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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.

6,339 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,339
Reviews: 2,186
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 196
Gots: 526 | 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
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Ratings: 6,339 | Reviews: 2,186 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ABOWMan
4.83/5  rDev +15.3%

My mouth is watering in anticipation of tasting this beer. I've poured a small amount in my pint glass from a good height to bring our it's aroma, and it's wonderful. Fruit comes to mind ... orange, and apricot, both really ripe and also pleanty of piney hops.

I can't wait any longer and take a sip and am rewarded with an upfront sweet fruity note, followed by the wonderfully bitter bite of hops. They are in perfect compliment with one another. Not all hops like some of the IPA's out there.

Craving more than a sip, I pour the rest of my bottle into my pint glass and see an ample two fingers of fine bubbled tan head. The ale itself has an orange tint with a little bit of a yeast "halo" that develops into a slightly hazy brew. There are signs of uniform lacing around the walls of my glass.

The mouthfeel reminds my a little of a late harvest muscat, thick and full bodied, but not oberbaring or coating on my palate. The flavor lingers sufficiently and reminds me that I need another sip ... or perhaps a good swig better yet. I am not disappointed as the flavor profile keeps reminding me of why I like this beer so much.

If you haven't tried Racer 5 and you like IPA's, I encourage you to crack one open. You won't be disappointed. I beleive that this might be the gold standard of American IPA's.

ABOWMan, Aug 15, 2009
Photo of cudmud
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%

Wonderful color, foam, lacing, and chains of bubbles. The appearance screams classic beer.

The aroma of this beer in another strong facet of this beer. The hops really shine. The aroma is a true reflection of style.

This is what an IPA should taste like. Likewise, the drinkability is good; I could drink this all night. This beer would be great with a nice steak.

The gold standard of IPA.

cudmud, Aug 15, 2009
Photo of jxhill
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%

Slightly hazy deep orange color. Nice white head. Well balanced hops and toasted malt smells, citrusy and herbal. Flavor much the same. Very tangy, earthy hops flavor that is not at all aggressive or bitter. Nice maltiness and medium body. Slight citric sourness towards back of tongue. Nice long pleasant finish fading to soft grassy hops, then biscuity malt. Good lacing. A delicious and well-balanced IPA.

jxhill, Aug 12, 2009
Photo of jonziefle
4.15/5  rDev -1%

From notes:

Appearance: Poured a darker amber, clear. Minimal carbonation. Half-finger white head, but sticks around as a thin layer. Very nice lacing all the way down. Toward the bottom of the 22, there was a lot of sediment and particulate as well.

Smell: Hops first and foremost on the nose. Sticky and oily. Some citrus and strong pine, with some darker fruit flavors. Brown sugar-like sweetness. No malts really stood out, but this is an IPA.

Taste: Fresh strong hops, not too sweet and not too bitter. Strong flavor without being "puckery". Good bite up front, flavor fades away gracefully. Dark fruit flavors with a pine bit. No real malts as well. Moderate sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, but with little carbonation. While it has a bite, the slight lack of carbonation makes it a bit "dead".

Drinkability: Very drinkable IPA. Good hop smell and taste without being to bitter or syruppy.

jonziefle, Aug 11, 2009
Photo of cbaird2
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%

I bought a bomber at Gomer's in midtown Kansas City. $4.50 for a 22oz bomber.

A - bright, light amber color, with a small head that dissolved quickly

S - big citrus aromas, very very hoppy

T - Slammed with hops right away, just like the smell. Well balanced bitterness, just tastes like a good IPA.

M - light to medium carbonation, goes down great.

D - great drinkability, easily could have had 2 or 3 bombers. I would seek this beer out. It's a well done IPA for sure.

cbaird2, Aug 08, 2009
Photo of beerwolf77
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%

Poured into my pint glass the beer is burnt orange with an inch of off white head. After the head retreats it leaves a coating of lace all around the glass. The aroma is super hoppy. Piney and sour. Hints of sweet fruits as well. The taste is hops and sweet malt. The alcohol seems to come through in the finish. Medium body with moderate to heavy carbonation. Sort of dry and bitting after taste. This is a decent IPA. Nothing out of this world but good.

beerwolf77, Aug 08, 2009
Photo of ArrogantB
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%

Bright orange color, hazy, nice head. Smells like citrus and hops. The taste is hardcore citrus with a nice bitterness. The mouthfeel is nice. This is a pleasure to drink and the price is fair at $10 per sixer or $4.50 for a bomber. This is a fantastic IPA as far as my palate is concerned.

ArrogantB, Aug 08, 2009
Photo of jneiswender
4.8/5  rDev +14.6%

I had this beer as part of a flight of samples at the Healdsburg, California restaurant. From tap and in 3oz sample glasses.

A-yellow body with a nice foamy white head

S-citrus hop smell in the front

T-piney, citrus rind and some nice sweet malt in the front before the hops onslaught


D-The definative American IPA. Just a well crafted beer and great on tap when you can find it.

jneiswender, Aug 07, 2009
Photo of washburnkid
3.68/5  rDev -12.2%

A: disappointing tiny white head fizzled effortlessly to a cap and then down to a ring only seconds later. The brew is amber and golden. At least a cap of head retains and there's a bit of sticky lacing.
S: huge citrus mandarin aromas with caramel malt to balance in the back. The aromas are pretty straightforward.
T: great at first, with huge hop flavors dominating. Citrusy goodness with the malt barely discernible. Then my palate starts cringing just a tad as the Columbus (bittering?) hops become incredibly overwhelming. I like a hoppy beer, but to have this one flavor really be the one to stand out is a bummer. I want mandarins and grapefruits to linger like the aroma promises, and sadly they just do not. With warmth, there's a small bit of wood and more perfumey, but it's just not doing it for me.
M: medium body with medium-high carbonation, which makes those Columbus hops tingle a bit more.
D: it's okay, but I think I'll stick to hop rod rye!

washburnkid, Aug 06, 2009
Photo of ShogoKawada
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%

Had this on tap. Same as my bottle review, just a wee bit more intense. Great hop flavors, great body, great drinkability. Piney, bitter hops dominate, but on tap more floral hops come through. Very good blend of bittering and aromatic. This beer is pretty damn good. I would recommend this one to any IPA fan. Went great with BBQ Chicken Pizza at Big City in Allston, MA.

ShogoKawada, Aug 06, 2009
Photo of BigMike
4.7/5  rDev +12.2%

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a 20oz nonic glass.

Pours a cloudy orangish yellow with alot of yeasty floaties.
A bubbly two fingers worth of white head.

Smell is off the hook with this one. SO many different aromas hitting my nose at once. Pineapple, orange, floral, mango, spice and herbs. major hops going on here.

Nice! This one is a real HOP BOMB and i love it. Taste is just like the smell says and more. Tons of wonderful hop bitterness.

Verygood mouthfeel. Good amount of carbonation. A bit of hop oiliness on the tongue.

Drinkability is great with this one. Its got everything i love in a beer going on. This is one i will be having again, and again.

BigMike, Aug 04, 2009
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%

Clear golden orange with a 1 finger white head that eventually gives way to a oily pool of hops juices and froth. Sticky strings of lace.

Pungent citrus, pine, and floral resins. Small toasty biscuit behind.

Fresh juicy hop blast over a nice toffee and biscuit backbone. Sour crisp citrus hop bite. Sticky lip smackin pine. A resinous oily floral bitter aftertaste. Alcohol is well hidden for a 7%.

Sticky, smooth, and dry with good carbonation and a light-med body.

Awesome hop profile and quite refreshing and drinkable. Could drink these almost any time. Pairs great with many different foods, especially spicy. Great American hoppy IPA.

CHILLINDYLAN, Aug 03, 2009
Photo of TommyW
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%

A- Slight haze on a golden orange body with a big white head.

S- Lots of hop aroma.

T- The citrusy and floral hops come in right away and the bitterness from them lingers on for a while. A strong malt backbone is noticeable with some biscuity flavors.

M- Incredibly smooth with a nice carbonation.

D- An awesome American IPA; great if you love beers with tons of hops.

TommyW, Aug 02, 2009
Photo of GRG1313
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%

Poured a lovely clear orange amber with a short white head.

Asssertive nose of cooked pineapple and hints of grapefruit. Some lemon and lemon cream in the nose.

Great big mouth feel, with a medium/heavy body and an almost perfect balance.

Big flavors of bitter pineapple/grapefruit that gives way to gigantic strong but rich pine/pine resin flavors and character.

Finishes with sweet malt that quickly gives way to to strong pine resin finish. An extremely well balanced, flavorful Double IPA. Just great with all kinds of food.

GRG1313, Aug 02, 2009
Photo of mcbSTL
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%

12 oz bottle, 6xer bought for $10 at W&C Place.

A: Copper like the pipe theives stole from our house. Lorraine cheese lacing remained on sides of glass for duration.

S: Didn't expect the significant malt presence here. Hops, sure. More citrus than pine.

T: Very bitter on first swallow. Further along, extreme bitterness slowly giving way to a bit of malt.

M: Just enough alcohol here to designate a big beer.

D: Amount of hops makes drinking a couple of these just perfect.

mcbSTL, Aug 02, 2009
Photo of JamesS
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%

Pours a decent mid-copper color with some good head and lacing, even if it goes away fairly fast. Nice scent, very hoppy with some nice citrus American hops, and enough malt to keep it from being too "un-sweet." Good taste, mostly hops, with some malt thickness if not some malt taste. Goes down well.

JamesS, Aug 01, 2009
Photo of Tilley4
4.65/5  rDev +11%

Picked up a couple of bottles from Jason at Bruisin Ales in Asheville and cracked this one tonight...

Pours a cloudy hazy hoppy looking dull copper with a slowly forming off white head that fades to a small ring... Each swirl renews the head and gives me assurance that is fairly fresh...

Huge pungent citrusy hops blast my sense of smell with this... Big time hops all the way and they're pretty much all citrus....I can't wait to taste this...

Oh, yes... Its pure hoppy deliciousness...very very citrusy and juicy... This is a totally one dimensional hop bomb and that's just the way I like my IPAs...its all I can do to keep from chugging this down so that should tell you something about the taste and drinkability...

Without a doubt, one of the best IPAs that I've ever tried... I'd love to see Bear Republic in TN soon...

Tilley4, Aug 01, 2009
Photo of ToddT
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%

A- Slightly cloudy amber colored beer with a small off white head. Head fades quickly to a ring but is sticky enough to leave lace on the glass.

S- Big nose of grapefruit hops with a slight undertone of sweet floral in the background.

T- Nice bite of grapefruit up front not overly bitter. Mellowing sweetness comes in at the middle and balances out the taste. Think breakfast grapefruit with sugar poured on top of it. Pretty straight forward not too complex.

M- Medium in body and nicely carbonated. Finish is relatively clean with a little oily hop residue left at the end.

D- Easy drinking west coast IPA. The 7.0% ABV doesn't show through anywhere.

Nice refreshing IPA and very well balanced.

ToddT, Aug 01, 2009
Photo of happybear
4.78/5  rDev +14.1%

A- dark golden color with good lacing

S- hops, hops tons of hops, clean citrus smell heavy with grapefruit and pine follow through

T- bitter hops, well balanced

M- left my mouth dry and sticky? if that makes sense

D- drinks well and despite ABV of 7%, you can drink in session

happybear, Aug 01, 2009
Photo of wnh
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a slightly hazy copper with a small-ish, short-lived light cream head. Floral, bitter orange, and grassy hop aromas dominate the nose. Light, bitter orange on the palate, balanced quite well by the malt presence, followed by a lightly bitter finish of moderate length.

Good enough, but lacks the depth and intensity of flavor as other IPAs in this price category. Solid and inoffensive, but a beer I'd be quite content to do without.

wnh, Jul 31, 2009
Photo of McDiddyPop
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%

12oz bottle picked up for me at Chevy Chase Wine & Spirits, Washington, DC. Poured into my Stone IPA stemware.

This one pours a bright golden color with perfect clarity. Two fingers of thick off-white head rise quickly with the pour. As it slowly settles, a dense ring of lace forms. This will happen with each sip. The rocky head slowly dwindles to a quarter inch of foam.

Like a good West Coast IPA, this one smells very citrusy. Lots of grapefruit. A bit of peach or apricot in the nose as well. A slightly minty aroma pushes through in the back end. I would love to see what this beer has in store fresh from the brewery, because the bottle I got is smelling wonderful.

Tastes just like it smells. A full-frontal hop assault hits the palate right off the bat. Then an amazingly well-balanced malt sweetness rounds the whole thing out. There's that peach I was smelling. This is a damn good beer.

Mouthfeel is pretty well spot-on. Maybe a bit more prickly than I would ask for, but it doesn't do anything to hurt the drinkability. Without any alcohol making its presence known, I know that this would be dangerous if it were regularly available. Good job, Bear Republic.

McDiddyPop, Jul 29, 2009
Photo of BARFLYB
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%

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.

BARFLYB, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of montageman
4.88/5  rDev +16.5%

Poured into a Schlitz chalice.

Can't get this beer in Michigan, so I'm kicking myself for not getting more of it when I was recently in Toledo. This is a powerful IPA. Huge bitter hop kick in the pants - relentless. Not balanced, but that's OK. It's all about the hops. Not something I could drink all of the time, but definitely one I'd love to have in my normal rotation. Highly recommended.

montageman, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of david18
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%

This is one of the best India Pale Ales but i have to say i think it used to be better. Like some of the other beers from this brewer, it is very good but I think they used to be better. Good hops/sweetness balance. Strongish for a single IPA but always great to see on tap on the east coast.

david18, Jul 27, 2009
Photo of hosehead83
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%

Poured into a Sam Adams "bubble" glass
Golden orange with a big rocky head
Aroma-Big, piney hops and citrus
Taste-Big initial onrush of piney hops and then juicy citrus. Well-balanced and very flavorful start to finish.
Overall, an excellent American IPA: Plenty of well-balanced hops and citrus, very drinkable and delicious.
Get Some!!!

hosehead83, Jul 27, 2009
Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,339 ratings.