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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

For Trade:
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Reviews: 501 | Ratings: 2,115
Photo of bulletrain76
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draught at The Red in Santa Cruz. Clear brown. Bursting hop aroma with flowers, orange and grapefruit. The flavor is pretty sweet; a little more so than the hops can rightly dominate. Bitter and flavorful hops play with the sweetness of the malt. Pretty nice stuff, but not the target dipa for me. (3.7) Rerate: Draught at the red. Orange/amber color with a sticky head. Oily, citrus and sap aroma that screams fresh, juicy hops. The flavor has a moderate malt sweetness that is pretty pale, with some light caramel and toasted malt. The hops are very green and oily, with a strong Orange/grapefruit and light tropical flavor. Bitterness is pretty modest in balance with the malt sweetness, just enough to win out in the end. Medium-full body with tight carbonation. Nice oily and citrucy DIPA. The balance makes this pretty drinkable as well.

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Photo of TheRougeBastard
3.32/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass, color was dull orange with minimal carbonation or head. The smell revealed the hops and a slight grapefruit aroma. Several reviews mentioned malt notes, but I didn't get that at all. The taste was typical of the style, a blend of citrus and piney hops, but surprisingly little to suggest the 8.3% ABV. Overall not a bad DIPA, but there a more than a few out there that better represent the style!

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Photo of BeerZombies1
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

8.3% ABV

APPEARANCE: pours a nice dark honey to light bronze color. Lots of great billowy off white head that settled quickly into small halo. Great sticky lacing.

AROMA: true to form dipa lots of grapefruit and pine hops. Bready notes in the back end also a bit of sweet malts.

TASTE: taste profile follows the nose with in your face floral hops, citrus and light caramel malts. Ends with a nice splash of piney bitterness.

MOUTHFEEL: medium body, medium carbonation. Smooth silky with a great dry finish that makes you want another taste.

OVERALL: I truly enjoyed this DIPA. Great west coast CA ipa. Super balanced and delicious. For now I put this up with the likes of Pliny.

RATING: 4.5/5 Zombie Heads!

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

Filled up a growler at Green's in Greenville, SC.

Pours a surprisingly dark copper color. Moderate white head and lacing. Crystal clear body.

The nose is a complete hop assault. Hop bliss. Heavy notes of pine and grass. There may have been citrus in there too, but I have a hard time detecting it behind the brilliant attack of pine and hop notes. This smells exactly how you want a DIPA to smell - the prototypical DIPA smell. Tons of resiny goodness too.

Not to be outdone, the taste follows through just as brilliant. This is one hoppy, bitter bastard. The pine and grass appears again. Along with that hop blast, however, there's a massive malt backbone. But Racer X doesn't fall into the same trap as many other DIPA-wannabes do - the malt backbone plays the supporting role here, and doesn't push past the feature player: the hops. This is a perfect balance. There are only a couple other beers I've had that so perfectly taste like a DIPA should - Oracle and Pliny the Elder are the ones that immediately come to mind. Fairly dry taste.

The mouthfeel is great. Carbonation supports the beer perfectly and the mouthfeel is appropriate - medium bodied.

This is one bad ass beer. I'm gonna be grabbing a growler of this brew any time I'm passing through a state that has distribution. Fan-freaking-tastic.

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Photo of CommanderOfAwesome
3.99/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a Bomber into a Snifter glass. No freshness date, though I know my bottle shop got it in this week (10/12).

A: Deep carmel color. 1 finger head. Tons of lacing on the glass.

S: Intense pine/piney smell. Some sweet/tropical fruits, and a bit of citrus of well.

T: Sharp pine taste at first, mellows into a more malty taste than I would have anticipated. Getting a little citrus as well. Getting more of a pine finish than a BAM in your face hop finish.

M: Medium to full bodied, which I would have guess by the color but the piney smell is deceptive. I usually associate piney with lighter mouthfeels. Medium carbonation providing some action on the tongue.

O: It is definitely well balanced. I expected a lighter taste based on the strong pine smell, but was surprised by the malty-ness provided. Very balanced DIPA and worth checking out, esp for the price. About $6 for a bomber.

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Photo of stratusjeans
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hard to put my finger on it but I like this less than Racer 5. It seems less balanced and more bitter in a not pleasing way. Maybe my taste buds are screwy tonight.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.95/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No picture - tap only me hearties!!! Got the old school Bay Area DM playing: Possessed!! Just saw that Blind Illusion is playing a show with Skitzo nearby in a week or so. HELLZ YEAH!!!

Pours a deep clear amber with minimal carbonation. Nice half-finger of soapy head dissipates into a tiny, Natalie Portman in Black Swan thin wisp of foam at the edge of the glass. Decent lacing. Huge, West Coast IPA aromas of grapefruit, pineapple and piney hops. Some hint of sweetness in there in the form of a caramel note but mostly dominated by hops. Not super unique. Big, bold hop flavors right off the bat. This is your standard, West Coast Double IPA and fulfills all expectations of the style. Nice malty backbone is sublimated to the hop character throughout. The carbonation is nice and dances on your tongue for a fleeting instant, then shuffles off to Buffalo. There's a flowery, sugary note in the flavor profile that kind of hides in the shadows and flits out every now and again. I like that. I got a growler of this for $24, and it's like 5 beers I think, so it's not cheap. I believe it's about 8% ABV, and the alcohol is well hidden. Good beer although pricey.

What I like most: The excellent, complex flavor profile (for a Lefty DIPA)

What I like least: The price and lack of unique qualities in the aromas or appearance.

Verdict: Very good example of the Lefty DIPA and worth trying if they are pouring it.

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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 jmasher85
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Fairly-well balanced, though if they're going to be so proud of their balance, they could have toned down the hops a bit. But besides this advertising miss, this is a solid DIPA with a lot of grapefruit and resin, thick but gentle texture, smooth on the palate, heavy on the hops, and not overly bitter in the finish. A bit more malt would have been nice for balance, but it's a double IPA so why bother?

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Photo of BuffaloTapHugger
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tap @ Coles

A: Dark amber in color, nice white head that sticks around some and killer lacing.

S: Pungent smells of piney hops blended with some malty notes as well.

T: Big hit of the hops in front with a mountable mix of malt in the back. That pretty much caught me off guard, as I was seeking something else in my mind. The malt does good though, rounds the mega hop blast and puts in all into perspective. Still an Dipa through and through.

M: Medium body, ABV blended well given the circumstance, beautifully carbonated to finish.

D: Nice sipper session all night given the situation. Very glad I had the opportunity the try this beer. Would drink again if the chance ever comes back... without thinking, as I did tonight.


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Photo of tr4nc3d
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to thagr81us for the growler

64oz growler poured into my pint glass

Appearance is a semi dark orange with ruby mix. Huge three inch off-white frothy head. Good head retention that subsides slowly leaving scattered lacing clinging to the sides of my glass.

Nice aroma of citrus flavors with mango, grapefruit, pineapple, and mandarin oranges. Very good aroma of ripe fruit I must say. I do not detect much malts except a little bit of caramel.

Upfront taste is a smack to the face with a very sharp bitterness that leads way into a semi grapefruit citrus flavor with some tangerine. Following is a bit of caramel and bread like finish with the alcohol pretty detectable and is not too much masked.

Mouthfeel is bitter and dry with high carbonation. Alcohol taste is very present in the finish and aftertaste making it feel a little boozy.

Overall a good beer but I expected more. My only complaint was it needed more balance and tasted too boozy, which it shouldn't haved. I Still recommend to try this

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Photo of snpub540
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Bottle Room.

Poured a cloudy orange hue with a small off white head that left scattered lacing on the glass.

Smell is grapefruit, tangerine zest, pine, and grass.

Taste is sweet upfront and then a bitter piney, resiny finish with some citrus pop to brighten things up. Crisp and dry in the finish and it just begs you to take more sips.

Mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing with a medium body with a touch of an oily feel as it slides of the tongue. Great drinkability and the balance is very nice while still allowing hops to be the major player.

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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 oggg
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful tawny ale with a huge hop bouquet that hits you from a long distance. Grapefruit and christmas tree hits the nose til the last drop. On the tongue this beer is hugely bitter, and only in my double IPA heyday could I say this beer was anything less. Punishingly bitter, now that I have had a hop vacation. Super juicy citrus hop flavor. Juicy and mouth watering, mouth puckering heaven. And yet late in the taste there is a great toasted maltiness that brings it all together.

In my top 3-4 double IPAs.

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Photo of albertjr21
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2012 poured gently into a snifter yields a clear burnt orange amber under a fairly easily roused foam. Aroma of pungent grassy pine hops lightly stings the nose with a deep inhale. Lush hop flavor fully fills the palate and delivers that imperial bitterness you'd expect from Racer 5's bigger brother. Malt very nicely complements the hops and helps deliver a smooth well-balanced mouth feel.

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Photo of 4000qtrap
4.07/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Source/Serving: 22oz bottle

S: Juicy gauva, mango, and blood orange. Hints of lemon verbena, toast, and peppery booze.

T: Up front, solid maltiness is immediately overtaken by intense guava, mango and orange hoppiness. Bitterness kicks in soon, which is firm but not overwhelming and has a orange peel pithiness to it. Above average body without too much oiliness gives this a firm, smooth character. Lots of brown sugar malt and caramel malt, some spicy mango hop, not unlike a thai curry really. Finish is pithy, grassy, piney and spicy hoppiness, lingering smooth bitterness, and caramel.

Notes: A nice balanced DIPA with an abundance of new hop varietals.

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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 SkinnyElvis
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler purchased at Capones & soon to be split with my brother in law. Pours with a thin head. Dark amber color typical of a big DIPA. Huge nose of piney hops. Tastes extremely hoppy which is agreat for a hop head. Mouthfeel is smooth & this is very drinkable even with the ABV. Highly recommended. One of the best DIPA's out there IMO.

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

Pours a medium orange color with a large poof of white head, citrusy orange aroma hits you over the head when it gets close.

Flavor is smooth hop bitterness with a tngy citrus, lemony hop flavor on the sides of the tongue. Really smooth with out that much alcohol in the mouth, some warming in the cheat as it goes down.

Very tasty, fairly refreshing , leaves a ton of hops in the mouth.

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Photo of DaverCS
4.58/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Moderate carbonation. 1 finger off-white head. Beautiful amber color.

Major citrus on the nose. Grapefruit rind, floral hops, touch of malt sweetness.

Flavor is extremely well-balanced. Like an amplified version of their racer 5. Not overly thick or bitter either. Nice amount of citrus flavors again. Classic west coast hop profile. Malts don't make a flavor appearance, but they must be there to tame this beast into a overall great! Definitely sticks in the mouth after drinking, however the ABV is undetectable and still is pretty easy drinking !!!

I pair this with a nice thick cut ribeye. Traditional cowboy style flavors would pair well -- mash potatoes, spininch, corn, etc. I really like this beer: well balanced, not overly bitter, nice drinkability. I give it a 92/100. A little more carbonation would jump it up to a 95 point plus for me.

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

Appearance:Glowing orange copper with bubbly off white head.

Smell:Fresh pine, citrus, and toasted malts with traces of grassy and floral hops.

Taste: Yeasty doughy malts mingle with fresh citric and piney hops Firm malt backing for a big hop punch.

Mouthfeel:Medium mouthfeel for a solid DIPA with no alcohol taste.

Overall: Bold character and great drinkability make this a solid DIPA.

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Photo of GregJ
3.99/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy yellow orange. Smells of pine, spicy rye, sweet malts. Tastes of earthy and spicy hops, rye, light grapefruit, caramel. Spicy rye hop resin aftertaste and a medium body med carbonation.

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

This Bear Republic brew pours a brilliant, clear copper, and it is capped by a fluffy, off-white head that provides plenty of lacing. Tropical and citrus fruit aromas burst from the glass, and hints of pine resin and caramel malt poke through as well. This beer starts out with sweet caramel and bready flavors before turning into a tropical explosion of fruit. Pineapple, mango, grapefruit, and tangerine flavors hold on the pallet, as the lingering sweetness melds into piney flavors for the finish. Moderately carbonated, Racer X has a creamy feel in the medium body. A world-class IIPA from California, who would have thought it?


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

From a growler to a Darkness snifter.

Thanks for the hookup Brendan.

Pours a beautiful amber hue. Very little head. A scant amount of lacing remains.

Dare I say this is maybe the best smelling beer I have come across. A waft of sweet citrus and honey. Pine and hop notes follow. Wow. Just beautiful.

Certainly citrus and pine on my tongue. The malty backbone is there and it's quite pleasant. As it warms I'm getting a taste of caramel. Hop bite on the backend, but certainly not abusive.

Carbonation is perfect. Sticky hop oil coats the tongue to my liking.

Coming in at 9% it's certainly sessionable to me. That growler is going down in a blaze of glory tonight. A very good example of a DIPA. This beer is right in my wheelhouse. I regret not sharing this with some buddies, but I'll get over it. Wait. I already did.

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