Red Racer Imperial IPA | Central City Brewers + Distillers

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Red Racer Imperial IPARed Racer Imperial IPA
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Central City Brewers + Distillers
British Columbia, Canada | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by astout on 09-26-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
65
Ratings:
179
Avg:
4.17
pDev:
15.35%
 
 
Wants:
38
Gots:
33
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 65 | Ratings: 179
Photo of kwjd
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks Sammy for getting this growler to Ontario! I was excited to try this since I love the Red Racer IPA. Pours a bright orange colour with thick white head. Really nice head retention, lots of lacing around the glass. Smells of strong citra (I think) hops, lots resiny pine. Grapefruit/citrus comes more in the aftertaste. Lots of pine all the way through. Bitterness is very noticeable, yet this is still quite balanced. I was enjoying this more as I went along and poured myself a 2nd glass from the growler not too long after the first.

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Photo of canucklehead
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Not a palate wrecker but rather a lovely nuanced DIPA that has a lot of hops but is all about the balance and finish. Probably the classiest and most complex DIPA in BC it is a treat to see in the bottle and hopefully we will see more special releases from Central City

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Photo of peensteen
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thank you Sammy for landing this one!

Pours a deep orange colour, nice white sticky head, nice thick lace on the glass. Smells hoppy, pine notes citrus grapefruit and a big chewy malt presence to balance it all out. Taste of lush malt, pine, citrus, lemon notes. grape like quality in the finish, dry like finish but not too dry, just right in that department. Good mouthfeel, slightly creamy, full body and as a whole quite nice. Very drinkable brew, right up there with the regular Red Racer nice addition of hops, good bitterness throughout. I could drink this all night easily, awesome stuff.

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Photo of bobsy
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lucky to try this one, which was a leftover bottle from the Canadian Brewing Awards, where Central City performed admirably.

Pours a burnt orange with a skiff of white head that laced well. Big citrus nose, but with more than enough caramel to provide balance. Intense, with a slight hit of alcohol. Flavour delivers in spades, but remains expertly balanced. Lots of grapefruit, orange, tangerine and pine, but again with enough caramel and biscuit to balance it out. Nice bitterness and a dry hot finish. Heavy luxurious mouthfeel. Nicely done!

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Photo of joemcgrath27
4.42/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap at a fairly recent 'tap takeover' by Central city at Beer Revolution in Calgary (from notes taken at the pub)
A - Very hazy orange, thumb of head, plenty of lacing
S - Plenty of citrus, some earthiness and a biscuity malt support
T - Lemon citrus, resin earthiness with some perfume, nice caramel malt support ads a nice sweet-bitter balance and a woody note to finish
M - Semi creamy, with a medium dry and bitter
O - big fan of the IPA, and their DIPA lives up to and surpases its bretheren, hop heads only need apply

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Photo of thehyperduck
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

650 mL bottle from the LCBO; dated Dec 8 2015 and served slightly chilled.

Pours a clear, vibrant amber-orange colour, generating one finger's worth of frothy, off white-coloured head. It lasts for a little over two minutes; a modest, foamy collar remains, along with some patchy lacing. Caramel, honey, bready malts and raisin butter tart on the nose, along with notes of grapefruit, pineapple juice, orange, dank pine resin and floral hops. Noticeably boozy, too; not a bad aroma, but nothing really stands out to me.

Sweet, fruit-forward flavour profile that seems more well-balanced than this style is apt to be. Caramel and bready malts provide the backdrop, with fruity flavours of apricot, lychee, mango and pineapple following closely in tow. Big notes of pine resin, grapefruit and tangerine toward the back end, culminating in a surprisingly understated bittersweet, fruity aftertaste. Surprisingly restrained astringency for the stated 90 IBUs. Nearing full-bodied, with a creamy, smooth, generously-weighted mouthfeel augmented by light carbonation that gently agitates the palate.

Final Grade: 4.15, an A-. Red Racer Imperial IPA is considered one of the best DIPAs in Canada, and for good reason - it's really delicious, while also being unexpectedly well-balanced and quaffable. While this isn't the freshest bottle in the world (thanks, LCBO), it's still drinking nicely, and has convinced me to pick up another (hopefully younger) bottle in the future, if given the opportunity. Oddly enough I think I prefer the regular Red Racer IPA, but this is still a truly solid Imperial version that all hopheads should seek out and try ASAP.

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Photo of chickenm
4.47/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Central City brewpub. Pours a deep copper orange color with a nice fluffy white head. Big aroma of citrus and pine, and just a touch of malty sweetness. Great taste, a big hit of orange rind, pine, and grapefruit; quite bitter but incredibly balanced. The mouthfeel is great too, this has a thick body with carbonation that is spot on. Insanely drinkable, the alcohol is barely noticeable. All in all, it's an exceptional beer!

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Photo of SebD
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: It has a nice clear orange/amber color to it. It has a nice thick off-white head that dies down moderately and leaves some nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of citrus, grapefruit, piney resins and sweet caramelly malts.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a some nice citrus notes, grapefruit, alot of piney resins and sweet toasty/caramelly malts. Very nice lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: It has a low carbonation with a very nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavors and aromas.

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Photo of TerryW
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Seems as though we have a winner here. A very good beer with lots of interesting things happening.

Pours a finger high head on a red amber brew. Lots of spidery lace along the way, rings where you rest. Quite handsome.

Big grapefruit citrus nose, resiny pine. Appetizing. Sticky, almost oily mouthfeel, Unctuous. very interesting. Big hit of sweet malt and piney hops to taste. Initially a hint of something like licorice, which is odd, but works fine. Pine bitterness that lingers. Alcohol well hidden, but you can feel it pretty quick as you work through the bottle. Approaches syrupy, boozy as it warms up, so get at it while it still has some cool in it.

An interesting, a bit off the beaten track, lots of complexities, subtleties. Worth a try.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

One of the Autism research bottles, a great cause and still pretty affordable at $9.50 with the $5 donation.

Pours a bright. slightly hazed bronze with a huge, pillowy off white head. Head retention is great, lasting solidly the entire glass and draping it with lace. The aroma is of pine and caramel with orangey hops and medicinal booze in the background. The taste is piney and floral hoppiness upfront with an immense malt profile with rum cake, field berry and cookie dough elements making for a complex flavor. Alcohol provides some heat and is always present as you would expect for 9%. The mouthfeel is full bodied and moderately high in carbonation. The finish is lightly bitter with a sherry-like malt character that lingers with alcohol heat in the back.

This is a great DIPA that goes more for balance than pure hop delivery vehicle. Lots of malt complexity balances out the interesting piney/orangey hop profile. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of LampertLand
3.92/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Central City Brewing 'Red Racer Imperial IPA' @ 9.0% , originally tasted on tap @ GCBF , this review from a 650 ml bottle purchased for $6
A-pour is gold from the bottle to a clear dark amber in the glass with a smallish off-white head leaving a spotty lace along the pint
S-nice smell of floral & citrus & weak hint of pine
T-just ok , lacks something
MF-ok carbonation , big body
Ov-not a great beer , ok /good local DIPA compared to Twenty Pounder , Hopdemonium , 3rd Blind Mouse ....
prost LampertLand

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Photo of polloenfuego
4.27/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From the 650 ml bottle into a pint glass.

Kudos to Central City for donating $5 from each bottle to autism research.

A: a nice hazy amber color, with a two finger head that fades giving way to a nice film.

S: the smell is pure hops. Pine and citrus all over.

T: The pine and citrus hops come through. It is a bit sweet with the malt coming through.

M: medium carbonation and body.

O: perhaps the best IPA I've had in a while. I found the flavor and feel of this beer to be quite nice. I can't usually say that I want to have more than one IPA at a time, but I would like another soon.

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Photo of DenisKolkin
3.97/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

650ml bottle purchased from the LCBO for about $7.50 CDN. Poured at cellar temperature into a pint glass.

Appearance - Modest pours yields a clear coppery red colored beer with great clarity and many effervescent bubbles. A small thin layer of foam is poured and coalesces into a thin wispy froth.

Smell - Big resiny hop aromas, pine with some grapefruit and lemon mixed in. Also a delicate sweetness of caramel lying in wait underneath. Some floral aspects as well, but more along the lines of citrus first and piney / resiny second.

Taste - Hops and malts balance each other out quite nicely, whats left in the mouth is fairly bitter but with a melon and slight caramel sweetness. Only in the aftertaste does the big citrus flavors emerge.Bitter but not bitter, sweet but not too sweet, this is one of the most balanced DIPA's I've had, so while the flavor is less robust than I'd expect, this imperial IPA need to score well.

Mouthfeel - Smooth and a bit syrupy but with a good amount of prickly carbonation to keep things everything. Body is fairly heavy and finish is dry.

Overall - Red Racer Imperial IPA is certainly a fine beer, however as others have echoed, I prefer the simplicity and hop-attack that the original presents. There is some substantial balancing acts going on with this beer, but I figured that the flavor would be more assertive in one way or another (very hoppy, very malty, or explosive taste). While very good, it just misses the mark of greatness.

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Photo of hopsolutely
4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great beer being sold in Ontario for a very good cause...

An absolutely beautiful beer that pours a brilliant amber, with an oiliness and limited head suitable to its 9% ABV. Deep aroma of caramelized malted barley, suspended by the full spectrum of tropical fruits. Taste starts sweet before crossing that "west coast" hop variety and ending with an impressive bitterness; and hop tones that linger....

A very impressive IIPA and the more we see from Central City in Ontario, the better!

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Photo of leaddog
4.24/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

650 ml bottle. $5 from the bottle goes to Autism research. Fantastic!

Appearance - Pours a dark amber colour with a finger of bubbly white head.

Smell - Nice piney hops, toffee, sweet malts, hint of dark fruit.

Taste - Piney hops, sweet toffee notes, dark fruits and tropical fruits. Good clean bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Overall - A great Imperial IPA by Central City. Fantastic that proceeds are going to a worthy cause. Good flavour profile overall and another winner by a great BC brewery.

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Photo of kjyost
3.78/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep copper, can already tell it will be maltier than I prefer a DIPA to be. Very earthy / piney nose that continues on the palate with heavy malt sweetness. Needs to be drier IMHO.

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
4.21/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed 12 oz. on tap at Beer Revolution in Calgary. What a great place, truly. Arrived in a stemmed glass, a dark reddish amber color like strong herbal tea with around an inch of beige foam. High, high expectations going in, as this brew's little brother Red Racer IPA is one of the best hoppy craft beers in Canada (my opinion of course ... I think I can back it up). Red Racer smells very floral and piney, and this beefed-up take follows suit nicely. What are really striking though, on both nose and palate, are the heady tropical fruit notes. I get a shit ton of lychee, mango, and papaya, along with some classic American hop gooseberry "funk" and orange breakfast crystals. Mellow pine resin, peach, pineapple, salt water taffy, bergamot orange like Earl Grey tea, tobacco flower, fruit roll-up ... All kinds of layers here. Many of these elements can be traced to Citra hops, applied with a lavish hand. Some orange peel flavor adds citric character but in all honesty this is one of the more perfumed and tropical DIPAs I've had, with these components trumping the citrus and pine. The malts take a back seat to the hops but do provide some light toast and caramel flavors, just to remind you that this does indeed contain barley. As the tongue acclimatizes to the fruit flavors, more molasses and pine come through and a pleasant lingering bitterness emerges, almost medicinal like gin. Fairly fizzy but this somehow works, syrupy but smooth. Awesome and nearly beyond reproach. Maybe some will want more pine. This one is juicy and the booze is almost perfectly obfuscated. It is as if someone took Red Racer, kept much of the aggression, but rounded off some of the corners and layered on more tropical fruit.

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Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.48/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My first review from the first bottling of the limited edition series.

A: 1/4" cream coloured head over orange amber liquid with excellent clarity and visible carbonation.

S: Citrus mostly, with grapefruit, tangerine and pine along with the malt base coming through.

T: Pine, grapefruit, earth, lemon, grass... its all here. The hop taste is complex and it comes in waves with the first sip quite different from the finish.

M: Medium viscosity with a resiny feel and a medium level of carbonation.

O: This is a hop bomb alright, and its drinkability is good. It seems a little more earthy than I remember it, but its still a great beer nonetheless.

Edit: spoke with one of the brewers who said that more citra hops were used in this rendition of the Imperial IPA. That makes sense considering more citrus on the nose and more earthy flavours in the taste profile.

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Photo of DaveBar
4.36/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Purchased at the LCBO for $6.95 for a 650ml bottle. Served at 8deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a 1" high white head films out within a two minutes or so. Very dark yellow colour and filtered clear

S- Oodles of hops here. Heavy malt

T- Lots of malt and hops here. Very heavy handed hops here. Malt is heavy and sweet. Nice blend. Gets a bit bitter at the end.

M- Dry and tart.

O- Nice overall blend. Has a wonderful full and rich body to it that shines through. I like this one. Would like to try it fresh.

Food Pairing

This nice little brew went well with....... Roasted pork loin encrusted in peppercorns and salt. Low and slow get the fat rendering.

Enjoy

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Photo of ritzkiss
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle leftover from CBAs this year, shared thanks to a generous BA.

Pours a rich orange with hints of amber, not a lot of head but it leaves a little sticky lacing.

This is a terrifically balanced DIPA with lots of heft in the malt and loads of hops. Pithy grapefruit and orange rind, lemon, pine, just a hint of tropical fruits. Sticky caramel malt, some toast and a hint of minerally dryness. Moderate to heavy bitterness with a pleasing long finish, alcohol just peeks a bit but it's so smooth. Sticky, thick mouthfeel which balances the blast of bitterness. This DIPA is just plain awesome.

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Photo of Bunman3
4.1/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was pleased to find this "amped up" version of Red Racer. It is almost ideal for a one bottle night. The elevated alcohol is well masked. This pours with a nice rich colour, the appropriate amount of tawny head, and smells like it means business. The toffee, followed by citrus and piney hop flavours eventually give way as the booziness creeps up on you.

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Photo of Mlkluther
3.52/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's a good beer - but I prefer the original Red Racer IPA. The amped up alcohol content adds a more syrupy mouthfeel that I'm not sure I like. The hops are balanced well with malt. It's good - but I'll stick with the original.

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Photo of FondueVoodoo
4.47/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a clear deep amber with about 1-2 fingers of head which dissipates to a lacy trim around the glass.

S: Scent of caramelized grapefruit rind together with floral notes. A mix of fresh pine needles and resin round out the scent.

T: Hoppy bitterness pops in the front followed with the acrid pairing of grapefruit rind and fresh pine which adds a touch of earthiness. The alcohol is nearly undetectable. Malts and hints of vanilla are present which adds a good balance to the hops. Aftertaste of smooth grapefruit rind.

M: Medium bodied with low carbonation. Has a somewhat syrupy coating.

O: This is a hop forward IPA but has a well rounded finish. It is dangerously drinkable given it is 9.5%. Definitely worth searching for.

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Photo of decimator
3.97/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bottle poured into a mug.

Labelled as "Imperial IPA for Autism". $5 from every bottle is being donated to charity. As Autism runs in my family this caught my attention. I reviewed this beer before knowing this was actually Red Racer DIPA.

A - Poured a clear gold to copper with a thin beige head, head quickly reduced to a ring of bubbles, minimal lacing.

S - Golden sugar, pine, grapefruit. Nice aroma.

T - Some caramel sweetness, pine, grapefruit, alcohol is barely noticeable. Good balance between the malts & hops.

M - Medium carbonation, medium-heavy body, sticky, slick, dryish finish with some heat.

O - Considering the ABV the alcohol is well masked. Not the best DIPA I've had but it's a pretty good one.

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Photo of CanadianBacon
3.86/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - This beer pours a window clear deep amber color and when I say clear, it is so clear it looks like a cut of an actual amber in my glass, It poured with 1 and a half fingers of off white head which faded leaving a ring. This looks pretty delicious.

aroma - Big resiny nose, Pine stands out followed by grapefruit and lemon, Balanced out with light caramel and slightly stronger pale crackery malts. It smells a lot like a bigger version of their IPA which I guess is what they were going for!

Taste - Mash Pine needles into a syrup and thats what hits your tongue first. Its followed by a more subdued grapefruit and very light lemon rinds. Honestly like I need to make a point on how sappy this beer is, the pine litterally tastes like evergreen sap! The beer is then balanced again backwards to the taste, the caramel malts seem stronger than the pale malts. but they are both there.

Feel - The body is definitely a clear medium with sharp carbonation, It finishes very crisp and bitter, the feel goes really well with the flavor profile.

Overall - This isn't my favorite Imperial/double and personally I think their IPA is better, with that said this is still a very good IIPA the flavors and aromas mesh well the feel is on point and it looks good. It just falls behind some of the best out there. So for the question of would I drink this again? yes absolutely!

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Red Racer Imperial IPA from Central City Brewers + Distillers
92 out of 100 based on 65 ratings.
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