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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.

6,397 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,397
Reviews: 2,190
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 201
Gots: 541 | 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: 6,397 | Reviews: 2,190 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dac0152
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice orange, smaller head than I expected, maybe half inch. Love the lacing with all those hops.

Smells like piney hops, but there is a tint of sweetness peeking through.

Lots of hops up front, followed by a nice sweetness that really leaves no bitter aftertaste to be found. Overall not a huge kick in the face with hops, but that doesn't stop my from enjoying the beer at all. In fact, it tastes pretty heavenly.

Definitely full-bodied beer, but so smooth and nice. Goes down very easy. Hard not to gulp, it just drinks so easily.

Definitely something I'll be picking up again and again, I just wish I could get it in 6-packs. Delicious and a solid IPA.

dac0152, Aug 21, 2009
Photo of akorsak
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A tumbler glass served at Al's of Hampden.

A: The IPA is an amber orange color, translucent with a small band of head that doesn't lace.

S: The aroma is chocked full of hops, bitter pine primarily. The oily aromas stand out above the malt backbone.

T: Sweet mamma jamma, this is hoppy. Pine is resinous, oily as it coats me mouth. Bitterness is sharp, peppery without the a spicy finish. Underneath the hops, the caramel malts are more than up to the task, balancing out the ale with a bready body. The hops din't stay silenced for long though, returning to leave a sharp flavor on the tongue.

M: A heavily hopped IPA that seems too strong at times. A little more balance never hurts anyone.

D: I limited myself to one glass. It seems a little to boozy to be enjoyed in multiple servings.

akorsak, Aug 20, 2009
Photo of Daniellobo
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Great US strong IPA with a sturdy hoppy backbone.

Presentation: 12 oz bottle. Recognizable racing design mixed with the Bear Republic branding, a bit kitschy and, true, the racing topic does not do it for me. Brief and assertive narrative with some nice brew master notes. Lacks date of bottling or freshness, neither shows IBUs or °Plato, only Alc. (7.0%) Poured into a tulip glass.

A - Nice golden orange color. Starts with a one inch head that turns quickly to a consistent ring on the beer and some traces on the surface. Minimum lacing as it goes down.

S - Dedicated hoppy aroma. Pine and resins predominate over the floral .

T - Hoppy bitter taste with a small sweetness lingering briefly. Quite assertive but nicely balanced.

M - A bit higher than what one typically would call medium bodied with some carbonation. It works great.

D - Very drinkable. Complex but with a sense of sturdy hoppiness that builds its character.

Notes: Not a DIPA but it is a great IPA leaning on the heavy personality side. I´m making this one a regular on my fridge for this style.

Daniellobo, Aug 19, 2009
Photo of jrallen34
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I drank this from a bottle into a chalice.

It pours a dark orange with a white head and decent lacing. THe color is a really pretty orange with and head lastes about 30 seconds.

It smells very bitter, the hops show through with a nice combination of orange and coriander peeking through. Great smell.

This tastes great, nice slow start with a citrus tinge and great smooth finish, with a very very late bitter finish. Wonderful tasting beer. Here.

jrallen34, Aug 18, 2009
Photo of kegger22
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is hazy golden with thousands of suspended particles of yeast adding body to Racer 5. The aroma was citrus, but instead of the usual grapefruit, I got a snoot full of lemon. The taste, more true to form, was grapefruit, but sweet. All those hops and no bitter aftertaste. With all those yeasties hanging around it was almost like drinking a gel, but actually just medium bodied. I'm guessing drinkability is about a 4 because by this time I've been over-self-served. Thank you very muck.

kegger22, Aug 18, 2009
Photo of alcstradamus
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice looking amber pour with a thick finger of head and solid lacing. Smell is caramel malts punctuated by sweet floral hops. Taste is malt driven with a bit of bitterness and some piney hop oils. This taste like it is perhaps past its freshness window, but since there is no bottling date I must assume it is meant to taste this way. Very solid and easy to drink, and actually somewhat tasty, but still it appears faded. Mouthfeel is on the full side of medium bodied and very oily. This one went down pretty easy but lacked the hop profile of a true standout IPA.

alcstradamus, Aug 17, 2009
Photo of TheFightfan1
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden color with thick fluffy white heading. Lot's of particulates floating in this brew. Lacing is in full force and stays till the bitter end.

Smell is more fruitier than I would have imagined a decent hoppy aroma is with hint's of biscuit and toasted malt.

Taste well the nose deceived me it is very bitter a floral tasting. Hoppy oiliness coats the entire mouth then kind of gives you a fruity punch to the palate.Until the aftertaste the hops really work overtime on the palate.

Mouth is light-medium bodied excellent carbonation. Finishes oily and with a heavy sting on the tongue from the hops.

Drink is solid. Not to crazy hoppy like some other IPA's but certainly has a nice kick for a hophead. Easy to enjoy a few of these.

TheFightfan1, Aug 16, 2009
Photo of ABOWMan
4.83/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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 13, 2009
Photo of jonziefle
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 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%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

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%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 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
Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,397 ratings.