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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.

6,837 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,837
Reviews: 2,231
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 249
Gots: 779 | FT: 10
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: 6,837 | Reviews: 2,231 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Dubbercody
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Very nice hop aroma. Gives you the hello, you're about the hang with some hops chat. Nice flavor, hoppy, but not obnoxiously over the top. Pleasantly hoppy that goes nicely with the malt. Good lasting aftertaste. One I will have to get again.

Photo of Lenny2884
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a hazy orange-straw color with a huge billowy white head that latches onto the glass and doesnt let go.

Smell - WOW! This is my style for sure! Big hop aroma. You name a citrus aroma and I bet you'll find it in here. Slight sweetness but it's hard to get through those hops.

Taste - By the aroma I was expecting more citrus tones. I taste mostly grapefruit with a little orange. It starts off big but mellows out quickly. Seems to be missing something to set it over the edge like the aroma suggests. Good bitterness, could even do slightly more. Ends slightly dry.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium body, good carbonation.

Overall, I cant get enough of this aroma! It's a truly amazing hop aroma profile. However, the taste just doesnt live up to the hype the aroma sets forth. Still a very good beer and one I will definately go back to. Cheers!!

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

Pours a hazy dark orange with a pillowy head the falls into a thin cap.
Citrus peels, hint of pine, honey and caramel round out the smell.
Flavors of Grapefruit/orange peel, a little pine and some honey/caramel maltiness on the front of the tongue.
Good mouthfeel. It sticks around, but in a good way.
Fairly drinkable in that the palate is not so overwhelmed that it will be tired after one of these. At 7% this is not a session beer, but not so over the top that you'll be slurring your words after 2.
Very good beer and it's not just hop tea with some alcohol. Very well rounded for a West Coast IPA.

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

Pours a golden color with some reddish hue to it, a good-sized fluffy white head. Very slight lacing left behind.

Aroma is citrusy hops, mostly grapefruit, also some orange. Very minor piney notes, and a slight earthy malt in the back.

Very well balanced flavor of citrus, pine, bready malts. Nothing overpowering, all of them well defined and a good progress from one to another.

A nice amount of carbonation, smooth, medium body leaning towards light, finishes dry.

An extremely pleasant, drinkable brew, great balance, not overpowering in any way but thoroughly solid and flavorful. Would highly recommend this brew to all comers.

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

Pours a clear gold with modest head that dissipates quickly leaving thin lacing behind.

Grapefruit hop nose, not as overpowering as some.

Typical IPA with a tasteful balance that is quite enjoyable, crisp, and light.

Mouthfeel is mellow and smooth with moderate carbonation.

Photo of gford217
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle courtesy of deepsouth poured into a snifter.

A: Pours deep golden with a one finger head that dissipates fairly quickly leaving a decent swirl of bubbles on top. Minimal lacing.

S: Smell is mostly fruit hops - grapefruit, orange, and lemon zest. Mild bready malt smell balances it out a little, though it's mostly a light fruit hop smell.

T: Initial taste of grapefruit, lemon and general fruity hops followed by the malty sweetness. The finish actually has a bit of resiny hops but is fairly crisp for an IPA.

M: Fairly light mouthfeel with a decent carbonation.

D: Drinkability is actually pretty high on this and I could drink this one most of the night.

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

Love this brew the more I drink it. Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Deep amber with a one finger head on a gentle pour. Smell is super fresh hoppy goodness, some pines and other woods. Taste buds get super excited with the brew rolling over my tongue, just the right amount of alcohol, bittering hops, aromic hops, and malts. Highly drinkable for any hophead.

Photo of blakesell
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the tap into a standard pint glass.

Appearance- Beer pours a hazy golden yellow with a creamy one and a half finger cap of foam, lacing clings lightly to the sides and carbonation rises from the bottom of the glass.

Smell- Amarillo, Simcoe, and Centennial hops rise forward. A strong orangey citrus flows into the nostrils. Light malts linger but the hops dominate. Cascade hops are likely in the ale as well.

Taste- Creamy and quite thick with citrus and a light soapy character. I taste Simcoe, Amarillo, Cascade and just a bit of Centennial pine in the finish. Very light an effervescent.

Mouthfeel- Creamy, medium bodied, well carbonated, not astringent and effervescent.

Drinkability- Nicely drinkable. Bear Republic's best effort yet. Worth a revisit soon.

Photo of allergictomacros
3.45/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A - Clear gold liquid and an inch of thick creamy head. I could probably stand on this.

S - Big raw pine obliterates anything else that might be in here.

T - Again, pine is the biggest flavour here, followed by a healthy dose of throat losenge. This is powerful stuff. Quite sweet as well with a healthy boozy touch.

M - Silky smooth.

D - Not my favorite. Actually does remind me of throat medicine somewhat. I know it's an IPA, but the hops are harsh, coarse and tough to handle.

Photo of ckeegan04
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep yeloowish orange color with off white head. Great lacing in glass.

S - Citrusy hops and a hint of some sweetness. Not sure where to place the sweetness though.

T - Excellent balance between citrusy and piney hops and a sweet malt backbone.

M/D - Medium bodied and very smooth. Bitterness is a little strong but by IPA standards it is very drinkable.

Photo of fitzy84
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Moan and Dove. The beer had a murky orange look with some slight amber in the light. Eventual lacing from its thin head. The aromas of alcohol were pretty strong, supplementing the hop and malt flavors. The taste was similar to the smell: bittersweet with malty, hoppy goodness. Medium body helps this pretty malty IPA be an enjoyable drink for the evening.

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

A - Really beautiful copper color. A little cloudy (not murky though). Has the color of an IPA, but the body of Hoegaarden. Off-white head with some sticky lacing.

S - This beer smells amazing! Really well balanced. It smells like a forest. There are notes of pine, cedar, moss, earth...

T - Big hops and citrus up front and with a pine and whiskey-like oaky finish. Stays with you in the back of the tongue.

M - Nice and bold. Crisp finish, but not too dry.

D - Overall, this is a really great, extremely well balanced IPA.

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

Pours very similar to the pale ale from bear republic, only slighter darker. Intricate balance between the hops and malts yet again from them. Smell contains a slight bit of pine needles, but really balanced by a heap of sweetness of malt. Lots of sweetness, richness and theres always a bitter side hanging on the background but really only stays there on the back of the palate. Only a slight bit of spice to the "piney" side to this balanced IPA. This beer is 100% a school girl that is smart as hell and down for doing work, and always good to bring to your parents house. Great IPA. Did i say creamy malts?

Photo of Metalmonk
4.62/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Label offers the brewery's motto "bigger is better". While that's not always the case, I will never argue to the contrary. "Bigger" definitely describes the head I got from the pour, a huge fluffy cap of cream on top of what the label very correctly describes as "golden". Easy enough.

Aroma is a thing of wonder, especially if hops are your thing. Big piney presence in the nose, with plenty of malty sweetness balancing it out, and lighter, more delicate flowery spices dotting the aroma. Almost a gingerbread thing lurking around there somewhere.

Flavor is generally big, rich, tingly and sweet. If you know the finest IPAs and Double IPAs, then you'll know what this is all about. This is a DIPA-leaning IPA, with the hops winning out in assertiveness and sharpness over the gooey malts that try their best to balance. Nice spicy/herbal accents throughout. Malty sweetness carries over into the finish, rich and caramel-like. Then once again trumped by a sharp layer of prickly, piney hops.

Mouthfeel is maybe a little too tingly, perhaps a little rough for the richness of flavor. Because it almost tastes like a double IPA, I expected that level of creaminess, but this is actually drier and more like your typical IPA...but there is enough buttery roundness to give a hint of creaminess.

Really, really good IPA, one of the best ever, up there with Bell's, Stone, and Green Flash versions of the style (among exalted others). Yum.

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

A- Opaque and light golden caramel color. Lacing is patchy and head is quite minimal.

S- The first smell that hit me is sassafrass. This is the first time I have ever used that term in a review but that is what I smell. Caramelized malts and strong hoppy tones round out the nose.

T- Nice and bitter with some sweetness from the malts. Citrusy and earthy tastes make it more complex and different.

M- Oily and medium thickness with medium carbonation.

D- Little too sweet and bitter (making it rich) for a session beer, but outstanding for a stand alone drink.

Overall- Very good brew. I am impressed and would definitely seek this one out.

Thanks again to hurleymanvw for sharing this one with me.

Photo of trackstar1043
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deeper hazy golden orange, with a tremendous 3 in rocky head that stuck around almost the entire time, this is much cloudier that previous IPA and seems to pour much fuller than others also.

S - Rich full aroma of bitter hops, little citrus, earthy wheats, and sweet floral. It strikes a nice balance between them.

T - More of a complex palate with noticable bitter hops, semi-sweet floral and citrus flavors and a lasting formitable after taste reminds you this is a great IPA.

M - Has a fuller body than other IPA, with high carbonation that makes it a very lively beer, with a clean lasting finish.

D - A joy to have and easy to enjoy, Great IPA.

Photo of kenito799
4.65/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pint at South Philly Tap Room.

Darkish amber brew with nice 1/2 inch tan head, intricate lacing, classic IPA look.

The aroma is a typically wonderful fresh, floral, fruity, citrusy hop burst. On the palate there is a fruitiness up front, with a sweetness that doesn't cloy, isn't really sweet actually, just serves to perfectly balance an experience of complex hop flavors that come on citrus and fruit, finishing with pine and flowers. Classicly near-perfect West Coast IPA, closely resembles Stone to me (need to try these side-by side). Great effort, wonderfully drinkable beer. Reaffirms my love of the balanced IPA, no DIPAs for me...

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

Bear Republic Racer 5.. Enjoyed out of my Sam Adams Glass (which I absolutely love) listening to some random techno album. Picked up in trade with wiebull

Appearance: One finger head, fades quick but doesn't die. Pure golden color. There is a light haze.

Aroma: Big hoppy nose. Aggressive floral notes that have been punched in the face with a grapefruit.

Flavor: Bold hoppy flavor up front that dies off little bit but picks up in to big and beautiful finish. Very floral on the finish, dries out and becomes a lingering soft bitter.

Mouth Feel: Up front is a distinct west coast hoppyness that coast the mouth. This one might be a tought over carbonated for the amount of flavors that are jam packed in there.

Drinkability: I wish I could get it in Boise Thank you again Jason for hooking me up! I would love to buy a six pack of this beer and hike up to the top of camelsback at dust and share with fellow with fellow BA's and enjoy a fine Idaho sunset.

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

6-pack purchased at State Line Liquors in Elkton, MD. Bottle did not have any dating but states it's bottle conditioned - freshness not a problem. Pours a dark amber color with a fairly thin lacing. Piney aroma which is quite suggestive of its overall taste.

I particularly enjoy IPA's and this one seems to be somewhere between a typical IPA and a Double IPA. 7% alcohol but very balanced with a clean and bitter finish. Definitely hoppy but maybe not to the extent of some West Coast IPA's.

If this were available in my home state, it would be a worthy competitor for Smuttynose IPA which, to me, it very much resembles.

Photo of RedBeerchetta
4.89/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap recently and was taken aback at how fresh the hops smelled and tasted. I was at the Dogfish Head brewpub in Rehoboth Beach, MD recently and had their 90 minute IPA that had been put through "Randall the Enamel Animal" (look it up if you don't know of it). I had never tasted a brew with such a fresh hop smell and taste. This glass of Racer 5 was second to that. It was so fresh tasting (pine, herbaceous hop scent) that I had to ask if they had a Randall (the used to, but don't anymore).

Racer 5 has always been one of my favorite IPAs but this keg was outstanding. Hoppy without being very bitter (though that would be ok). A unique and special IPA that would please hopheads and newbies alike.

Photo of Spikester
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-poured orange color with an average head with lots of lacing.

S-Fruity pine herbal.

T-Taste is complex- citrus, resinous pine, bitter. Slightly sweet malts help cushion the bitter hops. Good crisp IPA.

M-Better than average

D-Due to relatively high abv I wouldn't call this a session brew but two 12's or one 22 oz. would be great anytime. Very nice IPA.

Photo of avalon07
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: When I poured this one from a bottle to a pint glass, it had a deep amber hue and a cloudy consistency. Also, it had bits of sediment floating around. There was a decent-sized head and good lacing.

S: Had a strong aroma of hops, citrus and bit of malt. Not overpowering, but certainly noteworthy.

T: This one had quite a complex taste, though it was dominated by hops. There was a faint taste of citrus (orange?) and a hint of malt to balance things out.

M: Vibrant carbonation level and a smooth finish. This is definitely a full-bodied beer.

D: If you like IPAs, this is one for you. It goes down very easy and has a lively personality.

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

Pours a hazy dirty orange color with a nice dense white head that left a wall of lacing as it dissipated. The smell is of juicy floral and grapefruit hops and some pepper. This is followed by sweet malt aromas. The taste is of big grapefruit hops, some tropical fruit, pepper. Some malt sweetness to help try and balance. The feel is moderate with soft to fizzy carbonation, finishes with a big bitter bite. Also has a bit of a slick feel to it. Really reminds me of a DIPA without the bigger ABV. Definitely a very hoppy AIPA and a great call for any hop-head. Big on grapefruit and tropical fruit hops. Only negative is that it is a bit slick.

Photo of deepsouth
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

this beer poured a golden color with a straw colored head that receded pretty quickly leaving scattered patches of thin head all around the top of the beer. WOW, this beer smells good. citrusy hops, grapefruit, lightly peppery fragrances dominate the nose. the citrusy hops EXPLODE in your mouth from jumpstreet, but leaves with just the right amount of sweetness to make you want to take another sip. this beer BEGS to be drank. fortunately, at 7% you can get a little reckless with them without paying high prices. not to mention, at under $5 a bomber, this things a steal. the mouthfeel is nice and suits this style beer and i could drink one after another until i passed out. another fine offering from bear republic, which has proven to me that they make all their beers very well.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz brought over tonight by SAS while we were packing up a couple boxes for trade... my half from my New Belgium snifter.

3/4" head.. left good lacing.. hazy honey colored brew (I got the bottom half) ..

Aroma is C-hops all the way around.. it smells fresh... grapefruit .. slight but present pale malts.. with touches of yeasty fruitiness.

WOW! Flavor is big even for a CA IPA. Big grapefruit and Flintstone vitamin hops (only way I can describe it).. fruity and a little minerally at the same time. Nearly absurdly big hop flavors squash the pale malts that are present.. I am getting just enough sweetness to balance the big bitterness. Fairly thick mouthfeel for the style but the oily hoppiness lends to a pleasant slickness ... but I am definitely not complaining. Finish is a long fruity hoppiness.

Racer 5 would be a staple in my home if I had access... definitely verges on DIPA territory.. but still utterly fantastic... I could drink this until my palate was long blown.. but I would somehow try to find a way to slink one more in.

I've only had this brew one time before.. but I am truly thankful I had the chance to try it again.

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,837 ratings.