Racer X Double IPA - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Racer X Double IPARacer X Double IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,975 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,975
Reviews: 494
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.46%
Wants: 334
Gots: 138 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: xlperro on 01-13-2003

Racer X is an uncommon Double India Pale Ale which puts a California twist on English brewing traditions by adding an assertive hop aroma and bitterness that compliments the firm malt backbone. Like its little brother Racer 5, Racer X is balance in a bottle.

2009 California State Fair – BRONZE
2009 San Diego International Beer Competition – 2nd
2009 West Coast Beer Fest - GOLD
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,975 | Reviews: 494
Photo of GreenWBush
4.87/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I'm starting to think of the advent of these double IPAs are really just different forms of lobotomy for hop-heads. You can't get enough of the hops but the alcohol gets enough of your body. And when they're fresh, they're especially medieval on the skull. Racer X fits this formula; wildly hopped, but malty sweet and booze-laced as well. Some of the shitty d.IPA's are just a nasty malt liquor / hop juice experiment. This one is the Bentley of all double IPAs.

Amber hints in a glimmering gold pint glass. Initially impressive head for style fades to tiny suction-cup lace blots.

Lightly carbonated to the point, but so thickly chewy in mouthfeel, this felt like a cask ale though it wasn't. This is a rare-example of a double IPA that I would love to age and then enjoy - there's that much going on. The malt is chewy but stapled in to the alcohol and warming hop.

I love the initial hop jolt. You think you've been teased and then the hops are back, winning over the overall prize. But the malt-foundation is never forgotten, making this an uncharacteristically balanced disciple.

I should've growlered this in BR's hilariously low-brow plastic growlers, resealed, and aged. Damn shame.

Photo of younger35
4.87/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Drank on 1/26/08, taken from notes.

Visited Bear Republic with a buddy of mine on a recent little beer trip. I've had Hop Rod Rye in the bottle and it was damn good so I hoped that the other beers would follow suit. Drank out of a Bear Republic pint glass.

Appearance- Pours a yellowish orange with hues of a light pink and brilliant clarity. A rather small bright white head forms that recedes fairly quickly leaving a spotty cap and fairly thick collar. Plenty of lacing is left for all to enjoy.
Smell- The nose lets you know right away that it's a DIPA. Loads and loads of fresh strawberries was the first thing that jumped out at me (amazing). A bit of pine sap is discernable but for the most part the nose remains floral. Lilac and fresh strawberries abound. Someone should sell this fragrance to Glade®.
Taste- Not quite as floral as the nose but it is nice and fruity. Bits of grapefruit and pineapple add a bit of a citrus bite that is really nice. Spruce and pine are present as well but definitely taking a backseat to the fruit. The most surprising part about this brew is that as big and hoppy as it is, it's got plenty of caramel sweetness. I wouldn't go as far to say that it's "balanced" but it's got enough toffee there to keep everything in check. The alcohol is also pretty noticeable and shows it's 8.3%; probably the only negative about this brew IMO.
Mouthfeel- Very thick and creamy with a nice oily slick feel with medium carbonation and quite a bit of warming from the alcohol. Nearly perfect.
Drinkability- This is a really really good beer. I had a lot of DIPA's this weekend and if this wasn't the best, it was tied for first. The nose and super creamy, delicious mouthfeel are reason enough to try this. The fact that it tastes awesome is just a bonus! Wish they'd bottle this stuff (if they do, I wish they'd send some up to Boise. Hell I'd take any distribution in Boise).

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Caught this one on tap at Fathead's awhile back and have since filled a growler at Mad Mex in Robinson, I can't believe I never logged my review of this brew. One of the best DIPA to cross my palate yet, Bear Republic nails every style the make this West Coast DIPA is no exception. Appears a clouded copper orange hued body the oils grip to the chalice when you swirl your glass. Head is a thin scan white color with minimal specks of lacing scattered on the glass. Aroma has a huge hop bouqet with candy coated sugar glazed deep pine, citrus fruit, and pinapple notes definite layers of grapefruit pungency as well. More of the an intense wave of hops passes your senses with the first sip, big bitterness but also big on fermentable sugars here with the malts really wrapping around the bitter hop bursts. Layers of sugar and massive bitterness compete with one another with alcohol and resinous hop oils in the finish. More hughe grapefruit zest, pine needles, some tobacco leaf, and floral hop flavors. Mouthfeel is big with thick hop oils stick to the palate leaving the hop bitterness lie on the palate between each sip. Drinkability such a rare treat glad I had a couple run ins with this bad boy, flows so nicely remains balanced even with raw hop bitterness kick ass west coast DIPA at it's best.

Photo of Corkpuller
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My favorite Double IPA (or any IPA).

Orange with some rust.

The nose is tropical with dank underbrush aromas and a slight herbs de provence. Alcohol is totally buried by aromatics.

The palate enters slighty sweet and then quickly dries out and feels much more attenuated than it must be. The hops are rich and considerable but not particularly resiny. The firm dry texture is offset by a surprisingly creamy carbonation and a complex and ever changing rush of flavors. The palate is so complete and balanced it's almost ridiculous.

There is no hope of me accurately describing this beer. It is a masterpiece. Thank you bear republic. Awesome.

Photo of HopNelius
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

served on tap at Coles, had in a Tulip glass.
Appearance-golden orange, medium carbonation.
Smell-wonderful notes of citrus and pine.
Taste-heavy notes of grapefruit, tangerine, orange, followed with light pine notes and with a slight alcohol kick on the finish.
Mouthfeel-lovely,not too much carbonation, a nice citrus hop taste lingers.
Overall-I have to admit I have been waiting to try this beer for awhile, and I was not disapointed, I actually said to my wife, this could be my new favorite beer. If you are a fan of Imperial IPA's or IPA's seek this beer out, excellent, very nicely balanced.

Photo of NCBeernut
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just going off some mental notes from last night's pint at Woody's in City Market.

Rich copper color topped with a one-finger super creamy-looking head like it was poured from a nitro tap. Huge citrus hop aroma that I could smell as soon as my server set it on the table. Major hop bomb - in a good way. Taste is hoppy and citrusy with just a touch of caramel malt. Very resinous. Where is the 9%? Feels like I am drinking something around 7%. Dangerously easy to drink. Full bodied. The creamiest IPA/DIPA I have ever had. No tannins detected. Just thick, creamy hop goodness in a glass. There seems to be some richness to the malt though - maybe Maris Otter base malt? This is exactly what I want in a DIPA.

Photo of rallison
4.82/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just tapped at Beachwood BBQ. Boy was I in for a treat! When I arrived Alesmith Nut Brown was still on tap (and nothing wrong with that - it's one of the best English browns around). About 30 minutes in, a party ordered a pitcher of it. Not a quarter of the way through and it tapped out. So, the question then becomes "tap the Racer X or the Gonzo Imperial Porter?" Seeing as how I had had the Gonzo (and liked it), but had only heard great things about the Racer X, I happily offered my opinion on the matter. This, of course, led to my having a couple more pints than expected...

A: Beautiful copper color with a delicious fluffy off-white head that never died.

S: Mmmm, smells of piny hops and delicious malts. I can't imagine an IPA smelling much better than this.

T: You thought the smell was good? The taste is even better. Perfect in every way. Delicious, floral hops at the forefront. Piny more than citrusy. Middle is nice and sweeter - kind of a raw sugar sweetness (in a very good way). Finishes nice and hoppy, with a good amount of bitterness. I must say though, the balance is more like a Pliny the Elder than a Hopsickle, and that makes for an incredibly drinkable double IPA. In fact, for 9%, this is incredible.

M: Perfect. Perfect carbonation level, perfect richness - I wouldn't change a thing.

D: I had 2 and a half pints, and I'll be going back for more as soon as possible. That should sum it up well enough.

Highly recommended. I've had a lot of double IPAs. This one is honestly one of my favorites. I have to say the craftsmanship on this one is absolutely phenomenal. If you ever see this one on tap, get yourself a pint - you won't regret it!

Photo of parris
4.82/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smell - Dank hops, a small amount of toffee, I suppose the aroma could be a bit bigger.

Appearance - Looks like beer, descent white head, yellow copper in color, there's a small amount of either yeast or hop bits floating in it, some lacing

Taste - Dank, spicy hops, nicely, no perfectly, balanced out with the malt

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, carbonation hits the back of your tongue, somewhat slick, no astringency

Overall - It's lame I don't have more of this, ISO

Photo of cdizinno
4.8/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: Poured into a Duvel tulip glass from a growler purchased from Green's at Piney Grove in Columbia, SC.

A: Hazy dark amber color with a nice off-white head. Moderate lacing.

S: Citrus/floral fruit aromas from the hops. Nice mildly sweet fragrant smell.

T&M Beautifully smooth and balanced beer. Complex flavors start with mildly sweet pine and citrus hops that transform to a floral, mildly sweet taste that ends with a nice bitter hop/malty taste. Some chalkiness on the end. Medium to full bodied with well hidden alcohol.

This is very similar to the Apex, probably a slight bit more hoppy bitterness in this Racer X though. Definitely a quality product. Very drinkable!

Photo of cbutova
4.8/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally get to try this on-tap exclusive, I feel lucky for randomly finding this at the Dirty Truth last night. Reviewed from notes. Pours a dark amber-orange color with a one finger creamy white head. The head has great retention. Massive lacing is left coats almost the whole glass as I gulp this down. Exactly what I look for in a DIPA here. Smell is great. Huge hop aroma, the kind you hope for in a DIPA. Smells like a fresh bag of hops from the homebrew store. A nice mix of earthy, floral and lots of fruity hops. The grapefruit scent sticks out and works very well. Some sweet malts are picked up backing up the hop blast. Just like the smell, the hop blast treats me nicely and reminds me of Sculpin flavors. Tons of citrus/fruity hop notes and flavors. The grapefruit is immense in this but I like it. A decent malt backbone is found hidden behind the monster of hops. Lots of hop bitterness also, looks like they can utilize both parts of the boil very well. The only thing I think is a bit over done is the citrus/peel taste. I would like a tiny bit less but this is hardly an error in the beer. Still an exceptional example of the style. Mouthfeel is moderately carbonated and bodied to suit the taste to perfection. It goes down very smoothly with no alcohol aspects. Massive coat of bitter hops stays on the tongue. This one is dangerously drinkable to me because of the taste and smell. I could session this one till I could drink no longer and at $6 for a pretty big glass I wouldn't mind doing that. Definitely my favorite Bear Republic beer to date.

Photo of rye726
4.8/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is damn fine Double IPA, one of the best I've had.

It pours an rich woody brown with shades of amber. Creamy tan head displays excellent lacing and retention.

The nose is an explosion of pine and citrus hops well balanced by nutty malts, caramel and toffee.

Huge amount of bitter hops hops up front and through the finish. Perfect balance is maintained by bready malts and dark carmelized candies.

Silky smooth body has a delicate yet crisp carbonation. Dank, resiny hops coat the palate for a lasting finish.

Another superb West Coast IPA that should be put into bottles.

Photo of Floydster
4.79/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint from Hollingshead's Deli in Orange

Great Double IPA that is comparable to the Pliny the Elder

Blows their own Racer Five out of the water

Nice dark dark brown with a huge white head

Smell was great with hints of citrus but more hoppy than anything

Cascade stood out for me as well as continental

One of the best India Pale Ales ever tried, hope this comes out in bottles

Could drink this all night but the alcohol would definitely catch up with me

Taste never seemed to go away

Find this and try this as soon as possible

Photo of wagenvolks
4.78/5  rDev +13%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Props to the BA who supplied this growler at the May tasting (I think it was thickerfreakness; if so then thanks Charles)! Been wanting to try this one for a while.

Pours a beautiful, deep golden-copper hue with interspersed trails of carbonation. A pillowy cap of custard foam crescendos at 2" in height and slowly recedes to a thick cap, leaving sexy webs of lacing along the inside of the glass. Aroma reeks of resinous, piny, sticky hop cones, with a superb balance of toffee, caramel malt, and Sugar Daddy candies.

The flavor surpasses my expectations; IIPA's really don't get much better than this. A perfectly balance of pine-laden hops and toffee malt coats the palate, while the greenery leaves a lasting bitterness along the finish. Body is medium-thick, but not overbearing in the slightest. Perfect carbonation and a chewy, creamy body that never turns syrupy. All in all, Racer X is a fantastic beer...I rave about Bear Republic's Racer 5, but Racer X just takes it to another level. More please!

Photo of Matt_Schlamann
4.78/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A: Deep orange color with a nice white head that quickly dissipates.

S: Pine, Hops, Floral scents.

T: A perfect balance of hops-to-malt. Super smooth drink-ability. Such a good blend. Very "west coast". Hop bomb up front with a pretty nice malt back bone.

M: Good lingering bitterness, not overwhelming, but just right for a double IPA.

Overall: This is a really good one. Will definitely be enjoying again in the near future.

Photo of GilGarp
4.77/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've been waiting for this beer to come to Colorado for years so I'm super excited to give it a try.

Seed cold in a goblet, Racer X is a slightly hazy amber color with thick head, good retention and nice lacing as it settles.

Aroma is super fresh and hoppy with great big loads of citrus, especially grapefruit.

Flavor is just as amazing as I was hoping it would be. Much like little brother Racer 5, and as it claims on the bottle, it's wonderfully hoppy while still managing to find balance with sweetness from the malts. The other similarity that I see is that the malts and hops seem to compliment eachother perfectly. The hops flavor is near the very top of the scale but the balance is still kept in check.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated with balanced bitterness.

Overall one of the best double IPAs I've had the pleasure of enjoying. A wonderful beer well worth the wait.

Photo of meathookjones
4.77/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had this on tap at the Capitol Ale House Innsbrook location. This came out with a deep amber body with about an inch off white foam on top. The head stayed around for a bit lacing the glass with rings foamy lace. As the glass was put in from of me I could smell the huge citric and floral aromas rising up and a strong pine scent. Surprisingly there was a slight fruity sweetness lurking about to tame the hops a bit. Taste was of strong citric hoppiness with underlying fruit notes. Quite an excellent smack of hops to the face with a refreshing sweetness keeping it from going overboard. A nice hoppy bitter aftertaste ended this awesome brew off. Great mouthfeel with a nice coating hoppiness and a creamy feel to it. This has awesome drinkability as I went through about 4 or 5 23 ounce glasses of this and still wanted more. I was surprised how much more balanced this was than I expected but it worked out nicely. This is one of the best double IPA’s out there it packs a strong hoppiness without completely shredding your palette. It listed this as 7.8% there not the 9%, I believe it was closer to 7.8% considering that I was still pretty functional after so many.

Photo of LibraryTom
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Library Alehouse, regrettably only a few ounces in a ten ounce chalice, but then I was working.

This beer rolled out of the tap beautifully, and was a pleasure to pour. Good, yet tight head, that did dissipate a tad quickly.

Deep, copper colored malt that is barely present in the nose, which is dominated by the well extracted hop profile of this brew. It was difficult to draw many single attributes out I found, but all the regular suspects were present.

The first sip revealed a beautiful candied orange slice base neatly balanced by the assertive yet delicate and varied hop character, which demonstrated a nice citric bite.

This beer really wins in mouthfeel as far as I am concerned, because it has a full richness that is truly powerful, yet never overbearing nor does it linger to long. In fact, this beer finishes fairly dry with a mellow hop bitterness.

Great to taste it good and fresh, and makes me remember my days in Philadelphia drinking 90 minute. Right up there with it in my book, and I love the 90.

Photo of Wasatch
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks goes out to Wespatrick for this brew.

Pours a very awesome clean/clear golden orange, very nice carbonation, HUGE three-finger creamy/thick/foamy head, with tons of thick/creamy sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, bitter, sweet, malty, lots of citrus/pine notes. The taste is incredible, hoppy, bitter, sweet, slightly malty, very nice citrus/pine notes, and some caramel. Medium body, slightly syrupy, chewy. Very drinkable, probably the best DIPA I've had to date. Highly recommended. Thanks Wes!

Photo of sdwchef
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Excellent beer. Has a little sediment and cloudy color.

Photo of DavoleBomb
4.74/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter. Big thanks to nyrangerfan for hooking me up.

4.0 A: Clear dark orange amber color. Two and 1/2 fingers of frothy creamy head that retains well and leaves lots of lacing.

5.0 S: Awesome aroma. Lots of pine and grapefruity citrus from the start. Though the hops aren't particularly complex, its simple aroma is strong and wonderful. Malts take a backseat, but add a layer of complexity with a soft caramel aroma.

5.0 T: The hop flavor is massive. Completely overwhelmed. Strong piney backbone again with softer citrus notes including mandarin and regular orange. Lemony grassiness to an extent. Malts lend caramel and a slight biscuity flavor.

4.0 M: Medium body. Good carbonation. Creamy, but could be creamier. Dry on finish with a pleasant bitter aftertaste.

4.5 D: Awesome beer. I'd love to get a growler of this once a year (or more!). Tons of hop flavor and an excellent IPA overall.

Photo of Lakes
4.73/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

With 7 hours to kill the Sunday after GABF we headed over to the Falling Rock. The plan was to have a Pliny (the Elder) and then work through a few others doing reviews as we went. Imagine our surprise when RacerX, which we were teased with 1 oz samples of for the previous 3 days, was freshly tapped.

Appearance
Color is a lovely deep copper. It has a lasting fluffy white head. Lacing is more of a death grip on the glass. Beautiful, just beautiful.

Aroma
Citrus and sweet malt.

Taste
This is SO good. Very hop forward with bright bursting notes of citrus, tangerine, naval orange, and pine. The malt compliments the hops perfectly. Resin and if honey could be a citrus product this is what it would be. This is an exceptional treat.

Mouthfeel
Flawless. Carbonation is excellent. Aftertaste is smooth and pleasant

I'm drinking this till they ask me to leave.

Photo of gregmoscetti
4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had: on tap at Beachwood BBQ

This IPA is thick, chewy, and delicious. I have had my share of IPAs and I would not hesitate to place this one in my top 3. If you have the opportunity to try this beer, take it. It was Super balanced, had a great floral smell and where most DIPAs can fight their way down, Racer X went down smooth. I would have loved another and will probably have one if I can get back next week.

Photo of rxdrewthejew
4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally got down to Naja's to get some Pliny the Elder, only to find that they ran out. Good news was they replaced it with this. I LOVE Racer 5, so was quite excited to find this on tap.

A: Dark IPA, clear orange/red (though tough to tell in the dark...). Not much head, not much bubbles. Really nice lacing.

S: Big bitter hoppy scent. Mostly citrus. My friend told me she smelled lychee, but I don't have a damn clue what that smells like so who knows.

T: Starts with a malty backbone. This is truly a DIPA with plenty of sweetness. Fruity/estery goodness, orange and tropical. Then the hops hit. HUGE hops. Some citrus but pine dominates. The citrus hops are mostly orange to me, but the pine is really the big flavor. The bitterness just lasts and lasts.

MF: Very smooth, doesn't have the bite that many IPAs have. Carbonation is pretty low. Sticky and syrupy, coating the mouth and leaving a nice bitter film.

D: Talk about a helluva consolation prize. This is a well crafted beer. Starts off more like a strong ale, but the bitterness is huge enough to slightly overbalance the sweetness. So smooth and tasty. Easy to drink, I wanted to go back for a second round but too long of a drive home to do that...

Photo of Maxfield
4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Somehow have not tried this until today. The Racer 5 is great and my brother picked this up for me a few days ago. Great smell, good amount of bitterness. Absolutely would get it again.

Photo of NWer
4.68/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

On tap at the brewery last month during their brewery only release.
PtY one day, X the next. Life doesn't get any better than that.
Pours nice golden in a tulip glass. Tight foamy head retains well. Flowery. Well balanced. Very flavorful. Finish is smooth and very enjoyable.
On of the great West Coast IPA's.

Racer X Double IPA from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,975 ratings.