that beer either, but I did get a sample of the Horchata Ale and it was great! This also reminded me of fall, but didn't overwhelm me with such strong fall flavors.
Beer Flight at Cigar City Brewing
Cucumber Saison-Peach American Sour Ale-Cinnamon Apple IPA-Cubano Style Espresso Brown Ale
During all my visits on the weekend, there has always been a food truck parked out front.  They have a schedule of the trucks on their website. I have never visited Cigar City Brewing during the week when they offer food from Cigar City Brewpub.  It's nice knowing you can visit the brewery and not have to worry about food.

The brewery is stocked with beer in cans or you can fill up growlers to go. They also have some fun items such as beer books, beer soap, shirts and more offered in their gift shop.

Cigar City makes it enjoyable to Drink Like a Local and enjoy some great Florida craft beer. Now Carnival Cruise lets you enjoy it while on vacation at sea.