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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.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

6,347 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,347
Reviews: 2,187
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 197
Gots: 529 | 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: 6,347 | Reviews: 2,187 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rossthefireman
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This, to me, is what the standard for IPA's should be. This IPA has a great hop flavor, great floral /citrus/grapefruit nose and good carbonation. Its the perfect balance of flavor and weight. Some IPA's get that 'heavy' taste ,(too much hops, not enough carbonation) this one doesnt but still maintains the exceptional hop flavor that IPA's should have. Altough this isnt my absolute favorite IPA ever, its in my top three. I recommend this to everyone trying their first IPA.
Great orange color on the pour, good foamy head and the aromas during the pour are fantasticly pleasing.

rossthefireman, Dec 11, 2008
Photo of yesyouam
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Racer 5 is a cloudy orange ale with many small particles. The head is a fluffy, lumpy white one. The aroma is very hoppy-- almost soapy. Fruity sweetness and citrus peel dominate. It is medium-light on the tongue and quite smooth. It has a very fresh hop flavor. the balance is well done between the hop aroma and hop flavor, as well as between the bitterness and the body. The ugli fruit flavor lingers lightly for quite a while. I have punished many a pitcher of this at Zeitgeist in SF. Classic.
(rated Jun 11, 2007)

yesyouam, Dec 11, 2008
Photo of armock
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a copper color with an off white head that leaves lacing

S - Is of a lot of citrus hops a great scent

T - Starts off with those wonderful hops and gets balanced by the malts sweetness

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

D - This is a very easy to drink IPA another solid beer from Bear Republic that I can't say anything bad about

armock, Dec 10, 2008
Photo of hoplover82
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've been waiting to try this one for a while now. I've heard a lot of good stuff about it.

I pours a hazy deep golden color. It has a nice medium head when poured vigerously in the glass, but it dissapates fast, blink one time and the head's gone. But it is creamy and leaves ok to desent lacing. Ok, the second pours, the beer has clarified a little. And the head stays a lot longer, with thicker lace.

The aroma is up in your face hops of citrus and floral and pine. As the head leaves, I pick up some pale malts. But swirl the glass good and the hops come back. I detect fresh orange zest. And lemon zest.

The flavor is pretty bitter, which is to be expected, but as it warms, the bitterness gets softer. Much softer. I get a good balance of malts and hops. Not boozy at all. Very pungent hop character. Strong citrus and resinous pine.

The mouthfeel is full bodied for sure. Has a a little dryness to it, which is good IMO. Pretty smooth for an IPA od this calaber. Really seems like a double IPA to me.

A very good IPA, glad it was recomended to me.

hoplover82, Dec 09, 2008
Photo of CoolJosh
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Split this with fellow BAer treyrab at tasting a couple weeks ago..

Pours a very hazy light copper, with a bone white 2 finger head, and as the head dissipates, a nice layer of lacing is left behind. There is very little activity in body.

In the nose, one finds a lot of lighter fruits, particularly apricot, some white grapes, orange, and a lot smoothed out sweetness.

On the palate, it comes across with a little bitterness right off the bat. Some heaviness comes in body and flavoring in the form of apricot, as mentioned above. A really smooth finish to end, with a ton of orange and grapefruit.

CoolJosh, Dec 08, 2008
Photo of gearbike
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Plain yellow color with some bubbles. Sweet grapefruit smell. Tastes like straight up hops. What make this beer exceptional is even though it has way too many hops it is not over the top. It is just a great example of a floral and bitter hoppy bear nothing more nothing less. What keeps it normal and drinkable?

gearbike, Dec 07, 2008
Photo of benclimbs
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hell yes...this is and always will be one of my favorite californian beers. If anyone ever comes to Lake Tahoe, you must have it on tap at the wonderful locals pub The Divided Sky. Pours a beautiful light color with smells of floral hops, a little pine and a light yeast effervescence. Tastes like an american IPA should, hoppy but not overkill with no noticable booze flavor and a good bitter finish.

benclimbs, Dec 06, 2008
Photo of magictrokini
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange-gold out of the bottle with a big, fluffy head. Aroma of grapefruit hops and fresh-cut pine trees. Smooth hop taste that is tempered by the malt without drowning it. More of a bittersweet West Coast IPA than a pucker bomb. Its toned-down but still has a strong hop flavor. A nice change of pace for hopheads.

magictrokini, Dec 05, 2008
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 5/9/08. Bottle. Pours a slightly cloudy orange with a foamy white head. Aroma and flavor of citrus and piney hop, some corn, sweet malt. Very drinkable, especially when cold. A little heavy mouthfeel for a single IPA, not that I minded necessarily....an awesome beer with hop deliciousness.

Update 9/14/08: Thought I'd revist this tasty IPA...Growler from Bellport Beer. Aroma of luscious pine and faint citrus. Flavor of lots of citrus (orange peel) with bitter piney hops in the finish. Quite sweet. Nicely balanced, although more on the hoppier side. Just as tasty as before! (No change in my rate).
7/4/8/4/16 (3.9/5)

LilBeerDoctor, Dec 02, 2008
Photo of clayrock81
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden orange with an amazing, soapy head that dies slowly in bunches and leaves lace all over the mug. A very large citric burst in the aroma along with hints of dry malts. While it has a huge hop burn for the taste and finishes dry, it is mostly a smooth and citric flavored beer that does dry the tongue a little as it leaves its mark (not that this is a bad thing). Didn't really taste any malts but there must be some in there because this beer's body had a subdued creaminess to it. ABV hidden well and no alcohol burn; I could have another draft of this any day of the week.

clayrock81, Dec 02, 2008
Photo of lynx1245
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Nice golden crystal clear body with a white head that recedes quickly but leaves some lacing.

Smell: Sweet, floral, citrusy. What's not to like?

Taste: Nice mixture of malts and hops. Personally I think the malts win out on this one - a little more sweet than bitter. I'm really just nitpicking though, the hop bite is still there.

Mouthfeel: Not too much carbonation with a medium body. Doesn't finish as dry as I'd like.

Drinkability: Not too bitter, very sweet. All around a very pleasant drinking experience. I'll definitely try it again. I could drink this beer til it comes out my nose (in a good way).

lynx1245, Dec 02, 2008
Photo of Squelch
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Crystal Clear golden colored. Small off white head that doesn't last a long time. Medium lacing:

Smell: Good mix of earthy, piney, lemony hop aromas. No malt aroma. could be bumped a bit more.

Taste: Wonderful hop flavor. Mildly harsh. Citrus up front followed by earthy british noble hop flavors. Nice balance with the malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Pretty heavy. Feels like an IIPA. Syrupy.

Drinkability: Very nice IPA. Will drink it again if I can find it!

Squelch, Dec 02, 2008
Photo of biboergosum
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've heard about this brewer being a leader in the West Coast Way, so I jumped at the opportunity to procure a bottle of this whilst checking out the retail beer scene in friendly Austin, Texas a few weeks ago. Best not to let the purported aromas of the the style fade away by neglecting it, so here we go, into an American pint glass...

Pours a slightly hazy pale copper colour, with a few fingers of thick puffy white head, that persists for a good while, slowly leaving a solid ring of lace around the glass. The smell is big grapefruit citrus hops, with a little bit of pine in there too. I'm not getting much in the way of specific malt, other than a general sweetness mixed in with the hop essence. The flavour is a large smack of citrus and pine hops at the front, which are quite astringent. They carry through right to the finish, dancing the watusi on my tastebuds. The malt body is there, but I only detect it in the mouthfeel, which is actually quite full, with a moderate carbonation. Any warming from the elevated alcohol is hard to discern: I'm all warm and fuzzy from a hop coma. This is indeed tasty, and obviously unbalanced at first due to all its bitter goodness. But as it warmed and I became accustomed to the bitterness, the sweet malt finish became much more evident. This slow to arrive balance would make for a decent drinkability, once suitably primed.

biboergosum, Nov 29, 2008
Photo of swizzlenuts
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

The beer is tan with a small head, but pretty damn good retention. There is a small head during the entire beer, with great lacing. The nose on the beer is sweet and hoppy, and pretty balance. Mostly a fruity aroma from the malts and yeast though. It was different than I expected. When taking a drink the beer hits you with a large amount of hop flavour and bitterness. A bit of alcohol comes through with the hops as well, which is okay. Behind the huge amount of hops comes a slightly fruity flavour, but it's hidden by the slight watery mouthfeel. The beer is pretty god damn drinkable!

swizzlenuts, Nov 29, 2008
Photo of blackjack000
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bomber bottle poured into a goblet.

Appearance: Deep honey gold. Beautiful, frothy head--thick-looking, like the head on a root beer float.

Smell: Citrus and sugary. Grapefruit rolls into my nose and singes my nosehairs.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Grapefruit comes out right off the bat. Big time. Wow. Overwhelming grapefruit flavor. Very strong grapefruit aftertaste. A sweet, malty backtaste sits in the background. The grapefruit is turned to 10, it's hard to notice anything else going on. The tingly carbonation works well to highlight the citrus puckering flavor. The overall feel almost makes me feel like I'm drinking some kind of grapefruit soda/beer drink.

Drinkability: A very nice IPA. Very distinct. However, that being said . . . I don't know if I would be down to drink more than one at a sitting. The citrus tends to blow me away. I don't think I'm man enough to sit through another wave.

blackjack000, Nov 25, 2008
Photo of hopdog
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle.

Poured a deep, hazy amber color with a large off white head. A couple of floaters. Nice hoppy, piney aroma with light citrus. Tastes for pin citrus (Grapefruit) and some light caramel in the tastes as well. Nice and bitter. Overall a very good IPA.

Notes from 10/20/04

hopdog, Nov 24, 2008
Photo of sweetbrew82
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a pint glass:

P: Pours light-copper out of the bottle and sits a very clear, deep golden-copper (almost orangish) color in the glass. Produces a fluffy, tooth-white colored head made up of medium-sized bubbles, which has great retention! It finally dies down to form a nice cap of foam on top that never quits. Leaves great, chunky webs of lacing down the glass as well.

A: Smells of ripe grapefruit, citrusy hops, and toasted malts to compliment.

T: Starts with a citrusy-twang that tastes a bit like grapefruit rinds with a toasty malt backbone that provides the trunk to which the big hop flavors seem to branch out from. Upon the dry, and quite smoooth finish, the hops provide some significant spice to the back of the throat and tongue. Racer 5 leaves an aftertaste of those same citrusy, spicy hop flavors for what seems like forever and a day. Delicious!

M: Body is medium-full, smooth, massaging, and perfect for an IPA of this character.

D: Drinkability is very high with this one. A 22 oz. bottle just seemed to vanish into thin air in a matter of minutes. Very easy drinking!

Notes: This is one excellent version of a West Coast IPA. Citrusy hops, grapefruity flavors, toasted malt backbone, with just the right amount of bitterness without being overpowering. The touch of spice on the dry, and long-lasting finish just puts a nice little ribbon and bow on this great brew! Predictable. After all, does Bear Republic ever make anything less than a stellar beer?

West Coast!!!

sweetbrew82, Nov 23, 2008
Photo of tpd975
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice amber hue with a small tight head. Very little retention with sparse lacing.

S: Bold citrus aromas with hints of cut grass. There is a sweet caramel malt character as well which balances things out nicely.

T: Nice hop profile without being overthetop. Great grapefruit flavors with hints of lemon zest. There is a real sweetness beneath, which slightly cuts thru the hops, but is a real compliment..

M: Medium in body with good carbonation.

D: Very, wonderful beer.

tpd975, Nov 22, 2008
Photo of beerbart
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a strong ale with a very citrusy smell and taste. it's sweet, but it's not.

How much sugar did you put on your grapefruit when you were a kid? A lot? Well, this is less than that.

It's bitter but it's not actively angry. It's piney, but it's not sticky.

It's good, but not a favorite.

beerbart, Nov 19, 2008
Photo of davexisxrabid
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 22 oz. bottle into a pint glass (two actually, shared this one with my girlfriend).

Nice cloudy amber coloration. Beer provided a small head which fizzled out kinda quick, but there was good carbination and lacing throughout the drinking period.

I was surprised (and so was my girlfriend because she likes sweeter beers like Lambic's and heffe's) at the sweet aroma of this beer, in a good way. There was a citrus-sweet aroma like a floral arrangement; grapefruit scenet was strong.

The taste was a good combination of malts, though the hops do come through big time, like a good IPA should. Very well balanced and not too hoppy.

Racer 5 was medium bodied; the taste sticks around on your tounge but it isn't heavy or overpowering.

I found this to be very drinkable and could definitely have more than one (my girlfriend thought so too ... good, maybe I can get her to drink more beer this way). I wouldn't go as far as to say this is a session beer because it is 7% abv, but I wouldn't mind having this one all night long.

davexisxrabid, Nov 18, 2008
Photo of beachbum1975
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to newtonty for letting me snag this 12 ouncer while watching the Bengals game.

Pours a cloudy, rusty brown with a white, attractive head. Nice lacing on the walls of my glass.

Smells of sweet grapefruit and other citrus.

Like the nose, the predominant flavor is moderately bitter grapefruit. Bitter through the middle and end of the drink. Nice and hop forward with just the right amount of malts to keep things in check.

Medium bodied and medium to full flavored beer. Very drinkable and worth trying!

beachbum1975, Nov 16, 2008
Photo of bigkahunas4
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into a pint glass.

My initial pour of this was underwhelming - a copper orange with really minimal head. Nose was of stale hops, pine and citrus alike. Flavors mild and subdued. To me it was a bit above average.

However, after it had sit for about 15 minutes before I filled my pint again, what a complete turnaround. Huge 2 finger head, that had some incredible peaks and valleys. Extremely frothy and just providing a second layer to the glass.

Nose really came alive, and some really sweet hops jumped out at me. Taste was much more fresh and had a nice wooden character to it. Big biscuity malt backbone moved to a nice array of hops. Great texture and just really was a delight.

Pop this one open and let it sit in the bottle for a good 10-15 minutes before serving this one - and you'll have one of the better IPAs you've ever had.

bigkahunas4, Nov 14, 2008
Photo of hiikeeba
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours up a hazy orange/amber with a rocky white head.

S - Citrusy hops dominate. Slight malt sweetness in the background.

T- Sweet malt at the back of the tonue, slightly nutty with citrus hop finish on the back of the tongue. Nice balance.

M - Medium mouthfeel.

D - Very nice. Hop aroma is slightly betrayed by the aroma. I was expecting more hops. Tastes more like an English pale ale than a California pale ale.

hiikeeba, Nov 11, 2008
Photo of rtepiak
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a solid IPA look. amber clear with a slightly off white head. thick head that taste really delicious upon first sip. sort of leaves the rest at a stand still. when dissipated. nose is that quintessential IPA citrus candy. similar to the marsala mama... great body but i am left wishing for the body in the first pour. taste is pine, particularly grapefruit and pineapple blend. orange mandarin... nice. well rounded. with a great malt backbone. a good session IPA. not as sweet as some.

rtepiak, Nov 11, 2008
Photo of mattffrost
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into glass.

Appearance Beer is a light amber that is neither clear nor really cloudy kind of in the middle of the two. Head is white. Decent lacing on the glass.

Smell Very nice citrus/grapefruit/lemon smell. I also get a bit of carmel. Very pleasant beer to smell. Very nice hops.

Taste I like the taste of Big IPA's and Racer 5 is a great example of this style. The low carbonation with the citrus up front finishes a little bitter which I really like. I also note the spiceness and a touch of sweet carmel taste. I reall think this beer has a lot going on and its well balanced.

Mouthful: Low carbonation with the tanginess in the mouth is reall cool. Very pleasant.

Drinkability. So refresing I really like drinking these IPA's like this one.

mattffrost, Nov 10, 2008
Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,347 ratings.