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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.

6,774 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,774
Reviews: 2,223
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 232
Gots: 720 | 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:
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: 6,774 | Reviews: 2,223 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of exparte
4.16/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle. Lovely strong aroma of sweet malt and pineapple citrus hops. Beautiful clear golden color with a substantial sticky white head that forms a web down the glass. Quite bitter but even more sweet. Full bodied and smooth with a long finish that manages to be both sweet and bitter. Finely crafted but a bit too sweet for my taste.

Photo of cdizinno
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz brown bomber with no freshness date.

A: Slightly hazy golden amber with floaties. Minimal white head with some lacing.

S: Clean, fresh citrus hop aroma. Light alcohol and toasted malt lay underneath the hops.

T&M: Crisp, smooth up front with a medium body. Mostly citrus, semi-sweet with a mild piney hop taste. Semi-rough carbonation and hop bitterness on the fade.

Very good IPA. Probably not at the top of my favorites, but high quality nonetheless.

Photo of donkeyrunner
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Like Bear Republic, don't like their lawsuit.

Gold with floating yeasties bobbing around. Bulbous white head forms a mound in the glass center like a turtle shell. Retention is said turtle shell descending like a scuba diver when the tide is going out. That's a good thing.

Pineapple, grapefruit and soft pine aroma. Taste is citrus and tropical fruit (lots of pineapple) hop with a full resiny mouthfeel. Though hop forward, the malt puts up a fight in it's own right being just the right amount of dryness and just the right amount of fullness. I'm getting watermelon with the swallow?

Though I will stand up for East coast IPAs in their own right (Berkshire Lost Sailor, Smuttynose, Mayflower, etc) I'm a sucker for a West coast citrus bomb. This is a go to when I have the urge.

Photo of TCHopCraver
4.27/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: At first glance, I'm a little disappointed by the look of this brew. In a standard pint glass, it looks a little thin, with a see-through golden orange color. A medium-hard pour leaves about a 1/2 finger head that fades quickly. The carbonation looks great, however, as does the thin, thready, lacing the sticks on the side of the glass.

S: Mostly sweet citrus notes come upfront; is is a nice orange and lemon scent. A little bit of oily, pine-y hops support the citrus smell. As with the appearance, the word thin comes to mind. It does not have a big aroma, but it does have a nice aroma.

T: The taste, however, is not thin and this makes this guy quite happy. There is a very delicious balance between the sweet citrus flavors and the pleasant, dry, pine hop tastes. The finish has that nice, lingering dryness that I really enjoy from a quality IPA.

M: A good, warming feel that spreads joy to all parts of the palate. Crisp and refreshing in the mouth.

D: Not a palate-ruining IPA at all and its crisp, clean citrus tastes lead me to believe that I could drink several of these puppies and be pretty joyful.

Photo of Bfarr
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice bright orange color with virtually no head (which may have been the way it it was poured). It has a wonderfully robust fruity hop aroma complements the sweetness of the beer. A nice velvety feel lingers with the bitterness and sweet alcohol flavor.

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

I was sent this beer unsolicited by one of my traders because I had previously given it a very bad review. he felt I should give it another try... Thanks Russ (2dogbrew)!

Bottle poured into pint glass

pours a pale apricot color. Whitish head lasts half way through before becoming a swirl of faint bubbles. Chunks of lacing remain firmly in place.

Smells of grapefruit and citrus hops. Not smelling malts, but it is still rather pleasant. So far, much better than the other one I had.

Taste follows nose. There is a nice sweetness present from the malts. Also this one had a slight sour citrus- like a hint of lemony goodness. Actually very pleased.

This is right where it should be for an A IPA. Good light/medium body with solid amount of carbonation.

I will delete my original review. This guy deserves an A.

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

On Cask @ The Grey Lodge

Look: Amber orange, clear, with thick head and excellent lacing

Smell: Citrus and pine - very floral!

Taste: Up Front: Sweet malt, citrus. particularly orange
Finish: Apricot, tropical fruit, and nice malt backbone

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation with a creamy and smooth body

Drinkability: Malty, fruity, and not too hoppy. Very easy to drink

Overall Impression: This is an excellent IPA from California! This beer should go over well with Newbeez that do not have an aversion to hops.

Photo of erosier
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Pours a nice clear orange yellow color with a medium bodied and short off white colored head that laces the glass a bit on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet toasted malts, a nice citrus aroma, followed by a nice blend of earthy, piney, and citrus-y hop aromas to finish.
T: Tastes of sweet toasted malts - just the right amount for this beer - followed by a perfectly executed blend of earthy, floral, citrus-y, and some piney hops. It's not too bitter and not overhopped at all.
M: Very crisp, fresh, refreshing, light bodied, perfect amount of carbonation.
D: Very drinkable beer, the flavors blend well and it's a pretty sessionable IPA.

Photo of ocmpoma
4.77/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep orange-gold into my pilsner glass. Settled down with a couple of millimeters of foam which faded out. The beer leaves some great lacing.

The nose is strong. Extremely complex, with lots of citrus and tang and hops, and even some mustiness, all mixing together -- it's a great aroma, one of the best I've experienced in an IPA. And the taste delivers what is promised by the nose: a very rich, very complex and lasting flavor. The bitterness is not only balanced, but enhanced by the complexity of the flavors. There's lemon and candied orange and I get some mint and spices... it's a wonderfully rich taste that's hard to describe fully -- knocks me out with each swig.

The mouthfeel is just a bit thin for such a great, complex beer, but it's so delicious I could drink a sixer if I wasn't careful. An absolutely outstanding beer, one of my favorites.

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

A: Hazy, honey amber, mildly carbonated with a slight, creamy, short-lived head and light lacing

S: Citrusy, slightly grassy with faint alcohol

T: Hops up front, with some hints of a honey malt, mild alcohol, and a bitter hop finish that stays for a while

M: Wow-- this stuff is smooth. Perfect carbonation

D: Very drinkable beer that I could easily see becoming a staple IPA in my beer diet.

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

Pours a yellowy copper color with medium white head which dissipates quickly for an IPA, but leaves plenty of lacing. Lots of visible carbonation in the beer.

Lots of pine and citrus aromas, with a bit of an herbal/grassy note as well. Taste is very bitter, lots more hop flavors and very grassy flavors. Plenty of citrus as well, with less pine. A bit of malt comes through but is subtle compared to the hops flavors.

The bitterness of this beer combines with a bit of sweetness to produce a light to medium body, and the carbonation gives it a bit of a crisp, almost silky feel in the mouth.

Photo of Celt44
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I've always eyed this one but have never picked it up..here goes..

Appearance - Transparent light gold - very light for the style...Nice frothy head and lacing that lasts...

Aroma - Piney floral hops up front...Malty, bready aroma towards the end...

Taste - Excellent - Citrusy and sweet. Hops are not overly bitter...just right. Finishes with a sweetness that reminds me of prunes....

Mouthfeel - The smoothest IPA I've had in recent memory....almost silky.

Drinkability - One of the best. I like different types of IPAs and this one is an excellent hoppy treat. Great job Bear Republic...

Photo of nukem5
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A:First pour differs from 2nd pour, 1st is clear and bubbly fine lacing and nice head; 2nd is mostly the same but has yeasty bits floating around.

S: Very hoppy and citrus aroma resonates throughout nice floral

T: Very hopped up and smooth. Every sip is a mouthful of grapefruit and lemon ... mmm

M: Creamy and rich nice body, medium.

D: Like this one could drink a few on tap and would be liking it very much.

Photo of WYVYRN527
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Golden to amber in color, with a white head that settles to a thick film on the surface. Lacing and carbonation are both quite good.

S: Mainly piney, citrusy, and floral hop aromas along with biscuity malt and a bit of honey.

T: Very balanced, as this brew displays notes of grass, cedar, pineapple, and citrus, along with bready, honey-like malt notes also with a bit of caramel. Finish is crisp and dry.

M: A bit light for what I was expecting, but still flavorful with a very long finish.

D: This is a damn fine example of an American IPA. Very balanced, yet on the hoppy side, it goes down easy. It's a shame that this beer is not available here. Thanks Tyler!

Photo of Seanibus
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What a luscious beer.

Pours clear orange with a fluffy but short-lived head (though I have seen it on draft where it is quite cloudy. I have yet to have anyone explain this to me, but it seems far too extreme for chill haze. But maybe).

The aroma is quite hoppy, fresh and crisp, with pine and grapefruit. The flavor is clean and hoppy, strong pine, strong grapefruit, maybe some simcoe there? The malt is just a backbone for the gorgeous West Coast hop bombing, but the overall effect is not out of balance for the type.

The mouthfeel is clingy, highlighting the deep hop bitterness that lingers. There may be a hint of alcohol heat in there too, but nothing unbalanced.

Dangerously drinkable.

Photo of climax
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Racer 5 poured an amber/yellow with a good rocky off-white head. It had good clarity for the most part, considering the bottle fermenting yeast floating around in there.

The nose had excellent hop complexity. Oily grapefruit and orange, pine, and some soapiness. The malt balances pretty well but doesn't take the emphasis from the hops. It wasn't overly strong though, but fresh and clean.

The flavor had that extra oomph to it, lacking from the smell. Very resiny and soapy, the hops had everything; floral, spicy, piny, and citrus. The complexity of the hop profile was excellent, covered every base I could think of. The malt backbone kept out of the spotlight but the presence was none to shabby to say the least. It was toasty and semi-sweet, with even some chocolate and coffee tones chiming in as it warmed up. The alcohol was well masked.

The feel was very lively. It had a good chewy thick feel to it, the bubbly carbonation kept it crisp and interesting. The dry finish lingered long and kept me wanting another sip to quench and ponder. It is definitely a no dillly-dallying IPA, awesome flavor.

Photo of Tinfoilrcr
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to mentor for sending me this one as an extra!

A- pours a hazy gold, with about an inch of head from a bomber. The white head dissipates quickly leaving behind larger bubbles along the outer rim of the beer, along with lots of lacing.

S- I get lots of hops with a subtle malty and possibly a spicy zest in the background.

T- Lots of hops upfront, but the initial flavor is tamed by the malts that finish it. Lots of earth mixed in with the malts. Goes down very easy.

M- substantial mouthfeel, but very well balanced without leaning too much to any spectrum.

D- Dangerous. Good easily sit down and have a few of these.

Photo of mtyrrell
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark gold color with a small head that recedes fairly quickly leaving a patch of foam and some lacing.

S- Fruity and floral. Strong grapefruit smell with some floral components in the background

T- Mostly grapefruit with some floral background like the nose. malty sweet throughout, but especially in the finish

M- medium body, good carbonation. bitter, dry, medium long finish

D- This is a pretty good IPA. Nothing crazy going on here but definitley not boring either.

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

On the bottle: "Keep cold, respect life, don't D+D, real ale is alive, yeast is good"

A: Pours a slightly off-looking transparent straw/copper color. The head is small and fluffy and retains only for a few seconds. Slightly cloudy as well.

S: Starts off with a fragrant sweet note; honey, residual sugars, and a slight whiff of brown sugar. The hops are definitely intense, but the malt background balances very nicely. Smells more like a DIPA than a classic rendition of an AIPA. Nice notes of citrus (lemon peel)

T: Very nice flavor profile. All of that sweetness seems to disappear into a hop heaven. Earthy, floral, fragrant, and bittering aspects of the hops come out. The malt backbone is a slight bit biscuity, and gives a firm balance, but hops are definitely dominant. Not as bitter as some of the other Bear Republic brews (Hop Rod in particular), but definitely intense in its own right. The alcohol (which I just noticed now) is actually very nicely hidden. You get the warmth as it goes down, but not noticeable as you drink.

MF/D: Medium/heavy in body for the style, lingering honey/piney hop finish. Very balanced and highly drinkable.

Really good with a spicy dish. I tried this with homemade Panang Curry and it was perfect!

Photo of TheJollyHop
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium amber, thick one inch of off white head. Great retention and beautiful cylindrical lacing.

Prominent floral nose, tropical fruits, subtle citrus fruits...very sweet hop aroma.

Light herbal hop taste, followed by hints of orange and grapefruits. This is a very hop centric brew, that grabs you from the get go and doesn't let go. Biscuit malt sweetness and grain help keep some semblance of balance. Somewhat dry finish with a bitterness that dawdles, albeit smoothly.

Light to medium carbonated with a thin body. Light on the tongue and good for the style.

No harshness or woodiness, coupled with intense hop flavor and good mouthfeel makes this brew a good sipper.

Photo of bosox941827
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into imperial pint glass; served cold and warmed as I tasted it...Recommended by clerk at the great Sam's Quik Mart in Durham, NC.

A - It's "alive", so has a cloudy look to its (light) orange color. Soapy head dissipates fairly quickly. Lighter (looking) than most IPAs.
S - NICE nose to this; soapy, grapefruit-y hops; promising...
T - Pervasive hoppiness, balanced with a nice, continuous backbone of malty sweetness. Just before you get of alcohol at the end, there's a hint of orange/grapefruit pith, that is really distinct. Hangs around for a bit too...
M - Smooth, as a result of low carbonation and un-filtered-ness
D - Could easily down a few of these and enjoy the helll out of them.

Overall a very solid IPA and wil be looking for more from this brewery.

Photo of fastsrt
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle in a tulip
A: golden orange with a soap like one finger head
S: Piney, earthy, citrus hop aroma.
T: balanced this tastes wonderful malt up front carbonation carries on to a dry hoppy finish. ipa's that taste like liquid hops with no malt backbone are a big turn off for me.
M: lighter body, refreshing, finishing dry. the sweetness of the malts are just enough to off set the hops yielding a perfect finish, driving me to go for another swig. this is a wonderfully crafted ipa.
D: ipa's are my least drinkable style, but I could put these down, due the fact this beer has balance and tastes refreshing.

Photo of lumikuuro
3.77/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

650ml bottle.

Appearance: Cloudy orange, with no hint of head forming at all during the first half of the pour, so I poured the rest very aggressively. Formed a small head that rapidly receded to large bubbles around the edges but left good lacing.

Aroma: Very citrusy hop, nothing else. Standard but decent.

Taste: Lots of grapefruit, lots of orange. This gives it lots of flavour, and the orange mellows and smooths the beer. Impressed with this aspect. Bitter hop finish doesn't stay strong as long as you would expect for the style, however. 7% abv is decently camouflaged. Moderately crisp, slight dryness.

Mouthfeel: Well. There is sensible carbonation in this beer, so what was the problem with the head? Also, this beer is refermented in the bottle, so some natural sediment is to be expected... but I unexpectedly got a chunk the size of a raisin. That's a bit much. Otherwise functional.

Drinkability: Maybe I was unlucky with the size of sediment; if that's how this beer is, along with the poor head and retention, they need to print on the label that the beer should be gently agitated first. As it is, I really liked the fruitiness, but found the length of hop finish too short and the appearance and mouthfeel a bit lacking.

Worth a try for the lovely orange and grapefruit flavour, but shake the bottle first.

Photo of Gribbs23
3.39/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle pour into your run o' the mill pint glass.

Initial sniff after pour was fantastic- got that really piney hop hit. Golden color with minimal head. Admittedly surprised at all the hype given to this IPA because I honestly didn't get it in the taste. Malty with some floral and pine hop aftertaste- expected more. Overall a decent enough IPA, but somewhat middle of the pack for me.

Photo of minnunderground
2.96/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


clear amber color very light tan soapy head with some retention clinging, smells like pine and grass clippings, really a odd smell not like other ipas I have had. Seriously the smell reminds me of something more earthy. taste is a huge dissapointment. Malty with some pine hops at the end to back it up but very weak. Easy to drink since the flavor is weak. Not going to lie, my least favorite IPA I have had.

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,774 ratings.