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Black Racer - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Black RacerBlack Racer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

477 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 477
Reviews: 100
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 9.44%
Wants: 17
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  8.10% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
Black Racer™ blends Bear Republic's love of hops with the Pacific Northwest's appreciation for dark ales. Our pit crew brews this award winning ale which boldly defines a new frontier of flavors and always maintains pole position. Race to the Dark Side™.

Bronze 2011 Great American Beer Festival American-Style Black Ale
Gold 2012 World Beer Cup American-Style Black Ale

(Beer added by: avaldivia on 07-27-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 477 | Reviews: 100 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap at the Tap Room. A story of Cascade, emphasizing the hop as opposed to roast. A sipper, as alcohol warming. Piney aroma. Some toothpaste taste, also apple cidery in the finish. 75 IBU Black with lace and some head. Not bad, worth a try, however not the best of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

11-13-2012 01:55:20 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours an almost opaque super dark crimson-brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, burnt cocoa, and subdued hop aromas. Taste is much the same with char and citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2013 03:38:14 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of djrn2
djrn2

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

10-20-2013 20:35:21 | More by djrn2
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is clear but very dark red in color and has a slight amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin beige colored head that quickly died down, leaving a large patch of bubbles on the surface, a collar around the edge and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of chocolate and roasted malts are present in the nose along with notes of underlying citrusy hops.
T: Similar to the smell, flavors of roasted chocolate malts are present in the taste along with a light to moderate amount of bitterness and hints of pine resin from the hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a little crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. The roasted malts lend some dryness to the finish.
O: This beer doesn't seem to be as roasty and bitter compared to other beers in the style but is pleasant to drink in its own regard and has good drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2013 03:34:40 | More by metter98
Photo of nmann08
nmann08

District of Columbia

3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served from a 22oz bottle.

Pours a dark brown, almost black with an off-white thick head, great head retention.

Smell wise, pulling out molasses, some fruit, pine smell from the hops. There is an interesting smoke smell that is coming through, which I usually enjoy, but this seems misplaced.

It starts with malts, almost sweet, then turns into a bitter piney taste leaving a lingering smoke aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is fine.

Overall, this is an OK representation of the style. Its good, but so many better examples of better American Black Ales out there.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2013 00:43:47 | More by nmann08
Photo of acurtis
acurtis

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

10-20-2013 20:35:03 | More by acurtis
Photo of kjkinsey
kjkinsey

Texas

4/5  rDev +2%

06-01-2013 20:56:22 | More by kjkinsey
Photo of Texasfan549
Texasfan549

Texas

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

06-06-2013 14:51:38 | More by Texasfan549
Photo of jaydoc
jaydoc

Kansas

4/5  rDev +2%

02-12-2014 00:00:42 | More by jaydoc
Photo of kylehay2004
kylehay2004

Florida

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Tan single finger head without much retention on a nice red tinged deep black body. Very nice actually. Coffee, roasted malts, earthy hops and orange citrus for the aroma. Flavor of earthy hops nicely balanced with roasted malts although neither is especially memorable but the combination is excellent. Medium body, moderate carbonation and semi dry finish related to the coffee.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2013 02:57:30 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from the growler into an imperial nonic a deep garnet color with a blooming lighter beige head atop,aromas are full on pine and citrus over top of roast and bitter chocolatet,the way it should be in my opinion.Sharp and pickly pine hops on the palate with some dryer earthy tone,some roast and bitter chocolate comes into play as well but he pine resin wins out.This is what I want and expect for the style and the left coast once again brings it,love this beer.

Serving type: growler

11-25-2013 23:19:51 | More by oberon
Photo of GRG1313
GRG1313

California

4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasted at Bear Republic as part of our "full list tasting" New Year's weekend.

I have grown a bit bored with the whole "Black" thing. Everyone is now doing a black ale, lager, ipa or some sort of "black thing." I anticipated a typical black IPA and then I'd be done with it. Wrong!

This black IPA is a knock out. It is in my opinion one of the nicest, most complex but most drinkable black IPAs I've tasted. While a bronze winner at 2011 GABF, I'd give it a gold!

Black with a nice tan head that it retains longer than most.

Nose is aggressive hops with grapefruit and pineapple but with a really nice undertone of malt and roasted grain; just a hint but it's layered and complex and nice.

Mouthfeel is medium thin but with nice carbonation and character and with a feel that one wants to just keep drinking it.

Flavors are super. Big light coffee bitter with layers of bitter stone fruit and undertones of malt, carmel and roasted grains.

Finish follows flavor profile to just make this a wonderfully appealing and nice drinking beer.

Serving type: on-tap

01-02-2012 04:51:34 | More by GRG1313
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westcoastbeerlvr

California

4/5  rDev +2%

04-06-2013 06:21:18 | More by westcoastbeerlvr
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bomber, bottled Jan 21, 2013. Muchas gracias to doktorzee for carting this back from Cali for me.

This beer pours a very dark mahogany-tinted brown colour, with three fingers of puffy, rocky, and creamy beige head, which leaves some lovely dense treeline lace around the glass as it slowly melts away.

It smells of roasted, somewhat charred caramel malt, bittersweet chalky cocoa, aged citrus rind, vegetal pine hops, and some mild spicy pepper notes - which make it hard to shake the idea of mole sauce. The taste is medium baker's chocolate, toasted dark bread, kind of musty, fruity citrus, last autumn's fallen pine combs, a twinge of cold coffee, and loitering vegetable greens. No earthly sign of that 8 points and change ABV.

The carbonation is lightly frothy up front, and quickly settles to a pleasant lilt, the body a sturdy medium-heavy weight, the dark ale really delivering here, and mostly smooth amongst a wee clamminess. It finishes quite off-dry, the judicious chocolate malt kind of throwing its heft around, while the hops maintain their pithy holding position.

A surprisingly malt-forward example of an ABA, especially coming from this brewery. Not a bad thing per se, but I was kind of hoping to see how these guys approach this hybrid style with their usual arsenal of hopitude. In the end, a decent, mildly hoppy dark ale, with a boozy punch that you sure don't see coming.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2013 02:20:26 | More by biboergosum
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largadeer

California

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

04-06-2013 20:21:21 | More by largadeer
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

4/5  rDev +2%

08-24-2013 02:46:19 | More by nickfl
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

West Virginia

3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look pitch black minimal ruby highlights peaking through when held toward the light, mocha tan head forms thick and lasts quite awhile, fine even lacing strung around my chalice as it dwindles. Aroma has dark chocolate notes, herbal earthy hops, along with some anise notes. Flavor has a milk chocolate, dark herbal notes, bitter baker's chocolate mild coffee roasts in the dark malt notes. Very strange mix going on here bitter baker's chocolate again, roasted malts nearly burnt marshmallows, herbal tea like bitterness dank earthy character from the hops seeping through the dark malted IPA. Mouthfeel is medium bodied slightly resinous dry finish from the dark malts and bitter hops. Overall very easy to consume a great Black IPA compared to most versions out there I'm usually telling myself this just tastes like a hoppy porter.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2014 13:13:46 | More by WVbeergeek
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Kegatron

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

10-22-2013 18:29:50 | More by Kegatron
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SocalKicks

California

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

08-10-2013 02:40:32 | More by SocalKicks
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

4.11/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I picked this up at Monde, enjoyed chilled from a goblet chilled from the 22oz bottle shared with tenderbranson69.

The color is black with opaque appearance with 2 fingers tight bead and streamers of lace with good retention. The smell is very good with floral, citrus and tropical aroma of hops dominant with a nice malt aroma and a hint of alcohol but no real roasted odor. The feel is very good with moderately bitter feel and moderate carbonation, low sweetness and resinous hop texture with a semi-dry finish.

The flavor has a mild pine tinge with slight hint of char in the background with moderatly citrus flavored hops with a slight yeast fruitiness and light raisiny element but pine and grapefruit outweighs the malt strongly with some pithy flavor which makes the finish seem bitter toward the end with mild alcohol warmth. Overall I like this a lot, pretty great example of the style and I was pleased it met my expectations considering I think highly of the original Racer 5 IPA. I recommend this to those who like hop forward black IPA's

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2013 15:35:57 | More by Slatetank
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

Washington

3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The aroma is really appealing and different. It even smells dark, with the burnt sugar scent mixed with piney hop aromas. It makes me think of roast pumpkin and vanilla. I like this for being less hop-dominant. They call it an IPA, but I think it's correctly categorized as a Black Ale that happens to be pretty hoppy.

Quite dark, of course, with a handsome beige head. Pleasantly sudsy in the mouth. A little sharp and slightly slick. Huge nose of flowery and piney hops. Somewhat fruity, but no single flavor stands out. A little on the dank side but a more open and clean flavor for the most part. The touches of toffee, charred grain, and pineapple upside-down cake add to the complexity. Substantial bitter aftertaste, finally. From the 22 oz bottle for $6.59 at Baron's Marketplace, Point Loma Blvd.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2013 06:29:04 | More by mactrail
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

4.21/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

The color of the broth is a deep brown where light shines through the edges. There's a modest, but lasting, beige head. Some initial ring lace--it's spotty lace toward the end.

Attractive blend of pale and mildly roasted malts. Excellent hop balance, enough to be present but not dominating. Good notes of chocolate and dry caramel.

The flavor mimics the positive aroma. The malt is dark in flavor, but without any burnt elements. I'm reminded of unsweetened cocoa (no milk). The bitterness is more pronounced in the swallow and lasts a while in the aftertaste, but it isn't overbearing. The body leans to the thin side, but the carbonation is appropriate. Overall, this is an extremely well-crafted, well-balanced beer. It would be very easy to keep drinking this one all afternoon.

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2013 21:53:40 | More by smcolw
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood II,

A: Pours a deep brown with medium off-white head, good retention and lace.

S: Dark chocolate malt and grapefruit, standard Black IPA smell.

T: Chocolate, hint of roast backed with citrus (grapefruit and lemon) with a hint of pine. Well balanced flavours.

M: Medium-bodied, resiny at times, pretty smooth.

O: A rather good Black IPA. A style I'm not the greatest fan of but I enjoyed this effort, not surprising since I enjoy Racer 5.

Serving type: on-tap

10-14-2011 01:12:31 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of mendvicdog
mendvicdog

Maryland

4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

08-19-2013 13:14:45 | More by mendvicdog
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

3.09/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Cost was $6.50. 8.10% ABV confirmed. It says brewed in Cloverdale, which I thought was strange seeing as Bear Republic is in Heraldsburg. Maybe I'm just not in touch with Bear Republic's operations as much as I should be. 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard silver pressure cap served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude, Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given the brewery.

Served cold, straight from the fridge in keeping with directives on the label. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a 5+ finger head of nice light khaki colour, good cream, good thickness, and good (6+ minute) retention for the high ABV. Body colour is a nontransparent solid black; opaque. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Appealing for a black IPA. Pretty much what you'd expect; there's nothing unique or special here.

Sm: Smells like an IPA. There're delightful pine and floral notes. Some oily hops, maybe even some nectary notes. I get no roast at all. A hint of dark malts. Some caramel. An above average strength aroma. No yeast character or alcohol comes through. I'm excited to try it.

T: Piney hop notes, hop oil, floral hops, caramel, and dark malts. Thankfully, there's hardly any roast. No alcohol comes through. No yeast character. Fairly balanced for what it is. Cotton candy/candy floss. Not a whole lot of depth of flavour here. Nor is there much complexity or subtlety. Just a decent merging of a hoppy build with a darker build. It comes off forced and unnatural. This is one of the better beers in the style that I've had, but it still misses the mark.

Mf: Smooth, wet, and overcarbonated. Decent presence on the palate. Too thick. The body is too full for the lack of diverse or deep flavour.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, but not a great beer in the style. To be honest, few are. But Bear Republic brings a sincere effort to the table and it's not bad for what it is. Even at its pretty fair price point for a bomber, I wouldn't get it again. Hides its ABV decently. I'll finish this bottle, but it'll take me a while. It feels like it has no reason to be a Black IPA - they could just as easily have made an IPA and it'd be better. That don't bode well; the style of a beer should be motivated.

C+

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2013 02:35:35 | More by kojevergas
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Black Racer from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 477 ratings.