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Red Racer Imperial IPA - Central City Brewers + Distillers

Not Rated.
Red Racer Imperial IPARed Racer Imperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

52 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 52
Hads: 152
Avg: 4.2
pDev: 15.48%
Wants: 38
Gots: 26 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Central City Brewers + Distillers visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: astout on 09-26-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 52 | Hads: 152
Reviews by CalgaryFMC:
Photo of CalgaryFMC
4.21/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed 12 oz. on tap at Beer Revolution in Calgary. What a great place, truly. Arrived in a stemmed glass, a dark reddish amber color like strong herbal tea with around an inch of beige foam. High, high expectations going in, as this brew's little brother Red Racer IPA is one of the best hoppy craft beers in Canada (my opinion of course ... I think I can back it up). Red Racer smells very floral and piney, and this beefed-up take follows suit nicely. What are really striking though, on both nose and palate, are the heady tropical fruit notes. I get a shit ton of lychee, mango, and papaya, along with some classic American hop gooseberry "funk" and orange breakfast crystals. Mellow pine resin, peach, pineapple, salt water taffy, bergamot orange like Earl Grey tea, tobacco flower, fruit roll-up ... All kinds of layers here. Many of these elements can be traced to Citra hops, applied with a lavish hand. Some orange peel flavor adds citric character but in all honesty this is one of the more perfumed and tropical DIPAs I've had, with these components trumping the citrus and pine. The malts take a back seat to the hops but do provide some light toast and caramel flavors, just to remind you that this does indeed contain barley. As the tongue acclimatizes to the fruit flavors, more molasses and pine come through and a pleasant lingering bitterness emerges, almost medicinal like gin. Fairly fizzy but this somehow works, syrupy but smooth. Awesome and nearly beyond reproach. Maybe some will want more pine. This one is juicy and the booze is almost perfectly obfuscated. It is as if someone took Red Racer, kept much of the aggression, but rounded off some of the corners and layered on more tropical fruit.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of cam477
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Justindouglas7
3.5/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of beerhunter13
3.75/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of FadetoBock
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of olradetbalder
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of BCborn
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of chickenm
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Central City brewpub. Pours a deep copper orange color with a nice fluffy white head. Big aroma of citrus and pine, and just a touch of malty sweetness. Great taste, a big hit of orange rind, pine, and grapefruit; quite bitter but incredibly balanced. The mouthfeel is great too, this has a thick body with carbonation that is spot on. Insanely drinkable, the alcohol is barely noticeable. All in all, it's an exceptional beer!

 441 characters

Photo of LDuke
4.06/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of JonnyBeers
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of biboergosum
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle, rebranded for the time being to benefit autism research, with 5 dollars per bottle going to said cause. The label's imagery sort of suggests that this beer is the 'missing piece(s) of the puzzle'.

This beer pours a slightly hazy medium copper amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, foamy, and fairly bubbly ecru head, which leaves some nice gnarly, Sleepy Hollow forest lace around the glass as things progress southwards.

It smells of acrid pine needles, bitter grapefruit and orange rind, sugary, toffee-like caramel malt, and more floral hops, that when combined with the lurking alcohol, get rather perfumed in nature. The taste is more big citrus peel extract and pine resin astringency, a bready caramel malt infused with brown sugar and tropical fruit - pineapple, lychee, and papaya come to mind - all further tempered by a soft field honey sweetness, and burgeoning alcohol warmth.

The carbonation is more or less subdued, but not quite inert, the body a sticky, at times syrupy, and decidedly hefty medium-full weight, with a quivering smoothness that the tacky hops have the temerity to poke at. It finishes on the sweet side, as the bitter side of the hops collapses under the barrage of pudding-worthy malt and across the board fruitiness.

A proper big brother simulacrum to the more famous Red Racer IPA, this offering duly amps everything up, all without losing the subtly and complexity that makes little bro so universally adored. Add in the closer to the heart charity work going on here, and there is certainly now no other reason to avoid buying, nay, stocking up on this one, eh?

 1,617 characters

Photo of Tmappin
3.91/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Sammy
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours orange body with sticky white head, and its Lacy. Smells great. This is a bit similar to the regular Red Racer with a lot more hops, fresh and very high and good bitterness from C-hops. A West Coast IPA but without a melange of hops just for bitterness. Malted down, but its spot on the style because of in-face bitterness.Above-average mouthfeel.
Growler from Brad.
Much better than the Autism bottle I had 2.3 years later, which was still good.

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Photo of dirtylou
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on-tap @ the brewery

Nice looking beer - bright clear amber with a health bit of head. A very well crafted and balanced DIPA that would likely draw a lot of criticism from American hop-dorks as this one doesn't bash you over the head with hops. Pine is fairly pronounced, caramel malt balance, some candied citrus. I enjoyed, but I think I prefer the Red Racer IPA more.

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Photo of H1N1
4.97/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Pours golden amber with a finger and a half of fluffy head that leaves nice lacing.

S- Big pine and citrus hopes. I can tell right away that this beer is gonna be good. It reeks of quality. A pleasant amount of balancing malt. VERY well balanced. Excellent start!

T- HUGE taste! The hops jump out and kick my tastebuds right in the neck! Citrus and the trademark Red Racer IPA strong pine. Grapefruit comes bursting through the pine. The alcohol is so well blended in this beer also! It's there just enough to enhance the beer. Not overpowering at all. For 9%, it's impressive.

M- Full bodied for the style. Ithe big body suits this big IIPA. Pretty much perfect carbonation, which accentuates the hop bitterness.

O- Unreal! When I asked the bartender for a growler fill, he looked excited. I asked "How is it?" He pretty much ran to the tap to get me a taster glass of it. "Just try it" he said. But what I got from the way he said it was "Hold onto your socks!" When I tasted it, I understood. It was a huge beer with a huge taste. The best thing I've ever tasted to come out of Canada!

 1,097 characters

Photo of joemcgrath27
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at a fairly recent 'tap takeover' by Central city at Beer Revolution in Calgary (from notes taken at the pub)
A - Very hazy orange, thumb of head, plenty of lacing
S - Plenty of citrus, some earthiness and a biscuity malt support
T - Lemon citrus, resin earthiness with some perfume, nice caramel malt support ads a nice sweet-bitter balance and a woody note to finish
M - Semi creamy, with a medium dry and bitter
O - big fan of the IPA, and their DIPA lives up to and surpases its bretheren, hop heads only need apply

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Photo of kyrlos
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of cletetron
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of souvenirs
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of maplesyrup76
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of sammo
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Boozecamel
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Rutager
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First time available in bottles, came out last week. Labeled "Central City Imperial IPA", 9.5% Alc./Vol.

Appearance. Pours a clear gold-amber with a finger+ of thick off-white head that fades fairly quickly, but leaves some beautiful lace.

Smell. Huge citrus fruits; ripe red grapefruit, bitter yellow grapefruit and oranges, chopped up complete with rinds. Plenty of pine and some cedar in there too with sweet caramel and nice toasty malts.

Taste. Big juicy citrus fruits, mango, peach and then comes the pine, waves of bitter pine sap and oily citrus rinds. Some sweet caramel malt in the middle there, but this is all about the hops and I love it. Alcohol well hidden.

Mouthfeel. Just below full body with low+ smooth carbonation.

Overall. A beautiful big sipper of an IPA. Loved this on tap for years, love it in a bottle.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.78/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a deep hazy amber/orangey color ale with a medium size foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of citrus hops with quite of bit of residual sugars. Taste is also a good mix between some citrus hops with light piney notes and some residual sugars with a solid malt backbone and some toffee notes. Body is quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Nice hops-heavy IIPA thought a bit too much residual sugar in the background for my taste.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.44/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to Rutager for this fresh bottle. Poured in to CBS Snifter.

A - Translucent medium orange/amber colour. Half a finger of off-white head that quickly receded to a ring around the glass.

S - Citrus and pine hop aromas up front with a fairly prominent malt sweetness adding balance and caramel aromas.

T - A big bitterness up front. Pine and some citrus and herbal flavours. The hop flavours don't come through as much as I would like but they are defintiely there. A huge sweet caramel malt backbone dominates and somewhat drowns out the hop profile.

M - Medium to full body. Creamy. Light carbonation.

O - This one didn't live up to the hype for me. I don't prefer balanced DIPA, which this definitely was. But even in terms of balanced DIPAs, this one lacked the nice citrus hop punch that I like. Still happy to try this one.

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Red Racer Imperial IPA from Central City Brewers + Distillers
92 out of 100 based on 52 ratings.