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

489 Reviews
THE BROS
95
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 489
Hads: 2,012
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 8.47%
Wants: 346
Gots: 142 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 489 | Hads: 2,012
Photo of wedge
4.31/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful clear amber color under a dense, creamy head of milky froth. Very "dark" smelling for the style, almost more like an American-style Barleywine. Dank pine resin, peppery and pungent with some zesty, spicy grapefruit and cedar. A touch of alcohol as it warms. Taste follows the nose, definitely trending towards the spicy, herbal, piney side of the hop spectrum with enough malt to keep some balance without making it too sweet. Flowery, lemony, peachy hops followed by some tea-like notes, light black cherry, and a malty sweetness. Medium bodied, creamy, and textured. This is tastier and tastier with each sip...more hoppy than it seems on first sip, yet not scathingly bitter, overly fruity, or too extreme in one way or another. Just a fine, well-crafted hoppy strong ale from Bear Republic. (804 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
4.12/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Rate #1,000! Vintage 2013 poured on 1/17/14, so not optimally fresh (bottle date 10-21-13). Pours a dark orange color, clear, with a small off white head. Nice lacing on the glass. Big floral aroma of citrus grapefruit and pineapple, light pine, and sweet caramel malts. Flavor is very malt forward as expected for the age on this one, but still a nice beer. Floral tones alongside bright grapefruit and lemon rinds, a touch of mango, and sweet mealtimes in the backbone. Mouthfeel is slick and resinous, near syrupy, but still with a lightly dry finish. Carbonation on the low side. Overall a nice beer that I want to grab fresh as this is trending toward barleywine. Nevertheless this is still rather yummy. (709 characters)

Photo of BB1313
3.92/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 vintage. 22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a burnt orange; fluffy off-white head that fades slowly and leaves great retention and nice lacing. Some sediment though. The aromas are full of orange and tangerines. Lots of sweet caramel malts. Nice amount of grapefruit as well. Very subtle amount of onion and garlic. The flavors have a nice balance between the hops and malts. The caramel definitely accents the hop flavors. More orange zest. Citrus is there. More grapefruit. Very solid bitterness with a solid malt backbone. There's some pine in the mix as well. Some resin. Maybe even some mint. Mouthfeel is very nice. It's full-bodied with moderate carbonation. Alcohol goes unnoticed and it's very smooth.

Very solid DIPA right here. It might not be a mind blower, but it's well-crafted. There is an English influence to this one, which gives it even more character. I like it. (892 characters)

Photo of KomodoDragon
4.58/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - a hazy burnt orange, modest head, wonderful lacing,

S - orange peel, spicy smells of ginger & cinnamon.

T - Caramel malts, balanced with fruit flavors - cherry / tangerine, even vanilla. Long and extraodinarily smooth hop transition. Lingering bite on the finish, with some peppery spice.

M - lightly carbonated, smooth - complex, not light.

Close to perfect IPA. Hearty, dangerously smooth, lacks the crispness of little brother Racer 5, instead going for something more complex. (492 characters)

Photo of biegaman
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Racer X is a lightly caramelized amber tone that is too obscured to see through but still manages luminous highlights. It has an appearance emblematic of both its boldness and strength but also its citric and tropical flavours. The beer is topped with what appears to be a memory foam lining - it's firm and cushy, I could take a nap on that surface.

Attention people on a juice cleanse: here's your loophole. This smells so much like fruit that no one will know you're cheating! It's got both orchard and citrus fruits (oranges, peaches, grapefruits, mangoes) as well as all other parts of the tree: leaves, needles, bark, even the resinous secretions.

The concept of "terroir" - that the geography, geology and climate of a certain place is reflected in a product's taste and characteristics - is not nearly as applicable to beer as it is to wine (grapes generally coming from the winery's own vineyards whereas most breweries source their ingredients from around the world)...

But funny that this northern Californian DIPA should have a heightened emphasis on pine and forest-y herbals in place of the usual San Diegan characteristics of sunny, tropical, citrus fruits (which, to be sure, this has too). Indeed, in both taste and aroma, Racer X has a lot of tree resins and leafiness, but also the requisite tangerine, grapefruit, and papaya flavours.

Bear Republic is sometimes overshadowed by the likes of Stone and Russian River but they've been in the hop game just as long and, as evidenced by Racer X, make a Double IPA every bit as good and deserving of respect as any of their Californian compatriots. I drove across international borders to get a bottle - you do what you have to as well. It's that good. (1,724 characters)

Photo of macrosmatic
2.3/5  rDev -45.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 1.75

Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into a Fat Head's pint glass.

A: Hazy dark gold to light bronze, with a one-finger white head that fades fairly quickly. Good amount of visible carbonation.

S: Primarily an onion and spice aroma from hops, and a bit of bready malt. But overall not a huge aroma. When I work at it, I can get almost a cheesy smell – potentially an "off" aroma?

T: This is pretty bad – oniony hops, strong enough to remind me of garlic, and some toasted bready malts. Moderate levels of bitterness, with a healthy dose of awful. There's almost a rotted onion aspect to this flavor.

M: Full-bodied, good carbonation sensation, and the alcohol is noticeable but not hot.

O: This is awful. Given my very high opinion of both Racer 5 and Cafe Racer 15, it's possible (and I'm hoping) that this is somehow a bad bottle. I'll more than likely give it another try, and update if I have a different experience. But this is horrendous, both lacking in aroma and having a very off-putting flavor. This is getting poured down the drain.

EDIT: Tried a second bottle. While perhaps not as offensive as the first, it still is really sup-par. I'm supremely disappointed in this beer and will not be trying it a third time. Cannot recommend this to anyone. (1,271 characters)

Photo of clayrock81
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured a copper brown with one finger head and lace patches that gave off a piney, citrusy, grapefruitish aroma and there is some bready/caramel malts that are noticeable. Fuller bodied, good balance as the piney citric hops are not dominant but instead kept in check thanks to a large, bready, somewhat sweet malt backbone. The finish is dry thanks to lively carbonation and more hop assertiveness although the malts are still around and sometimes the beer is even a tad sticky. A solid sipping DIPA that has more malts than usual and makes it work. (550 characters)

Photo of Flounder57
4.27/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle was poured into a large tulip glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a copper color with great clarity and vision of bubbles coming up through the glass. Nice lacing on the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Floral, pungent, resiny, citrus, piney, grassy, caramel malts, and toasted malts. Smells awesome.

Taste: All of the above plus a tea like hop flavor and mild lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: A bit smooth, mild lingering bitterness, medium carbonation, and medium bodied.

Overall: This beer got better as it warned up a bit. Aggressive hop characteristics that only left mild bitterness. Extremely tasty, drinkable, and enjoyable. (707 characters)

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into tulip; clear bright orange with a nice white head that fades after a bit, leaving nice solid rings of lacing.
Smell is stunningly good...huge fruit, with tangerine, pineapple, mango, stonefruit, and lesser pine and herbal leaf. One of the best-smelling DIPAs, up there with Heady.
Taste is interesting; different than the nose suggests. The malt is very clear, but present, with some nuttiness and biscuit flavors. The hop flavor is the major element still, with juicy tropical fruit, citrus rind, and pine all in equal proportions. Alcohol is also present as a sort of flat warmth behind the flavors, and it seems to mute the flavors somewhat.
Mouthfeel is medium and slick. I'd prefer more carbonation I think.
Overall, the smell sets you up for a great experience but the taste doesn't quite deliver. But it's still a tasty and drinkable DIPA. (862 characters)

Photo of far333
3.96/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Clear apricot colored with streams of fine bubbles rising up. Orangey rocky foam with fine bubbles lingers long. Low aroma of honey malt, toffee and tangerine, some orange rind. Rich flavors of bready and honey malt, ripe fruit, tangerine and orange rind, some ruby grapefruit. Very hoppy, but offers a good balance of malty goodness along with the hops. Rich and full mouthfeel, viscous and chewy. Great beer. (410 characters)

Photo of GallowsThief
4.42/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a bottle into my tulip.

A – Poured out a nice amber color with a full two finger slightly off white head. Nice looker.

S – Citrusy and piney right out of the gate. Grapefruit with a bit of orange. Floral hops. Smells great.

T – Sweet malts and floral hops all around this one. Lot of fruit flavor in here as well with definite grapefruit, orange, lemon, lime and so on. Not overly bitter at all with just enough sweetness to make it perfect. Honey? Delicious!

M – Medium bodied with average carbonation.

O – This is damn fine. I did make a mistake of starting this one too cold and it didn’t grab me right away however when it warmed it was fantastic. I mean damn fantastic. I wished I had another bottle. This one is a huge win. (763 characters)

Photo of babaracas
4.05/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear, pale orange, two fingers thick dense cream colored head; settles slowly to a small cap and leaves chunks of lace down the glass. Smell: floral, honeyed biscuit, grapefruit, apricot note, pine. Taste: orange, grapefruit, toffee, mild alcohol note, pine finish. Pretty much a DIPA template. While not exotic or particularly exciting, it's got no rough edges and hits the spot. (389 characters)

Photo of JiuJitsuNINJA
3.52/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This was a great DIPA. It is rated World class but it is a bit shy IMO. The color and aroma of this beer is absolutely wonderfull. The taste is is a bit one sided.Plent of pine and grapefruit,with plenty of sweet malt to almost but not completely balance out the dank hops. (273 characters)

Photo of itsscience
3.85/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours muddy copper with a tinge of gold around the edges and a short white head. The nose is a huge ripe grapefruit with pine needle, tangerine, and biscuit malt. At the front of the tongue I get a lot of grapefruit flavor which blends into pine needle and onion, delivering a moderate bitterness that is balanced out by malt on the finish. For a double IPA it is very drinkable with a medium body and medium carbonation, but this is quite a mild example of the style. I would guess this was a regular IPA. (506 characters)

Photo of tastybeerinmybelly
3.59/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

It's been a while since I have had the Racer 5, but I remember it being an above average IPA. I was excited to try the Racer X, but am a little disappointed. Nothing really stands out about this one for me. The hoppiness is kind of one dimensional with a piney taste, but that is quickly replaced with a malty aftertaste. It's not bad, but for the price there are a lot of other double IPA's I would rather have. Good thing it is Christmas and I got plenty of different options to choose from! (493 characters)

Photo of arizcards
4.23/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a bomber from Total Wine in early December for $7.99. Bottled on 10-21-13.

Beer poured orange with a nice white head that is leaving lacing.

Nose is pretty nondescript, some citrus hops linger.

Taste is big grapefruit citrus rind and pine up front. Malt backbone attempts to balance things out but does not accomplish that. Everything i am looking for in a 2IPA.

Mouthfeel is full and satisfying.

Overall this is a very smackable brew. This is an old school 2IPA where the malts complement the hops and not become dominantly sweet and the abv is not jacked up too high. Try it if you come across it. You will not be disapointed! (643 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.11/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

fresh batch of this just hit shelves, but I was lucky enough to score some on tap. its blonde honey colored beer with lazy white lace head and lots of frantic bubbles heading for the surface. high alpha and intensely bitter hops notes assault y nostrils, and there is a very light malt base for how much hops are packed into this. the flavor sings with all the glory of delicious west coast hops, this is a defining example of the style. its citrusy and has a fruit punch quality, but certainly not at the expense of bitter, which is the dominant sensation through this whole beer. the alcohol is invisible, and there is almost a rye malt spice to the finish, but I think its just a side effect of how bitter this finishes. high ibu content for sure. its in many ways more robust than the café racer 15, less gentle, less citra maybe, more aggressively bitter. I would love to be able to drink this fresh all the time, its a big ipa and one or two glasses is enough for me, but I love the way this is built. medium bodied and carbonated enough to keep it moving, long hoppy finish. excellent nectar here from bear republic. I wish more of their beers made it into this market. (1,177 characters)

Photo of scotorum
4.14/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 11/10/13. "Vintage 2013" reads a small label on the neck of the bottle.

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a Sierra Nevada IPA glass.

a: Clear amber with a two inch tall white head which receded to rocky surface foam and dense lacing.

s: Intense pine and citrus.

t: Piney hops forward in a blast over a moderate malt base. Sticky afterfeel with lingering bitterness at the sides of the tongue and elsewhere.

m: Medium, lingers in the mouth as though sticky. Very smooth otherwise.

o: Excellent DIPA. Expecting a bit more flavor considering its high rating, but certainly a top flight brew in its style. (616 characters)

Photo of tastybeer
4.34/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Straight orange colored beer, medium sized white head, and patchy lace around the rim of my tulip. Smells sweet, citrus, crisply dank, and a wee but passionfruity. This is very satisfying on the taste buds. By no means overpowering like some dIPAs. This could in fact be sessionable. Sweet, chewy, pine, citrus, tropical fun. Smacky in the mouth through the finish... Medium body. Mouth-watering lingering hop tingle. Super drinkable. Overall very nice. (453 characters)

Photo of Ego
3.21/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

2013 vintage
eyes...
tightly packed cap of foam, a lovely finger size hat, great lacing, clean orange hue with a smattering of carbonation in no sort of hurry to arrive at the top destination, looks good for the style

nose...
smells like a souped up amber, spicy malts, some hops (herbal), a bit underwhelming overall

taste etc...
a sharp bite of hops and then it melds into an almost syrupy malt flavor, this has a lingering almost medicinal type hop signature - not your typical west coast hop experience, the ABV is noticeable in the afterglow but not so much in the sipping, this does have a really nice weight to it compared to many DIPAs but unfortunately the flavor lacks a punch I am looking for in the style

verdict?
bear repub makes some great beers at some usually incredibly reasonable prices... this just isn't one of them (839 characters)

Photo of ajmitch4
4.24/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass. Just under two months old. Reviewed live.

Dark orange, almost brown color. It leaves, at most, a decent lace. Smells of the citrusy hops with alcohol on the end, classic West Coast IPA smell. Nice balance with the hops up front and a great malt backbone. Leaves a good amount of bitterness in the back of the throat. Crisp and very easy to drink. I'd much rather spend my money on a 6-pack of Racer 5, or even the Hop Rod Rye, but still a solid DIPA. (492 characters)

Photo of cvm4
4.42/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a hazy, light amber in color with a one finger off-white head. The head is sticky, great lacing and not bad retention.

S - Pine hops, orange peel, sweet grapefruit and a malty backbone.

T - Floral hops at first with a sweet malty backbone, piney sap, tropical fruits and the ending isn't too bitter.

M - Medium body and carbonation. Slightly boozy and has a wet finish.

O - It's not a huge hop or bitter bomb, but the beer is oh so drinkable and tastes so good! (475 characters)

Photo of vfgccp
4.19/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A - Really nice dark honey apple juice color. Suspended sediment even though the bottle was well kept. Off-white head settles quickly into a medium halo. Nice retention and lace.

S - Awesome nose. Bright pine, grapefruit, honey, and apple. Touch of honeydew.

T - Smooth, sweet profile with a firm bitter backbone. A lot of the nose comes through in the flavor profile. Pine, honey, lightly toasted malt, honeydew, cilantro, and spicy black pepper.

M - Thick for the style with a really nice smoothness.

O - More so than a typical DIPA, Racer X really cranks up the sweetness to match the bitterness. Not necessarily my favorite take on the style, but still a great beer. (674 characters)

Photo of Zraly
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2013 Vintage. Found it at Total Wine, of all places. (As an aside, they've surprised me lately.)

Poured into a DFH IPA glass. Aromatic. Hazy light amber with a two finger head. Not the prettiest but certainly wonderful smelling.

Extremely balanced but deliciously hoppy all at the same time. Melange of bright and pungent hops: tropical fruits, orange, grapefruit, a touch of resin and a hit of earth. Sugary and honey laced malt provides a beautiful background for the complexity of hops. Medium bodied and smooth to the last drop.

Extremely well-made Double IPA. (568 characters)

Photo of whatthehull
4.54/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Wine Tulip

A - Semi Translucent Copper Orange sunset, barely any white head and tons of sticky lacing

S - Sugary sweet malts, Lovely booze note, pine, Huge fruity/earthy hops, tangerine, pineapple, slight funk, banana, tons of floral notes, crisp mountain air, champagne yeast and some weed undertones

T - In your face aromatic floral hops, huge malty sweet backbone, tree sap, fresh tropical/island fruits, tangerine, fresh water, lightly toasted grains, sugary booze note and a clean pine finish

M - Medium body, well balanced, nicely complex, medium acidity and a huge sugary malty backbone, with an explosion of glorious hops at the beginning and end finish

D/O - Just all together great. Nice and refreshing, crisp and clean, just well done. Has that CA everything about it. I think the most surprising part is the higher abv and besides the sweetness, not really noticing but at the same time noticing the booze. Real top notch

Final thoughts - $8 a pop, 8+abv and a whole lot of awesome. Get you one and give one as a gift (1,035 characters)

Racer X Double IPA from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 489 ratings.