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Red Rocket Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Red Rocket AleRed Rocket Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,163 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,163
Hads: 2,540
Avg: 4.06
pDev: 16.01%
Wants: 148
Gots: 229 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Red Rocket Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,163 | Hads: 2,540
Photo of Damian
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Drank from a 12fl oz. bottle
Served in a pint glass

Thanks to my friend Roy for bringing this to our holiday party.

Gorgeous appearance. The nearly crystal clear, russet-mahogany liquid became slightly clouded as some of the secondary yeast sneaked out of the bottle. An inch-tall crown of creamy, bubbly, light tan foam topped the liquid. The head faded to a clingy, lasting film. Drippy splotches of lacing trickled all down the glass.

The aroma was punchy and really interesting. Intense citrusy hop notes were well matched by sweet, bready, carmelized malts. Hefty dose of toffee, brown sugar and spices. Some Scotch ale qualities were definitely apparent. Fruity with strong notes of candied orange peel.

The flavor profile was quite similar to the aroma. Juicy, citrusy, West Coast-style hop notes were balanced by a stiff, sweet, bready malt presence. Somewhat toasty. Lots of caramelized sugar, candied orange peel and spices. Again, somewhat reminiscent of a Scotch ale. Ruby red grapefruit notes appeared on the finish. Some bitterness lingered on my palate after each sip. For a beer that registers almost 7%, the alcohol was incredibly well buried.

The beer contained a zippy, finely beaded effervescence that gave the liquid a nice suppleness. Creamy and smooth on the palate.

I admire Bear Republic for never resting on their laurels and for consistently creating new and exciting offerings, but I was really blown away by this commonly available (almost) session ale. Red Rocket is a super drinkable and fantastically well crafted West Coast version of an American amber ale, but done with a Scotch ale twist. Impressive, to say the least.

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Photo of Captain_Komamura
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - It is a dark amber to brown color, with good retention.

Smell - It is a sweet citrusy hop smell.

Taste - It is a good mixture of malts and hops.

Mouthfeel - Full-bodied, with a good amount of carbonation.

Overall - It is a pretty good beer, hoppy and sweet.

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Photo of walkinginplace
3.35/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Amber colored with a small head (strangely large bubbles as well). Smell is strong with caramel maltiness with hops and maybe some grapefruit. Medium to heavy body with moderate carbonation. The taste is more hoppy up front than I expected but the caramel malt rushes in soon thereafter while the aftertaste is equally sour malt and bitter hops. Balanced but intense. It was OK but there are a lot better (and more sessionable) options out there when it comes to ambers (including the less intense and ultra easy to find Fat Tire Amber).

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Photo of Mike_Moe
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark brown color, brown head.
Aroma: Spicy, hoppy aroma.
Flavor: A very spicy beer, with some peppercorn flavors coming through. Nice hoppy finish. A full bodied bold, smooth carbonation.
Overall: This is a very good bold ale. The spicy smooth flavor up front is accented with perfect hoppiness

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Photo of hopsolutely
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Although only purchased recently, I can't speak for the age of the bottle and fear it may be past its prime, as I'm not getting the hop "wow" of other reviews. These hops are faded in the aroma, which has a metallic twang overriding the caramelized malts. Bomber pours a dusty dark brown with a limited head that fades quickly. The flavour is also malt forward, as befitting the style, and has a touch of citrus in the finish but definitely doesn't have the full hop portfolio I expected from this brewer. Despite those faded hops the beer still finishes with a nice bitterness that lingers for a respectable amount of time.

Would like to seek out again when known to be freshly bottled.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Dark brown in color. I see a fair amount of sediment floating about within. Head is almost nonexistent. I smell lots of dark malt with a bit of smoked peat. Mouthfeel is a bit warm,sticky, and chewy with all of that dark malt. A bit of toffee and caramel in the flavor.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. Picked this up at the local beer store as part of a mixed six pack. I haven't had anything from Bear Republic in a while, but my expectations are high.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a dark ruby colored body with lots of dark sediment floating in the glass. One finger of khaki froth than thins to a ring. Nice sticky scattered lacing. Looks pretty nice.

S - The hop aromas have faded considerably from some time in the bottle, but they have turned more earthy, with green apple skin sweetness. Creamy caramel. Musty yeast presence. I think it smells rather nice.

T - Taste is of creamy caramel malts, dirty earthiness, woodiness, some pine, sticky green apple, & some sugary tea leaf sweetness.

M - Feel is sticky with caramel & green apple, and bitter with herbal resinous pine hops. Medium bodied with good carbonation.

Overall, a nice drinking beer from Bear Republic. This is exactly how the ideal American style red ale would taste to me. Good balance between hops and malts, and a nice 6.80% abv, I would have it again.

Bear Republic Red Rock Ale ---4/5.

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Photo of soju6
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Pours a dark mahogany color with a decent head that fades to bits of lacing. Aroma is a bit on the mild side with roasted malt, some dark fruit, bit of caramel and spice. Taste of roasted malt, bit of caramel sweetness and fruit, with a trace of spice in the background. Mild bitterness and a clean finish with a bit of hops tart lingering. Moderate body, smooth and creamy with the 6.8 ABV well hidden. The hops give the beer a bit of character missing from most Amber Ales. Enjoyable beer well worth checking out.

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Photo of Flounder57
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a pint glass at Estelle's in the South End.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that reduced yo a thin layer. It is an amber brown color with little clarity, but bubbles can be seen coming up through the glass. Super awesome lacing all the way down the glass.

Smell: Tangerine, grapefruit, citrus, caramel, biscuit, and floral.

Taste: Tangerine, grapefruit, orange perl, caramel, toffee, biscuit, fruity, and a little creamy.

Mouthfeel: Creamy smooth, mild hop bitterness, low to medium carbonation, medium to full bodied, and drinkable.

Overall: Pretty solid amber/red ale. Hoppy, drinkable, and balanced. Thought I had this one before, but it just got lost with all the other awesome stiff they do. Add this one to the list folks.

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Photo of SteadySippin
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into chilled glass from a bottle.

A - Dark amber/ reddish brown color with a half inch off white head. Considerable lacing on the glasss.

S - I mainly pick up roasted malt with a slight hop presence as well. It smells somewhat sweet.

T - At first I taste malt, then bitterness from the hops lightly comes in enough to be noticeable but not overpowering. The hops give off a piney/grapefruit taste which is pleasant. The malt side of things tastes like brown sugar or caramel.

M - Bitterness covers the pallet immediately. Carbonation is on point and the beer feels slightly heavy but it is smooth and easy to drink.

O - I will be buying more of this for sure. Its a really good ale! It was recommended to me and I am quite happy with it. The balance between the malt and hop is almost perfect in my opinion. The beers appearance is great too.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed from notes. Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Cigar City pint glass.

A: Pours a dark amber to reddish-brown, hazy but not opaque. Forms a finger's worth of dense tan foamy head with retention of only about 60 seconds. Average levels of visible carbonation.

S: Sweet toffee up front, with pine, citrus pith, and grassy hops and a backbone of bready brown malts. Hints underneath of alcohol and toasted caramel.

T: Malty at first (toffee, toasted bready, and a hint of caramel), the a nice punch of citrus hops (grapefruit and orange) and resin - but the citrus retains a more pulpy fruity flavor rather than only the pith. But the beer still packs some bitter punch near the swallow, just as the sweeter caramel and toffee flavors increase. The hang is citrus pith hop bitterness on the back and sides of the tongue while a thick biscuity sweetness stays in the middle of the tongue.

M: A bit heavy-bodied for style, but not distractingly so. The alcohol is more noticeable than expected for this ABV, but not obnoxious. Medium carbonation sensation.

O: Red ales aren't always my favorite, and this started pretty malty, tempering my expectations. But in the end, it was quite drinkable and fairly tasty. Overall though, it doesn't do anything to make me want to seek out another one.

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Photo of Mantooth
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an American pint glass @ Duckworth's in Huntersville.

Deep amber caramel colered brew with a milkshake thick head and crazy-glue sticky lacing. Great looking brew.

Malty caramel piney nose that comes alive as the beer warms, it was served a bit too cold, which Duckworth's typically doesn't do... so, hall pass.

The taste follows the nose... lots of pine-bitter from the hops, caramel too.

Lightly carbonated and dry mouthfeel.

I've heard good things about this beer, can't believe I haven't tried it before now. Very solid brew that I'd recommend to anyone.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours dark amber/red color with finger width foamy head. Head retention and lacing are fair. Yeasty, almost tropical fruit aroma. Slightly piney, floral accents. There is a hint of booziness to it. Either way, it is awesome. Smooth, creamy, malty taste with a mild hoppy bitterness towards the end. Hint of caramel. It does leave a mildly bitter, piney, citric aftertaste. Awesome beer. One of my favorites for sure.

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Photo of BeerImmediately
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Can't believe I've never reviewed this one before...

Bottle(s) into nonic pint glass at about 45 degrees.

Pours with a very short, cream-colored head over the deepest, darkest amber body I've ever seen. No lacing.

Aromas are huge on the hops! Deep spruce / pine quality is the first thing you notice. Touch of pink grapefruit, too. But lots of sweet malty presence takes care of the middle and finish. Butterscotch, marshmallow, and honey ham are the sweets I'm picking up.

Thick on the palate. Very smokey for the style. Flavors have a more lingering hop quality than the aromas. Scotch-Ale-like indeed. What a cool mix of styles. Rich, sweet, and cloying... yet sharp and hoppy - the thick sweetness does tend to take over.

Not a beer that I could have all night, but it's a fun and different take on a couple of my favorite styles.

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Photo of keithmurray
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - dark crimson/mahogany color with beige head

Smell - grapefruit, pine, caramel

Taste - caramel, pine, grapefruit

Mouthfeel - slightly sweet, medium bodied, light on the carbonation, hoppy/bitter on the finish

Overall - good representer of the style

Price Point - $2.40/ 12 oz. single

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Photo of scotorum
3.84/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22 oz. bottle into an Innis & Gunn flute.

A deep translucent red/amber, a finger thick off white head receded rather quickly to a surface foam film and heavy even lacing.

s: Mild aromas of dark fruit.

t: Raisins balanced by considerable hop bitterness, fireplace ash finish reminiscent of drinking by a low fire late at night. Tastes better than it may sound.

m; Moderate, the combination of dark fruit taste and hops bitterness hold your attention.

o: The sweet/bitter balance is pleasing. They call this a "bastardized Scottish style red ale packed with distinctive flavors and an aggressive hop character." Drinking some "bears" that out.

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Photo of c_bellingham
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

The appearance was a dark amber just a hint too strong when compared to amber maple syrup, but still really good. It has a pleasant, fate smell of something fruity.The taste was not bitter much, and only a bit in the aftertaste. It only went down smooth, and felt fruity and roasted nuts.It has a pleasant mouthfeel, did not turn to foamy with swishing, however the roasted flavor becomes more prominent.

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Photo of ISmith87
4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 22 oz bomber to a clear plastic cup (unfortunately). I was excited to try it because I haven't had very many red IPAs. (From notes):

A - 4.50 - This beer has a beautiful deep red mahogany color that is crystal clear when you look at the edges. The off white tan head is two fingers at first and then dies down to one finger of thick frothy foam.

S - 4.50 - Caramel malt is most prevalent. Some spicy hops.

T - 4.75 - The hops are very forward and spicy/pine/grapefruit flavored. There's some caramel malt flavors prevalent and some brown sugar. Overall this is a great tasting beer set apart by the spiciness of the hops, on a level that I've only seen in Pliny the Elder.

M - 4.50 - Spicy, bitter, medium carbonation, aftertaste is bitter, alcohol well hidden, strong hop bite.

O - 4.75 - I think this is a great beer. The best red IPA that I've had. Compared to Green Flash Hop Head Red and Oskar Blues G'knight there's a spiciness that's just not there with the others. It's almost like if someone mixed one of these two beers and Pliny. I was very surprised at how good this was, especially at 4.50 a bomber.

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Photo of 57md
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is a reddish-brown (more brown than red) with a finger of beige head that left thick lace rings in its wake. Malt notes are present in the nose, but the hoppiness is the standout feature here. A spicy malt note that is almost rye-like takes center stage in the flavor profile. The hops, especially on the finish are quite pronounced for a basic red. This is an impressive offering from a really solid brewery.

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Photo of delta490
4.69/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A- a deep red with a thick lighter tan head that lasts a while a leaves nice lacing.

S- Deep and robust malt aroma with a nice hoppy aroma in the background.

T- A vibrant malt backbone balances the strong, but well-balanced hops. There is also a subtle pepper-y flavor that is imparted by the rye. Certainly not overwhelming but noticeable and enjoyable.

M- Smooth. No carbonation noted. Not too heavy or thin but just right.

O- An excellent ale. I've had it bottled, as well, and while that is very good, this beer shines on tap.

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Photo of CookstLiquor
3.94/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 650ml bottle. Pours a reddish chestnut colour. The nose is somewhat subdued for a Bear Republic brew which typically feature a lot of aromatic hops. There are aromas of caramel and a bit of bright pine/citrus. It's an easy-drinker for nearly 7% ABV and there are sweet notes of Fruit Loops and caramel with a very bitter finish. Medium bodied and nicely balanced.

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Photo of T100Mark
3.77/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22 ounce Bomber poured into a cheap water glass.

Appearance - Reddish brown (or brownish red). Big, lumpy, tan head. Good stickage.

Smell - Hops. Herbal. Black liqourice.

Taste - Hoppy. Malty. Angostura Bitters. Molasses. There's a lot going on here!

Mouth - Tangy. Fizzy. There's a lot going on here!

Overall - Imagine a malty red ale and a California hop bomb stuffed into the same bottle. This beer is similar to Mendocino Brewing's Red Tale Ale (which also tries to pass itself off as just an Amber Ale). Not bad but, also, not was I was hoping for.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.99/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at JP Looney's Sports Bar & Grill in Kernersville, NC

A: Pours a very slightly hazy deep reddish amber in color with moderate to significant amounts of visible carbonation and some garnet red highlights. The beer has a finger tall foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a couple of small slightly thicker patches and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of citrus/grapefruit pith hops over the top of toasted malts.

T: Upfront there are moderate flavors of toasted malts with some caramel sweetness. That is followed by light to moderate flavors of citrus/grapefruit pith hops. Light to moderate amounts of lingering bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Relatively smooth.

O: Smooth and enjoyable while being easy to drink because of the well hidden alcohol.

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Photo of alaimoa
3.7/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured this from a 12oz bottle picked up in New York.
Nice amber color with a 1 inch head
Smells of caramel, brown sugar
Tastes similar to smell, hoppy with a malt backbone that lingers for a while. sticky
Overall good, Killians on steroids comes to mind

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Photo of dar482
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The beer comes in a darker amber brown color.

The aroma has lots of caramel malt, with some tea notes. Then there's tons of grapefruit, pine, tangerine.

The flavor follows with a bit of grapefruit, but mostly tons of pine and resin. There's some caramel malt body to it, but it's mostly taken over by soil, black tea, woodiness, resin. It's a strong lingering bitterness.

The beer reminds me a bit of Hop Red from Green Flash.

In the end, it's a good pine bomb, but the bitterness is a bit overpowering.

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Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 1,163 ratings.