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Racer X Double IPA | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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501 Reviews
Racer X Double IPARacer X Double IPA

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

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

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Reviews: 501 | Ratings: 2,115
Photo of Duane_Opfer
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a Speigelau IPA glass. No date on bottled, but labeled as "2013 Vintage." Consumed on 12/8. Review written from notes.

A - Reddish orange with 1/2 finger of off-white small bubble head. Moderate carbonation with distinct lines. Heavy continous bands of lacing from top of glass to the bottom when finished. Not clear, but also not cloudy with no sediment.

S - Very fragrant. Pine, melon, lemon, kiwi, and peach.

T - Apricot and melon, with a hint of onion bitterness. Strong malt backbone. Alcohol not well hidden. Lasting onion/grapefruit rind bitterness.

M - Moderate to high carbonation. Dry and medium bodied. No stickiness.

O - Good, but slight flavor descreased this beer's overall score for me.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.73/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Deep copper body. Nice white head. Chunky collar. Decent lacing.

Smell - Grapefruit and pine hops. Resiny. Very malty. Sweet smelling.

Taste - Malt is strong. Very sweet. Grapefruit. Pine comes out more than grapefruit. Musty and bitter.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy. Sweet. Bitterness pushes through the sugar.

Overall - Good hop flavor, but hella sweet. Too much.

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

22oz bottle poured into a snifter. 2013 vintage.

A: Pours a hazy orangish amber with a slightly yellowed head. Leaves some nice lacing on the sides of the glass. Too opaque to see any visible carbonation.

S: Great hop profile on this one. Balanced blend of earthiness and citrus with a touch of spiciness. Malts back it up nicely giving it a touch of sweetness.

T: As expected from the aroma this one has a great hop profile and ample bitterness. Mostly an earthy hop approach that is rounded out by a fairly strong malt backbone. Malts add a bit of carmel but the main focus is on the hops. Alcohol is lost in the bitterness.

M: Medium body with low carbonation. Nice nectar like quality in this one that is enjoyable in double IPA's. A bit sticky on the finish but that can be expected from something so hoppy.

Overall this is a very enjoyable double IPA that can compete with the big dogs. Isn't overly bitter which is nice because it still has all the hop flavor you could want. Worth picking up.

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Photo of dar482
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

The beer comes in a clear beautiful deep orange.

The aroma is wonderful and hoppy. It has tons of orange, mango, tangerine, grapefruit, and a bit of caramel malt and garlic in the back.

The flavor follows with juicy citrus, orange, grapefruit, pineapple. It moves onto a caramel sweetness, yet with a light body. The finish cleans off well with a bit of piney bitterness.

The alcohol and light body really hide the body.

The best DIPA/IPA from Bear Republic.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: medium orange hue with a light haze and a strong effervescence. There are tiny floaties in the body as well, which add to the attractiveness, I think. head is a finger of frothy ivory foam. Not bad at all!

Smell: big citrusy aroma with a nice little bit of tangerine character. There's also a big floral hop character which really adds something. Sweet and enticing!

Taste: bold fruity and floral flavor with a big malty sweetness that renders the whole works quite candylike. Bitterness is moderate by very smooth and not at all raspy; low-cohumulone hops at work. I really like it.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a decent carbonation and a good-enough creaminess for the style. Not bad.

Overall: the flavor is why you drink Racer X. For years it seemed you couldn't get it in Seattle, but now I'm seeing it in bottles and on tap all over the place -- a development for which I'm quite grateful.

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

22oz bottle of Vintage 2013 poured into a large mug. No indications that I can find about bottled on or best by dates, except for the Vintage 2013 label.

Pours cloudy golden, orange, with a nice respectable head with good retention. As it fades, it seems to be leaving some heavy lacing. Smell is grassy, piney, a little spicey, floral sweetness. Smells a little orangey. Smells good, but slightly muted. But, that'll probably open up as it warms.

Taste is resinous bitterness and floral sweetness, strong hoppy bitter aftertaste. Slightly citrusy.

Mouthfeel is excellent. Thick and pleasing without being sticky or heavy. Overall, this is a very good beer.

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Photo of McStagger
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 Vintage.

A: Pours a fairly clear darkened copper. Somewhat aggressive pour lead to a finger of slightly darker than off white head. Carbonation is moderate. Moderate retention. Moderate lacing.

S: Bitter grapefruit, citrus peel, lots of evergreen. Some muskier odors, has that hint of savory onion. Lots of mango underneath, with a splash of papaya and pineapple. Toffee and malted sweetness base.

T: Quick shot of bitterness up front. Mid palate is all fruit. Amazingly fruity. Huge grapefruit, peach, nectarine. Splashes into tropical, with the big mango and pineapple sweetness flexing. This tropical fruit melds very well into the malt backbone. Finishes very dry, with some oily evergreen resin and just a touch more pineapple in the aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied. Smooth and well rounded without being syrupy. Very easy drinking. No heat, but just a touch of warmth that really accentuates the juicy hops.

O: This is an incredibly good DIPA. I've come around on this brewery. They produce some consistently high quality ales.

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Photo of JohnG190
4.46/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy orange with a thick off-white head. Great lacing. Aroma of pine, citrus, with a hint of dank. Smells like a big west coast IPA. This beer is bitter. Pine resin, orange, balanced by a great malt backbone. Finishes dry. Medium bodied with a slightly oily mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Overall, this is a well crafted west coast DIPA. It's Racer 5 on steroids!

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Photo of MattLatuchie
4.31/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A very pretty peachy, hazy color with minimal head. Aromas were inviting, albeit unexpectedly subtle. Nice peach, lime, and orange flavors seemed to emerge. The body was incredibly smooth and balanced. Nice mix of super floral/citrusy hops with malty undertones. A bit of bitterness on the finish seemed to keep it fresh.

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Photo of jeff1973
4.14/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Southampton Publick House pint glass. Bottled 10/18/13, so about 3 weeks old. Bought at Whole Foods Newport Beach CA for $8.99.

A - Burnt orange color. Eggshell head leaves decent lacing.

S - Citrus - orange and grapefruit. A bready note in the background. Not overly pungent.

T - Grapefruit, orange, a little catpiss upfront. Very bright. Then goes into a nice smooth malty flavor that plays well with the hops. An aggressive bitterness on the backend that dries things out nicely. No discernible heat from the robust 8% ABV.

M - Silky smooth. Carbonation is medium. The silky mouthfeel is cut by the hoppy bitterness perfectly.

O - Great beer. Perfect balance between the hops and malts. Mouthfeel is spot on, makes it easy to drink.

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Photo of jibbyvonjibb
4.36/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

bottled 10/18 (month ago)
Amber color, slightly hazy. Very fresh and intense tropical fruit aroma of pineapple, mango. Slight malty sweetness noticeable but fruit is dominant. On the palate, really well balanced and smooth. Not too bitter, malty, or oily, and alcohol perfectly integrated. I love tropical, well-balanced IPA's, and this might be one of the best out there.

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Photo of CA_brewster
4.9/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Typical IPA or DIPA appearance. A nice off white head with a deliciously sweet hoppy aroma. This brew has an intense but absolutely amazing flavor. It has some very distinct hop bitterness but all kinds of flavors are blending in this beer. Peach, mango and cherry are some I noted but really I don’t think it can be described (at least not by me.) Absolutely fucking sublime and this is truly "balance in a bottle." Picking up on a bit of the 8.3% abv. Mouthfeel is phenomenal not a syrupy double IPA. This has a nice crisp bite to it as you are sipping it but it mellows out and coats the tongue in hoppy resins on the aftertaste. Overall this beer is fucking delicious! I wish it wasn't seasonal and so damn uncommon.

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Photo of Greywulfken
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: medium amber body of beer, just short of clear; make the head as big as ya want - foamy bubbly bone-colored head; some arms and sprinkles of lace left trails down the glass

S: a chorus of hops, ringing in with citrus and pine notes, floral and fruity - a sweet caramel-esque base confirms that the malt bill will be well-represented

T: crisp floral flavors, tinged with citrus will bitter the tongue; sweet flow of smooth and fresh-grain malt flows beneath - lots of great hop bitterness and malt chewiness. A particularly "well-balanced" DIPA

M: smooth and slick, bittering and drier on the finish; medium weight but full-bodied; some sparkle from carbonation

O: you'll be hard-pressed to find a DIPA that is truly superior to this one, simply because, as far as I'm concerned, this one does everything right. It doesn't go too sweet or thick or syrupy. The hops lighten and brighten the drinking experience. Flavors are complex and complimentary - sweet malts and bitter floral hops going hand-in-hand. A great feel, having presence, but also staying brisk and easy-drinking. No wonder this flies off the shelf.

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Photo of Somebody_Else
4.59/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I finally scored a bottle of this!

I don't know how to score "appearance"...

Nice stuff! Started off with more fruit than pine in the smell. Apricots?

The flavor was all I was expecting and maybe more. When the beer was coldest there was lots of fruity hop flavor but as the bomber warmed, more pine and malt came out while still maintaining that yummy hop bitterness. I didn't really taste alcohol, per se. The malt is present -- you can taste the sweetness -- but not in that cloying, uber-sweet, overpowering way. I would say the balance of this beer is spot-on.

I have been consistently pleased with the products from Healdsburg.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.21/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter from a 22 oz bottle.
2013 Vintage

Pours a gorgeous and abrasive dark copper almost amber color with some golden hues. There is a nice off-white/ecru head that forms thats pretty dense yet thin. Very attractive looking brew with great color and a slight haze.

Starts off with resinous pine notes. Yummy oily alpha acids. Piney and citrusy all in one. Sharp nodes of tangerine and grapefruit rind. Assertive and abrasive hop notes that seem very well crafted and not jumbled. Perfect slight caramel sweetness tries for balance but is outdone by the shear hop juices in this brew.

Flavor starts off with citrusy grapefruit notes, some tangerine and mild tropical mango notes from the hops. Piney and resinous as well with some slight herbal character. There is some assertive spiciness in the brew. Seems like it could be the hops but also maybe the grain bill. Mild biscuit and bready notes linger in the background and barely make the beer not a sipper. Although the ABV might make it so. Mouthfeel is crisp and clean but with a sticky hop finish and some heavy bitterness. Overall a very solid DIPA. Cali style all the way. Big juicy hops. Resinous pine and a nice mild caramel malt backbone.

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Photo of jhawth
3.99/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured into a DFH snifter. Pours a deep red-orange with a sudsy, two-finger head. Good retention, slowly dissipates to a thin cap of foam.

Aroma: Big hop notes--floral, some tropical fruit--followed by strong sweet malt presence.

Taste: Floral hop notes and bitterness transition to fruitiness which blends into big, sweet malt body. Hop bitterness returns, finishes clean.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, smooth, relatively low carbonation

Overall: Very nice malt-heavy DIPA with solid, primarily floral hop contrast. Nicely balanced, very drinkable.

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Photo of JohnnyCards
4.1/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into snifter a brilliant copper with a late forming foamy head. The nose was deceptively mild with no single dominating scent. Tremendous body lending toward a tounge-twirling experience. A dark caramel syrup fairly well balanced with striking booziness. The aftertaste is phenomenal, very warm and smooth with a powerful kick and slow dissipation. Cheers Bear Republic!

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.21/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Out of a bottle and into a stemless wine glass at Raul's homies as the Kings are mercifully down 3-1 to the lowly Predators.

At first when Raul tasted this, it was too cold. So cold that it reminded Raul of the hostess (yes, hostess) that gave him sass earlier in the day at some "glorified" high dining establishment at Fashion Island.

Raul moves on...

As this baby warned up, it was like Natalie Portman maturing over the years. And currently at this very moment, it's sticky, gooey, lush, tropical...

Like Paul Gogan in Tahiti, yep!

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Photo of lordofstarside
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bomber to a snifter, 2013 vintage

Pours a dark golden orange with a finger of foam that stuck around for about a minute. Full transparency, moderate carbonation. Lacing's pretty good also, not too bad looking of a beer

Smells of of tropical hops- passion fruit, pine apple, mango, lemon lime. Bready caramel malts follow up with a touch of alcohol. Definitely more on the fruity/sweet side of ipas

Tastes is with the nose well, hop profile falls in line: pineapple, mango, orange, and citrus mix with a sweet malty base with a hint of caramel notes. Finishes with a nice splash of alcohol, all comes together pretty well

Taste is a moderate body, crisp and wet. Alcohol is concealed well, very drinkable

Overall a really solid ipa. Bends a little more towards the fruit profile than I prefer, but this is still a damn good beer

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Photo of rawfish
3.67/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear and golden with a sloppy and sticky three finger head. Leaves a mess of impressive lacing on the glass after the head dissipates with good retention.

Aroma of pungent pine resin, earth and warm colored citrus fruit. Hefty underlying malt sweetness, caramel and graham cracker.

Loaded with caramel and cane sugar sweet malt, with a balanced attack of typical west coast pine and grapefruit citrus hops to back it up. The pine resin flavor comes through the after taste with some slight dryness and milder bitterness than most DIPAs.

Sticky malt with some drying. Average carbonation. Alcohol is managed well enough but the body of this beer is surprisingly light to help with drinkability.

The hops fix is there in classical pine/citrus hops, its a very managed and balanced IPA which includes the body and feel. It bothers me that the malt is so sticky here and without a bit more kick in carbonation it feels sluggish despite being crafted pretty well and fresh. Nice beer, maybe too boring. I'll stick to Racer 5 and Cafe Racer 15.

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Photo of JohnCassillo
3.87/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Brownish gold pour into tulip glass; dark color overall, with a very minimal head that sticks around.

S: Very piney smell, with a hint of grapefruit and a lot of malt.

T: Malt seems to shield hoppy flavor initially, before it returns on the back end. Sweet, for the most part, but without being overwhelming. Not overly filling either, which makes it surprisingly drinkable for a DIPA.

M: Medium-to-heavy body with minimal carbonation. Warm feel and a delicious finish.

O: Takes the general style of Racer 5 and seems to replicate it perfectly in a DIPA. The fact that you can't really taste how boozy this is becomes an interesting feature. But the taste and aroma are the highlights without a doubt.

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Photo of utopiajane
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

This poured a handsome orange with great clarity, golden hues and a a thin loose head of big bubbles that fell quickly to a ring and film on top. It tired to lace like the champ it is but it was a little flat. It does have legs.

Nose is simply outstanding. Crisp fruit. Orange, tangerine and grapefruit. Hop floral and a bit of spice. There is a nice strong malt presence in the nose. it's a honey sweetness that is terribly inviting and the fruit has a tropical presence as well. It smells earthy. I has a little spice on the nose so it's deep. The malt offers up light sugar on the nose as it warms.

Taste is smooth and the malt presence surprises again to the delight of the palate. The fruits are sweet and authentic with their tart aspects and even a little pith. They make the mouth water and then satisfy the tongue with their light sweetness. The malt is cracker but it's strong enough to be seen and felt on the palate. The honey and the light sugar satisfy with a little bit more malt body than the average DIPA. It' s not chewy it's firm. The alcohol warms and the resin and honey sweetness are sticky and coat the throat to leave all the bright fruit to linger with the aftertaste. Finishes dry and with some hop spice and herbal. Has a nice bitter that accents the flavors perfectly and does not run over them. Superb!

This beer had a malt presence that was equal to it's immense hop character. The fruit flavor was not outdone by the staunch malt presence and that's what made this beer. There was something to it. It had a full mouthfeel and taste but a light smooth drink.

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Photo of bmwats
4.11/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 650 ml bottle into a mini snifter.

A: Opaque golden hue. Pours a 1 finger, foamy, white head. Settles pretty quickly leaving a smattering of bubbles on the surface. Decent spider web lacing.

S: Woody hops, orange citrus, grapefruit, honey, and coriander.

T: Pungent hop tone. Wood chips, plenty of grapefruit and a little orange. Nice sweet balance of honey or agave nectar, and a little savory spice.

M: Thick and syrupy texture. Pungent throughout. Dry, bitter finish.

D: Sip and enjoy.

Atmosphere is really nice. Foamy head, and some decent lacing. Nose is woody and hoppy, with some great citrus notes, sweetness, and spice. Pungent hop tone with a strong woody character, balanced with citrus, spice, and sweet components. Very well done. Overall, this is a great quaff.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.73/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a deep hazy orangey color ale with a medium white foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of citrus and earthy hops with some deep caramelized sweet malt backbone. Taste is also dominated by some citrus and earthy hops with a huge caramelized malt backbone with quite a bit of residual sugar. Body is quite full with good carbonation with no apparent alcohol. Enjoyable but just too sweet for my taste buds.

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

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #64 (May 2012):

Simply put, we dig this beer and love the fact that it is available in 22-ounce bombers. While it's loaded with hops, there's plenty of malt flavor and backbone to balance, it’s got drinkability despite the packed flavors and high alcohol.

LOOK: Clear and copper, lacing has legs

SMELL: Grapefruit rind, spearmint, hemp seeds, shortbread

TASTE: Sweet and sticky, hop bitterness, resin, macerated tangerines, lime pith, juicy, leafy, grassy, crackers, exotic fruit, warming alcohol; bitter, drying finish

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Racer X Double IPA from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.24 out of 5 based on 2,115 ratings.
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