Racer X Double IPA | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
500 Reviews
Racer X Double IPARacer X Double IPA
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.30%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by xlperro on 01-13-2003

BEER STATS
Reviews:
500
Ratings:
2,107
Avg:
4.24
pDev:
19.1%
 
 
Wants:
359
Gots:
187
For Trade:
5
User Reviews
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Reviews: 500 | Ratings: 2,107
Photo of JohnQVegas
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. counter-pressure filled Bierkraft bomber into red wine glass.

Pours a lightly hazy dark amber, with a sparse off-white head, but excellent lacing. What little head shows up stays around the whole glass.

Nose is pure west coast hop madness - an intermingling of super-dry but vibrant pine, mango, orange zest, and grapefruit,all wrapping around a sweet caramel note that's all foundation, barely showing through in the melange of beautiful hop aromas.

Taste follows suit. Dry and prickley, but with absolutely no harsh astringency. Big notes of tingley pine and a mix of tropical and citrus fruit sit on top of a malt body that's big and slightly sweet, maybe even a bit toasty, but entirely wrapped up in the juicy hop oils. Not at all overly bitter, though there is a nice, satisfying cotton-like dryness that just sits on the back of the tongue. A fantastic example of the right way to brew a DIPA.

Mouthfeel is oily, tingly carbonation and a hop bite in the back of the throat, perfectly balanced. Very well done - it's like this beer is just swimming in hop oil.

Drinkability is scary, actually. Huge flavor, but somehow light on the palate. No real alcohol presence. Beautiful beer.

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Photo of jera1350
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an amber color with tight one finger head that leaves some lacing on the glass.

Fresh citrus, pineapple and some grass. Sweet and delightful.

Big and fresh citrus hop taste, but with a solid and sweet malt backbone that makes this well balanced. Some caramel and toffee with the pineapple and citrus flavors as well. Definitely can taste the BR influence in this.

Somewhere between medium and full bodied. Soft and smooth. Warming sensation from the alcohol.

Awesome drinkability, I had an entire bomber of this. An all around great beer that goes down way too easy. So glad I had the opportunity to drink this one. Thanks to SpeedwayJim for this one!

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a small snifter there is a thick, creamy off white head. I'm assuming there will be lacing on the inside of the glass since its all over the outside from the over pour. Deep/Amber colored with decent clarity. Yep, thick lacing everywhere.

Aroma is pine like with a twinge of grapefruit in the background. You also get a whiff of alcohol.

A good dpa and one that certainly has Bear Republic's fingerprints stamped on it. While highly hopped there is a great deal of balance here and a strong malt backbone. Initial burst is fruit with pineapple, maybe peach and then citrus. Both orange and grapefruit. The elevated ABV is noticeable. There is a tropical fruity sense to this which is nice. Also get a touch of honey. The hop bitterness is strong and melds nicely with the alcohol flavors. A long lingering bitterness in the back of your throat.

Big mouth feel due to a thick body and the presence of the ABV. Just the slightest prickle of carbonation.
This is very good, but the obvious presence of the alcohol hits the drinkability for me.
This is where I usually proclaim my greater love for "regular" IPA's vs DPA.
Still glad I got to try this.

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Photo of Popkas
4.26/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to my Secret Santa tpd975 for this one from Bierkraft! Review #1 for me...

A: A beautiful deep hazy amber with a thin creamy head. Nice residual lacing. Beautiful DIPA.

S: I'm getting pine, orange and grapefruit with a touch of sweetness coming through.

T: Strong pine and grapefruit with a hint orange peel upfront followed by the sweet thick malt and finished up with a bitter punch.

M: Thick malty and a little dry.

D: Goes down smooth, but not as well as some others.

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Photo of jlindros
4.54/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another bottle/growler of awesomeness unveiled at our Rush Hour Tasting, thanks again to mikey711 for this one.

A: Bright golden orange with slight haze. A slight head which is decent for being shoved into a growler, shipped 1000 miles, sat in a fridge for a couple weeks, then drove in a car for 2 days.

N: Tons of hops, the way a strong DIPA should be. Lots of pine, citrus, grapefruit, and aromatic hops. Its a hop bomb. Aroma of 200 IBUs.

T: Hits you with a fresh hop bite. Earthy musty fresh hops. Lots of pine, citrus, grapefruit, and chewy hops really hit first. They never really fade either. A nice thick malty sweetness runs around in the background but never really comes to the front as it can't get past the hops. The very bright hop character changes slightly to a chewy, earthy, almost spicy hop character as it grows, then back to more pine and citrus.

M: A nice body with lower carbonation, but that can be expected.

F: Super bitter and dries off a bit, probably because of the crazy bitterness more than actual drying. Again the pine, citrus, and grapefruit seem to linger for a bit. The grapefruit is a lower character than the rest. They very slowly fade to a lingering memory, but your mouth never really forgets them. Thanks again Mikey for being able to experience this awesomeness.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.22/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Edited on 10/18/2012 after having a fresh batch on tap at SteakOut in Mountain View.

Many of the same notes below apply, but the more delicate flavors and aromas (lychee, tangerine) are muted in favor of straightforward citrus. The beer is dominated by caramel malt and winds up being unremarkable in flavor.

I'm downgrading it to the low-3 range. I can find dozens of better DIPAs in this area; I think this qualifies as mediocre.

~~~

On tap at Gourmet Haus Staudt in Redwood City, CA.

A: Pours a perfectly clear amber color with dark honey highlights against the light. The head is a fluffy off-white cap of foam that retains very well, leaving substantial sudsing down the glass as it recedes. As I sip, there are thick register marks left behind. Outstanding.

S: Citrus flavors smack you right in the face: a mouth-watering bouquet of tangerine, lychee, grapefruit, orange. Noticeable pine as well, with a lingering note of grass. I'm surprised by how malty it is in the nose, too; I can easily pick out caramel and toast in there.

T: It tastes almost like citrus juice with the amount of fresh hops in here. Tangerine is strongest, followed by grapefruit. There's an orange quality to it, but it is more rind-like than pulpy. A surprisingly strong malt bill reveals caramel and toast in the mid-taste. The finish reverts to a hop-forward flavor, with apricot, tangerine, and just a hint of grass. They pull into a lingering bitter finish.

M: Medium-full bodied; it's nearly chewy, with a generally well-coating (almost syrupy) feel. Moderate carbonation. Definitely a sticky beer, which I normally don't like, but for the flavor profile of this beer, it works well.

D: Admittedly not my favorite DIPA, but a solid one and I'm glad I had it. I won't chase it down at the brewery or anything, but I would get it if it were on tap in the area.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
4.26/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed 10/26/2009 (Tap @ Flying Saucer, Houston, TX):

Pours a strong golden red color semi-cloudy body, big foamy head, off-white, very lasting. Hoppy aroma. Medium citrus, some earthiness. Sweet maltinesss. Citrus taste, some earthiness. Citrus, orange taste. Some earthiness. Light body, creamy head. Very tasty.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 10/9/2009. Growler from Bellport Beer&Soda. Pours a clear deep amber/orange with a thick creamy off-white head. Aroma of citrus, grassy hops. Flavor of sticky, sweet caramel malt and citrusy hops. A little heavier than I would have wanted from a 7.8% beer. A little disappointing as I was expecting more of a hops presence as opposed to a malt presence.

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Photo of CHickman
4.58/5  rDev +8%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours hazy amber with a small light tan head; smells very hoppy, floral hops, piney hops and some citrus (lemon zest, orange peel); very pungent floral hop aroma that is just inviting a delicious. Good lacing that sticks to the glass with the very strong hoppy odor, which again smells great.

Tastes like it smells: lots of hops, floral hops, piney hops, sweet malt, citrus (lemon or grapefruit), a little caramel and some more hops; complex hop combo that has a lot of tasty flavor that's explosive with the addition of tropical fruit. The brew is crisp, yet medium bodied and chewy, with a slick oliy resin that lingers in a good way on the tongue with sweet malt and hops flavor which finishes on the dry and bitter side. The alcohol peeks through behind the hops which dominate the taste, but keep this a very drinkable beer. As a hop-head I love the flavor and hop attack from start to finish.

A great hoppy DIPA that has strong tasty hop flavor throughout and is very smooth considering the hop taste that never let's off the pedal. A great beer!

2015 Note: Had another bomber and found it to be just as impressive. Very well balanced with a sturdy malt backbone that had nice caramel and graham cracker flavors to compliment the juicy hops which were again quite fruity and incorporated nice piney hops as well. ABV is just about completely hidden, with grapefruit pith bitterness and earthy floral hops making it complex and real easy to drink. The aftertaste is a sweet combo of citrus fruit and some other fruits like mango or star fruit, as well as brown sugar and some candy like Razzles. Glad I had it again and recommend it highly.

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Photo of mjl21
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Taps. Poured into a pint glass. Listed as being 8.9%

A-Pours a clear copper and has a one finger off white head. The head dissolves fairly quickly to a decent ring.

S-Not surprisingly, it is full of hop aroma. It has strong dank and pine notes. There is a touch of citrus and a pinch of sweetness.

T-Lots of pine and dank hit upfront. There is a nice level of sweetness to cut out some of the initial bitterness. It finishes with more pine flavor.

M-It falls on the upper end of the medium spectrum. It is oily and smoothly carbonated.

D-A great DIPA. The abv is well hidden. It is big and can easily catch up to you.

This is always a great beer. I wish it wasn't such a pain to find around these parts. Would love to see this bottled.

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

Pours a nice orangy copper color, full frothy and fluffy white head, diminishes quickly but leaves good lacing. Smell is of citrus (mostly grapefruit, some tangerine) and floral hops with a presence of pine in the rear. Sweet malt comes through behind the hops. Taste follows scent with the citrusy (grapefruit & tangerine) hops the star, followed nicely by piney and spicy hops. Good sweet carmely malt backbone that does not interefere and compliments the hops very well. Medium bodied, good carbonation, slightly dry to the palate. Very good dIPA, not a hop bomb, but not overloaded with malty sweetness either... very good balance.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.74/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter. Big thanks to nyrangerfan for hooking me up.

4.0 A: Clear dark orange amber color. Two and 1/2 fingers of frothy creamy head that retains well and leaves lots of lacing.

5.0 S: Awesome aroma. Lots of pine and grapefruity citrus from the start. Though the hops aren't particularly complex, its simple aroma is strong and wonderful. Malts take a backseat, but add a layer of complexity with a soft caramel aroma.

5.0 T: The hop flavor is massive. Completely overwhelmed. Strong piney backbone again with softer citrus notes including mandarin and regular orange. Lemony grassiness to an extent. Malts lend caramel and a slight biscuity flavor.

4.0 M: Medium body. Good carbonation. Creamy, but could be creamier. Dry on finish with a pleasant bitter aftertaste.

4.5 D: Awesome beer. I'd love to get a growler of this once a year (or more!). Tons of hop flavor and an excellent IPA overall.

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Photo of koopa
4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance:
Transparent copper body with a 1 finger khaki crown that shows a touch of retention and moderate lace.

Smell: Beautiful nose....Lively and pungent floral hops, citrus hops (grapefruit and orange), sugar, and sweet malt.

Taste: Same as nose. Really works well but it is just too sugary for my personal preference. Small touch of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Could use a touch more carbonation, but still a nice chewy med-thick body.

Drinkability: the sugar is what keeps me from scoring this one higher, but besides that it is delicious.

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Photo of scootny
4.57/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The growler was not not full. I got the last of it at DeCicco's and so the carbonation is a little off as there was space in the bottle. Still there is a bit of and just a touch of lacing. Color is a beautiful copper with touch of cloudiness. No visible carbonation.

Smell is a yeasty bready mix of malt and hops. Fruitiness fuses it into an invitingly delicious hop bomb. Piney hops are prominent with a caramel sweetness flowing underneath.

Taste is a a collision of the big caramel malt backbone and the huge hops. They start out piney and quickly switch to grapefruit. A bit of citrus grove and afew other hops notes in this sweet hoppy symphony. There is just enough malt and breadcrust to balance the hop profile perfectly. That sweet caramel again mixed with tortured toffee. The finish is dry and bitter with a grapefruit skinned hop oiliness on the tongue and palate. Malted grains linger with a touch of menthol. Alcohol? What alcohol? Feel is full and somewhat syrupy in a good way. Hop oil is a distinct presence. A fine tingly carbonation breaks it up.

Drinkability is designated driver stuff. My wire and I killed this like it was lemonade. Wow is this smooth. No indication of the abv. Glad I got there in time to get some.

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Photo of LibraryTom
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Library Alehouse, regrettably only a few ounces in a ten ounce chalice, but then I was working.

This beer rolled out of the tap beautifully, and was a pleasure to pour. Good, yet tight head, that did dissipate a tad quickly.

Deep, copper colored malt that is barely present in the nose, which is dominated by the well extracted hop profile of this brew. It was difficult to draw many single attributes out I found, but all the regular suspects were present.

The first sip revealed a beautiful candied orange slice base neatly balanced by the assertive yet delicate and varied hop character, which demonstrated a nice citric bite.

This beer really wins in mouthfeel as far as I am concerned, because it has a full richness that is truly powerful, yet never overbearing nor does it linger to long. In fact, this beer finishes fairly dry with a mellow hop bitterness.

Great to taste it good and fresh, and makes me remember my days in Philadelphia drinking 90 minute. Right up there with it in my book, and I love the 90.

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Photo of augustgarage
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Library Ale House in Santa Monica. Served in a Unibroue tulip glass.

Hazy body, a mix of persimmon and scarlet which casts a beautiful glowing light. Buoyant finger of off-white foam recedes to a puffy skin and curling collar, leaving behind a wake of sticky pumice patterned lacing which drapes neatly over a wavy line of legs.

Valencia and blood orange aromatics along with a touch of pine and rosemary. Juicy but polite (though I wouldn't go so far as to say "restrained") hops, present harmoniously.

Herbs and grapefruit on the palate - sweet and bitter all at once. Light malt notes emerge in the finish, which brings to mind a fine orange marmalade spread on toast. Straight-forward, but pure rather than simplistic.

Well carbonated, which contributes to the perception of dryness in the finish, and distributes the fruit and bitterness energetically, leaving my gums tingling. A bit warm, but the glass was nearly empty before I noticed. A touch oily, but this works well for the style.

First class, very tasty, and distinct from its peers (if only by a gossamer margin) - all in all, worth seeking out...

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Photo of mikey711
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Boy was I excited when I saw this.

A: Vibrant amber color with no cloudiness at all. The head poured an inch thick and retained quite well, simmering to a quarter of an inch after about two minutes and leaving gobs of lace in its wake.

S: Nice hop aroma, some spicy and grassy, others are grapefruit and maybe some melon citrus. It does not have the same burst of hoppy aroma as say pliny or sculpin, but still nice

T: Super balanced for a DIPA. There is plenty of hop bitterness but enough caramel sweetness to back it up. It starts with a pine bitter note that transitions into a bit of melon and mild grapefruit.

M: Ultra smooth. A great amount of body is present with a good lingering bitter note. It is full without being heavy. No booze is detectable at all.

D: This is by far the best beer from Bear Republic that I have ever had. WHile some of the others can be too piny and bitter, this one goes down very smooth and is deceptively light.

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Photo of nomomentwasted
4.37/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at O'Brien's, or where I seem to try everything on tap. This keg lasted longer than I thought it would, much longer than Expo. I guess this was review #100. Woohoo?

Appearance: Amber-orange with a frothy white crown of head that hung on pretty well. Lacing was nice too; nothing ground-breaking here, but impressive.

Smell: Very, very hoppy. What else is to be expected? Major pine and grass, with only a little fruity ester peeking through. Some pineapple is weakly there, but this is all about the dank, wet, piny, grassy, glorious hop.

Taste: As my roommate so eloquently put it: "This tastes like a forest." And it does. A huge wave of hops are there, with other maniac grasses and hops coming for round two, immediately after the first retires. There is a little more fruit here than in the nose, but the more reviews I read, I'm surprised the citrus was as muted as it was. There is a slight caramel sweetness there too, but this is all about being a huge, grassy hop bomb.

Mouthfeel: Not enamel-eroding bitter, but among the more bitter in the style, and that's saying something. Resinous, thick, and carbonated about how you'd expect while being on tap. Finishes like you just swallowed lawn trimmings, and I mean that in the best way.

Drinkability: I have to say, this is one of those times you understand, though, why more malt backbone may need to be there. It's an amazing hoppy beer, cured my desire for a hop fix right up, but in all, this is just a bit too much of one dimension to be really drinkable. I'd imagine if bottled this beer wouldn't be much fun. The freshness of the hops are excellent and fun, but even fresh, a full 16oz pint of this was more than enough for the day's hop fix, and left me wanting something different. Still, an imperial IPA through-and-through, and while not as good as Expo or Hop 15 in my opinion, still a very great example of a huge, bitter, hoppy imperial IPA.

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Photo of ArrogantB
2.76/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

on-tap at the Falling Rock. Thick orange color, decent lacing. Smells kind of hoppy but faint and muted. The flavor had a some nice bitterness and fruit flavors but it was all overpowered by the alcohol taste, smell, and astringency on my tongue. You could instantly tell this was a very strong beer, very dissapointing given how good Racer 5 is.

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Photo of jpro
4.59/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow - probably the best double IPA I've had. Pours a pretty dark amber / copper with a fluffy off white head - nice lacing. Smell is straight hop deliciousness - citrus rind, pineapple, tropical fruits, and hints of pine resin. Taste is well balanced by a malt sweetness - nice hoppy finish with that signature grapefruit bitterness. Mouthfeel is full bodied and a hint syrupy. Drinkability is up there for the style - awesome stuff!

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Photo of jnn4v
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler poured at CBX in Charleston earlier today. Reviewed within an hour of when the growler was originally filled.

A: Amber color. Much darker than I had originally expected. No sediment or haze. Head filled about 1/5 of the glass.

S: Some grapefruit, copper, and sugary sweet scents are the first three. A bit of pungent, herbal hop scents on second smell. The color, hops, and scent remind me a bit of a big imperial red.

T: Excellent balance. Very good sweetness, yet also very good, clean bitterness, and some nice citrusy flavors with a hint of resin / herbal bitterness on the tail end.

M: Not as thick as some DIPA's. Moderate carbonation, which is more than average for the style. Helps contribute to the overall well-balanced nature of this beer and keeps it from seeming to sweet or syrupy.

D: 9% ABV is definitely noticeable. However, it's got very good flavor and is such a rare treat that I have to force myself not to race through Racer X.

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Photo of natelocc787
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nice and dark double IPA. Great lacing and three finger, medium beige head. Very sprucy in the smell and taste, some citrus to back it up but very bitter citrus peels. Very tasty and piney with a big dose of floral notes. Definitely lopsided towards the piney side but the bitter citrus rears its head in the beginning. Mouthfeel close to perfect. Fantastic experience I only wish it was bottled.

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

a bright orange/copper body supports a filmy head that seems to just ooze hops. The aroma is fresh citrus and tropical fruit, slight brown pine. I think of Breckenridge's Small Batch as an example of a piney IPA, this is a good example of a citrus IPA. Mouthwatering. Flavor is dominated by those citruses. A bit of soft fruit (peach?) gives it a thicker flavor in body. Carbonation is just right; it doesn't take away from the hops and gives it a little extra zing to it. Would like to have some cheese with this one. Darn. ABV makes this a one pint (maybe 1 1/2) and done. Zowy.

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Photo of vacax
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ah, Racer X. The elusively tasty member of the Bear Republic lineup. Pours a light amber with some red tones in it. Thick white head of one-finger in height lives on in a carpetlike existence.

Nose has grapefruit, candied orange, and pine. Tastes piney, spicy with white pepper, sappy, maybe even a hint of chocolate or lactose in the finish. Hop forward and unbalanced in that respect, but it still has lots of nearly imperceptible malt influence. Medium mouth feel and a matching level of carbonation leaves lots of sticky hops in the mouth.

Heck of a tasty beer chaps. Just avoid putting it on a pedestal just because the kegs are few and far in between.

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Photo of bonbright7
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This great looking amber IPA was great addition to my fridge's collection of beers from the rockin' beer store next door. Racer X was good name for this big brother of the regular Racer 5 as its depth is both greater and it's aroma is more fragrant with malts, hops and fruit. I didn't even bother to pour it into my usual 50 cl glass of many reviews from before as the clear 750ml growler was just another big bottle.

Relaxing with the beer and the Falcons-49ers game, I dove into the volume of nuances. I wished had read the AHA brewing guidelines to further extol the great taste I was enjoying with a fat roast beef hero. In any event, it was a great ale to enjoy while watching football.

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Racer X Double IPA from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 500 ratings.
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