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Red Rocket Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Red Rocket AleRed Rocket Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,440 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,440
Reviews: 1,148
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 10.86%
Wants: 124
Gots: 178 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-05-2001

Red Rocket Ale is a bastardized Scottish style red ale that traces it's origins to our homebrew roots. This full bodied and hoppy brew finishes on the palate with sweet, caramel malt flavors.

2009 California State Fair - SILVER
1999 Great American Beer Festival® Other Strong Ales or Lagers - SILVER
1998 Great American Beer Festival® Other Strong Ales - SILVER
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,440 | Reviews: 1,148 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of blackie
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: pours a huge orange-brown head that shows good retention, the beer is a deep red-brown in color

s: fresh, sugary, dark rye bread underneath a huge aroma of grapefruit and pine, caramelized sugars, hop-dominant but with a big malt body to hold it together

m: smooth medium carbonation, with a body on the full side of medium

t: begins and ends with piny and tropical hop flavors, big red malt backbone with toasted dark sugar, moderate-high bitterness lingers with some toasted rye amber malt husk

d: easy

single bottle from Whole Foods Reston

Photo of bunnyhustle
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I cant believe I'm love an Amber/Red so much! Consistantly my least favorite style but this is amazing. First of all this may be the best looking beer I've ever seen. The color is a rich, dark hazy amber. Thick, rocky mocha colored head that settles into this amazing creamy head with great retention and awesome lacing. After it settles it practically looks like its been on nitro-tap I swear. Smell is rich of malt, caramel, and hops. Taste is great. A nice strong malty backbone but not to be outdone by the hops. Nice, bitter west coast hops. In a way it almost reminds me of an English IPA (like Drake's IPA) but thats a good thing. Mouthfeel is perfect. It is light and easy drinking yet there is a creamy texture to it that feels so smooth going down. Overall a great beer. Again, I cant believe this is an Amber but it may have reignited my interest in this style.

Photo of jwinship83
3.92/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- MONSTROUS head was the first thing i noticed. maybe the bottle was agitated, but i had to take a break when pouring it so it could all fit into my glass. very dark amber.

S- i noticed alot of citrus hops which i thought was weird for an american red but something i enjoyed. also a bit of roasted malt maybe.

T- just as hoppy as it smells with a drying aftertaste.

M- creamy and smooth. feels heavy in your mouth.

D- an easy to drink enjoyable take on the style. i loved how hoppy this one comes off as. id like to have this again sometime.

Photo of Biggness
4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a beautiful cloudy dark amber with a 2 fingered light tan head. The smell is light but nice a mixture between nuts and malts. This beer's taste has a wonderful mixture of malts and hops, a VERY smooth beer, the malts in the beer are top notch. The mouthfeel as stated is incredibly smooth, almost silky, my only complaint would be a slight dry feeling after I swallow. This is a very drinkable beer, if not for the slight afterfeel it would be a all nighter! Well done

Photo of Ricochet
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep red/amber, cloudy, not see through, little head with a lasting lace. This seems like a more intense red.

S: Malty, alcohol, raisin, plum. Rich smelling. Good.

M: Thick, with licorice aftertaste. Chewy. Good stuff with a malty reminder of what this is.

T: If this was on tap, I'd get it every time. It's malty, has a nice raisin finish, tastes slightly like olive, but alcohol kicks in. There is a slight hops kick in there too. Different and good.

D: Well well well. Bear Republic two for two and they are a bit different than others, so yes, I'd get again.

Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: thick, rich amber color...almost mahogany. tan head, with good retention and rather nice lacing.

S: big citrus hop aroma. huge malts. some sweet tones, apples with some dates.

T: very mellow, yet rich amber ale. solid malt backbone, with some spicy characteristics. light citrus hop flavors.

M: very smooth and mellow mouthfeel. mild carbonation level. medium bodied.

D: very nice brew. I could have a couple of bombers but that would probably do me in.

Photo of toolbrew
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red/brown color with a small tan head. Head fell quickly. Some lacing.

Nice malty smell with some citrusy hops mixed in.

Initially I tasted hops, but the more I consume, the more I taste sweeter, caramel flavored malts.

Some bite at first but now it's smooth and mellow. Still get the hop sensation in the back of the throat.

A great session beer. Could definately have a few of these in one sitting.

Photo of tai4ji2x
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber with no date. poured into shaped pint glass.

dark amber brown, gem clear. (hazy with yeast on later pours) nice rocky head with good retention. some lace.

mildly resiny pine, grapefruit (both zest and fruit). hint of apple and caramelized malts.

similar flavors; decent balance of malt and bold zesty hops. moderate bitterness. lasts into finish w mild resiny and citrusy aftertaste.

not too thin. pretty smooth, with slight tannic texture. moderate carbonation.

a nice red ale with bold hop flavor and aroma, while still keeping things malty and complex.

Photo of jmalex
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Perhaps my favorite from Bear Republic. I'm thrilled that this became available in PA in the past year. I'm also using this to celebrate the (long overdue) repair of my PC (see my review of Storm King for the commiseration of it dying).

APPEARANCE: Pours into my Victory becker a reddish amber that becomes brilliant red when held to light. The head is massive and light tan in color. It takes forever to drop and eventually winds up as a thick surface coating with the sides of the glass caked in lacy foam.

SMELL: Heavy American citrusy hops shine through and are slightly sticky and resinous. They sit atop a barely noticeable malt base that gives a mild roastiness.

TASTE: A mostly balanced beer with a bready, somewhat roasty malt base with accentuations of sharp, citrus hops all over the place. The hops aren't anywhere as sticky as the nose could have indicated. The beer finishes somewhat malty surprisingly, but bitter hops are what you get after the swallow. Definitely on the hoppy side of balance however.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium to medium full might be a little big. The carbonation is at a medium high level and appropriate.

DRINKABILITY: It's certainly a much bigger example of the style so drinkability suffers a bit because of that. The ABV doesn't seem like it comes up to match though. Ah well, a bomber is still easy to take care of and another glass wouldn't be out of the question either.

I'll be buying more. One of the finer ambers that are out there. And what makes it sweeter is that I'm reviewing this as I sit at my resurrected computer.

Photo of ATPete
3.91/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


A- Pours a deep red color with a medium sized, tightly woven tan head, all and all translucent with no noticeable carbonation.

S- Faint nose of sweet roasted malts.

T- Sweet fruity malts followed by a nice hoppy bitterness on the finish, well balanced and an excellent representation/interpretation of the red/amber ale style.

M- medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D- Very good, the bomber is a perfect serving to share with a friend or hog to yourself.

Photo of Jerzdevil1116
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber purchased at Joe Canal's in Egg Harbor Twp., NJ. Served in a pint glass.

A: Deep red/amber body. Small white head. Nice lacing left the legnth of the glass.

S: Dominated by floral and grassy hops. A faint caramel malt backing.

T: A strong presence of citrusy and piney hops. Hard to find any malt presence. Also a bit spicy.

M: Velvety medium to full body. Not much tingle from the obvious carbonation present.

D: A very good beer. A nicy hoppy brew that isn't overly bitter. Not sure if it's a session beer, but I could have a few of these over the course of a night.

Photo of maximum12
4.06/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to beerheaven who slung this my way via trade while, unbeknownst to all, another bottle made it's way to MN via a throw-in from moose3289. Coincidence? I think not.

This poured a dark, dark amber with a thin head & little smell, which made me wonder what kind of light beer I was in for.

Wrong! This is listed as a Red Ale, but to me it had more of a scotch ale flavor than amber, mixed in with a light malt & subtle hop aftertaste. Everything met on my tongue, & after introductions, got along swimmingly. I was surprised, given the light nose, at the tastiness of the Rocket. Realy good stuff. Now I'm glad I have another bottle downstairs.

Easy drinking & great with the meal of fresh-caught fish we enjoyed with this bomber. Didn't hit the style for me, falling in the cracks someplace, but damn tasty. I'd take this baby out to dinner any day of the week.

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.8/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, deep amber color with a small white head. In the aroma, a small citrusy, grapefruity hop. In the taste, grapefruity hops in a dry end. A small bitterness, and a medium to big mouthfeel, with a semi dry citrus hop aftertaste. A nice hop presence and a bigger body. Almost feels like an IPA.

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Truly red body, heavy with chill haze, topped by two level fingers at first, and then a table top of tan foam about the exact shade as Guinness draft. Good lacing.

Big bread, buscuits, and touch of candy aroma is evident at arms lenght.

Big malt beginning just slathers over the tongue. Takes several sips before the hops register. Then they make their presence felt big time. Big earthy hops. Big bitter bite at the swallow. A sweet and bitter entanglement throught the aftertaste.

Good, big smooth mouthfeel. Surprising drinkability.

To put it roughly, it comes across like a crash of an IPA and a scotch ale. And it works in spades.

Photo of argock
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a clear pint glass

A: Gorgeous mahogany with thick, rocky light tan head that recedes to numerous island clumps leaving a ton of lace up and down the glass.

S: Toasted and caramel malts are nudged out by grassy and piney hops.

T: A combination of heavyweight toasted and caramel maltiness with earthy, grassy hops leaves a rough edge to this beer that is refreshing for a red ale. The flavors need to work together exceptionally, otherwise the beer comes off as rough and difficult to drink. BR's Red Rocket is rough because the flavors clash well, instead of other style-margin beers that are rough despite the flavors.

M: Feel is good with medium-to-full bodied with low carbonation to personify the ale feel.

D: A great red ale with an edge that screams high-quality. I would welcome a little more sweetness and a little less hoppiness (ala Samuel Adams Irish Red Ale), but all in all, this is an excellent beer.

Photo of oneeye
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A. Pours cloudy because it's unfiltered. Black cherry with a two fingered soapy head. The soapy head is amber and oily. Lots of lace, sticky lace.

S. The aroma is strong. It smells of caramel malts and piny hops. Notes of dried fruit and caramel.

T. Upon the first sip you notice a strong malty backbone. Dried fruit' cherries and figs. Almost like a Barleywine backbone. Piny hops then back to the malts. Caramel and bready with a lingering of bitterness. A little bite of alcohol.

M. Mouthfeel has a medium body. A warmth of alcohol. Oily and sticky.

D. Oh my, I love this beer! Highly recommended! The drinkability is excellent. Tasty Brew.

Photo of dreadnatty08
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark amber color with a half inch of tan head and large soapy bubbles. A touch dark for style, but otherwise an attractive beer. Aromas off this beer are dominated by hops, lots of piney Chinook and citrusy Cascades. Following are notes of caramel, toasted bread, and some diacetyl. On the palate, this is a substantial amber with lots of hop flavor (not exceptionally fresh), malt depth and plenty of bitterness in the finish. Carbonation is medium, body medium high. Alcohol is quite noticeable, almost a bit hot as it's a very dry beer. Overall, it's a solid beer, but it leaves me wanting in the malt department.

Photo of athensbeermaster
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Now this West Coast amber ale has a big profile worth bragging about! A good two finger head that shows decent lacing. The nose has a caramel apple scent with just a hint of pine resin.
The taste is amazing stewed apples and a light fig flavor with very god carbonation that wakes your palate up from the dead. This amber ale has so much going on, it almost taste like a scottish ale that Bert Grant use to make. Another great beer from Bear Republic. I'm glad you can get this ale in six packs here!!

Photo of wide3345
3.34/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Picked this up at Hucklebee's in Spokane, Washington while on vacation. I love Bear Republic...

Appearance - Dark red to brown, off-white head clings to glass. Cloudy

Smell - Malt sweetness dominates with some slight caramel noted. Hop aromas were actually quite subdued which surprised me for a left coast beer.

Taste - Bitterness dominates, supported by a strong malt backbone. Hop flavor is earthy but dificult to find behind the bitterness and malt flavors. Some oxidation noted.

Mouthfeel - Medium body, bitterness dominates the finish

Drinkability - Clocks in at 6.8% so I wouldn't want more than a single bottle but is fairly drinkable. I fear my bottle has lost a bit of its intended hop flavor as evidenced by the perceived oxidation so I suspect other reviews may have gotten a fresher bottle. Despite the bottle issues, it's still a good beer if you enjoy high alcohol, bitter reds.

Photo of ruckzuck
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - a very dark red amber body with a think white head

S - sweet malty and roasty aroma with a serious citrus hop presence

T - initial bitter/citrusy hop flavors with a great malt backbone. Leaves an enjoyable bitter aftertaste

M - medium bodied with really good carbonation. Feels great in the mouth and going down.

D - super! Really hoppy red with an excellent maltiness holding everything together. Great mouthfeel. Would definitely have another one and look forward to finishing the bottle. It seems like Bear Republic can do no wrong

Photo of bbothen
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber. Into a The WHO pint glass. Giddy up. Bear Republic excites me. I Can't Explain.

Reddish brown color with a bubbly tan colored head. At least to The Naked Eye.

Nice toasted malt, caramel scent with a distinct hop presence. Smells delicious. I no longer have the Young Mans Blues after smelling this.

Tastes of sweet caramel, slight toffee, and a nice dose of earthy hops Join Together. Alot of flavor going here & it's fantastic. Lingering taste of the afformentioned deliciousness is quite nice. Love Reign O'er Me.

No put on. It's an Eminence Front of smooth. frothy, chewy goodness.

This is big ass tasty Squeeze Box of a delicious brew I can drink at any time. And will. Lots of flavors Gettin In Tune here.

Bear Republic make some fine products. At least to My Generation. The Kids Are Alright. I will be The Seeker trying to find more Red Rocket.

Red Rocket in The Blue, Red, & Grey.

Photo of ABHatter
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle served into 2 types of glasses. 8 oz into 16oz tumbler & 6 oz into Grand Marnier snifter.
Very nice appearance burnt red color, strong pour into each glass leaves a very tiny head in both glasses which rapidly disappears. Smell is somewhat faint,a little caramely maltiness combined with mild orangy notes and finishing off with a slight maple syrup aroma towards the end.
This beer is a great interpretation of the style,Nice Malty sweet balance gives off great flavors of dried fruits and a faint touch of brown sugar to go with an extreme hop rush which is slightly toned down at first but really delivers a great spicy bitterness at the end.
The mouthfeel on this beer is tremendous, Nice long hoppy bitterness with great carbonation is perfect.
Drinkibility is quite good, Due to the nice sweet malty flavors and good hop balance, Even at 6.8 % abv I could most likely drink a couple bombers of this.

All in all this is a great beer. This was my second offering from Bear Republic (1st was Racer 5 which rocks!) And I was really impressed. I would buy this all the time if it was available in RI.

Photo of johannasclimacus
4.37/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A great offering from Bear Republic. The first taste I get is very piney. After that it is kind of like a hop explosion in your mouth, which is very tasty for hop lovers. The finish is pretty dry, and in the finish I pick up a lot of the toasted flavor that is also broadcasted by the hazy reddish color that the beer pours.

Each taste seemed multi-layered and complex. I will soon have to pick up the bomber that this comes in to compare between the tapped version I had, and also just to get more of this awesome beer!

Photo of brandoneast
4.65/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Red Rocket takes off into the glass with explosive carbonation and portrays a garnet color and tan cushiony foam leaving plenty lacing. Aroma initially opens with sweet hops then settles down with some fruit, burnt sugars, and roasted malt. Wonderful flavors of balanced hops, brown sugar, and roasted malt. No other red ale exemplifies the style so well while incorporating hops into every interaction in the brew to the bitter end - love it. Another amazing beer from Bear Republic - also try their Hop Rod Rye.

Photo of atigerlife
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark red with a thick, creamy light brown head. Very good head retention, nice lacing.

Aroma of hops and roasted malts.

Taste is hops, caramel malts, chocolate in the background. Even a hint of coffee.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, very dry and smooth.

Overall, very drinkable. Delicious.

Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,440 ratings.