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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.

6,834 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,834
Reviews: 2,231
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 246
Gots: 773 | FT: 10
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,834 | Reviews: 2,231 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of pmarlowe
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tulip glass. 22oz bottle. Can't locate bottling date.

Pours a clear orangish gold, finger of off-white foam with medium sized bubbles, okay retention and good lacing. Smells like orange, pineapple, passion fruit, mango, some pineyness in the secondary. Delicious, clean aromas. Tastes is a little more pine forward, with orange and pineapple, a moderate dose of malt, and a long, moderately bitter finish. Medium bodied, medium carbonation, slightly oily. Overall, this is a great everyday IPA: good taste, great value.

Photo of Tucquan
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on 2011-03-09 at the Drafting Room in Exton, PA

A - Almost clear straw-amber with a 1.5 finger, pillowy head with good lacing.

S - Light citrus pulp, pine, biscuit and hop floral. Not overly strong.

T - Grapfruit, biscuit, mild caramel, pine, naval orange sweetness, which quickly yields to the grapefruit.

M - Light to medium body and carbonation (more than I expected on-cask). Smooth and a little prickly.

D - Very good but I like it better on-tap, which improves the mouthfeel and aroma.

Photo of Tballz420
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pretty hazy brew, light gold color on the bottom half and a darker orange color on the top half. Small white head leaves its impression on the glass. Sweet malts backed by sticky hop sap for the scent. Mmm. Thats a goodin. Sweet malt start gets dominated by a nice thick blend of hops. Citrusy, oily, flowery, bitter. This brews for the hop-lovers. Medium bodied and smooth. Lovely drink.

Photo of Dieseljaxx
4.67/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bear Republic rarely disappoints. They are one of the most consistent breweries going and definitely have an appreciation for hoppy beers. This beer has a wonderful color, smells delicious and the taste meets those expectations. This is a tasty IPA that provides that crisp hoppiness you get with a good IPA but doesn't overwhelm the palate. This beer is very drinkable and should be consumed often.

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.

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

I poured it into my pint glass. It has a dark golden amber appearance.

The first smell that jumps out at me is some resinous piney hops, there are some sweeter hops to balance it but the resinous bitter hop smell is pronounced at 40 degrees.

The taste is glorious, lots of hops. It starts fruity floral but finishes bitter and resinous. I would say It is perfectly balanced.

The mouth feel is pretty light, for all the flavor Racer 5 goes down pretty easy.

As it warms up it becomes more enjoyable.

Overall I knew this was a fresh bottle and when fresh this is a must try IPA.

Photo of boudreaux
4.73/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Racer 5 pours a deep golden color with hints of red along the edges. A nice thick foamy off-white head that built up to 3 fingers and stayed there for quite a while. Quite clear in my pint glass.
smell: The aroma seemed to leap out at me. It had a wonderful hop bouquet. It was piney, floral and citrusy.
As expected, the first sip or two was bitter with a drying effect on the end.
Taste: the blend of malts, hops and yeast gave this beer a nice crisp taste. Bear Republic put in a generous amount of Columbus and Cascade hops into this beer but held back from going too far with the IBUs. I could pick up an underlying sweetness of the malts when not inhaling as I sipped. But just as soon as I breathe in, the hop sensation nearly masks the sweetness of the grains.
Mouthfeel: smooth and creamy with a full bodied texture.

Photo of zeledonia
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 4 June 2011. Enjoyed 1 July 2011, and reviewed from notes.

Pours a light, yellowish amber with a solid off-white head that lasts and leaves really good lacing. Streams of bubbles showing off the carbonation.

Smell is full of great hop flavors, mostly pine with a bit of citrus.

Taste is all about hops (mostly pine), with decent malt backing. But definitely hop-forward. Starts out full and slightly sweet, then comes on bitter and piney with some citrus (orange peel and grapefruit), and stays bitter through the finish. The malt flavors aren't on display, but their presence gives the beer a good platform for the hops to stand on.

Mouthfeel is great - medium-bodied, a little sticky but not too much so, smooth, well-carbonated, and a great persistent finish.

A very tasty, mostly hoppy IPA, with great pine and subtle citrus flavors. Not overpoweringly bitter, but really brings the tasty aromatics out of the hops. I have nothing bad to say about it, and I will definitely drink it again.

Photo of psuKinger
4.46/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 ounce bottle poured into my Racer 5 pint glass. This is my second bottle from this six-pack, and the first sure tasted fresh. This is one of my favorite west coast "gems".

A: Pours a hazy golden color with a wonderful lively frothy white head on top. Some "pancake batter" bubbles in the middle. I like that.

This brew is leaving great lacing on my glass as I work through it.

S: Grapefruit and pine in the nose. Moderate intensity.

T: Taste follows the nose. Taste starts smooth before grapefruit rushes in. This beer strikes a great balance, with just the right amount of sweet malt backbone behind to balance things out. It finishes wonderfully bitter, with a hint of pine, and yes, even MORE grapefruit goodness.

M: Light and lively, this beer has just the right level of carbonation, feels light in the mouth, and coats the tongue nicely with hop oils.

D/O: Drinkability is High. Very high. I love this beer. So much so that this bottle is actually my second of the evening. I liked the first one so much I decided to review the second.

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

I bought a bottle of Racer 5 India Pale Ale a couple days ago for $1.69 at The Lager Mill. I was impressed with my first beer from Bear Republic, Hop Rod Rye, So I decided to see what else they are working with and picked up a bottle of Racer 5, so lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a imperial pint glass.

A- The label looks good and keeps with the vintage car racing scheme that Hop Rod Rye had. It poured a orange/golden yellow color with three fingers worth of fluffy white head that died down to a thick layer that stayed the rest of the time.

S- The aroma is pretty much dominated by the hops in this beer. It's got three different hoppy aromas going on. First is the citrus with pineapple sticking out the most along with a little bit of mango, orange zest, and grapefruit. The second was pine which imparted some dank and resiny aromas. The third was floral hops which isn't as strong as the other two but adds a nice subtle complexity to the aroma. The hops took over the aroma so I really couldn't pick up any of the malts in the aroma.

T- The malts actually come through in the flavor and to me they taste like a mixture of pale and caramel malts that make for a nice base for this beer and it has just the right amount of sweetness. The hops are still the major player here, just like they should be. At first I pick up a good amount of pineapple along with a little bit of orange zest. The pney and floral hops come out on the finish along with some grapefruit to make for a nice medium amount of bitterness that fits this beer perfectly.

M- Smooth, slightly dry, and meduim bodied with just the right amount of carbonation, the mouthfeel is just right for an IPA.

Overall I thought this was a pretty good IPA. The hops are there in abundance and are pretty assertive and combine citrus, pine, and floral hops together to make for a great hop profile that is balanced well and doesn't completely overshadow the malt base like it did in the aroma. Everything was pretty spot on in this IPA and I liked the drinkability and mouthfeel the most with the rest being almost as good, if I had another one I would drink it, it hits the spot on this warm summer night. I would buy this beer again, I like how it combined the different aspects of hops together rather then just focusing one aspect. I recommend this beer to any hop head or IPA lover, it will calm your hop cravings. This was another home run for Bear Republic, now I feel like I have to try the rest of their lineup since everything I have had from them so far has been very well done.

Photo of samie85
5/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A-An aggressive pour yields a very clear light orange color with a finger and a half of thick white head.

S-Smells of dank pine and huge pineapple notes with some mango and light caramel notes.

T-Big pineapple and caramel on the front with some bitter pine and grapefruit on the finish.

M-Extremely smooth feel with a medium body and light carbonation.

D-This is an incredibly balanced, yet flavorful IPA. I've had this one before, but I'm not sure why I haven't revisited it since. I'll be sure to in the future.

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

Poured into a paper cup (I know, but it was all that was available. At least I got a cup!). Dark gold with a yellow-white pillowy head. Bottle conditioned, so some sediment. Pine hops aroma and taste with some malt and alcohol aftertaste. Went well with a pepperoni pizza. A solid IPA.

Photo of goblue3509
3.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orangish copper like color that has visible floatees with a one finger head which gives way to skim and leaves a little bit of lace on the glass. The aroma is of a nice floral presence combined with a citrus, lemons, oranges, and grapefruit smell. There is then a hint of an earthy hop bite at the end. The taste is balanced by a sweet malt backbone with hints of citrus. In the tail end of the beginning the rest of the way through there is an earthy hop bite, not a huge bitter bite, but a nice and smooth hop bite. The mouthfeel is moderately carbonated. Overall it is a solid beer, it is something I would go back to for sure. It is well balanced yet pretty straight forward for an ipa.

Photo of trisweb
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap, Central Kitchen in Cambridge. New favorite. Clean reddish gold color, full hoppy slightly sweet smell—knew it would taste good as soon as I smelled it.

(First real review so forgive me if I don't know what I'm talking about!) Flavor overall is hoppy, fresh, and clean. Some citrus and hop resin flavor and aroma up front, hoppy and fruity in the body with a full but unmuddled flavor. Mouthfeel is full and thick for an IPA, sticks to your mouth just the right amount. Finish is clean and satisfying with lighter non-bitter sweetness of fruit and hop, very nice.

Overall this is an excellent IPA with a full on confident hop flavor, that's very easy to drink and not overwhelming. It's a great balance and I think close to ideal for an IPA to me. Looking forward to trying it again!

Photo of Chickenhawk9932
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured golden orange with some reddish tendencies, with an off white head - good lacing.

Smells largely of citrus hops sweet orange, bitter grapefruit and lemon, with a subdued malty sweetness.

Hits you with powerful citrus hops, lots of flavor popping around, backed up by a solid, sweet malty spine. An excellent beer. I had this on tap at Shady McGrady's after the Harrisburg beer fest and it stood out against all the other IPAs I tried that day.

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

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

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Marble Brewery shaker glass. Golden orange and slightly hazy. Fluffy pale head, about 2 fingers deep. Straight up citrus in my nose (mostly orange and lemon). Light bitterness on the palate up front, then a kick of pine and citrus, followed by a huge lingering bitterness. Very tasty. Simple but excellent. Creamy while the beer is in my mouth. After swallowing, a tacky, tannin-y, resiny finish. One of my favorites.

Photo of ehammond1
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Liquor Stop
San Marcos, CA

A clear golden orange and yellow. Moderate head. Decent lacing. Pretty.

Simple, hoppy, citrus aromas.

Citrus along with some bitterness. Well balanced. Some floral notes as well.

Medium bodied. Ample carbonation.

A tasty American IPA.

Photo of chinchill
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Undated bottle served in a Highland Brewing pint glass.

A - clear (top of bottle) becoming hazy (bottom of bottle) golden with creamy white head that, as is typical for IPAs, has limited retention.

S - strong aroma of hops; fresh, piney/sprucy, floral and nicely complex. There's probably some roasted malt lurkering in the aroma too, but the hops just jump out.

T - Frankly, the strong piney hop aroma, while very pleasant, is a bit forbidding as it suggests an intensely bitter and piney taste. Such is not the case. This is a refreshing, easy-to-drink IPA that has modestly strong hop flavor together with a quite strong aroma. Moderately bitter grapefruit/pine finish and aftertaste.
Very nice!

M - good body and carbonation

O - an outstanding Amer. IPA, particularly suitable for those who prefer a strong aromatic contribution from hops more than a strong flavor or pronounced bitterness. Quite different than, but overall about on par with, the local Sweetwater IPA I had (for about the 20th time) earlier this week.

Photo of beerdown77
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours a nice light brown/orange. The head is moderate with larger pebbles and acceptable retention; the lacing is good as well. The nose isn’t super strong, but the usual smells are there. I wouldn’t call this a hop bomb, but it has a fairly large hop presence, but then a smooth malt finish. This is a solid beer that has a great well-rounded taste and feel. My only criticism is that it seems a little heavy and slimy and I wish there was a little more distinction. Then again, not all beers need to taste like a grapefruit I suppose.

Photo of awesomeandrew
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: copper gold, thin white head, good lacing

smell: toasty, herbal scent, extremely hoppy scent

taste: flowery, biscuity, nutty, piney, very hoppy as expected

mouthfeel: smooth while drinking, bitter aftertaste, very drinkable

Overall: Very drinkable IPA not excessively hoppy, great to sip on. One of the better IPA's i've ever tasted.

Photo of Janderson91
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this last time I was out in Arizona, really enjoyed it. Got this one in a trade. I can't find a bottling date anywhere on the bottle so I'm not sure of the freshness. Enjoyed on 06/17/11.

A - Poured from a 22 oz bomber into a DFH snifter. Almost totally clear very pale orange color. One finger white head that recedes very quickly. Leaves decent lacing.

S - Grapefruit! And some sugary sweetness. The two balance each other quite well. Also present are some citrusy/floral hops that compliment the battle going on in the front. Excellent aroma on this beer.

T - Once again, very grapefruit forward. Like I've just taken a sip of juice once I swallow. Balanced by that nice sugar sweetness and just a tinge of alcohol burn. Citrus also in the background. Finish is very balanced and stays on the tongue for a while.

M - Mouthfeel is good. High carbonation and medium creaminess.

O - Overall, I really like this beer and if it were easily accessible I would drink a lot of it. The only offering I've had from Bear Republic, would love to try more.

Photo of Knapp85
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Racer 5 was a beer that a friend of mine suggested that I try. I ran to my local Wegman's and grabbed a bomber of it the next day. Opened it up and it poured out as a really nice yellowish gold color. The head a lacing were very nice. The smell of the beer was really hoppy for just a regular IPA. The taste was also much hoppier than I expected it to be, lots of citrusy pine flavors that fade into a strong bitter aftertaste. The mouthfeel is very drinkable. Overall this beer kicks ass. I could drink this one over and over again. I'd love to try Racer X one day.

Photo of jsprain1
4.14/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Clear dark golden, perhaps lighter amber, with a thin white head that drops down to a slick pretty quickly. A little bit of lacing.
S- Smell is C-hops all the way. Citrusy, with a bit of pine and grass. Pungently hoppy.
T- Same here. Big citrus up front, more of a pine character in the finish. I'm also getting just the slightest bit of tropical fruit flavor.
M- Smooth, almost but not quite creamy at first, pretty dry in the finish.
O- A very good IPA and one worth seeking out. It certainly is a hop-centric beer, but it never pretended to be anything else. Aggressive, yet refreshing.

Photo of rundocrun
3.76/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a 12-oz bottle. Very thick, loose layer of yeast sediment on the bottom of this bottle-conditioned beer. I unavoidably got a little bit in the glass during the pour but hey, a little yeast never hurt anyone right?

A - Pours a coppery golden color with burnt orange highlights. A finger of white head forms and then fades to a thin layer on the top of the beer. Moderate amount of lacing on the glass as I drink it.

S - Piney, resinous hop aroma is most noticeable with undertones of honey sweetness. Overall, not an extremely pungent beer though.

T - Creamy, malty sweetness up front that's almost honey-like in it's smoothness. The bitterness, piney-ness and citrus peel character of the hops hits hard in the middle and lasts through to the aftertaste. This is unlike any IPA/APA I've ever had, honestly. I've never experienced something so smooth and drinkable (a by-product of the bottle-conditioning) yet still maintaining the über-hoppy presence that one hopes for in this style.

M - Medium body with a juicy, lush finish. As mentioned earlier, this beer has an incredibly smooth, creamy character to it that lends to its drinkability.

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,834 ratings.