1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Red Rocket Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Red Rocket AleRed Rocket Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,120 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2120
Reviews: 1120
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 10.81%

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:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-05-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Red Rocket Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,120 | Reviews: 1,120 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mtbdonn


4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle from Beer of Europe, England.
A-Pours a murky brown with a foamy off-white head.
S-Aroma of bold pine and grapefruit hops with an assertive malt backbone.
T-Really nice bitter hop profile of grapefruit, tangerine, and pine needles and is cut by a nicely balanced caramel malt. Medium to full bodied. The alcohol is more present than in most beers at 6.8% ABV.
M-The mouthfeel is thick, creamy, syrupy
O-Though ABV a little high, a nice sessionable, uncomplicated, straightforward red ale.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2013 20:25:17 | More by mtbdonn
Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead


4.41/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed from bottle; if I try it again with proper glassware I'll edit this review.
Smell is at first like an IPA, hoppy and flowery, but with an undertone of malt. Tastes like a really good IPA smells; hoppy but with a sweet finish. Mouthfeel matches well; not sure what style this beer really is, but whatever it is, I'd definitely drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2013 05:38:24 | More by BurgeoningBrewhead
Photo of Foam


3.33/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

I grabbed couple bottles of this stuff at my local bottle shop at the suggestion of the young guy working there .
Little does he know I am definetly NOT a bitter hops guy. When I saw "aggressively hopped" I kind of rolled my eyes and cringed but bought it anyway.
It says it's a Scottish ale on the label but in reality it's more of a red I.P.A. of sorts. I noticed one of the Alstrom Bros. called it a hybrid-style and yes, I agree.
I'd rather they left it a proper malty-sweet Scotch ale, proper . I don't think Scots ale brewers have any interest in their style being this bitter and hopped .
It's the west coast big-hop flavor aesthetic, I realize but, not my thing. Life is too short to have to grimace and wince as you're sipping some "aggressively hopped" beers ...

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2013 15:46:38 | More by Foam
Photo of DaveAnderson


4.41/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm not usually much of a malt guy. Give me a buffet of IPAs, and I'll converge on the citrusy hop bombs. This beer awakens something else in me. It's not Bear Republic's highest-rated beer, but it's the one I leap at the chance to drink again. We don't get it in MN, but I was in WI recently, and snagged some. I am so happy I did.

The beer is pretty to behold. It has a pipestone color with a dense, thick, tan head. But the smell is what intoxicates me. Caramel, toffee, brown sugar, toasted marshmallow, vanilla, butter, pastry, yeast -- and all with pine and tropical fruit in the background. But mostly it's the maltiness that gets me...

And the best part of all? Despite the smell, it's not really sweet. Hops are ample, and the bitterness lingers for quite a long time. The anticipation and the finish stand out in this beer. With each taste, I bury my nose in the glass and inhale for a bit before drinking, then sit and wait for the finish to...finish. It goes for a long time. I don't often take this long to drink a beer I don't find challenging.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2013 07:06:45 | More by DaveAnderson
Photo of TheRealBigC


3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Red Rocket is a robust red ale. It is very hoppy, with the malt playing a minor role in comparison. Still goes down smooth. Fans of red ales will thoroughly enjoy this one, with its deep red body and sheets of lace. Nothing too fancy about it, just a really solid brew.

Serving type: on-tap

01-22-2013 15:09:02 | More by TheRealBigC
Photo of TwelveOunces


3.99/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap

This beer is a clear deep dark orange color with little head. The nose is subtle but matches the taste. This is more IPA then red ale. It is very hoppy and very west coast. The hops are sharp and quite piney. There is a bit of citrus in there as well but its very piney and has a nice dry finish. There is little malt flavor that sneaks past the hops but a subtle toffee and caramel flavor if you look for it. This beer has a pretty light feel and is easy drinking. A solid hopped up red.

Serving type: on-tap

01-22-2013 00:06:32 | More by TwelveOunces
Photo of Kevin73


3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a crystalline tree resin red with a sturdy off-white head that disappears slowly with lots of lacing. A lot of reds in my experience are hazy, this one is not. I don't consider that a plus or a minus; just something to note. The beer looks gorgeous, so whatever. Strong fruitiness on the nose. Smells of burnt cherry, marmalade, and graham cracker. The latter being the toasted malts, I suppose? On the first sip I got sour cherry, cappuccino (which was weird) and lots of hops. Unfortunately I also got some shallow, yet apparent, metallic notes, which were definitely not desirable. On subsequent sips the weird coffee notes disappeared and more of the caramelly malts showed through. The tinny metallic taste persisted but was more of an annoyance and not overpowering. Still there was the strong hops bitterness intruding on the finish; over done a bit I think. Overall the beer is very well crafted, but could be more well balanced with either less hops or more malts. Otherwise what are we brewing here? A Red or an IPA? I can't tell. Anyway I still recommend trying this beer, and will try it again myself. Paired with a sweet food like BBQ sauce (chicken/pork) this beer is probably fantastic.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2013 00:37:29 | More by Kevin73
Photo of daskchb


3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a pretty tasty beer, although you're expecting it to be a red and it tastes more like an IPA. Poured it in a glass and got a nice head. Good mouth feel, not too heavy. Beer has a nice look to it, dark red. Smells hoppy to me. Overall, I like this beer, just expected a red and got a red IPA.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2012 06:40:00 | More by daskchb
Photo of jrenihan

Ontario (Canada)

3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer is brown in colour, some amber hues. Smallish off-white head. Some lace.

Some caramel in the nose. Brown sugar. Very malty. Bready.

Taste contains sweet caramel and bready malt, brown sugar, a slight bit of toffee, some pine. No date on the bottle that I can see, but not as hoppy as I expected it may be. A slight bitterness in in the finish. Malt is nice and big, some hop element but it plays the minor role.

Medium bodied, moderately carbonated, nice smooth feel.

Overall, good stuff.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2012 22:18:31 | More by jrenihan
Photo of SLeffler27

New York

4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear, dark ruby when put to the light, with a half-inch, fine ochre head that quickly turns rocky and diminishes, leaving fine rings of lace and carbonation on the tulip glass.

Powerful citrus aroma up front. Clementine with a grapefruit background and some pinesap. Warmth brings out a blend of caramel and lightly toasted malt with some smokiness.

Bitterness is strong with lots of hop-forward flavor. Caramelized sugar with occasional burnt notes. Peppery spice bites throughout and the finish is modest.

Full bodied and mouth watering. Alcohol is present and there is a touch of chalkiness. Quite dry with soft, fizzy carbonation and a cotton texture.

Good with conversation, better with lunch. A well-rounded drinking beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2012 12:37:51 | More by SLeffler27
Photo of obrike


4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one as a gift during a Christmas party. I have not had one in ages and I can't for the life of me remember why I stopped buying it. This is a good one.

Poured a deep amber red/brown in my 512 IPA pint glass. Pretty decent lacing on this one as well. Pretty looking brew.

Really fresh citrus, pine, and toffee. A hint of spice as well. Very warm, rich scent. Good stuff.

Drinks like a hybrid IPA...hop forward...then quickly followed by caramel and burnt toffee. A nice flavor that goes down super easy. A little thin, but it almost makes it better as you can drink this one super fast. So tasty.

This is a very good red ale. Probably one of my favorites. Bear Republic once again comes shining through.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2012 02:45:02 | More by obrike
Photo of pkalix


4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

transparent, ruby, uncarbonated, no head.
smells like pine.
tastes like i licked a baseball bat with pine tar resin on it. the bottle says it finishes with a malty presence, but i get grapefruit.
overall, very little carbonation. i honestly believe the over-hopped american 'craft beers' are fraught with with hops so that they can 'hide' the higher alcohol content. i mean, i understand the greatness of brewing a beer and calling it your own, but i just cant get into the part of dumping mass hops into a brew. it doesnt do anything but add pine tar, grapefruit, or, if you're lucky, a 'floral' - ness to the brew. i suppose that's my rant for the evening, but i really was expecting a little something different. it's not bad; in fact, it's good. but i guess i prefer my beer with a more balanced malt to hop ratio. or maybe a little barley. i can even appreciate a riced-up kirin (but NO BUD!), but the mass tea-bagging of hops just seems to be the 'american way' and i dont agree with it.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2012 01:19:28 | More by pkalix
Photo of chicagoanbeerone


3.38/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Great smell of hops and very creamy in texture. It is unlike any other red ale. its like a red ale mixed in with a porter but very good and better.It also has a few coffee aromas and qualities overall i was very surprised by this beer very good i would say definaity worth a try

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2012 18:05:56 | More by chicagoanbeerone
Photo of BrownAleMale


3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Horny Goat pint glass

Appearance- A deep mahogony to amber color with a slight haze. The fluffy off white head is about a half finger and only dissipates a little leaving decent lacing.

Smell- First a tart hop smell kicks you in the nose and then subtle sweet carmel scent comes through the finish. Also some char and bread malt towards the end.

Taste- A sweet carmel and bready hits the front of the tounge and is finished with a long mellow smoke. I do have to admit that the finish came from left field as I expected the tart hop that I smelled to be in the finish.

Mouthfeel- Nice medium to heavy body with a perfect amount of carbonation that makes this a pretty easy on the palate.

Overall- Have to say that I was disapointed with the mellow smoke finish. I think the hops definitly needed to be present to create a better balance. I will also say that I got this as a single from the grocery store and that it may have been sitting for a while allowing the hops to fade. I will revisit and update if nessicary.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2012 00:10:38 | More by BrownAleMale
Photo of RonaldTheriot


3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bear Republic Ricardo’s Red Rocket Ale has a thick, pillowy, beige head, and a murky, sediment-filled, reddish-brown appearance, with some bubble streams and thick lacing left behind. The aroma is of turned fruit and rank hop oil. Taste is of brown bread crust, sweetness, sourness, toffee, hop oil (lots of hop oil), and over-ripe fruit. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy (mostly heavy), and Bear Republic Ricardo’s Red Rocket Ale finishes mostly dry, sickly-sweet, but highly drinkable. Maybe, my bottle was old (no date on it, however), but this was mostly of musty, oily, oldness. I’ll say it’s on the low end of good, and that’s being generous. Too bad.


Serving type: bottle

12-13-2012 21:54:16 | More by RonaldTheriot
Photo of Vec2267


4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - dark orange to brown, frothy light tan head, excellent lacing

S - hops - pine and mint

T - bracingly bitter hops, pine, mint, herbal, enough caramel malt to keep the hops from running wild

M - quite rich

O - very hop forward with enough malt for balance - a big bad red

RIP Bear

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2012 21:44:33 | More by Vec2267
Photo of babaracas


4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a mostly clear garnet with one finger thick, creamy tan colored head; settles to a quarter inch, with many dots of lace down the glass. Smell: whiff of grapefruit, then pine settles in with a caramelized sugar back, black cherry and earth. Taste: pine, herbal, minty, caramel with some toasted bread and date-like sweetness getting overpowered with a piney and herbal finish. Creamy, medium bodied feel gives way to a dry, slightly powdery, finish. There are other imperial (read: highly hopped) reds with hop profiles that I much prefer to this one, but the non-imperial abv gives Red Rocket bonus points.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2012 03:04:10 | More by babaracas
Photo of BrownNut


3.84/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - 4.0 - Clear dark amber close to ruby. Cream colored head, partly creamy, partly bigger bubbles, settles down toa film after a few minutes.

S - 4.0 - "Aggressively hoppy," as advertised. Piney hops transition to sweet orange to edge out a subdued sweet bready malt. Reminds me of a DIPA on the nose.

T - 3.75 - Having a hard time pinning down what I'm tasting. I get something almost herbal. There's almost a hollowness here due to the dryness, a hole, though it's interesting. Moderate bitter piney hops on the exhale.

M - 4.0 - For a second it wants to be medium, but it quickly goes powder dry, which makes it come across thinner. It's a neat effect.

O - 3.75 - Not a fan of reds/ambers in general but this takes it in a direction with some identity. It's an interesting beer if only because I can't quite figure it out. But mystery is nice.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2012 03:09:49 | More by BrownNut
Photo of Philousa


3.18/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear light brown/dark red with a creamy, dense head one finger thick. Great head retention, equally great lacing, leaving layers like rings on a tree. Semi sweet chocolate and toasted rye dominate the nose. Wheat bread is in there with some earthy hops. Semi sweet chocolate and toasted pumpernickel start the taste. Some sweetness come out and is broken by a grassy, dirt/copper bitterness. Balanced feel and finish.

This doesn't fit guidelines well, as it's a roasty but sweet beer. The former makes it an Amber, the latter a Scottish. I'm not much of a Scotch Ale guy, so I like the experiment but ultimately that's what it is. I feel the same way about this beer as a cool concept car: fun to think about and try, but impractical for real life use.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2012 18:42:25 | More by Philousa
Photo of Nugganooch


3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber to pint glass
Notes taken from 09/16/12

A: Red Rocket pours a deep amber color with some dark brown hues. Surprisingly nice clarity to it. Thick taupe head is practically static leaving splashes of squiggly lace down the glass.

S: Big pine and caramel malt aromas exert themselves. Bright with orange and citrus. Has an overall nutty caramel malt character with a bit of raisin and tart berry yeast esters.

T: Flavors express a deep caramel roasted malt base with a unique biscuit character and some complimenting nutty chocolates. Juiced with a classic combo of pine and citrus fruits this brew has a somewhat higher level of bitterness. There is a bit of raisin sweetness and some subtle alcohol notes . Finish brings forth hints of earthy mace-like spice. Overall a really nice balance that is rich with carmalized malts and bittered proper.

M: This beer is rather light in body despite the abundance of chewy caramel malts making it much more approachable. Medium body overall with a nice creamy consistency and bit of drying finish. There is a nice flourish of hoppy resins that wax the palate after.

D: One of the better American Amber’s available and always a quaffable favorite. Has a flavor profile not unlike SN Bigfoot only without the big ABV’s. Caramel malt with a nice bitter hop charge and rather clean yeast profile.

Red Rocket from a dog = bad.
Red Rocket from the Bear = good.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2012 22:31:57 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of kylehay2004


4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Half finger head on a clear amber body with some lacing. Aroma is very hoppy with grapefruit and orange peel. The flavor has a great caramel malt backbone with citrus light pine and earthy hops. Medium body and moderate carbonation. This one is very flavorful and even more drinkable. Excited to see these beers in Florida.

Serving type: on-tap

09-12-2012 00:00:54 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of weaselchew


4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle, no date.

Appearance - dark coppery red, quite clear. A finger thick foamy tan head with decent retention and tons of lacing.

Smell - not overly dominant, but had a piney hop character with some caramel/toffee malt notes coming through as well.

Taste/Mouthfeel - Malt comes right in, caramel - even raisin/molasses like. The hops come into play with a mainly pine/earthy bitterness, just a hint of a citrus note. Alcohol is somewhat warming, but not overly so. Fairly carbonated but very smooth, even creamy body.

Overall - Definitely a good choice for a red ale. Plenty of flavor, well balanced and smooth to boot.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2012 05:50:49 | More by weaselchew
Photo of claspada

New Jersey

3.85/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a translucent deep ruby red color with a larger khaki head with good retention that leaves nice lacing.

Aromas begin with big blood orange, piney and grapefruit hops that are quite powerful and dominant with some underlying roasted and sweet caramel maltiness.

The taste begin and are entirely dominated by big grapefruit and piney hops. Only after the first couple sips can you detect the good toasted bready and caramel malt backbone.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Finish is initially slightly sweet but becomes increasingly resinous and bitter, maybe overly so in the end.

Overall this beer was a little over-the-top for my tastes. If you like big, overly bitter, caustic grapefruit hop forward beers from the west coast then this is probably going to be for you. If you like a more balanced offering as I do, look elsewhere.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2012 19:07:37 | More by claspada
Photo of blackcompg


4.23/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from their 12oz bottle...

Appearance - Just pours a finger of khaki head, body is a very slightly hazed red amber, the head recedes to a cap within a few minutes but still leaves nice webbed lacing covering the glass at the end of the session.

Smell - Dark fruits, juniper berry, toffee, warm baked bread, touch of soy sauce.

Taste - Nearly identical to the nose - juniper berry, dark fruits, baked bread, a touch of dark toffee, meadowy hops, a slight sourness of plumskins, finishes dried hay and breadcrust, and slight dried orange peels.

Mouthfeel - Nearly medium, this ale is really smooth and drinkable, carb is lower side of medium and has a creamy foaming texture, some crispness on the sides of the tongue, just cleansing to transition to a slightly dry, bitter finish.

Overall - This is a wonderfully balanced and complex red ale, with all of the flavors complimenting each other without being overly sweet. I find myself contemplative after each sip, enjoying the wonderful symphony of flavors, highly recommend!

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2012 04:02:13 | More by blackcompg
Photo of ElSid


4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Beers of California


Freshness Date: None

A: Copper brown in the glass with deep strawberry accents with penetrating light. Half a finger of off white to tan head which dissipates quickly to a faint bed of foam.

S: Pine and flowers with a bready malt sweetness. Overall a simple, but penetrating nose.

T: This is where this brew succeeds. The malt foundation is of brown sugar and caramel breadiness, best noted in the middle of the tongue. Then comes the fresh, bitter hop attack which takes over the palate. The hops have characteristics of earth, flowers, herbs, and pine along with citrus notes cascading to pleasing peppery spice finish.

M: The mouthfeel is slightly thin with a faint chewiness. Classic oily hop linger with moderate carbonation. Minimal coating on the glass.

O: Touted as an aggressively hoped bastardized Scottish style red ale, this brew is highly original, flavorful, and a joy to experience.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2012 02:46:20 | More by ElSid
Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,120 ratings.