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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.

6,900 Ratings

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Ratings: 6,900
Reviews: 2,236
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 256
Gots: 808 | FT: 11
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: 6,900 | Reviews: 2,236
Photo of youngblood
4.16/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very golden copper with a huge craggy white head. Looks very lively. This looks amazing and out of control.
Smells very citrusy. Lots of grapefruit and lime rind. Small bit of malt sweetness lying underneath.
Taste follows scent closely with the exception that there is a bit more fresh cut grass taste to it. Wonderful! As it warms, the caramelly malts make themselves more known.
Feels great on the mouth, smooth and slightly sticky. Great drinkability.

Photo of barnzy78
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. I had this previously and wasn't crazy about it. Re-taste:

Rigorous pour revealed a light orange colored ale with some mild particulates. Head was bubbly but thin, off-white in color, and had good retention with decent lacing on the glass. Aroma was terrific - hop presence of pine and citrus, with hints of caramel malt. Tastes were mild caramel malt followed with strong earthy pine and citrus. Seemed to lack complexity, but is well balanced with a bitter, lingering hop finish. Hop resins coat the mouth well, especially towards the end of the ale as it warms. Overall, very good example of the style, but again for some reason I'm not crazy over it.

Photo of MetalHopHead6
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a shaped pint glass.

Racer 5 poured cloudy and dark gold with a thick three-finger head that became a creamy pillow and left a moderate amount of lace. Immediately after the pour, it perfectly filled the glass and looked like a poster-child for how a beer should look.

The smell was very citrusy, like a freshly sliced grapefruit. The flavor, however, was earthy and grassy. I've never experienced such a contrast from smell to taste. Both were wonderful, yet not alike. The best beers get better as they get less cold and the taste of Racer 5 got more complex, more layered, and more better as I eased through the glass. The feel was gritty, aggressively bitter, and dry.

As IPAs go, gritty is a good word for Racer 5, which feels like a dingy, dark dive bar on a chilly and rainy spring day.

Photo of SeattleAdam
4.52/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours golden with amazing 1.5 finger foamy white head. Pretty damn clear.

S- Citrus, floral, piny. Everything you want to smell in a hoppy American I.P.A.

T- Takes a second to bloom. Hits cold and explodes into piny, citrus, goodness. Finishes very clean.

M- Effervescent, medium bodied and carbonated perfectly. Not heavy in the least and not thin and fizzy by any stretch of the imagination.

D- Very drinkable. This is a great American I.P.A. This is is my favorite stlye so I'm a little biased but the great crisp, refreshing, piny taste is there. Pour me another please!

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

A) Pours a deep golden with a frothy white thick head.

S) Lots of hop aroma eminating from pint glass.

T) Lots of hoppy, grassy, piney, grapefruit with hints of fruit.

M) Excellent mouthfeel.

D) This is a beer is very sessionable to me. Loved its tase, mouthfeel. A very drinkable IPA.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of nectar14
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a 22 oz bomber...
Has a pleasant light copper/gold color and a 1/4 to 1/2 inch white head that does fade rather quickly, leaving decent lacing on the glass. Smells piny and hoppy (which I like). Has a very nice combination of bitter hops on the palate and maltiness. The two balance each other nicely; this is not an over-the-top Hop Bomb. Mouthfeel is also pleasant, and this drinks very smoothly. Very easy to like, and at the moment, this is my favorite California IPA next to the Ballast Point Sculpin... it's wonderfully balanced and very drinkable. I found it for $2.99 for 22 oz, which ain't too bad. Solid.

Photo of gabe23
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Clear copper color with a rocky, off white head. It faded quickly and left scattered lacing.

S - Nice fruity, citrusy hop aroma with slightly sweet undertones.

T - Grapefruit bitterness hits up front, but a surprisingly sweet malt backbone balances things out. Sharp hop bite on the finish, but no lingering aftertaste.

M - Very smooth and creamy going down. Moderate carbonation.

D = This is a very good IPA. I always expect anything from the west coast to be a completely unbalanced hop bomb, but that wasn't the case with Racer 5. If it wasn't so damned expensive, this would be in my regular rotation.

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

The color is golden with a good head that falls apart quickly. It smells very sticky, piny, citrusy, all things hoppy. Tastes bitter with hardly any malt character. Mouthfeel is good, just enough body. Drinkability is good. I would have this again and again, one of the best IPA's I've tried.

Photo of IMincedTheKing
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle is dated 2/25/09. I'll assume that's a "bottled on" date.

Pours a dark gold with a small head that retreats back to a ring of foam.

The pleasant hop aroma is accented by fresh citrus--mostly lime. A light maltiness is there, but the lime has captured most of my attention.

Surprisingly sweet on the palate. A lot of caramel and vanilla. The citrus hops cut in like a knife, bittering the brew but never dominating. There's a good amount of body and light carbonation. The aftertaste is of rinds and mildly astringent--just astringent enough to make me want for another sip.

I'm not too familiar with the style, but this is obviously a quality IPA. I could go for a glass or two every now and then.

Photo of projectflam86
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours golden orange with a slight amber hue. Frothy white foam that leaves nice lacing.

S- Floral pine hop nose with some sweet honey and malt scents. Some typical citrus notes as well.

T- Nice piney hop flavor initially. Sweet caramel malt backbone balances nicely leading to a pleasant finish. Not much alcohol flavor to speak of. The hop bitterness seems to be a combination of citrus esters and pine tastes but balanced very well by the malty sweetness.

M- Medium/light bodied. Smooth and well balanced (all most too much for a hophead).

D- Nice IPA to get someone into the style. The hops are very much present but not dominating.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Golden with an orange hue; excellent lacing and a good head.

S: Lots of citrusy hops. For an IPA, lots of malt to intrigue what's coming to the palate.

T: Plenty of hops at the outset. A smooth, slightly caramel malt behind all the hops. A bready/biscuit flavor is there, but the hops certainly dominate.

M: Nice and creamy for an IPA. Goes down incredibly smooth.

D: Ask for another! This is one terrific IPA, and I can't wait to get out to CA to try more of Bear Republic's brews.

Photo of drgonzo3705
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Happy to do the 1,001st review for this brew!

A: Pours a pretty pale copper color with a thin fluffy white head that leaves nice sticky lacing in its wake.

S: Nice crisp citrus nose with a touch of pine blended in.

T: Big grapefruit up front with the pine laying low underneath. A touch of malt and a nice hop presence.

M: Medium body with good carbonation. Hop oiliness left in your mouth.

D: All night long!

Photo of tronester
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy golden with a big tan head. Smell is of toasted sugar and citrus. Taste has a sturdy malt backbone with a ton of caramel and biscuit in the flavor. A nice pine flavor finishes the beer nicely, as well as a hint of citrus peel. Bitterness levels match up with the malt nicely. Mouthfeel is super creamy, very nice carbonation. Bottle Conditioned. Quite drinkable, a good IPA that I plan to drink again.

Photo of grayburn
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A frothy sunburnt orange into the glass with big head and nice lacing. Cloudy with some sediment floating about.

Spot on American IPA nose, very citrusy with some minty notes coming on in the back

An excellently well rounded brew, the taste and mouthfeel combine perfectly into a creamy bitter blend. There is just enough carbonation to carry the flavor around, with a sweet almost vanilla note on the finish. Great.

I could drink this beer all night, hides the abv well, excellent beer.

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

Beer is a nice dark golden orange color with a pale white head. Nice carbonation bubbles trailing the sides of the glass.

The first thing i noticed when I opened the bottle was a nice floral aroma of hops. The beer keeps putting out a pleasant floral hop aroma from the glass.

The taste is excellent. An excellent hop bitterness throughout the whole sip. A nice malt background. Finishes with a strong hop bite.

Mouthfeel is resiny from the hops and slightly bitter.

I would drink this beer over and over, a great American IPA

Photo of AtlasBrew
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color: Deep Gold with a pillowy off-white head that has great retention and leaves a wonderful lace around the glass as the level sinks.

Aroma: An outstanding spicy citrus aroma with just a touch of floral-ness and slight sweet undertone.

Taste: A powerful blend of spicy citrus flavors with a touch of floral flavor and a tint of semi-sweet malt underneath it all. But naturally there is the hops...glug glug...and lots of it! The bitterness says hello towards the end and stays for the after party making for a semi-dry finish. What is it about those hops that fascinates me?

Overall: I'll not tell you that this is the best IPA I every had but it's in my top ten.

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

Presentation: 22 oz bottle into a nonic.

A- Clear golden/slightly copper....last bit poured carelessly in renders drink hazy and sediment laced. Pours with 2+ fingers of creamy off white head, which fades slowly to a solid cap; excellent retention. Ample lacing.

S- Nice pine/grapefruit, and slightly floral hoppiness. Slightly malty notes emerge behind the surge of hops.

T- Pine/herbal hops bitterness, orange peel on the finish. All followed with some solidly sweet caramel malt. Alcohol is well blended.

M- Moderate carbonation with a medium feel. Moderately dry on the finish.

D- Good. Looks great....smells and tastes very good....goes down easy.

Future outlook: Very good. I'd be happy to have this again.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.02/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. 7% ABV, "Brewmaster's Notes: Keep cold, respect life, don't D+D, real ale is alive, yeast is good, serve at 45°-50°F" No date.

A - Floaties fill the bottle so I just dump the whole thing into my pint anyway. For how vigorous the pour is, a modest two-finger white head is surprising. Nice lace coats the glass above the slightly hazy golden-yellow beer though.

S - A fantastic floral and citrusy American hop bouquet erupts from this beer. Notes of resiny pine, grapefruit, and even hints of orange peel come out. Malty backbone supports the hops nicely.

T - A big smack of hops hits the tongue instantly. It's predominantly resin-flavored but grapefruit is big too. A laid-back malt profile doesn't really show it's face but still provides a fantastic backbone for the hearty hops. The resin almost becomes slightly plastic-resin like though.

M - Medium-bodied and smooth initially with a nicely balanced carbonation level and an even better balanced semi-strong bitter finish. Lingering resin notes add some dryness.

D - A solid, very well-done IPA better my second time around for sure. It's best feature is the balance it carries with the hops and backing malts. This pint zoomed down the hatch but one is enough for this guy.

Rereview. Changed from a 3.3 B-

Photo of citan133
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a smuttynose pint glass from a 12oz bottle purchased at Julio's in Westborough, MA.

Almost no head to speak of, just a very thin, bright white layer of foam that barely covers the beer and dissipates quickly, leaving a very thin ring around the edge of the beer as I drink it. Not a bad color, sort of a light orange. Looks like an ipa.

Smells pretty good, some citrus and fruit hops coming through. Not real intense but some nice smells going on.

Kind of basic, light mouthfeel, pretty bitter hops in the middle and the finish, a little sweetness in the front. Hops are just nice and bitter, not really any fruit coming through and the malt shows up a little in the beginning but is quickly overpowered by the hops. Not an intense bitterness but kind of subdued, just enough to please a hophead but not enough to turn on someone who doesn't normally drink an ipa.no alcohol to speak of.

Kind of nice, maybe light to medium. Hops leave that bitterness on your tongue for a while but nothing cloying.

I could definitely drink a bunch of these in a sitting when it comes to flavor, probably a very nice summer time ipa, refreshing. nothing crazy going on but a solid, drinkable ipa. I'd pick up a six for a hot day but nothing that floored me, even for a regular ipa.

Photo of mjl21
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter. No bottling info is given and comes in at 7%.

A-Color reminds me of orange marmalade. Has a 1/2 finger white head that dissolves quickly, leaving scattered clumps of foam and a small ring.

S-Citrus hops as well as some floral hops hit fast giving this a really nice hoppy bouquet. Also pick up some sweet malt notes.

T-The hops hit fast. Once it hits my mouth orange zest comes quickly followed by grapefruit. Pine can also be detected. This beer leaves a really good level of bitterness.

M-Medium bodied with a light level of carbonation that works well for the beer.

D-The 7% is extremely well hidden and all those hops along with the fact that it is not sweet mean it is highly drinkable.

A great beer that can meet my hop demands and it is easily available.Along with SNPA, this has been my old standby for years when out at local restaurants and/or pubs with limited beer menus.

Photo of steelerguy
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours golden with a 1 finger off white head. Head fades quickly leaving lacing on top. Lightly carbonated and quite clear, with heavy lacing as I drank.

S - Sweet malt and floral hops. If there were a such thing as a beer flower, this is how it would smell.

T - Sweet caramel malt taste, some unfermented sugars, balanced very well by the floral hop bitterness. Can definitely pick up some alcohol in there, but in a good way, lets you know this beer is packing. I would have guessed this beer to be a DIPA considering the strong malt backbone and hop counter punch.

M - Thicker than expecting, not heavily attenuated. Feels like a bigger beer than a regular IPA.

D - This is a beer to sit down and savor. Enjoy one or two, but it got a bit tiring as I drank more. This is called an IPA, but felt like a DIPA to me and because of that it is only so drinkable even though it is quite good.

Photo of jizdepski
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from tap into an imperial pint glass. appears a golden orange with a very nice looking thick white head that slowly dissipates, but leaves beautiful webs of sticky, crystaline lacing. smells as advertised, floral hops, herbs (particularly oregano), some grassy notes, slight citrus sweetness. taste follows smell, though it is VERY herbal tasting when it warms; almost in a medicinal way.i have drank this beer several times, and cold and room temp glasses make a big difference here. i think i'd opt for the cold normally, but its just a nitpick. has nice lively hops, some citrus notes, with the alcohol barely noticed. the mouthfeel is medium bodied, not overly carbonated but has a nice zip going on. tasty bitter finish. fairly drinkable. a very interesting and bold (though not traditional) ipa. recommended.

Photo of DNICE555
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into an english pint glass. Decent white head with an average amount of carbonation. Hazy grapefruit color. Some nice lacing rings the glass even after I've finished.

This beer smelled very good. Citrusy, tangy, piney hops.

Taste was right on point. Crisp clean hops with some zing to them. Not overly piney and not very bitter.

Medium body with some nice citrusy high notes.

Very drinkable. Just have to be careful of the 7 percent abv that is barley noticeable.

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

Beautifully clear medium amber with a densely grown thin layer of light beige foam. A swirl of the tulip leaves a clinging gargoyle arm of lace.

The nose is heavenly citrus/pine, sweetest essences, running from from spruce fruit/orange peel to lemon to grapefruit all wrapped in hints of sweet malty goodness that are teasingly and complexly aromatic.

Taste is a bold assault of flavor. Grapefruit leads the attack, passing command of the sip to orange peach lemon pine and herbal florality into a tasty finish. As it warms the floral sweetness and bitterness balance into an even better and longer finish.

Mouthfeel is very good for the style, just shy of overly resinous.

Drinkability is amazingly good, the abv 7% is present only in the mind not on the tongue.

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

A - Pours a crystal clear straw yellow color. There is a tall white head that carries good retention throughout. Lacing is also present on the side of the glass.

S - Floral hops dominate the nose, with some slight grapefruit notes.

T - Almost all hops in the taste but it is not overly bitter. Good balance between floral and grapefruit hop flavors. I didn't find this bitter at all.

M - Medium carbonation and on the thinner side.

D - Wow, this goes down easy. I could drink a few of these.

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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,900 ratings.