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Racer 5 India Pale Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

6,480 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,480
Reviews: 2,193
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 208
Gots: 564 | FT: 9
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:
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 added by: kbub6f on 03-27-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Racer 5 India Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,480 | Reviews: 2,193 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ZenAgnostic
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Hazy amber body, frothy white pancake batter head with good retention.

Smell - Strong bitter lime peel and hop.

Taste - Hoppy kick in the tongue.

Mouthfeel - Great, creamy mouth and full bodied.

Overall Drinkability - Best IPA I've had so far.

ZenAgnostic, Apr 09, 2011
Photo of trappistlover
4.7/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is my favorite IPA. It has everything that I expect from an IPA without being "extreme'/ 'imperial'/ 'double": a nice fruity aroma which explodes with great hop flavor. In spite of the hoppiness, it maintains a nice malt balance. I love it!!

trappistlover, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of TheSignPost
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Awesome! This beer is an extremely pleasant surprise. It pours a golden honey color, not super clear, but you can tell it means business. The aroma is perfect. Hoppy and clean. And then the taste backs it up. This one talks the talk, and walks the walk too.

Very very good.

TheSignPost, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of TheSupremeAJ
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy cloudy gold piss color with nice white head. Some of the best lacing i've ever seen.

Smells like a nice balance of malts and a little bit of tropical hops.

Taste is balanced between easy malts, good amount of ibttering and a healthy dose of aroma. It has the typical Racer 5 yeast (anyone care to comment? send me a PM with what kind of yeast it is.)

Mouthfeel is great... a tad bit towards the sweeter side however this may be an old bottle.

Overall this is a very good go-to beer!

TheSupremeAJ, Apr 06, 2011
Photo of sentomaster
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- On tap poured into a pint glass. A bright, clear golden apricot with a soft and frothy three finger head, which lingers. As it slowly recedes the head leaves chunks of nice lacing.

S- In a word: Yummy. A rich pale and caramel malt base of crisp sweetness covered with snappy notes of pine and citrus. A very crisp and appetizing nose.

T/M- Absolutely delicious. Almost a bit buttery it's so smooth from the tight but soft carbonation and a firm, crackery malt base. Then the hops lay in with a soft tropical fruit juiciness. Layers of pine and citrus join in adding to the nuance. Lingering soft hop flavors with a touch of grapefruit and a crisp- but now very subdued- malt sweetness on the finish.

O- What a great beer. It doesn't go over the top, but that's part of what makes it so great- it just hits all it's marks quite perfectly and on time. This may very well be the standard-bearer in my opinion. It's somewhere between IPA and DIPA in the way it feels and tastes, but it's all goodness. So well balanced and drinkable it's scary.

sentomaster, Apr 05, 2011
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

barleywinefiend, Apr 04, 2011
Photo of morebeergood
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Second beer of the night last night at the Yard House, Dedham, as my drink with appetizers. Served on tap into a pint glass. Bright yellow color with a fizzy white head and plenty of carbonation. Smell was hoppy, but not overly powerful. Taste was much more agreeable than I expected. While I am not a huge IPA fan, this one tasted excellent. It had hops, sure, but it didn't blow your palate off. Just a nice dose of hops that tasted great. Mouthfeel was not overly bitter like some IPAs, but instead was smooth and crisp. This IPA was a surprise because of how much I liked it, and it rose to the top of my list of the style. Very well made beer for all types of craft beer lovers.

morebeergood, Apr 04, 2011
Photo of chilly460
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A slightly cloudy deep orange amber with huge billowy white head. Great lacing, head simmers down to a single cap on the beer.

S - Immediate piney smell followed by citrus and melon fruity aromas with plenty of biscuit malts along with some lightly sweet malt smell coming through.

T - Small malty sweetness followed by a solid hop presence. Pine and grapefruit, quite clean tasting, some sweeter citrus as wel. Great balance.

M - Somewhat creamy with low to moderate carbonation.

O - Actually the first time I've had this beer, and I can understand the popularity, great sessionable IPA.

chilly460, Apr 03, 2011
Photo of rawfish
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Broke in my NB globe glass with a careful pour that nets a frothy one finger head over a hazy orange body. Spotty lacing all over the glass.

Pretty strong, floral and pungent pine over citrus with a sweet underlying caramel malt character. Slightly breathy alcohol and a steady hop character. Makes me excited to take the first sip.

Pleasant drink, bright hop kick on the drink followed by some toasty malts and residual sweetness to balance it out. Hops are a good balance of citrus and pine with a bit more of the former, bitterness doesn't linger as much as some other IPAs but there is a pleasant accumulation of spicy notes on the back end. A little bit of yeast character helps to tone down the bitterness as well, thick and earthy.

Medium bodied,yeast doesn't really make an impact and well carbonated, I did notice that for a bottle conditioned brew the feel over the palate was a bit watery. Very smooth.

This IPA is certainly unique in the way the yeast and malts combine to balance out the hops. This combination makes for a beer that delivers in hops yet is delicate and very well balanced.

rawfish, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of jmfc8237
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass with a bone white head about an inch thick. Left tons of lacing which was very sticky and streaming. Color was a clear honey.

Aromas of earthy hops are abundant as well as a sweet malty background. Lots of complex citrus as well. Orange grapefruit and sap.

Bam there it is. Holy hops batman! This is a one way ticket to flavor country. Really unique bouquet of hops and has a imediate bitter resignation. Although it's in your face it's very well balanced with the malt profile.

Overall it's extremely drinkable and palpable. Two thumbs up.

jmfc8237, Mar 31, 2011
Photo of Thickfreakness
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Beautiful hazy orange hue with a bright white head floating on top. The heads fades away leaving some of the stickiest lacing I've ever seen.

S- BAM!!! Grapefruit, orange zest, honey, mango and pineapple! Just the right amount of pine underneath, with a touch of sweetness from the malts.

T- Fresh squeezed grapefruit juice... nice piney hop flavor. Really fresh Cascade and Amarillo hop flavors. I love the sweetness that the malts impart. This is really fantastic!

M- Sweet and bitter mingle well, and do a wonderful dance on the tongue. Very fruit forward with a nice sweet piney backdrop. The first beer where I can really taste the cannabis connection.

O- This is a brilliant IPA! I have a feeling that this is going to be my new go to India Pale Ale. I'm really digging and wishing this one wouldn't end!

Thickfreakness, Mar 29, 2011
Photo of canoehornpoint
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light, hazy amber with minimal head and minimal carbonation. Wonderful aroma of pine and citrus with a bit of maltiness in the background. Up front pine and citrus followed by some mild fruit flavors and finishing ever so slightly tart. Very drinkable beer, light on the palate with a bit of a lingering aftertaste.

canoehornpoint, Mar 28, 2011
Photo of DaveBlack
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Rich honey color, maybe a cm of white head that has pretty good retention and leaves a nice ring of lacing. A steady stream of bubbles can be seen rising from the middle of the glass to feed the thin layer of head that remains.

S: Lovely aroma of piney, citrusy hops. not much going on behind the hops except a hint of sweetness from the malts. Definitely almost entirely hops here.

T: Nothing subtle about the hops on this baby, either in the nose or the taste. Grapefruit hops hit right up front, giving a nice jolt of bitterness, that fades away into sweetness with a lasting hop flavor.

M: Medium-light body with a good amount of carbonation that tickles the tongue.

O: A good IPA, a very drinkable beer, but it's basically a mild hop bomb. Not much complexity, just delicious hops. I have given up being impressed with simple, heavily hopped beer, but it is good and well balanced. If you're looking for something unique, though, look elsewhere.

DaveBlack, Mar 27, 2011
Photo of ChugginOil
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Racer 5

Pours a near translucent amber orange with a spacious and bubbly fingers worth of white head. The bubbly lacing is holding up pretty well.

The nose is pretty faint for the most part. Some hoppy pine is noticed along with some sweet malt.

The taste is very nicely balanced between a light fruity bitterness up front and a caramel malt backdrop. Almost resembling a candied apple. Interesting...

The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth with a moderate amount of carbonation.

Overall, the hoppy bitterness may have faded overtime in this barrel but im not sure if this is due to age or if it is the intended direction. Either way, nicely done and quite refreshing

ChugginOil, Mar 27, 2011
Photo of Dan3279
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have been eyeing this IPA for a while now and I'm glad that I finally picked up a bottle. I really have been getting into IPA's lately and I was excited to give this one a try.

Poured a 12oz bottle into a pint glass to see the golden amber color. Now there was a noticeable haze in the glass and I'm not sure if thats common for this beer or if I got an older bottle.

To me grapefruit & hops really stick out in the smell. Taste wise this one really hits you hard up front and really mellows out.

This beer was easy to drink and I could easily but a few back in one sitting. I really enjoyed it and would pick up a few bottles again .

Dan3279, Mar 27, 2011
Photo of 9InchNails
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tiny bubbles forming into bigger ones. The head turned into a creamy film. Orange gold body color. Awesome creamy lacing on the glass. It's quite a nice looking beer.

Pine is quite evident in the aroma along with some malts. Really nice combination of the two.

Wow! What a great tasting IPA! Piney hops, citrus, sweet maltiness and a great bitterness at the end. It works so simply together but works so well. Definitely on my top five IPA list.

Light to approaching medium body. Goes down easily with its creamy head. Carbonation helps to meld the flavors together.

This is one tasty, easy drinking IPA. Very close to perfection as far as an IPA goes. Definitely on my top five IPA list.

9InchNails, Mar 26, 2011
Photo of Sensaray
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

serving - bottle into pint glass

a - hazy golden with nice frothy head. dissipates at a good pace leaving nice lace

s - citrus pine hoppy smell. nice fresh floral aroma. some tropical?

taste - nice hop tingle at first. grapefruity citrus is light with pine notes. alcohol became well more pronounced with each sip. very nice bitter finish that lingers. yum

m - very smooth. light medium.

overall - id recommend this to any ipa fan. wouldn't get a 6 pack but single is nice

Sensaray, Mar 25, 2011
Photo of Rhettroactive
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From growler to pint glass on 3/21/11
*From notes

A: A good, somewhat cloudy 24k gold. It's got a nice 1.25 finger head, followed by high quality lacing.

S: Pine needles attack the nostrils. If I wasn't aware before, I am now: this is a west coast IPA all the way.

T: A good dose of breadiness hits first, but it's merely a formality as the sweet and citrusy hops overwhelm the palate from the mid to finish.

M: Pretty killer - this one feels like it belongs. Good weight and creaminess that tends to be found in the upper echelon of the style.

O: I've been meaning to review this one for a while, and what better way then a growler!

Bear Republic's Racer 5 is one of the top AIPA's for a reason, and is a cornerstone of the style. I have returned to this time and time again, and will continue to for years to come. This one borders pretty close to perfection.

Rhettroactive, Mar 24, 2011
Photo of gundys10
4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle

Appearance - Pours a light golden. A little murky, but mostly transparent.

Smell - very hoppy with a little citrus mostly grapefruit coming through and floral.

Taste - slightly bitter with a floral and citrus taste

Mouthfeel - bitter but goes down smooth, but I'm a hophead.

Overall - a very good beer, very available, reasonably priced, and bitter, like I like my beer.

gundys10, Mar 24, 2011
Photo of lechroy
3.63/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22-oz bottle. Served in glass.

A: Hmm, looks like a primary fermenter on day 5. More particulate action than I wanted. Hazy orange hue - 1.5 finger head - lacy
S: Really pleasant delicate hop bite - piney for sure. Nicely balanced with malt touches.
T: I have always really dug this beer. Its quite tasty, but as I tuned in, I was surprised at how poorly the alcohol is masked. Quite a bit. I wouldn't notice it after 2 beers @ 7%.
M: Ok.
O: Yummy, very drinkable beer that is light but potent. Pretty yummy hop blend overall.

lechroy, Mar 23, 2011
Photo of ramseye4
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle
A=Pours a murky golden color, minimal head but with decent lacing.
S=Lots of citrus hops, good malty backbone, some grapefruit and pine resin are faint, but present.
T=Lots of bitter hops hit up front, piney and floral, with some malty flavors. A bit simple. but very well done.
M=Medium bodied and decently bitter
O=Great IPA, readily accessible, and inexpensive. What more could you ask for?

ramseye4, Mar 22, 2011
Photo of derekmorris7
3.45/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought this on a whim..been eyeballing it everytime i hit the wine nation store. Very average in a good way.

A- golden with light soft head..haha

S- not a heck of alot of noticeable notes..lil floral

T- kind of bland lite hop kick

M- clean with a lite cling of pine

derekmorris7, Mar 21, 2011
Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well it didn't produce much head but the lacing was ok. The color was orange-tan and it was a little bit hazy.

Smelled of pine and grapefruit with a bit of fruity sweetness and a smidge of earthy funk.

Taste was bold yet understated, great fruity pine and grapefruit, hops, and a smooth malt made for a very well balanced and flavorful IPA.

Feel is medium bodied, slick, tangy with nice carbonation, and mildly bitter in aftertaste.

Drinks very well. A really nice IPA.

AlCaponeJunior, Mar 20, 2011
Photo of MonkeymooTJ
3.28/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3


3/4" head with a light orange/amber color. "Cloudy" with medium carbonation.


A very inviting array of perfume, floral, and herbal hops. Citrus came through to a lesser extent.


An initial mild bitterness and citrusy punch quickly gives way to a bitter almost flavorless aftertaste


Slight carbonation. Light and smooth without much crispness. Goes down fairly easy


Overall a decent IPA. It has a great look in the glass and an aroma that really makes you look forward to that first sip. The hoppiness is on the mild side. Fits an IPA style, but lacks a little substance. I prefer really hoppy beers and this one comes up just a bit short for me.

MonkeymooTJ, Mar 20, 2011
Photo of jsulko
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a shaker Pint (need more Tulip Glasses!!))

Pours a yellow straw color with good head that lingers

Smell is strong citrus hops

Taste is hoppy without a huge bite of bitterness. Some pine notes to go with the citrus.

Very drinkable IPA. Have to keep my eye out for more of this.

jsulko, Mar 19, 2011
Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,480 ratings.