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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.

492 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 492
Hads: 2,055
Avg: 4.24
pDev: 19.34%
Wants: 354
Gots: 162 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Racer X Double IPA Alström Bros
Reviews: 492 | Hads: 2,055
Photo of hwwty4
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at the Saucer.

This beer was presented in a 10oz globe glass. It is a dark, burnt orange amber with a massive, white rocky head that leaves some of the craziest lacing I have ever seen. The aroma is pine, caramel, toffee, a bit of vanilla, grapefruit and fresh pine needles. This could very well be the most piny IPA I've ever had but the hop varieties still show through. its not just pine. The flavor is crazy hoppy. Huge pine notes coat the palate, then the malt backbone hits with caramel and vanilla, the bitter rinds of grapefruit show itself. This is really a phenomenal DIPA. Hoppy yet balanced. The mouthfeel is full and coats your mouth with a bitter resin. I know understand why this is such a highly touted beer.

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.78/5  rDev +12.7%
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!

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Photo of hooliganlife
3.63/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

poured on tap at the stable. huge thanks to jerad!

pour was deep copper with about an inch of white head. nice retention and nice lacing.

big scents, very piney and very citrus, light sweet caramel.

taste as dominant with pine and bitterness, slight citrus. strong malt backbone. alcohol was too present from start through finish. very bitter finish

very full, low to medium carbonation. very smooth and very easy going

low drinkability because of the strong alcohol flavor. this was a slow sipper and a one time deal in a sitting. i've been wanting to try this forever but as sort of let down by this. i expected less alcohol. its only 9% but drinks like a 12%.

overall, good DIPA. i would drink this again based on rarity so this is special to come across.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to WesPatrick for making the drive down to Charleston Beer Exchange for a growler of this stuff. Served in a Hopleaf tulip glass.

A - Late-rising 2.5 fingers of off-white foam with medium retention and great rings of lacing. Semi-transparent fire-red and copper color with some tiny bubbles making their way around. Looks a little like the growler of 16 Grit that I had.

S - Lots of pine, but also healthy amounts of caramel malt backbone. There's also a touch of alcohol astringency to it. I tried to let this one warm up but it's still not the biggest nose. Definitely one of the more balanced west coast DIPAs - lots of breadiness.

T - Tons of caramel/toffee/bread malt notes but with a mounting hop bitterness that arrives late on the palate. The hop character is very dank and earthy, with only little in the way of citrus. It starts to become a palate-bruiser after a couple glasses.

M - Medium bodied, moderate carbonation, soft and smooth, with a nice dry finish. There's some mild residual stickiness and warming sensations from the very sneaky ABV.

D - This one is a palate bruiser, and while not overtly boozy the ABV really snuck up on me and I hit a wall after my second glass.

This was not exactly what I was expecting after trying Bear Republic's Apex, which tasted like hop bitterness and fresh-cut lawn. I'm curious to know when it was brewed and how long it took the keg to arrive in South Carolina. That being said I'm still very glad I got to try it, and if it ever appeared on-tap in Chicago I would be at the front of the queue to try it again.

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Photo of Sean9689
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours rusty copper color with a white frothy head into a nonic. Smells oh-so-hoppy with lots of citrus and floral notes. Taste is a hop bomb as well. Lots of cirtus and hop character with a bitter finish. Mouthfeel is good, medium with good carbonation. I really like this DIPA but Pliny the Elder beats this one easily.

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Photo of dakid618
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at The Stable in St Louis. Poured into imperial pint glass. Pours a deep dark red with an inch of frothy head. Smell is very piney. Taste is kind of a shock, not nearly as hoppy as I was expecting. Dry pine and slight citrus flavors are mostly concealed by the biscuitlike maltiness. This beer tastes great but it wasn't what I expected. Medium mouthfeel that really dries out your tongue. Good drinkability. A very good beer but I expected a little more.

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Photo of bonbini26
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ the Blind Tiger 04-24-09

Poured into a tulip glass, has a bright glowing orange color, almost looks olive oil like in the consistanty of the liquid. Has about a 2 finger white head, with some lacing left behind. Huge, pinapple, citrus, oily piney nose, o yes this is going to be a good one i can just tell by the smell. Starts out hoppy and then the bitterness continues to increase as you drink it. Just enough malt in this one to keep all that bitterness in check. Alcohol isn't overwhelming, a lot of hop oil in the finish, grapfruit, pine. The mouthfeel is big with bitterness and thick oils, that stick to the palate (def have this one last it will stay on your palate well after). Drinkability is what one would expect from a 9% DIPA. I am spoiled now, Racer X has left Racer 5 in the dust

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Photo of glid02
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler courtesy of gford217 - thanks!

Pours a deep copper color with a one-finger tan head. The head dissipates into a thin layer on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of pine and citrus hops with a good deal of caramel malt. I was expecting this to be skewed more toward the hops but it's actually very well balanced.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Caramel malts up front with citrus and pine flavors. Midway through the sip a slight spiciness joins in and sticks around until the bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a great thickness with soft carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I had no problem finishing my glass and could easily have a few of these.

Overall this one surprised me a bit. I was expecting a beefed up version of Racer 5 but instead got a moderately hopped amalgamation of Racer 5 and Hop Rod Rye. This is a tasty beer, and one that is worth a shot.

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Photo of gford217
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler courtesy of RyanC84 shared with the usual suspects at the Brick Store.

Pours a deep golden amber with a decent off-white head that lasts quite a while and leaves decent lacing.

The aroma is not nearly as overpoweringly hoppy as I was expecting. There are citrus hops up front in the nose but there are also lots of bready malts in the background as well.

The taste follows the aroma with a massive citrus hop kick up front supported by the big sweet malts backbone. The finish was interesting for me as there was a bit of hop bitterness but there was also a slight peppery spiciness on the palate as well. Not sure if that's a function of the type of hops or what, but I definitely got a little bit of spiciness.

The mouthfeel is exceptionally creamy for the style and the soft carbonation just accentuated the smooth mouthfeel.

This is great DIPA, though not world class for me. The interesting spiciness of the hops and smooth mouthfeel really do differentiate it in my book and make it a very unique take on the style.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.92/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I have waited for this one for longer then I can even begin to go into here. After all that time a growler hits my front porch and I am literally floored. Served cold I popped this open at lunch on Sunday to enjoy throughout my day. Consumed on 04/19/2009.

The pour was just how I had envisioned it. Rich, deep copper colored amber with a crystal clear look to it. Big head of off white rises up and over the top before settling down gently into a thin crown that totally covered the top of the glass. Lots of thick and gooey side glass lacing all over the place here.

The smell was soo rich and pungent I nearly fell over. This was exactly what I had been searching for, looking for, in a big IPA. Huge orange citrus notes, resin so thick it clogged my nose, and soo damn fresh, sheesh, I have died and gone to heaven. I go in for my first taste of the nectar and that is just what it is. Sweet, buttery malts that gave me a fall sense of security before the backlash of sticky hops just kills me with bitter orange, pineapple and piney notes. Simply amazing, perfect, wonderful. Medium bodied with smooth, even carbonation and a dry feeling that stuck around forever making me restrain myself from guzzling it.

Overall this was exactly what I had hoped for, wanted, and dreamed about. May possibly be the best I could have hoped for. Balanced and complex, simply outstanding. Everything it should be.

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Photo of rhinos00
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split this growler with my father on Easter Sunday. Poured into pint glasses. Big thanks to Mychal (mykie73) for sending this one out to me.

A- Pours a nice copper, amber with great clarity. Nice two fingers width of white head that laced the glass throughout consumption.

S- Nice combination of floral and citrus hops. I think the bread type malts offered a unique aroma, but took away from the intensity of the hops. Still a wonderful scent.

T- This is an amazing DIPA. I really loved the balance between the hops and the malts. While there was a huge citrus hops that was pretty prevalent, there was a nice malt backbone in the background that countered it every step of the way.

M- Medium bodied with nice carbonation.

D- Alcohol is non-existent. As the beer warms, the balance between the hops and malts really evens out and produces liquid candy. Goes so smoothly.

Overall, what a fantastic beer. Really glad I got to enjoy a whole growler of this as one pint definitely would not have been enough. Thanks again Mychal!

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Photo of OlieIPA
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at Beachwood on 4/11/09 and poured into a 16 oz. pint glass.

A: Exhibited a beautiful deep amber or copper hue with a decent 1-inch white frothy head, which seemed to dissipate after a minute or two. One of the qualities I didn't like was the lack of lacing that most epic DIPA's typically possess.

S: An extremely well balance DIPA...strong piney/leafy aromas that mellowed down by the very sweet and somewhat spicy (perhaps a cinnamon) malt backbone. Strong alcohol presence was detectible as well.

T: More malty than I was expecting, giving a slightly sweet characteristic that made this beer unique in it's flavor profile. What I also liked was that the malts didn't take away any of the potent hop qualities that good DIPA's have.

M: Just about perfect....good amount of carbonation, medium body, and subtle dry finish.

D: The alcohol was definitely easy to pick up, but the beer as a whole was beautiful. I would love to have over and over again.

Overall: Very impressed...but not blown away. This beer is really good and a definite try if you see on tap anywhere. Cheers!

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Photo of gregmoscetti
4.7/5  rDev +10.8%
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.

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Photo of ROBORB
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Flying Saucer, Raleigh, this beer poured a nice copper color. There was a 1 1/2 finger white head that lasted for a long time. The aroma was dominated by pine and citrus. I was expecting this beer to be very bitter but it was not. There was a substainial malt backbone that helped blanace the beer very well. The carbonation was just right to make this beer go down easy. This is a fantastic IIPA and should be had when you can find it.

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Photo of Birdiebeagle
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle Pours a clear golden with a fizzy white head, that produces good lacing and lasts fairly well. Has a good hoppy aroma of spruce. Has an oily texture with good carbination. Has a real good duration with a nice strong bitter finish.This is what I love in an IPA. Bold and powerfull. Very well done. Has a very smooth ability to hit you with a solid bitterness. I highly recommend this one

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Photo of atsprings
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Flying Saucer, served on request in a Duvel snifter a nice crisp dark orange with a thin head that diminishes to a ring and leaves great lacing. Aroma is a nice amount of pine hops with a touch of citrus and enough caramel malt to back it up. The taste is a wonderful balance of pine hops and caramel malts. The beer is certainly somewhat heavy, put the bitterness is just right that you crave the next sip! This is a truly wonderful brew, I certainly would love to see it bottled, but the fact they don't just makes it that much more special.

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Photo of youngblood
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Very nice amber color to this. Sticky head, almost looks sugary. The smell is full of pine, very strong pine. Think Pinesol and you are awfully close. The taste follows the smell very closely. It's a knockout combo of in your face hop pine and subtle malt. Not balanced at all, but that is a good thing in this case. Mouthfeel is nice and sticky. Average drinkability due to high ABV and hop profile.

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Photo of HeyItsChili
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a growler of this burrr at the Charleston Beer Exchange's rare beer Tuesday this week.

A - Pours clear copper with a thin, gloppy white head.

S - Piny, sugary, with some citrus pop and a little white pepper.

T - The bitter taste really lingers a bit long with this one like that lazy bastard who won't move off the couch. C'mon Racer X, you said you would go look for a job but all you've done all day is get high and play Animal Crossing. Not cool.

M - Sticky DIPA feel, good carbonation.

Notes - One of the better DIPA's I've had.

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Photo of taylorhamrick
3.87/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours an almost hazy dark copper, nearly amber color. An enormous 3cm+ head forms on top with dense bubbles that sort of grow and pop, leaving a tight little cap with a little lacing. Looks a little dark, almost like a barleywine, but very nice. The smell is good. Resinous hops, grassy piney etc. as usual come up front, but then the good stuff hits. There seems to be plenty of late hops, with tropical fruit and citrus. Not a huge leafy character, and not as intense as some, you know, it doesn't remind me of sticking my face into a bag of hops, maybe more dry hops would help. There's also a nice bit of malty, bready sweetness in the background. The taste has plenty, I mean plenty of hop flavor. The bitterness is not challenging, especially with the malt backbone, nice raisiny, almost toffee like, reminds me of a barleywine here again. Actually this isn't as dry as the average west coast DIPA, which sometimes turns me off, but this one really has an amazing hop flavor, so I can forgive it. There's the tropical fruit, the sweet grapefruit, a bit of lemon-lime, and just a bit of resiny, piney flavors. I suppose I would like it to be a little dryer, the bitterness seems spot on, but I'm wondering if after feeling the vegetal flavors in the finish, if the amount of dry hops could be bumped up by quite a bit and left in for a shorter period of time, and it would really put this at that the A+ level. The mouthfeel is really, really wonderful. The best I've had for the style, easily. Full and robust, plenty of hop flavor without the clingy, slowing feel that some DIPAs have. This one gboes down smoothly, though the alcohol will certainly catch you after the second, or maybe even the first pint.

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Photo of ThirdLap
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at EJ Phair in Concord. Review from notes.

Pours a dark honey amber with a bright white, short-lasting head. Lots of lacing remains in my glass.

Smells very piney and woodsy,with a floral and citrusy edge to it.

Racer X is tangy, citrusy, and sweet all at once at first, mellowing to a piney bitter finish. There's a caramel sweetness complimenting the standard IIPA characteristics of grapefruit and pine, reminding me a bit of DFH 90. Overall balance tilts toward the malt side ever so slightly.

Mouthfeel is somewhat heavy with a velvety feel to it. Carbonation is right in the middle.

The 9% abv was somewhat noticeable, but drinkability doesn't suffer because of it. Fantastic beer, and one definitely worth seeking out.

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Photo of macktbone
3.98/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this beer almost six months ago and decided to review it today on a rainy California day at a local concord beer bar, E.J. Phair.

Good beer paired with a food sandwich and fries.

Appears as a crisp looking honey ale. Very clean appearance, with little head.

Smells very hoppy, but not the traditional bright hoppy flavor. More of a dark complex hopp smell.

Tastes very hearty. Some fruity notes along with pine nuts. Hits the mouth very far back on the tounge with a sense of hop oil.

Mouthfeel is typical for the style...nothing really special about the feel on this beer, but it doesn't take away from it either.

Very drinkable beer for those that love hard IPA's. I saw this at the bar and had to not only drink one but recommend it to the person we were meeting for a beer trade.

Good Bear Republic offering...one of their best.

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Photo of tjthresh
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On tap at Capone's. Turbid dark amber with a sticky white head and lots of lace. Straight up grapefruit with a smidgen of caramel or toasted character for balance (whatever). The flavor switched over to pine. Very sharp, but wonderful long lasting bitterness. Full body. Average carbonation. Semi sweet finish. Yum. Thanks Matt for this hookup!

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Photo of Billolick
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at the outstanding BR fest last week. It was poured into a pint glass and appeared hazed, medium amber, with some bubbles rising to the top and leaving extensive lacing. The nose is of pungent fresh hop cones. I got notes of grapefruit, ripe fruits, floral and resiny hops. Simply delicious. Smooth hoppy luxuriousness, over the top, high quality DIPA. Why they don't bottle this stuff is beyond me.

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Photo of WeisGuy
4.63/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On-tap at Rose and Crown in Palo Alto.

a - pours a hazy bright orange color, moderate white head with decent retention and lacing

s - big aroma of pine and grapefruit with a decent malty backbone (for a DIPA that is)

t - much like the nose, and explosion of piney and citrusy hop flavors, lots of grapefruit and lemon, significant amount of maltiness, just enough to make this dangerously drinkable, the alcohol is very well hidden, no fusel flavors at all

m - medium bodied with moderate carbonation, not overly drying on the palate

d - like I said above, this stuff is dangerously drinkable, one of the most easy drinking (in a good way) DIPAs that I've ever had, lots of complexity and intense hoppiness without wearing out the palate or an overwhelming amount of alcohol

Overall, this is an outstanding DIPA and one of the most drinkable examples of the style that I've had. I love both Racer 5 and Hop Rod Rye, but this surpasses both of them. Too bad BR doesn't bottle this stuff. Well worth driving to a locale with this on tap.

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Photo of magictrokini
4.62/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yes, finally get to try this on tap. Pours hazy orange-copper with a short but thick off-white head. Resin, pine, white pepper, and cake batter-like malt in the aroma. Sweet malt and candy grapefruit taste up front that rapidly progresses into a full-body hoppiness. Lots of grapefruit mixed with the sticky resin. Apricot, tangerine, and malt come through along with this towards the finish. It maintains its hoppy bittersweetness to the end without falling out of balance. Awesome beer.

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Racer X Double IPA from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 492 ratings.