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Racer X Double IPA - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Racer X Double IPARacer X Double IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,936 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,936
Reviews: 490
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 333
Gots: 133 | FT: 5
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: 1,936 | Reviews: 490 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of seanwhite
5/5  rDev +18.2%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Tony's Darts Away in Burbank, CA.

Pours a hazy amber color with a 2 inch foamy beige head that settles to a small cap. Thick foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruits, and citrus zest. Taste is of malt, brown sugar, citrus fruit, grapefruit juice, and citrus zest. A mild bitterness lingers on the palate after each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation making for a crisp yet smooth mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good DIPA with some awesome sweet/bitter citrus flavors going on.

Photo of brew3crew
4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Churchill's

A- yellowish orange body with white head and great lacing

S-nice hop smell that I can't distinguish

T-nice citrus taste. Only real flavor I get. Very smooth

M-medium body and smooth

O-nice dipa. Would definitely drink more if avalible

Photo of ehammond1
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap

Stone 15th Anniversary Brewers' Reception
CSU, San Marcos
San Marcos, CA

Clear amber and orange with a thick/white head. Lots of lacing down the glass. Gorgeous. Looks like a particularly thick and hearty DIPA.

Incredible aroma and my favorite aspect of this beer. The aroma is very tropical, floral, piney, and grassy all at once. It's quite spectacular. A full, inviting, rich, and unique aroma.

Well balanced DIPA: tropical fruit, some pine, and significant but appropriate bitterness. Very nice.

Medium to thick mouthfeel.

A solid DIPA with a world-class aroma. If the flavor excelled similarly, we'd have a very, very special beer on our hands. Bear Republic shines again.

Photo of magictacosinus
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap into a pint at the Bear Republic brewery and pub in Healdsburg, CA.

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a slightly small, frothy head. Not the prettiest double IPA I've seen, but still is eye-candy.

Smell: Strong hoppy notes reminiscent of grapefruit, pine and soap. There are sour bready notes thrown in there, which gives it a well-balanced aroma.

Taste: Very, very bitter, yet contains a very overpowering fruity taste with notable maltiness. This is not as balanced as other double IPAs I've had, yet the fun lies in the aggressive, zesty hops that Bear Republic uses. The alcohol, despite high in ABV, is barely noticeable here.

Mouthfeel: A malty creaminess with a strong hoppy finish. If you're looking for an IPA capable of ruining your palate, look no further! This one, if memory serves, is more bitter and outstanding than Stone's Ruination. Nevertheless, while hops win flavor-wise with this beer, it's the maltiness that is more pleasing on the palate.

Overall: A great double IPA that is quite different and zesty than others. I had it with spicy gumbo at the brewery, which was - as far as I'm concerned - tasty for me, but a large mistake for someone that's not a big fan of having these hops enhance the peppery notes of the food. Worth trying, and would have this again if I find it around tap around here.

Photo of avaldivia
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Taps in Petaluma. Poured into a Bear Republic pint glass.

A: Pours a dark amber color. Inch or two thick head with perfect lacing.

S: Very strong pine and grapefruit smell. Very citrusy on the nose, but that gives way to a caramel malt smell.

T: Not necessarily the hop bomb I was expecting, but I am not complaining about that. It has a great citrus taste to start off and then goes into a well balanced malt character.

M: Medium to full bodied. Very well carbonated. Oils stick to palate.

O: Bear Republic can pretty much do no wrong when it comes to IPA's and IIPA's. This is my new personal favorite from them. Great hop flavor. Well balanced with the malt. One I will not hesitate to order.

Photo of mdfb79
4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 07/03/11 notes. Had on cask at The Ginger Man in NCY while visiting my brother.

a - Pours a deep reddish brown color with one inch of off white head and low carbonation evident. No lacing and ehad doesn't last long at all.

s - Smells of citrus hops, floral hops, tropical fruits, and caramel and fruity malts. Very nice, with a lot of fruit and fresh hops in the nose. Wasn't expecting the caramel.

t - Tastes of light citrus hops, fruity malts, caramel malts, toffee, and light pine hops. More malty than I was expecting and than the nose. Good, but a step down from the nose.

m - Medium body and low carbonation. Very smooth and no real bitterness to it.

o - Overall a good beer, but slightly disappointing. I've been wanting to try this one for a while and it just didn't quite live up to what I was hoping for. Still a very good beer, and I'd definitely give it another chance. I think being on cask didn't really help this one; would like to try it again on tap.

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

Good nose honey, toffee/carmel, orange/grapefruit, abv creeps in. Nice orange amber color. Tad hazy. Good head that left lacing all the way down. Sweet malt, Kinda toasty. Citrus hops, mainly grapefruit/orange combo. Bit syrupy with bitter finish. Another winner fron Bear Republic.

Photo of nataku00
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured into a goblet glass. Beer is a dark bronze, with some lighter shades of orange when held up to a light, and slightly hazy. Initial half a finger of soapy head dissipated to a few wispy strands of white on the edges of the glass and some light lacing. Despite the dark color and haze, some carbonation could be seen floating up from the bottom of the glass.

Nicely aromatic, grapefruit peel and pith bitterness, tangerine, caramel and bread malts, and a touch of pine hops as well.

Following the nose, big grapefruit and caramel initially, mixing bitter peel oils and astringent pith with sweet caramel. Smooth bread malts sweeten on the finish, with a good bitter grapefruit and pine aftertaste on the tongue that lingers for a few minutes.

Medium bodied and slick on the tongue with some soft carbonation that helps mainly with filling your nasal cavity with aroma as you drink. Alcohol is nicely hidden on this beer. Glad that this is frequently on tap around the Bay Area.

Photo of werdnacross
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a growler picked up at Bear Valley Brewing Co.

A- Very Cloudy, Head disseminates quickly which may be a condition due to the growler storing conditions

S- Strong piny smell

T- Very hoppy with good well roundedness. taste is good but not necessarily the best I've had. some strong spice to it.

M- Thick taste, a little difficult to get down but delicious. Didn't stop me from finishing the growler though :)

O- A good beer. Not readily available but like to get more in the future if I come across it.

Photo of stakem
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Review from notes taken on 2/2/11. Growler secured on the way home from Southamptons RIS release and shared with wishuwerebeer.

Poured into a pint, this brew appears a very hazed deep copper color with a finger of white froth. It provides an entire curtain of lace all over the glass. A constant stream of bubbles rises to the surface in support of an already solid retaining head. When held to the light, this brew displays some yellow and orange coloration around the edges.

The aroma of this brew is fantastic. It is very herbal with it's hop presence producing characteristics that are minty, herbal and spicy with essence of pine, citrus and fruity rinds like orange mixed with grapefruit. As the brew warms it picks up some catty notes along with caramel malt that provides a sweetness minorly reminiscent of vanilla.

The taste is very herbal with flavors of mint, pine and somewhat catty. The oils provide a resinous cling inside the mouth that is lasting and enjoyable with a ton of flavor without just being a rip-roaring bitter brew. This offering is perfectly balanced with a fusel alcohol character and malty caramel inclusion that even tastes a bit like vanilla. The bitterness picks up as it warms with a lasting herbal and catty aftertaste that hangs in the mouth.

This is a medium to almost full bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is very drinkable for 9% and all around balanced extremely well. This brew is an absolute pleasure to drink. The resinous cling is enjoyable. Full flavored without just bitey bitterness. An absolutely stunning take on the style, Bear Republic is putting out some really high quality hoppy brews and this one stands out to me among the best in it's class. I can't account/confirm the kegs freshness which the growler came from but honestly wish I would have had more than one filled.

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Tan to orange-ish in color, slight chill haze, not much head really but lacing ok.

Smells very nice. A good mixture of grapefruit, hops, pine and malts blends together well.

Taste is really crisp and fresh, hoppy and delicious. A well balanced DIPA to be sure. Easy going grapefruit flavors are perfectly accented by pine, hops, malts, a little sweetness, and just plain deliciousness.

Feel is slightly slick and medium bodied, decently carbonated, with a lingering bitterness that's really nice.

Drink is excellent. I'm definitely going to buy more bombers of this one in the future. It was a good value as well.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 32oz growler fill while picking up some growler fills for trades (thanks Big Z for the continuous amazing offerings on tap!). This was a big want from the old top 100, now that the system has changed, it has fallen off, but let's see if it was worthy of it's old spot...

A - Through the growler almost looks like apple juice...nice deep dark center with a lightening along the sides of the glass. Poured into my oversized snifter still plenty of carbonation from the fill last weekend...a very thin foam (almost quad-like) head. Beer looks a bit deeper and richer in my glass than the growler. Clear, attractive, not syrupy looking like most IIPAs I've tried.

S - Candied hops. A touch bitter, but mostly sweet. Reminiscent of PtE, but a bit more piny and bitter smelling. Earthy.

T - WOW! Excellent balance. Nice sweetness, bittery hops...not very in your face. Starts off sweet, finishes bitter (but not overly so). Leaves a bitter aftertaste. Malts are in the background, but noticeable.

M/D - A bit watery for a IIPA, but medium bodied...subtlely bitter aftertaste. More earthy feeling. Overall, this is a great IIPA, but I had some higher expectations. All in all a beer that I would be more than happy to get again, but I was expecting something a little more mind bending based on the glowing reviews and spot in the former top 100...but then again I'm not a hop head and I tend to like the more malty and subtle IPAs. Gotta say though, the booze is not in your face at all and it goes down the gullet quite easily.

notes from further along in the growler...
gotta say, the more i drink this beer, the more i dig it...however, it is definitely on the bitter side, but way more like a traditional ipa than a iipa except for the ABV. definitely worth the taste and glad i got to try it (top 100 or bottom 100)

Photo of Estocker
3.29/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pretty, deep amber color.

Smell is very boring. i thought something was wrong with my nose. couldnt get much of an aroma from it. a little citrus and some malt.

taste is relatively boring. a little boozy, malty and some citrus hop flavor.

8 oz pour. plenty.

Photo of TheDudeRules
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a growler to a Darkness snifter.

Thanks for the hookup Brendan.

Pours a beautiful amber hue. Very little head. A scant amount of lacing remains.

Dare I say this is maybe the best smelling beer I have come across. A waft of sweet citrus and honey. Pine and hop notes follow. Wow. Just beautiful.

Certainly citrus and pine on my tongue. The malty backbone is there and it's quite pleasant. As it warms I'm getting a taste of caramel. Hop bite on the backend, but certainly not abusive.

Carbonation is perfect. Sticky hop oil coats the tongue to my liking.

Coming in at 9% it's certainly sessionable to me. That growler is going down in a blaze of glory tonight. A very good example of a DIPA. This beer is right in my wheelhouse. I regret not sharing this with some buddies, but I'll get over it. Wait. I already did.

Photo of HoganRJ
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a very nice amber color with a short head leaving a good lacing The initial smell was pine and citrus. My initial taste was lemon zest. It followed up with a very pleasing hoppieness without being overpowering as many ipa can.

In the mouth it starts a bit oily but finishes nice and dry.

I'm only half way through my first glass. But wow. This is one great bear!

Photo of JoeBloe
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

outstanding it is -
I almost passed this up because I didn't have my own growlers with me, but I went for the extra cost of yet another glass jug -
pours a clear deep amber/red with a nice ! finger head and leaves an impressive amount of ringed lacing all the way down the glass -
the nose is full of pine and resin with a fresh hop profile - earthy and grassy - a gentle swirl rejuvenates a 1/4 inch head each time - taste is very fresh, hop forward with a proper malty sweetness on the back of the tongue - very smooth - just the right amount of stickiness without sappiness(?) - feels just right -no alcohol burn, it's very well hidden - dangerously drinkable here - wish i had more - yummy - so glad I didn't pass it up!

Photo of CooperEllis
4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I reviewed this on growler way back for my 13th review. Had it on draught this time and felt it was different enough to warrant a second review.

Into 12oz chalice...

The pour accentuates the ruby/auburn color as the chalice illustrates how bright this ale is.

Out of the growler I felt there was a burnt citrus aroma. Certianly still here, but the pine is the dominant aroma. Big big aroma.

As I wrote before: tasty pine flavor, it is exceptional in the balance between the hop heights and the solid bitter citrus. The flavor is also well balanced with the carbonation. There is a slight oily feel in the front and a bit of water right at the death.

Very tasty but the crispness of the drink allows the taste to stay center. Though I feel the draught had far more heat than I remember from the growler. Draught was quite exceptional for the phyical act of drinking the brew. Still feel this a bit reliant on the pine flavor for my taste.

see also: (13)

Photo of afksports
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first time I had this one it was at the start of my BeerQuest to drink the old BA Top100. Now, more than halfway through it's come back on tap. And oh what a wonderful beer it is. A double IPA clocking in at 9 percent alcohol, it's big on just about everything.

Appearance is rosy amber, clear, and solid save the slight lack of lacing. As it warms the smell gets hoppier and hoppier, plus the malts come out with sweet caramel to compliment the aromatics of citrus and pine. The taste is really what wins the day for Racer X though. A bitter finish comes only after a beatiful hop start and malt middle. True to style, it's as malty with caramel and sugar as you'd want in the middle, but it never leaves the hop category throughout.

Buzzing after a 12oz pour, I can drink the bejeezus out of Racer X til I'm on the floor and it's racing past me. The only knock might a watery back end. But that's not unwelcome - it makes me feel like it's not as big as it is.

Photo of xnicknj
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on tap at rattle n hum in nyc, served in tulip glass

Pours a straightforward copper color with some darker burnt hues. A fluffy off white head bubbles up and retains for a moment before fading into some swirling film, with spotty and patchy lacing on the glass.

The nose is dominated by citrus hops, primarily grapefruit. Light edges of bready malt and sweetness.

An intense wave of citrus right up front. Explosive, juicy hops with grapefruit, orange, and invigorating zest. Just enough of a doughy malt base is present with low sweetness and a drop of caramel. Finishes with lasting dry citric hoppiness and very faint alcohol warmth.

Decent medium body and carbonation, fairly smooth and easy on the palate, slightly dry. Excellent, enjoyable drinking, and the alcohol is masked better than many other similar DIPAs. Too bad this is draft only.

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.

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.

Citrus and sweet malt.

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.

Flawless. Carbonation is excellent. Aftertaste is smooth and pleasant

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

Photo of dubinsky
3.62/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap, 12 ounces at SF City Beer Store

This is a review from my notes and memory.

A - This DIPA was poured super cold and was a very clear amber, with a nice one finger, sticky white head with plenty of lacing.

S - Tons of citrus and pine on the nose with an underlying sweetness from the malt.

T - Awesome citrus hopiness dominates up front with a great piny resin on the finish. This beer is also very sweet with hints of honey and bread coming out from the malts. Finishes bitter with a little too much alcohol taste.

M - Medium bodied and creamy. Not much carbonation to speak of, which is typical, but i would have appreciated it on this beer to clean off the tongue a bit. This beer also finished supper bitter, almost too bitter, leaving my tongue a tad numb.

D - A one sippa dipa. Tons of great flavors and aromas, but i found 12oz to be more than enough. Perhaps some more carbonation, less bitterness and slightly less sweetness would make this an top contender.

Photo of largadeer
4.64/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From a fresh cask at Toronado, served in a pint glass.

The beer pours a glowing shade of pale amber. The head is dense but settles to a thin film in time, leaving sticky lacing down the glass.

Hops are huge on the nose, redolent of mango, guava, papaya and pine. The tropical fruit character is incredible. There's subtle sweetness beneath the hop bouquet.

Hop flavors mirror the nose, heavy on juicy, citrusy tropical fruit. Guava and papaya hit the tongue first, but it becomes more resiny toward the finish. It's light and dry, just barely malty; there's a touch of breadiness mid-palate. Bitteness is at a perfect level, and the overall balance of the beer is impeccable.

I've had Racer X dozens of times, but never on cask before. It really brings the beer to a different level.

Photo of brewerburgundy
3.53/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a nonic at Gestalt in San Francisco.

Golden, possible orange, it's hard to tell in a dark bar. Good sticky head.

Soft but full hoppy nose with the usual suspects; grapefuit pith and juice, pine, and tropical fruit. When it gets warmer there is a bit spike of solvent alcohol.

Grapefruit, pine, and way more malt than I ever could have guessed. Huge caramel malt presence and fairly bitter.

Full, slippery feel with soft carbonation.

A pleasant enough IIPA, though I actually didn't even realize that it was one when I ordered it. For me, the level of malt is surprising and hampers its drinkability and enjoyment as it is held back from being the palate destroying dry, bitter machine it could be. I suppose the alcohol being hidden in the taste is a plus.

Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No picture - tap only me hearties!!! Got the old school Bay Area DM playing: Possessed!! Just saw that Blind Illusion is playing a show with Skitzo nearby in a week or so. HELLZ YEAH!!!

Pours a deep clear amber with minimal carbonation. Nice half-finger of soapy head dissipates into a tiny, Natalie Portman in Black Swan thin wisp of foam at the edge of the glass. Decent lacing. Huge, West Coast IPA aromas of grapefruit, pineapple and piney hops. Some hint of sweetness in there in the form of a caramel note but mostly dominated by hops. Not super unique. Big, bold hop flavors right off the bat. This is your standard, West Coast Double IPA and fulfills all expectations of the style. Nice malty backbone is sublimated to the hop character throughout. The carbonation is nice and dances on your tongue for a fleeting instant, then shuffles off to Buffalo. There's a flowery, sugary note in the flavor profile that kind of hides in the shadows and flits out every now and again. I like that. I got a growler of this for $24, and it's like 5 beers I think, so it's not cheap. I believe it's about 8% ABV, and the alcohol is well hidden. Good beer although pricey.

What I like most: The excellent, complex flavor profile (for a Lefty DIPA)

What I like least: The price and lack of unique qualities in the aromas or appearance.

Verdict: Very good example of the Lefty DIPA and worth trying if they are pouring it.

Racer X Double IPA from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,936 ratings.