Black Racer | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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Black RacerBlack Racer
Very Good
531 Ratings
Black RacerBlack Racer

Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Black Racer™ blends Bear Republic's love of hops with the Pacific Northwest's appreciation for dark ales. Our pit crew brews this award winning ale which boldly defines a new frontier of flavors and always maintains pole position. Race to the Dark Side™.

Bronze 2011 Great American Beer Festival American-Style Black Ale
Gold 2012 World Beer Cup American-Style Black Ale

Added by avaldivia on 07-27-2011

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 531 |  Reviews: 107
Photo of mbw314
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of nmann08
3.82/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served from a 22oz bottle.

Pours a dark brown, almost black with an off-white thick head, great head retention.

Smell wise, pulling out molasses, some fruit, pine smell from the hops. There is an interesting smoke smell that is coming through, which I usually enjoy, but this seems misplaced.

It starts with malts, almost sweet, then turns into a bitter piney taste leaving a lingering smoke aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is fine.

Overall, this is an OK representation of the style. Its good, but so many better examples of better American Black Ales out there.

 559 characters

Photo of eulerthegrape
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of Dope
4.09/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No bottle date but released fairly recently.

A: Pours a very dark brown, almost black pour. Big, fluffy light brown head. Head fades slowly with great retention. Almost solid walls of lacing left behind. Excellent.

S: Lots of pine and grapefruit with a bit of resin. A hint of chocolate but the hops rule here.

T: Again with the pine, resin, and bitter grapefruit. Roasted malt is more noticeable here but still mostly obscured. A little bit of chocolate and char tries to battle it out with the bitterness. Wave of bitterness in the finish. More pine and resin mainly with some cocoa. Lingering resinous hops in the aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied, unremarkable.

O: Nice black IPA. A lot more balanced than your average Racer 5 or Racer X but still the roasted malt barely has a chance to get going. At the same time, doesn't have quite the sharpness and quality of flavors that I get from something like a Racer 5. Not very bitter either. Good but not great. Feel like it's missing something. I still enjoyed it plenty, it's just hard to follow up the act of their other hoppy beers I think.

 1,096 characters

Photo of Hopmodium
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a very dark, almost black coloring with ruby highlights around the very edges and a thin, filmy, light tan coating of surface head. Aromas of roasted hops, resiny and slightly charred, and a touch of tropical fruit sweetness. Flavors of dark, sweet malt in the backbone, both fruity and a touch of molasses, with a resiny, bitter, slightly fruity hops overlay and a kiss of smoke and roast. Very balanced, on a full, smooth body. Tasty brew. The aftertaste has smoke, bitter hops, and roast, as well as a touch of chocolate. Very layered and dynamic. Slightly bitter, roasty finish that lingers long enough to entice more drinking.

 684 characters

Photo of JohnF51
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of twelveinches
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of brotherloco
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of Bilco
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of terence
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of nkeckhar
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of BarrelAgedBrian
3/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of flexabull
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep dark black color with a very nice light tan colored head.

Aromas are of roasted malts and hints of pine needles.

Taste is malty up front, roasted malts, cocoa beans, and light coffee. Finish is lightly bitter, with pine needles, and mineral hoppiness.

Mouthfeel is crisp and clean, with decent body.

Overall, a pretty nice Cascadian Ale, but I'd like too see more hop flavors. Good beer, but second tier compared to others in the style.

 453 characters

Photo of drgonzo2k2
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of Zorro
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Clear black colored beer with a tall light brown colored head.

Smells strongly hoppy with scents of pepper and pine with some carrot and smoke.

Starts out mildly sweet with a malty flavor of mostly patent malt. Medium bitterness with a taste of carrot and onion. Pretty much an Imperial IPA with Dark malt added.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall and OK beer, Onion flavor doesn't belong in this style though.

 406 characters

Photo of safaricook
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of McStagger
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: murky dark dark brown. Hint of ruby on the edge. Not actually black. One finger head. Moderate retention. Brown khaki in color. Can't tell carbonation level due to color.

S: Toasty notes. Torched nuttiness, caramelized sugar. Doesn't overpower hoppiness, though. Grapefruit citrus, some evergreen. Still malt forward in the nose.

T: roast malt I the beginning. Translates to burnt nuts (pecans, perhaps) and charred grain. . Hoppiness finally breaks through in the end. Traces of tropical fruit come through. Finishes a bit prickly and spicy. Aftertaste of big grapefruit. Alcohol heat acce ntuates the hoppy side of this beer.

M: A touch thin and fairly carbonated. The lively carbonation detracts a bit from the roasted qualities of the beer.

O: pretty good. Not great though. Friend of mine plugged it as better than Woo key Jack. He lied through. Won't seek out, but would order again.

 899 characters

Photo of ambruns1979
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of JasonFromLA
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of CommanderOfAwesome
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2013 bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a deep dark crimson black with excellent 3 finger dark khaki brown head.

S: Sweet dank citrus hops. Tropical fruits a plenty. Aroma is heavy on the hops.

T: Dark chocolate malts, with some nice sweet fruit finish. Pretty sweet with a bit of a piney finish.

M: Smooth, medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Getting chocolatey sweet finish.

O: A very solid BIPA that I would love to be year round. Doesn't have the hop bit bitterness that racer 5 has, but this is a solid/fantastic BIPA offering.

 560 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours an almost opaque super dark crimson-brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, burnt cocoa, and subdued hop aromas. Taste is much the same with char and citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

 556 characters

Photo of slashes2
4/5  rDev +2%

Photo of LiquidAmber
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Pours a very dark ruddy brown with a fine one finger light tan head with great retention and lacing. Nice lightly herbal, piney hops, hints of malt and citrus. Flavor follows, with piney, citrus hops, light and toasted malt very well balanced and integrated. Lingering citrus hop and light toasted malt finish. Medium body with light creaminess. A somewhat understated black ale, but the mellow balance of the hops and toasted malt is very nicely done. A great tasting alternative from some of the more assertive hop-forward black ales. The hops are pleasantly fresh tasting. I like the mouth scourging hop bombs, but I will definitely buy this again too.

 694 characters

Black Racer from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.92 out of 5 with 531 ratings
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