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Racer 5 India Pale Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Racer 5 India Pale AleRacer 5 India Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,242 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,242
Hads: 7,208
Avg: 4.19
pDev: 17.42%
Wants: 311
Gots: 1,057 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 03-27-2002

This hoppy American IPA is a full bodied beer brewed with American pale and crystal malts, and heavily hopped with Chinook, Cascade, Columbus and Centennial. There's a trophy in every glass.

2009 Great American Beer Festival® American-Style Strong Pale Ale – GOLD
2009 Colorado State Fair – Best of Show
2006 Great American Beer Festival® American-Style Strong Pale Ale – SILVER
2005 Great American Beer Festival® American-Style Strong Pale Ale – SILVER
1999 Great American Beer Festival® India Pale Ale - GOLD
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Racer 5 India Pale Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 2,242 | Hads: 7,208
Photo of supra429
2/5  rDev -52.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

It is my moral duty to let you guys know that racer 5 recipe has changed. Do not waste your time with this beer. It is not longer an "A" grade beer. All the reports you see here are BS by people who dont know what they are talking about. It is disgusting and nothing compared to what it was prior to april 14th batch. I am here to tell you DO NOT BUY so they can make the old one.

I'm not lying.

I demand the old racer 5 come back!

My review

The beer is dry and lighter than before. Is lacking body.

The beer is now clear and not hazy

The aromatic hops are way weaker now and smells falt. Before it had cirtus and even orange aroma.

Please do not support this companies.

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Photo of MrHirschybar
2.17/5  rDev -48.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

From a 12 oz bottle into 8oz beer glass and 4 oz beer glass - split

A - one glass nice clear amber color / 2nd glass murky orange amber color with tons of sediment and floaters - no shaking or hard pour -

S - Very nice citrus smell, no hop bitterness or maltiness present at all

T - Light hop bitterness with very light citrus after taste - this tasted like leftover hop water -

M - Very light mouthfeel - little to no carbonation -

D - Tried this at BevMo on tasting day a while back and don't remember it being bad - actually bought the 12oz single that day to try at home - maybe this is an old bottle, bad cap, faded out? Didn't see a date on the bottle on the look I gave it - kept it as I like to keep the labels -
I'll change the review if I get the opportunity to try this again at home from a bottle in the future --

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Photo of FACSman
2.34/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Dark honey color with a decent head, slight haze. Head was quick to dissapate.

S - Rather astringent smell with little hop flower detecable.

T - Like an overhopped pale ale, not a very good IPA. No complexity to the hop character, just unpleasant bitterness.

M - Thin for an IPA, light carbonation.

D - I didn't want to finish my 22 oz. bottle.

I was really looking forward to this beer as I have heard many good things about the brewery. I was very disappointed.

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Photo of confer
2.36/5  rDev -43.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Still do not have a taste for these overly hoppy IPAs. I like the look, nice gold with lots of floaties from the bottle conditioning. The piney aroma is not overbearing. The taste gets better as you go but I am still not a fan of chewing pine needles. I would never buy any of these, but will drink one occasionally when offered in a trade.

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Photo of RDAdams
2.44/5  rDev -41.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Serving: A 12oz glass at Frisco Burrito (a great pub) in Columbia, Maryland.

Appearance: It looked like any other pale ale except I've seen Industrial Light Lagers with a better head.

Aroma: It had that great IPA aroma screaming: "Hey, Hop Head, can you take it." OTOH once you got passed the hops, it said vegetables.

Taste: Disappointing. It tasted like an overhopped pale ale without a malt backbone.

Mouthfeel: Somewhere between thinner and thinnest

Overall: It was the thinest IPA I have ever tasted.

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Photo of waltonc
2.54/5  rDev -39.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Not much to say for this beer. It's a typical West Coast IPA drowned in hops. All the usual notes - pine, citrus, some sweetness. Good carbonation. Nice looking beer. I probably won't have another one for a couple years. Not nearly enough flavor balance. Give me a Dogfish 90 minute. Or a Pliny.

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Photo of byteme94
2.56/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I bought this beer on vacation and had very high hopes. Split between myself and two other avid beer enjoyers.

All of us were in agreement that it was just an okay IPA. Poured into tulips, very minimal head. Appearance was nice with a darker orange/amber color.

Taste was not fully there, hops on the front not too citrusy and tastes left mouth almost as soon as I swallowed it.

All were in agreement it was just okay - and being able to have the option to try anyother IPA blindly in front of us over that one would do so.

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Photo of DonnieHops
2.6/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The most overrated beer on beer advocate....

Had in a bottle and on tap..... Both underwhelming and non descript.... Sold as a bartender in a few spots and never had a repeat sale....

Don't get this one at all....

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Photo of audiojon
2.62/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

This is my second time trying Racer 5, the first being on tap. I remember it tasting better than this, maybe this is one that is better kegged? Smell is tasty enough, very piney, but the taste is off a bit to me. It seems like the alpha acid levels are out of wack with the rest of the beer. The mouthfeel is not right either, not enough carbonation (which could explain the mysterious lack of head too). Overall, I am very disappointed with this, but may give it another try on tap.

editing this review down as I could not even finish the bottle.

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Photo of hardy008
2.7/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Dark gold with less than one finger of white foam, and decent retention. The aroma has some citrus hops, and pine. Not as strong of an aroma as I expected.

The taste is just like the aroma. Very bitter, no balancing malt. A little too bitter for my taste. Grapefruit peeling and pine flavors, not much else

High carbonation, dry, with a long bitter finish. I like hoppy bitter beers, but not bitterness which lacks complexity. I also don't like for a beer to be astringent. Not something I would seek out again.

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Photo of VncentLIFE
2.71/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very thick, frothy head. Very small amount of carbonation.

Smell is different. And lacking hops. Smells oily, soapy, and metallic.

Finally, hops. Nowhere near what I want. Hop oils are dominant, with a very slick soapy feeling taking over. It's like a jumbled mess of an IPA. I finally get why twaddlac hated this thing. The aroma hops are AWOL. Light body.

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Photo of Cobrito
2.73/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A popular but in my mind mediocre West Coast IPA. In some cases, like with BR's Hop Rod Rye, balanced is good in that the ingredients all contribute to a nice, complex brew. In Racer 5's case, it has been balanced into insipidness. Not nearly enough hop complexity for hop-heads, and there is an odd brackish taste at the front end of the palate as well. Very disappointing.

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Photo of Minkybut
2.75/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I poured this hopped up beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was hoppy smelling and poured a cloudy wheat looking color. The smell and taste also was like it had pineapple in it and was fruity beyond what I like tasting. I will not buy again.

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Photo of Bugsey
2.8/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Big disappointment.
I really didn't want a second one.

The after taste is just too bitter. The overall taste is not balanced, but is rather harsh.

The astringent quality in the taste and the mouth feel are overwhelming.

Pine, resin, grape fruit, just too harsh.

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Photo of ajayma
2.89/5  rDev -31%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

LOOK. Nice honey-colored tones. Dense head on the pour but short-lived.

AROMA. Green, zesty, fresh hops. Like hops right off the vine that you crush between between the palms of your hands.

BODY. Medium-heavy in body, oily, with a firm carbonation.

TASTE. Grabs you by the tongue right off the bat with a bitter, resinous, pine sap attack. Finishes with an oily, medicinally bitter finish. Malt is there, but feels like it's just hanging out, not really bringing enough to balance the harshness of the hops.

AFTERMATH. Not my favorite. I would have liked a little more balance. It smells really, really wonderful though.

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Photo of JRdaSconnie
2.9/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

S: bottle from mix & match, not refridgerated, poured into New Belgium globe and allowed to warm.

S: light piney, typical West Coast hop profile. Not strong on aroma. Stale crackers, musty grass.

A: bright gold, slightly hazy. Soapy, large bubbles drop from two finger head to just a layer. No lace, no legs.

T: again, not much going on. Some pine, citrus, orange pith bitterness. Malt is flat. Finishes slightly bitter.

M: thin body, no alcohol warmth, slick finish but bitterness coats mouth. Feel a trace of acid on teeth.

O: disappointed. Thinking this one hung out on a shelf for too long. May try again but not rushing to do so.

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Photo of DrewSnyc667
2.9/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22 oz into a pint glass

A - Light amber to yellow, slightly hazy, almost no head

S - Strong citrus and floral hops

T - Big sweet sticky hops upfront, peaches and grapefruit Too much for. Almost no malt at all

M - Thin and heavy, cloying sweetness

O - Not my beer, just far to sweet

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Photo of LPorter33
2.92/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Purchased 22oz bomber from Martignetti's

Appearance = Good looking murky, dark peach colored golden browm. Decent head which fades quickly but leaves some intricate lacing. Small bubbles rise up giving a mild sense of carbonation

Smell = Very piney fresh hop scent. Super clean and crisp. Citrus flavors are there although not as dominating as the pine flavor. Still a great, strong intense scent.

Taste = Hmm...strange tasting. My initial impression was one of severe disappointment. It's way too sour, almost like the hops have faded away. There's no umph or kick...just a bitter sourness like someone squeezed lemon juice in here. Mouthfeel is flat and has little carbonation which surprises me. I think this. As I drink more of this, I see the taste isn't awful, but it is WAY below the IPAs I'm used to drinking and contains absolutely nothing special or unique.

Overall = a serious disappointment considering Bear Republic's reputation. I had high hopes for this beer but I can think of 15 IPAs of the top fo my head that I'd buy before I try this one again. I hold IPAs to an extremely high standard and this one did not meet my constaints. Did I possibly get a bad bottle?

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Photo of deebo
2.93/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A-clear and golden with an oily surface
S-hops. Citrus and pine
T-very hop forward. Pine and grass this bitch is bitter
M-nice body fairly smooth given the in your face hop character
O-a in your face beer that loosens up after a few drinks but still is resiny and bitter in the finish that limits its drinkability

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Photo of bamojr
2.94/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at the Lost Dog cafe in McLean Va.
Golden cloudy color with no head when it got to the table.
A bit of citrus with some malt notes in the nose.
Malty and a bit bitter in the flavor. Not much going on here
a lot of bitter flavor, it must have a high IBU.
Not the best BR I've had

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Photo of jdhilt
2.96/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a three-finger cream head that fades slowly leaving a good lace. Fairly clear amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Grassy/piney hoppy nose. Starts balanced with a hint of sweetness but the hops kick in and dominate, bitter grapefruit finish. Good IPA but I don't like the hops in-your-face which the brewer has done all too well. $4.55 for a 22 oz bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

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Photo of minnunderground
2.96/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


clear amber color very light tan soapy head with some retention clinging, smells like pine and grass clippings, really a odd smell not like other ipas I have had. Seriously the smell reminds me of something more earthy. taste is a huge dissapointment. Malty with some pine hops at the end to back it up but very weak. Easy to drink since the flavor is weak. Not going to lie, my least favorite IPA I have had.

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Photo of jmdrpi
2.97/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, no date.

appears a pale yellow golden color, almost no head, just some soapy white foam that quickly fades. smells grassy, slightly vegetal. corny pale malt too. taste has very little malt flavor, just a little grainy. floral, grassy light hop flavors dominate. thin body, medium to high carbonation.

overall - not my type of IPA. by the flavor and color, it seems like its all base malt. needs more malt flavor and body for me.

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Photo of Vaison
2.97/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic tumbler.

A smooth golden color with a nice fluffy white 2 finger head. The smell was overwhelming with hops and I was unable to detect anything else. My wife commented from across the table that my beer smelled like flowers. The taste was just like the smell, an overkill of hops and and bitter citrus bite on the back end. Carbonation was average and it went down okay. It was an okay drink but not something I would purchase again.

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Photo of mschind
2.98/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Poured from a bomber straight down the center and got a huge fluffy off white head. Nice retention and lacing. Great color, light copper and clear although there is some particulate in suspension. Had this upright in the fridge and everything looked well settled.

S- Tangerine and grass with malt in the background and some phenols. Complex.

T- Doesn't quite deliver on what the nose promises. Citrusy bitterness up front but there is a significant phenolic banana taste from the middle to finish which is not working for me. There is some harsh alcohol in the finish too.

M- Maybe it was the pour but this is a bit flat. Took it easy with the second glass but same result.

O- This is one to review again, maybe I got an old bottle or there was some other issue. Hope this is not typical because I have heard great things about this IPA

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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,242 ratings.