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Red Racer IPA (India Pale Ale) - Central City Brewers + Distillers

Not Rated.
Red Racer IPA (India Pale Ale)Red Racer IPA (India Pale Ale)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

460 Reviews

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Reviews: 460
Hads: 1,018
Avg: 4.24
pDev: 14.86%
Wants: 187
Gots: 129 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Central City Brewers + Distillers visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: canucklehead on 04-10-2009

A style of ale that was fashioned to survive the long voyage from England to India during the British colonization. Hop, hops, and more hops! This ale has an intense aroma and a long lingering finish. A beer for the connoisseur, this is the Brewmasters choice.

Known as Red Betty IPA in the United States.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Red Racer IPA (India Pale Ale) Alström Bros
Reviews: 460 | Hads: 1,018
Photo of bs870621345
3.58/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a Sam Adams glass, canned in September 10, 2010

Pours a beautiful pale amber color with a half inch head. Head fades to a collar leaving lacing down the glass.

Smells like caramel, citrus (grapefruit and orange), with a slight pine scent.

Taste is a let down for me. It follows the smell with a caramel citrus taste all over the tongue. It is just too light of a flavor with a slight astringent taste.

Mouthfeel is moderate with low carbonation.

Drinkability is good, very easy to drink and nothing lingers on the palate.

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Photo of mjl21
3.58/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Acquired via trade...thanks Rob. 12 ounce can poured into a SA perfect pint glass. C1910 is stamped on the bottom. Comes in at 6.5%.

A-Pours a fairly clear amber and has a thin layer of head that covers the top. Leaves a nice ring of lace around the top of the glass.

S-It smells of musty citrus hops. It smells like a 3 month old IPA.

T-It is a mix of grapefruit and earthy hops. It has a touch of metallic bite to it. Has a good amount of bitterness that lingers between sips.

M-Medium bodied with crisp carbonation.

D-Not bad, but it is hard to gauge this beer being as it is getting towards the end of its lifespan.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.61/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz can poured into a mason jar

Pours a beautiful orange color with a huge off-white cap. Slow to recede, leaving huge chunks of lace all over the glass. The aroma is balance. Earthy, pine and spruce, and some grapefruit rind over top a strong bed of light caramel malt. The flavor profile matches the nose. Earth, pine, and spruce up front, light caramel malt through the middle and some grapefruit and pine in the finish. Medium body with a mild lingering bitterness of pine, spruce, and grapefruit rind.

If your looking for a balanced ipa with some good bitterness, this is your guy. I wouldn't exactly call this world class.

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Photo of hotmailmsn
3.61/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

6.5% ABV, 80 ibu, 355ml can.
A - golden copper clear with half finger head, I expected more carbonation from can.
S - floral, oranges, sweet fruit, piney, caramel, there's some kind of savory spice at the back, couldn't tell what the exactly.
T - very full flavored palate, good carb mouthful, balanced which is not that hoppy with 80 ibu. taste is similar to the smells.
O - it's a really nice daily IPA, will get it next time.

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Photo of louis3
3.62/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Red Racer IPA is in a new can; the beer is now being filtered. I suppose the new presentation is designed to widen the appeal of the beer to the uptown crowd.
Fortunately I discovered the change and was able to buy a few cans of the older stock.

Filtration doesn't impress this customer; it is an additional process which subtracts from flavour and texture and is a waste of energy. But the uptown crowd doesn't care about such things. People either accept the style or they don't. Filtration isn't going to win someone who doesn't like hoppy beer, and there are many such people.

The yeast residue grounded the beer and now the entire flavour is different.

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Photo of xnicknj
3.63/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

review from notes

Pours a lighter copper orange with a foamy white head, leaving some filmy lacing on the glass.

Juicy, piny hops with a bit of tropical fruit and sweeter malt in the nose.

Biting hops right up front, coupled with lighter caramel malt. Continues with some juicier hoppiness and more citrusy fruit notes, although the malty backbone stays present throughout the profile. Finishes very dry and bitter.

Medium body, lingering dryness and sticky feel. Easy to drink and abv is masked well, although I'd like some more complexity in the flavor.

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Photo of beerluvr
3.64/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Sam Adams tasting glass it exhibits a nice white head that fades after a few minutes leaving patches of floating foam, clear light amber beneath. Fresh and flowery nose filled with hoppy aromas then light malt is noticed. Light bodied but with assertive spicy hop bitters right off the bat then light yeasty fruitiness then the malt is tasted. It's a long and bitter finish, delicious and easy drinking thanks to the lightness of body. One of the better IPA's I've had in some time.

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Photo of ChristianBlack
3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy light amber color with a nice colored head. Pretty good lacing.

Aromas are of strong grapefruits. One of the more grapefruity aromas I've ever smelled.

Taste is of bitter grapefruit hop flavors up front, beer then settles into caramel malts. Finish is okay, with bitter hop notes.

Mouthfeel is nice, and well carbonated.

Drinkability is good. Expected a little better when I saw the reviews, but still, quite tasty, and very pleasant.

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Photo of Rhettroactive
3.69/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From can to Bruges hybrid glass on 2/18/11

A: A clean and clear ambery orange. Not much in the way of head, a mere one finger or so. Retention and lacing are meager.

S: Fresh cut cedar. The heavy hop oil also strikes a bitter chord here too, but it's faint. Without question this is the highlight of the beer.

T: Red Racer initally comes off slightly citrusy and sweet. By the time the brew reaches the mid-palate, the hoppy bitterness catches up like a dog on a leash. As it goes down, the malt bites my tonsils. It's really quite unique how all of these different and equally enjoyable aspects come together.

M: Not what I was expecting. It's lighter then I would've liked, and had they left this one unfiltered and pulled back on the prickly forced carbonation, this could be (and I stress "could") an outstanding American IPA. As it stands, this is the beer's weakest link.

O: This is one I've been hunting for, and I'm glad to tick it off of my list. The nose on this one is simply marvelous, and if Central City ever gets into the air freshener business, I'll be first in line.

As I mentioned above, the mouthfeel really doesn't do this one any favors. If they would cut back on the intense level of carbonation, it would really allow the subtle nuances of the hops to shine through.

Regardless, this is a good beer. Here's to hoping that Central City's Red Racer find it's way to the DC market on a consistant basis.

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Photo of WeisGuy
3.7/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can into a pint glass. Glad to see this now being distributed to Chicago. Thanks for picking up this sixer, Derek!

Pours a clear, deep, golden orange color with a one-finger head. Head retention is very light, as is lacing. Pine, orange citrus and floral hop notes lead the aroma with a mild bready malt backing. Orange citrus hoppy bitterness leads on the palette with a substantial caramel malt and bread component (for an IPA) on the midpalette and finish. The finish is fairly dry and bitter with lingering earthy and floral hop flavors and light boozy heat. Medium-light-bodied with moderate carbonation and a dry, slightly hot finish. Not overly drinkable because the flavors are not that interesting and it's a bit hot, but it's pretty easy on the palette for an IPA with its mild maltiness. This is the best hoppy beer I've had from Canada, but that's not saying much. Well worth trying and a decent IPA, but nothing worth going out of your way for.

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Photo of tbart428
3.7/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

copper in color with thick white head that fades quickly. The initial smell is strong of citrus hops but fades quickly as well. The taste is like biting into a centennial and cascade battered orange rind. The flavor is good but kind of weak and watered down. The beer is extremely drinkable and is what I consider a upscale sierra Nevada. Overall decent beer.

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Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.71/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Appearance -- Pours a rich orange hue with the slightest sudsy white head. Halfway through the pour I feared that the can was still.

Smell -- Things are getting better. Pine resin wafts from the glass along with tangerine, split grapefruit and a bit of green onion.

Taste -- Definitely the highpoint of this offering. Citrus zest, grapefruit pith, sticky tropical fruit, peach and apricot, and a hearty dose of resinous hop bitterness. Caramel malt backbone is gently sweet, giving those juicy/zesty hop notes a nudge closer to the forefront. Lingering flavors of peach nectar and resin. All in all, quite balanced.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-light with mild carbonation. Canning issues?

Drinkability -- Man, I was really hoping to love this one. I really needed a top-notch IPA tonight and this one left me wanting slightly. The flavor was on the money, but the carbonation was woeful: no head and a very still mouthfeel. If the carbonation were bumped up I'd say this would be a top-tier American IPA, but it is what it is.

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Photo of deapokid
3.72/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours from an attractive green can painted to reflect 1950's Americana. An interesting choice of design for a Canadian brewery.

Liquid is calm and lightly carbonated with thin head and almost no lacing. Color is a bright, nearly neon, red with hints of a straw gold.

Scent is of warm hops and tart citrus. Aroma is well balanced between sweeter smells & dryer scents and manages to be quite appealing.

Taste is malty with an almost biscuit-like quality. An amber sweetness is in the forefront and it ends up being a bit sweeter than expected. Unfortunately, the hop strength fades as it warms, which throws off the delicate balance.

This brew is smooth on the tongue and low on the hop scratch meter. It's more of a display of balance than power, most of the time, before it gives way to grapefruit sweetness.

I could see this being the go-to beer for IPA fans who prefer something a hint maltier, and, as a nice alternative to the traditional American IPA, it succeeds.

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Photo of Bubba83
3.73/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to barnesy148927 for hooking this one up in a recent trade.

Poured in the low 40 degree range into a tumbler. A normal pour gave me a good two finger width offwhite head with good retention and excellent lacing. The body is colored fairly dark compared to most IPAs, sort of a dusty dark orange, lots of haze.

Huge piney resins in the nose. I also get grapefruit zest, tangerine, and some butterscotch. Kind of a mish-mash, but pretty nice smelling.

This IPA reminds of a lot of east coast style IPAs that I've had. It actually tastes a lot heavier than a 6.5% IPA, seems almost more like a double IPA. There's a big butterscotch component up front. I don't really like butterscotchy IPAs in general. The hop profile comes in quick though and rescues the flavor. Juniper, spruce, pine, and slight grapefruit are the main components. Not getting much citrus here at all. I'm guessing they used a bunch of Simcoe.

Mouthfeel seems a bit heavy for a regular IPA. It also seems a bit wet and chewy. I'm thinking the Final Gravity is not very low. Nice oilyness here makes it feel silky in my mouth.

Overall this felt like a solid IPA, and I understand the high scores. With that said, I love the west coast style which showcases brighter, cleaner flavors and less sugary malt on the backend. Still, really happy I was finally able to try this one and definitely enjoyed it.

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Photo of nkersten
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from can into new belgium snifter. Pour is a reddish orange, similar to the color of dying leaves. Small white head that fades but leaves some nice lacing. Smell is bitter C hops, very piney, with a slight pale malt sweetness. Taste follows smell, a bitter pine hop flavor up front with some fruity hops following. A grassy hop finish with a weak malt sweetness. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a light carbonation, slightly sticky. Drinkability is decent but mouthfeel could be cleaner. This is the best Canadian IPA I have had so far - I lived an hour and a half from the brewery for years and had to go to Chicago to get it. If you are in Canada this is a must, but in the states it is a so so IPA.

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Photo of robwestcott
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a can a hazy burnt orange to a sun king shaped pint glass with a full finger nearly white long lasting head that leaves just a bit of lace to the rim.

strong grapefruit aroma with a hint of other citrus behind.

crisp, bitter grapefruit forward fading to sweeter citrus. very enjoyable.

medium to strong carbonation, not particularly smooth, fairly bitter bite.

low abv, very crisp, very good cold. quite drinkable.

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Photo of dc55110
3.76/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received courtesy of slentz!
Can with a date code of F0711, which I think is June 7th, 2011.

Pours a cloudy golden with slight orange-ish hue to it. A vigorous pour yields a solid inch plus of pillowy white head, a small amount lacing is left behind.

I'm greeted by a the familiar aromas of pine and citrus... but there is something else there behind the hops but in front of the hint of sweet malty-ness is an off smell... I cannot place it, somewhere between medicinal and cleaning supplies. I still enjoy the aroma, but this unknown element has thrown me for a loop.

A burst of piney resin! Somehow it is full of piney hops but isn't all that bitter. After the deluge of pine, a bit of citrus makes a brief cameo followed by a uncredited role by a slightly sweet malty-ness.

Surprisingly the hops don't destroy your tongue, it is very smooth for a such a hop forward IPA. The carbonation is good, slightly low, but not enough to be detracting.

A very good IPA. Nothing amazing, just a well balanced "west coast" style IPA from the Canuck land.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.76/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: Philly Beer Scene Tasting panel with Matt Falco at Victory Brewing Company, Downingtown, PA

I was privileged enough to be on the tasting panel for PBS Magazine, along with Bill Covaleski of Victory and Greg Ramirez of Exton Beverage. This was one of 21 beers we sampled during the session.

At least an extra 0.5 on the appearance because I love the artwork on the can! Who drew my wife on there?!?! Clear amber pour with a small white head that retained and laced well. Crisp hop aroma, lemon and apple skins. More citrus hops in the taste, with the malts taking a seat far in the back. Tasty, but lacks complexity. Light-medium body, and a very nice drink overall.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.77/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Good ipa color here, amber, orange and yellow. Nice 3/4" head on it, doesn't stick around too long, its somewhere between white and off white.

Aroma was hoppy, not proprietary hoppy, but just run of the mill C hop hoppy, and enjoyable. Maybe there was Simcoe, it was a little bit piney.

Taste, solid, not a heavy malt bill, but neither too light, minimal caramel, the hopping was solid, again, not too exotic, pretty straight up enjoyable. Peppery at times, but far from overly. Considerable bitterness that isn't a chore, because of the other flavors going on.

Grassy mouthfeel to the hops. Good stuff. Good, not great. Check it out if reasonably priced. But there's hundreds of 'em out there.

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Photo of hops1337
3.77/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this as an extra from lunch on a recent trade.
Poured from a can into my SA perfect pint glass. Nice copper color with medium white head that dissipates into a decent sticky lace. Nice grapefruit aroma. Taste is slightly metallic im sure due to the can but is still quite good. I got a faint tea flavor in the background that was real unusual. Weird that i live 30 minutes from B.C. but i have never seen this beer in my town. Thanks again lunch!

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Photo of Watershed
3.78/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 355mL can into a pokal. Rich gold with pinkish highlights, it doesn't have the richness of colour that many IPAs do, almost as if its been a little over-filtered. The smell is sharp piney hops backed with sweet floral malts, and not overly strong -- an aroma that leads one to expect an IPA on the light, refreshing side, rather than a fuller, more mouth-filling example of the style. And that's exactly what we get: a quintessential summer IPA, nicely balancing an almost British malt profile (think Deuchars IPA) with west-coast hops, while not going overboard on either. In the finish, though, the hops take over, their grapefruit-pith bitterness lingering after any hint of sweet has vanished.

Overall, while there's a lot of flavour here, its lightness both keeps it almost sessionable and (less positively) prevents it from reaching the highest heights of the style.

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Photo of callmemickey
3.78/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Nice copper-amber body. Good clarity. Huge off-white head. Nice and creamy with solid retention. Lacing provides good coverage of the glass after each sip.

S: Nice, if not mild, hop presence. Mostly grapefruit, orange and some light pine notes. Significant caramel sweetness.

T: Subdued blend of light, but pleasant citric and pine notes. More malt than the nose would suggest. People have described this as a prototypical west coast IPA, but I just didn't get that impression.

M: A bit lighter, in a thin-at-times kind of way. Nice bitterness throughout though. Slight astringent finish.

D: Overall, this was a solid, but not noteworthy IPA. On the plus side... it comes in cans which is a nice emerging trend.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Devil's Backbone willibecher.

And the Leaving Falls Church uber-bender rolls mercilessly on. This participant pours a clear tawny topped by a finger of off-white foam. The nose is heavy with lime-strong citrus hops, with some pine cross-hatched in there as well, all backed by oaky toffee. The taste continues along this path, with hops distilled from 50/50 or Squirt. The toffee is kinda dark, with a hint of char to it, but mostly maintaining its general sweetness. The body is pretty light, with a moderate carbonation and a finish that tries to dry. Overall, a nice IPA, nothing really all that special, but economical and tasty regardless.

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Photo of scottfrie
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz can into Duvel tulip. Thanks to my bubby for thinking of me on his trip to Canada.

A: Pours a clear dark orange with about a finger of off white head that receded into a thin bubbly film that left really good lacing down the glass.
S: Nose is full of citrus hops, dank herbal notes, and some sweet caramel malt.
T: Clean and crisp flavors of herbal and bitter citrus hops. Sweet malt undertones and a touch of exotic fruits tie everything together. Finish is bitter but not outrageous.
M: Medium body, watery mouth with very low carbonation. A touch of chewy viscosity saves it.
D: An above average IPA. Pretty easy to drink, and I wouldn't mind having a few of these now and again. Not something I'd really seek out though.

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Photo of BuckyBeerBeaver
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Highly touted beers don't often live up to their hype, so Bucky was a little wary when he bought a can of Red Racer India Pale Ale ("RRIPA") at his local LCBO. RRIPA came in a 355 ml can, with a beautiful 1950's style cartoon of a pretty redhead riding a bike. I'll have to add a bit to this beer's rating just for the visuals on the can...probably the coolest I've seen to date! The bottom of the can was stamped with an April 27, 2012 production date and an August 25, 2012 "best before" date...a nice touch in providing both pieces of information, and the first time I can recall being given both. RRIPA was 6.5% alcohol by volume.

RRIPA is produced by Central City Brewing Company, which was named the Best Brewery in Canada at the 2010 Canadian Brewing Awards. The brewery is located at 13450 - 102nd Avenue in Surrey, BC, with RRIPA being by far its best seller. Central City began its life as a brewpub, but subsequently added a canning and bottling line.

The beer poured a slightly hazy, orange/gold colour, with the orange hues becoming more noticeable when backlit. An aggressive pour produced about 1/2" of off-white, lightly orange tinged head which dissipated to a thin collar after 3 minutes, leaving a surprising amount of lacing down the glass given the collar's small size. The aroma from the can was an intensive combination of tropical fruits, dominated by grapefruit, but with discernable notes of pine, pineapple and tangerine. A wonderful aroma, but it left me with the distinct impression that I was about to consume a serious hop bomb. The beer's flavour began with bitter grapefruit, giving way to a slightly sweet combination of pine with hints of pineapple and tangerine. RRIPA finished with a distinct bitterness, which seemed to become more noticeable as the beer warmed. The bitterness continued as a long lasting aftertaste...too long lasting given my dislike of lingering aftertastes generally, and bitter ones specifically. Ideally, RRIPA could use a bit more caramel malt to better balance its bitterness...but otherwise, a solid IPA. I would describe RRIPA as medium bodied, with its 6.5% alcohol contenting helping to heft it up a bit. The level of carbonation is modest, but well suited to the brew.

At $2.55 per 355 ml can, I'd consider RRIPA to be a bit on the pricey side, but worth the occasional splurge.

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Red Racer IPA (India Pale Ale) from Central City Brewers + Distillers
94 out of 100 based on 460 ratings.