1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

6,481 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,481
Reviews: 2,193
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 209
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: 6,481 | Reviews: 2,193 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of OldYoda
3.68/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, hazy golden amber with a small head that rapidly disappears leaving some nice residual lacing.

Smell is subdued with an overlay of hops and a whiff of malty sweetness.

Taste is initially hops with a nice dry finish and a good balancing sweetness.

Mouthfeel is clean and dry.

Drinkability is fine - several of these is no problem. For a hophead, this is a very nice effort from Bear Republic. Bravo!!

OldYoda, Aug 31, 2009
Photo of GordonQuid
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a dimpled pub mug.

Golden orange sun with a frothy one inch head that dissapates to a quarter inch head with ample lacing.

Smells of the typical American IPA; citrus and pine with an orange rind note.

Taste is fresh citrus hops and sweet malt blend. The hops linger in the finish. Quite appetizing and satisfying.

Easy drinker very smooth.

GordonQuid, Aug 29, 2009
Photo of JordonHoltzman
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle

very orangy amber, with a white bubbly pinky's head. pretty translucent. bubbly lace follows the path of the height of the beer. (EDIT: the last pour turned the beer from a very clear body to hazy, i'm guessing thats the yeast from the bottom)
this beer has a citrusy aroma as well as very floral. the website says columbus and cascade hops are used. no traces of alcohol come to the nose.
this is a great tasting IPA. aroma matches the taste very well. citrusy and very hoppy. i get a small lemony taste in there as well.
the cardonation is slightly higher than medium, but i wouldnt say its high and i wouldnt say its too much either. its on the dry side but not too dry.
i'm in an IPA tasting phase, and i don't like to compare, but i had abita's jockamo IPA yesterday, and this certainly tops it.
this is my first bear republic brew, and i have to say its pretty good. i have no clue where i can get a hold of their racer X, but who knows maybe i'll find that in a glass of mine in the future, but i'll be trying other bear republics for certain.

JordonHoltzman, Aug 27, 2009
Photo of saztheorybook
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Beautiful golden brown with a thick yellow-cake head that drops off pretty quickly but leaves some pretty nice lacing.
S- Reeks of fresh hops, spicy and herbal with the tiniest fruit character.
T-There is a surprisingly deep malt character, a low hop bitterness but loads of fruit and floral tastes in the hop itself. A nice rounded and subtle yeastiness is there in back as well.
M-Pretty smooth and rich. For the number of streams of bubbles on this beer, there is very little carbonation bite. This is how I dig 'em.
D- Dangerously quaffable. Now I know why people talk about this one so much. I'd probably take a 90 Minute over this, but for the price, yeah, I'll have another twelve.

saztheorybook, Aug 25, 2009
Photo of adamette
3.48/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into my Cooperstown Beverage Trail pint glass. Purchased a few months ago at Giant Eagle in Painesville, Ohio. The second of 4 Bear Republic beers that I bought a bomber of and will be drinking and rating this week.

A Nice orange brown body under a brief but creamy head. Good lacing too. Solid IPA look. 4.0

S Typical grapefruit hops, maybe some malt. One of maybe 30 of these IPAs that all smell the same really. 3.0

T Malt, hops, both with high concentration. Grapefruit and citrus is strong in this one. Reminds me of a Bell's Two Hearted but is more citrusy, more tart. I prefer the Two Hearted for sure but it is in the same genre. 3.5

M Full with big tastes, hops and malt. 4.0

D Maybe a bit above average for the style. 3.5

Notes: I decided a while ago to continue to try all styles but I am really getting bored of IPAs. To me they are too one dimensional and frankly, don't taste good. This one is a solid IPA with big tastes in the genre of Bell's Two Hearted but I am bored.

adamette, Aug 25, 2009
Photo of Morey
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a cloudy orange color with a decent cream colored head that has some serious clinging action.

Aroma is a fantastic and powerful combination of grapefruit and hops.

Taste is more of the same. A very citrusy, well hopped flavor with lingering bitterness.

Medium mouthfeel.

I could definitely drink quite a few of these, I don't know if I consider it a session ale, but pretty close.

Morey's Bottom Line: VERY similar to Bell's Two Hearted, and I mean VERY similar. Which obviously means that it's darn good.

Morey, Aug 24, 2009
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
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.

Georgiabeer, Aug 24, 2009
Photo of JEdmund
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance
Sunset orange glow with a healthy head that settles to 1/4" cap

Smell
Citrus and very fruity; nice, big aroma

Taste & Mouthfeel
Lots of sharp hoppiness throughout; seems to start off with piney hops but then more citrus flavors come in mid-way; the finish is of caramel sweetness--almost toffeelike with a hint of toasted flavor; medium bodied, velvety texture; the Cascade hops make the beer feel familiar, as many American IPAs use this variety; fairly big beer, so not something I could drink multiples of in one sitting

Overall
Racer 5 definitely competes with the best of American IPAs, but for some reason it doesn't seem to stand out. Maybe it's just me from having too many IPAs lately, or maybe there's not enough going on in the recipe to keep me interested. I'd recommend it to anyone, but I don't see it working its way into my regular rotation.

JEdmund, Aug 22, 2009
Photo of ocelot2500
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy orange amber color with a rising white head that falls into a ring. Plenty of lacing left on the glass.

Smells of a big dose of citrus and pine hops.

Tastes of the big citrus and pine hops. Also a pale malt presence. A lot less bitter on the finish than I would expect given the nose.

Mouthfeel is a smooth medium body. A good amount of carbonation to keep from being creamy or rough.

This is very drinkable.

ocelot2500, Aug 21, 2009
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

M-medium

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
Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,481 ratings.