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.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

2,227 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,227
Hads: 7,106
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 8.35%
Wants: 287
Gots: 959 | 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
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Reviews: 2,227 | Hads: 7,106
Photo of GClarkage
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

05/23/05- Had on tap at the Englander in Dublin, CA

Presentation- Via the tap into a standard pint glass.

Appearance- Darker golden color approaching an amber color. Smaller head by the time it arrived at my table. Nice lacing rounds it off.

Smell- Definite hops presence. More fruity than anything. Definte malt as well though.

Taste- For some reason I get more of a malt taste whenever I have this brew. I do get the hops as well, but to me it's a well rounded brew that leans towards a pale ale.

Mouthfeel- Good carbonation level.

Drinkability- Classic example of a good session brew. Wish they came in 6 packs rather than bombers. (653 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My notes from last summer rear their ugly head. This will be my third different serving style of this beer! I do not think that even any of LNCBC's beers hold that distinction.

My server, to be named later, brought this to me with a finger of bone-white head with good retention, Color was a deep-gold with NE-quality clarity. Nose was redolent with pine-y hops. Mouthfeel was medium with a palate-cleansing hoppiness. Don't hold back! Finish was gaspingly bone-dry. More, please, Raquel! (490 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper color, and is topped by a 3 finger tan head. Nice aromas of orange, apricot, and a general pungent fruitiness course through my nose as I take a big whiff. Interestingly enough I also get some notes of just over-ripe plum as I go in for another sniff. The first sip, ahhh, this was the hop fix that I have been looking for. This beer is ripe with hop notes from beginning to end. There is a medium level of sweetness, and a toasted maltiness in the finish. The sweetness helps to pick up and accentuate the fruity hop notes that are in this beer. The hops taste of apricot, lychee, and ripe citrus fruit. It finishes with a solid bitterness that ties the whole beer together and demands that you take another sip. This is the beer I was looking for tonight, it just hits the spot. (801 characters)

Photo of BARFLYB
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz fresh bottle poured into a regular kitchen glass. I seem to be revisiting alot of Bear Republic products this company, they do good work.

A- Racer 5 has a light golden color with some sediment seen in suspension. A nice frothy white head with small bubbles within rose up to an inch than faded into nothing, Light lacing on the top of the glass.

S- Big burst of citrus hops giving off the usual characteristics. This is backed by some malt, some bread and even lighter caramel which is a nice change.

T- A damn fine IPA, pretty balanced to, although my bottle is about a month old, so Im assuming the hops have faded just a bit. Some grass taste in the middle followed by a nice malt kick but that is light as well. A small earthy aftertaste, not so bitter.

M&D- Below medium bodied with light carbonation as well, but it is felt on the mouth. Kind of a slick feel going down. Not sessionable at 7%, but who cares, this is good stuff and a sixer would not be a problem in the course of a day. (1,001 characters)

Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Village Draft House in Raleigh

Arrived a light copper with no head, carbonation bubbles cling to the side of the glass. Nose is citrus and hop flowers. Taste is mildly sweet with grapefruit-citrus and floral hops. The bitterness from the hops is evident, but very well balanced and mild. Medium body and nicely carbonated. I could drink this beer for hours (as I have done in the past). (401 characters)

Photo of Gavage
4.63/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: pours a orange color with dark yellow highlights. A large 3" head lasts forever. Carbonation bubbles slowly rise to the top. Mild lacing develops.

Smell: oranges and a strong bitterness are easily detectable.

Taste: nice malt layer, balanced with some orange slices, lemon zest, and a perfect piney bitterness. This is a great example of what an American IPA should be.

Mouthfeel: smooth with a bite of crispness at the start and finish. The aftertaste is short with the flavor tones.

Drinkability: superbly drinkable. This should be a staple in everyone's refridgerator. (596 characters)

Photo of Halcyondays
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle

A: Copper, hazy red with thin sticky white head with good retention.

S: Grapefruit, citric hops, with malt and some tropical fruit, mango and papaya.

T: The tropical fruit shows its stuff, but also brings a more bracing pine bitterness, not overpowering, very balanced, especially for a West Coast IPA.

M: Creamy, full bodied, with almost a chewy bitterness.

D: Very good, a delicious example of the West Coast IPA style, its balanced character makes it a good anytime beer, the alcohol level does not show at all. Another great offering from the fellas at Bear Republic. (600 characters)

Photo of Billolick
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber bottle. No freshness dating. Pours nice auburn, with some golden hues, white,tiny bubble head and leaves alot of intricate lacing. Hoppy, hoppy nose. Large malty backbone, biscuity. Grapefruit, pine, grainy hops carry the weight here. Pac. NW jolt of HOPS is what were talkin' here. Big and bold IPA. High quality creation, seek-drink-enjoy. (348 characters)

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.59/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: poured four times into my toothbrush holder plastic tumbler (hotel room in San Fran) on 4 Feb 2013.

Pale amber body with an off-white head.

Hoppy, bitter and dry tasting: I'd had it in a sink full of ice while we went out and I thought it got better as it warmed, when cold it had little to no bite from its hoppiness, once a bit warmer the hops really asserted themselves and they came alive.

I'm not a huge 'hop monster' but I thought this was very drinkable in deed. (480 characters)

Photo of billab914
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Surly shaped pint glass. Poured clear and amber in color. It started with a very nice frothy white head that quickly started to leave chunks of lacing on the glass. The head had average retention but left excellent lacing as I drank it.

The aroma has a very juicy hop presence to it with some grapefruit, pineapple, mango and a hint of pine coming through. Excellent hoppy aroma overall.

The taste also shows some of the juicy, tropical hoppy flavors. Some pineapple, grapefruit and a bit of peach all come out in the intense hoppiness. A moderate bitterness comes through in the finish. Beautiful hoppy flavor overall.

The mouthfeel is on a little below medium bodied and carbonation is moderate. Drinkability is very good, it had some great hoppy flavors to it and went down very smoothly. Excellent beer overall, and one of my personal favorites. (889 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at McGrady's in Bethlehem. Nice seeing this on tap here and Big Bear at the Ho down the street.

A: Translucent, hazy golden amber/orange color with a moderate white head with nice lacing and retention.
S: As expected, citursy (grapefruit), slightly floral, hoppy aroma with malt background present.
T: Very smooth, crisp citrus grapefruit flavor hits first. Slightly sweet but balanced with malt and then the longer it is in the mouth the more the hops dig in. Not overwhelming bitter but hops are very assertive. Very balanced smooth tasting.
M: Full bodied with very smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Moderate carbonation combined with hop bitterness provides a mouthful.
D: Very flavorful, easy drinking, balanced IPA. Right up there with Two Hearted and Blind Pig for me. (778 characters)

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well, well. A very solid IPA from BR. $5 for a 22oz bottle. Good deal.
A slightly hazed golden, apricot color to the body. Good head, mix of dense and loosened foam. Some chunk.

Aroma is a mix of citrus, pine and resin/earthy. Herbal hints. Has a bit of a musk in the end. It's not powerful, but good and solid.

Malt backbone on the flavor is just barely holding up. Hope are strong, but not over powering. It seems they serve to up the abv and preserve the beer...like an IPA is supposed to do. I get some butteriness in the end. Quite an odd feeling for this style imo.

Good crispness and bitterness. Slight metallic flavor in the end.
A very nice beer. Not surprising from BR. (687 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
3.93/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from the bottle giving a simple nice cloudy dark orange body. Really good white head with some decent lacing.

Bouquet at first gives a weak bread smell, then to a simple faint grapefruit. Strangely it doesn't seem big on hops on the nose to me, as small as the smells on the nose are they are there and kind of make this quite pleasant.

Taste goes to a very straight forward simple citrus fruit orange. There is a really good oil of grapefruit and hops with this on the finish and mid palate taste, almost a rind chewing quality which is quite nice.

A very soild American IPA that I would have again. (628 characters)

Photo of DoubleJ
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Yard House in Brea during happy hour, on to the beer:

Orange in color withn a little paleness, it has a nice dense head on the top. Strong aroma of hops rise from the beer with the usual piney notes. The bitterness is not over the top. Very hoppy flavor. Notes of tropical fruit, grapefruit, and some esters. This beer has an excellent smoothness, which makes this a pleasure to drink despite the strength.

In comparison to the Hop Rod Rye, I prefer this one a little more (although I should point out I had this one on-tap, the Hop Rod came from a bomber). It doesn't have the dryness of that, but the flavor is a bit more tasty. (647 characters)

Photo of tempest
4.31/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at the Blue Tusk.

Poured into a weizen glass, this beer looks awesome. As I drink it down, its possibly the best look IPA I ever seen, let alone beer I've seen in the past few months. A hazy orange with white head and lacing all the way down the long weizen glass.

Smell and taste, however, are less amazing. Smells and tastes of west coast hops, very cascade like. Piney, citrus, grapefruit together at once. It was a good and balanced flavor, but lacks the complexity that would make this a great beer. Not overly bitter for the sake of being bitter like some IPAs, it earns it bitterness and flavor.

Very good mouthfeel and drinkability. I had no idea this was 7%, felt like any other good IPA. If I had this all night, I might end up on the floor. (767 characters)

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

Appearance: Copper in color with a small bubbly head. Some lacing dots the glass.

Smell: Strong malt aroma with floral hops chiming in.

Taste: Very well balanced. Prickly hops adding just enough bitterness to round out the malt bill. Toffee/caramel like malt. Distant herbal grapefruit hops. Zest. Even lightly spicy. Tasty. Good bite but not an overbite.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Carbonation is perfect. Makes me want another sip.

Drinkability: Well rounded. Could drink alot of this. Solid craft brewery in Bear Republic, who make a fine array of hoppy beers. (567 characters)

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.94/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into two pint glasses.

Appearance - The first glass was a clear golden color with a decent white head. The second was almost murky, despite not pouring the last half inch of beer. Neither beer retained the head well and neither exhibited very impressive lacing.

Smell - Floral hops with some citrus. Not really as strong of a hop aroma as I was looking for. I don't get a lot of malt, despite that it isn't a wave of hops drowning out everything else.

Taste - Citrus hops and a bit of pine followed by malt. Again, not strong hops, but present. The malts are the slightest bit sweet with some toastiness. In the finish is an ample bitterness.

Mouthfeel - It's about right for a single IPA. Not a lot of body, but just barely enough for the bitterness to linger. The other flavors are gone almost instantaneously, though.

Overall - I wasn't all that impressed. I had high hopes, but the hop presence just wasn't there. (943 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap at the Rogue Public House in San Francisco. A lovely beer that seems to get better with time- or maybe that its really easy to find fresh these days, and this beer is just fantastic fresh. I actually like it better than the Racer X. Pours dark golden with a fine white head that fades to a thin cap and leaves some great lacing. Smells nicely of bitter citrus and pine with just enough malt to keep things balanced. Tastes great when fresh, like this is. Wonderful sappy pine and zingy, bitter citrus, along with some dill herbal notes, and a bracing bitterness throughout. Not watery at all, so there is enough of a malt component to keep the beautiful hops supported. A delicious beer. (703 characters)

Photo of corby112
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on draft at the brewpub in Healdsburg.

Pours a clear dark golden color with pale yellow hues when held to a light source and a two finger frothy white head with good retention, slowly fading into a lasting ring that leaves sheets of sporadic lacing behind.

Crisp citrus and earthy pine hop aroma with some subtle malt and hints of lemon, grapefruit and biscuit.

Lighter end of medium body with a clean crisp dry hop presence. Light malts provide a nice balanced backbone. Dry piny notes with lemon and grapefruit as well as some subtle biscuit and graham cracker malt. Sweet with a dry lingering finish. (614 characters)

Photo of weeare138
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to sckressler for this one.
Appears a golden amber with a fluffy off white head. Some sediment and yeast falls to the bottom. Plenty of medium carbonation and lacing to be seen.
Smell is of floraly hops with some wood notes and solid malt. Gets much better as it warms up towards room temp.
Taste is a see-saw of hops and malt. Drink it and you'll see exactly what I mean. Very floral hops with some malt packed in there.
Mouthfeel is light, florally, with a powdered sugar type feeling rolling around in the mouth. Brew gets more complex towards the bottom of the glass but it's still highly enjoyable.

Finger licking good. (638 characters)

Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy, glowing golden orange body, with languous bubbles of fine carbonation. Head it creamy white, leaving amazing lacing. Great looking IPA.

Smell is also great, a beautiful tropical fruit hit - tastes of passionfruit, pineapple, menthol and pawpaw. It's not as overtly powerful as it could be, but it's very nice all the same.

Taste is a resinous bitter character, quite sharp, but clean and fresh, full of character. There's not a huge amount of complexity there, but it's tasty. Strong and robust hop bitterness that resonates through to the back palate. Mouthfeel is a little thin, surprisingly, but the sparkling character matches the hop bite nicely.

This is a pretty decent IPA - it doesn't knock my socks off, but it's solid, drinkable and enjoyable. At least it's a good example of the style. (805 characters)

Photo of Zorro
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy copper colored brew.

Smell is malt and hops that tickle your nose. The hops are a mellow citrus smelling variety.

Taste is a well-balanced ale with the hops and malt just about perfectly balanced against one another. The hops give this a dry astringent after taste.

Mouthfeel is quite good.

A very drinkable brew. The label on this reminds me of "Speed Racer." Go Speed Racer Go! (404 characters)

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a nice gold color with small thin white head.

S: Nose was floral, citrus and well hopped

T: Taste followed the nose very well. No surprises. Lots of caramel malt, more malts than hops I thought, floral notes mainly with citrus notes.

M: Finished slightly bitter but smooth. The hops blast was late and good.

D: Good (331 characters)

Photo of wl0307
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The most casual and unrelated-to-beer-like beer label I've ever seen this beer has... Got this bottle by courtesy of another BA based in NY City, Bultrey(Ben), and I couldn't find any best before date or anything like that on the bottle. It's supposed to last for a long time~~I reckon?

Appearance: served in a big tulip-shaped wine glass, it pours a slightly cloudy orange amber hue, coming with an extremely foamy, thick, off-white beer head which lasts quite well. Low carbonation detected.
Smell: extremely heavily hopped--profou...ndly perfumy and floral hops exploding right under my nose, along with aggressively fruity (sweet buttery lemon-cake, ripe peach+plum+apples) aroma...it's powerful yet not overpowering, as the deeply-sweet and grainy flavour of malts sustains well following the hop parade.
Taste: oily-hoppy and richly candyish-malty mouthfeel from the very beginning... a bittersweet nutty plus some grapefruit-zesty taste prevails right afterwards, underlined by a rounded, orange-peel oily flavour sitting firmly at the background, leaving a warmish mouthfeel of fruity hops and lingering but not overly strong bitterness. It's so satisfying and settled that almost no particular alcoholic touch is left behind. The balance b/w malts and hops is good, though for me the mouthfeel is a bit overly sweet.
Drinkability: absolutely an explosive and powerful American IPA for me--a delicious present from Bultrey! (1,439 characters)

Photo of John_M
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Frisco's the other day.

The beer pours a light peachy amber color with very good head retention and lacing. The nose includes the typical grapefruit lime aroma, with some sweet malt as well that is not overdone. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose, with the beer having a nice balance of sweet malt and hops. There is good underlying bitterness to this IPA, but your palate is not overwhelmed by it. This IPA is medium bodied and the abv. is remarkably well hidden. So this beer is very drinkable for an IPA, and remains one of my fall back beers if I do not see anything else particularly of interest on a beer menu.

There are so many good IPA's on the market these days that I rarely order Racer V. Nevertheless, this remains one of the better IPA's on the market, and quality is refreshingly consistent. Unfortunately, after having it's stable mate, the Racer X, I just find it difficult to get too excited about Racer V any more. Still, this remains a good quality, solid IPA. (1,001 characters)

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,227 ratings.