1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. 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.

5,933 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,933
Reviews: 2,168
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 9.76%
Wants: 166
Gots: 375 | FT: 7
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:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Racer 5 India Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,933 | Reviews: 2,168 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of merryjoulton


4.33/5  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.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2009 23:47:29 | More by merryjoulton
Photo of champ103


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden amber color. A two finger white head forms, and leaves lots of sticky lace behind.
S: A wonderful hop aroma. Citrus, piney, floral, and grassy hops. Light grapefruit, and bitterness. A good sweetness in the nose to balance everything out.
T: Well balanced between the citrus and floral hops and malty sweetness. Actually one of the best balanced IPA's I have had.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. A good creaminess as well. An easy beer to drink. One of the few IPA's I can session.

This is a great IPA. That is coming from someone that is not a great fan of the style. Really well balanced. Highly recommended.

Serving type: on-tap

07-21-2009 05:06:23 | More by champ103
Photo of rfabian


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tumbler it forms a 10 mm yellowish white head that leaves nice lacing. The color is light amber with slight cloudiness. The aroma is nice with spice and a bit of citrus hops. The taste is really good with strong spice and a little citrus taste with nice sweet maltiness and mild to moderate bitterness. The feel is full bodied, not at all watery, with moderate carbonation. The finish is as good as the start. I could drink this all day long.

I don't understand why they named it what they did. There must be a story there somewhere.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2009 18:08:54 | More by rfabian
Photo of Rainintheface


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this 22oz bottle in the fridge for a couple of weeks. Eagerly waiting to drink my first Bear Republic brew. As luck would have it I was at the Union Brewhouse a few nights ago and had several on tap but wasn't in a reviewing situation. Blabber, blabber.. on to the review.

A: orangy, hazy copper with nice off whitehead and nice lacing throughout

S:orange marmalade, piney hops, citrus

T:pineapples, oranges, hoppy but not overly bitter by any means

M: smooth and creamy, sweet and slightly bitter at the same time. has a medium body

D: very drinkable. I find the 7% abv well hidden

My first journey to Bear Republic was fantastic. I must try other offerings

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2007 23:41:14 | More by Rainintheface
Photo of gskitt

New York

4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beverage center owner suggested I try this because he did not know next time he was going to be getting any more Bear Republic inventory.
A- Pours a pale golden color, much lacing, thin white head that does not last.
S- The first thing other hops is citrus and a lot of it. Was expecting more hops.
T- Really good, tastes of undefined citrus and is not overpowered by the hops. Balanced.
M- slick and maybe a little oily, not bad though.
D- I would think that you could drink this IPA and be happy.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2010 01:14:52 | More by gskitt
Photo of PintOHops


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Glass - Pint

A - Slightly hazy orange/gold color with about a 1-finger head, soapy & sticky looking with not so good retention. Lite Co2 can be seen, left some splotchy lacing.

S - A bit floral with a dry pine & mild sap like aroma. Some fresh & fruity mango & pineapple are about as pronounced as the dry/floral/pine like notes. A bit of rind like notes, some underlying biscuit/cracker like malts are there but are so soft there hardly noticeable until it warms.

T - Fresh orange & mango juice flavors upfront. Some semi bright citrus is noticeable as it rolls to the sides of the tongue, as well as some puckering rind flavor. Moderately sweet, finishes with mild toasted malt flavors, touch of sap, and burnt like hop bitterness that lingers on the back of the tongue. Bitterness isn't over the top but pretty high.

M - Smooth with with lite-moderate crispness. Around medium-full but allot closer to medium bodied.

D - I'd sit down and enjoy a couple pints I'd say. This is a pretty damn good IPA, maybe not my favorite but I'd buy this one again sometime. Definitely recommended. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2010 22:35:57 | More by PintOHops
Photo of cichief


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on draft at Friscoes Grille in Columbia, MD.

A- Deep orangish-gold in color, with a nice white head.

S- Very flowery hoppy, citrusy and piney, very inviting.

T- Powerful hoppy flavor, again piney and citrusy.

M- Good carbonation, very well done.

D- I had three pints, and can't get enough. Unfortunately, at 7% ABV I cannot have many.

Serving type: on-tap

04-20-2007 03:18:22 | More by cichief
Photo of ChrisBowers


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now this is what an IPA should be. Hoppy but balanced, slightly creamy, a bit malty, and just plain refreshing. An immensely pleasurable beer to drink, especially on tap. Pours with a thick rocky head, nice lacing. Smells slightly sweet, floral. Taste is slightly sweet caramel malt up front, lots of hops, well balanced, crisp hop finish. Slightly creamy mouthfeel. A great IPA, not quite a double IPA, but close.

Serving type: on-tap

05-13-2005 20:43:59 | More by ChrisBowers
Photo of MrMcGibblets


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

lighter in color than i expected, this was a hazy bright apricot with thick off-white lacing. looks enticing. as soon as i cracked the bomber the sweet malt notes jumped out at me. tropical and citrus fruit notes were also present, along with some fresh bread dough. overall a wonderful bouqet. taste is a wonderfully balanced interplay between the sweet malts and the significant hop bitterness. not a soapy or rough bitterness either, instead it is cleansing in character. again, the balance of this beer is phenomenal. medium in body with a lively, creamy mouthfeel. nice long finish. the alcohol in this is not discernable. i normally score lower in drinkability for beers above 6.5% abv but i can't for this one. a must try beer.
update: have had this many times since it's release in 6ers and it hasn't been as impressive as in the bomber format. hops have seemed faded in both aroma and taste, leading it to be a bit on the sweetish side and overall not quite as impressive. Have even started seeing some particulates.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2007 02:52:29 | More by MrMcGibblets
Photo of BigCheese


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle , no freshness date, fingers crossed.

A: Nice Amber/orange, on the lighter side in appearance for style. Thing white head, dissipated rather quickly. Not totally clear, a hint of cloudiness. Some lacing but nothing overly impressive.

S: Definitely a citrus hop aroma. Very tropical in scent, mango/pineapple and lemon. Some honey sweetness too. Pungent.

T: Hits you with some grapefruit/pineapple/piney hop flavor up front. Then slightly lemon/lime/mandarin. Then a nice honey/caramel malt sweetness smooths over the palate. Very sweet and bitter at same time. Finish is mix of Pine/Citrus/floral and dry.

M: Seems well carbonated. Actually has a hint of booziness in finish, suprsing for ABV but not unpleasant. Soft on palate, a bit oily.

O: This is what you want when you buy an IPA. Awesome hop extraction, well rounded bouquet of flavors. West coast classic. A tad over hyped IMO but certainly a heavy hitter in the category.

Serving type: bottle

02-29-2012 01:49:24 | More by BigCheese
Photo of orangesol


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on cask at Al's of Hampden into a nonic pint. No info was given as to what type of hops were added to the cask. If I had to guess, I would say "TONS!"

A - Pours hazy sunkist orange with a thick pillow of two finger tall white head leaving thick rings of sticky lacing down the glass.

S - I knew I had to get this one when I smelled it from across our table. HUGE pungent hop punch right off the bat with hints of pine resin, grass, and grapefruit. A tiny bit of sweet caramel malt comes thru but this one is really all about the hops.

T - Nice grassy hop bite up front never really leaving the pallet. Light caramel malt and grapefruit acidity offer as much contrast as they can but this one is truly all about the hops. A bit dry in the finish with some lingering hop bitterness. The taste wasn't as good as the nose but I still really enjoyed this one. One of my all time favorites revved up a few extra notches.

M - Medium body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Nice light feel with a bit of dryness toward the end. Plenty of hop bitterness in the finish but it doesn't linger for very long.

D - Very good. I really like racer 5 quite a bit and this version was even better. A touch one dimensional with all those pungent hops but that really isn't a bad thing.

Serving type: cask

03-07-2011 19:54:26 | More by orangesol
Photo of ohoove


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this burnt orange color with an off white head and a sprinkling of what looked like cinnamon " bits" was quite the spectacle. the head was absolutely stunning ,we actually gobbled it up with spoons and the lacing was equally impressive.
Taste and smell were of citrus and pine hops with a malt sweetness and bitter hop finish.
mouthfeel was slick and oily.
drinkability was very good and although the abv is present it's masked well enough to have more than a couple per sitting.
if you like hops this will be a great selection. Definitely worth the time and money!

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2007 22:28:33 | More by ohoove
Photo of hwwty4


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 22oz bottle into my Smokestack goblet (3 pours). This beer pours a cloudy amber orange with a big fluffy white head that leaves hints of lacing as the head recedes. The aroma is spot on for a West Coast IPA. Big citrus notes with orange and grapefruit with just a hint of its malt backbone. The taste is much the same with citrusy hops dominating every other flavor, even living a biting bitterness coating your mouth. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and lightly carbonated but still very resiney. This is a great IPA that I will definitely be seeking out again now that Bear Republic has found its way to Kansas liquor stores.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2008 21:29:12 | More by hwwty4
Photo of BarrelO


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Light brown body. Not much of a head.

S: Hops. Mad hops. If SNPA is Exhibit A for the Cascade aroma, this is Exhibit B.

T: A huge citrusy hop punch. Also plenty of caramel maltiness. Pretty much perfectly balanced.

M: A bit resiny.

T: What an IPA. Quite possibly the best in America. At least, the best that I have access to.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2009 06:39:13 | More by BarrelO
Photo of UnDeadly

North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Beautiful, gold/orange hue. Zero haze. Thick, creamy/foamy head that faded to a small but consistent film, which leaves sticky lacing on the side of the glass.

Smell - Yup, this is pretty much how an IPA should smell. Biting hop aroma, with light notes of apple cider vinegar and bready malt.

Taste - Hooray hops! Citric hop taste flows over the entire palate. Quite bitter. Slightly burnt malt on the finish with a note of sweet, but the malt profile on this IPA is minimal. A true Californian IPA.

Mouth Feel - Medium on the body, with a good, strong carbonation that fits the style well. Not overwhelming with the bubbles, just about on par with your average, lighter ale.

Drinkability - This is an everyday IPA...and I mean that in the best way possible. Very strong hop presence is well done, and putting away a bomber is no problem. Thank you sir, may I have another?

An all-around great IPA, especially if you are a hop-head. Definitely NOT true to the UK style, but just how I like it. Also, this beer is widely available, at least here in San Diego. I can usually pick up a bomber or ten when I go grocery shopping, or my trips to Bevmo and Holiday. I think I paid about $5-$6...

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2010 04:19:28 | More by UnDeadly
Photo of knm

New Mexico

4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a filtered golden, and has a smooth white head with good lacing. Smell is very hoppy, with a slight yeast note. Taste is amazing, very smooth for 7%. Not super sour, but with a good kick. Has a fruityness that is quite light. This is a solid beer!

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2011 23:15:06 | More by knm
Photo of BretSikkink


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great looking IPA on tap as well. A little light colored, but that just leaves more room for the hops right? The nose is pungent as hell, very fresh smelling, with lots of citrics and slightly floral.

Mouthfeel and flavor are a little thin and one-sided. But is that so bad, when the hops are so good? Excellent and flavorful IPA, highly recommended for a fix of bitterness.

Serving type: on-tap

05-22-2008 03:17:56 | More by BretSikkink
Photo of GJ40

North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 22 oz bottle purchased at Bev Mo in Redwood City while in SF on business.

A - Golden with some haze and a huge off white head. Good retention and nice lacing.

S - Nice floral hops. Just what I'd expect.

T - Floral and citrusy flavor that you can taste before your lips get wet. Some sweetness mixed in but it doesn't detract from the hops. Nice malt support without trying to take the lead. This IPA has a pretty complex flavor.

M - On the thick side for an IPA. Good carbonation. No complaints here.

D - This beer was very enjoyable and easy to drink. I liked it more and more as it went on.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2008 22:05:28 | More by GJ40
Photo of scottyb88


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled date is, I think, March 16, 2010

A- pours a cloudy dark gold/yellow color with a fluffy white 2-finger head; a lot of sticky lacing

S-nice lemon peel bitterness, grapefruit with some tangerine sweetness

T-lemon/orange peel, grapefruit and pine at the front followed with a malty sweetness but not overly sweet, just enough to cut the bitterness

M-the lingering oily bitterness is very present, but should be expected; great medium body mouthfeel with just enough carbonation

D-if you're looking for a bitter ipa this is a very good example imo; not a great session beer, but it's definitely nice to fulfill your hop cravings; the alcohol is well hidden and a 22oz is easy to finish

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2010 22:57:17 | More by scottyb88
Photo of Bfarr


4.33/5  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.

Serving type: on-tap

02-28-2010 14:04:53 | More by Bfarr
Photo of TonyVic

New York

4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is delicious... I highly recommend it.

Nice foam head that last... leaves foam rings through the drink. Pours golden-yellow with a slight cloud.

Beautiful aroma. Nice citrus notes of grapefruit and pineapple. There are also hints of pine.

Taste is crisp. Has a lemony-citrus finish.

Medium body... true to category.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2010 00:57:30 | More by TonyVic
Photo of btcook007


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer scored #1 among 5 IPA's tasted. IPA's were rated as follows: Bear Republic Racer 5 IPA (1); Port Brewing Wipeout IPA (2); Stone Ruination IPA (3); Samuel Smith's IPA (4); and Decadent Imperial IPA (5).

Samuel Smith's was the only English IPA in the tasting, and I intended to use it as a "baseline" against American IPA's. However, I found it much too malty and not hoppy to my tasting. I would suggest that it tastes like an IPA would have tasted at the end of the long English-India voyage for which it was designed. The American brews were all decidedly much hoppier and less maltier than the English standard.

I would also add that I am biased in favor of big hoppy flavor to my beers, and I am looking for less "balance" in an IPA.

The Bear Republic Racer 5 IPA was excellent.

A: It is a medium-coppery colored brew. Its head was one finger of white head which dissipated the 2nd quickest of the group.

S: It was well-balanced, with a pronounced hoppiness on the smell consisting of citrus and some lighter pine.

T: Very well balanced, with a wonderful sweet foretaste followed immediately by a pine citrus hop flavor. Fills the mouth with a nice, balanced pine and burnt flavor which melds nicely from the foretaste. A good amount of bitterness lingers on the aftertaste.

M: Nice effervescent mouthfeel from the foretaste, settles in nicely.

D: I could have this with anything!

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2007 04:34:34 | More by btcook007
Photo of RobbDogg

New Hampshire

4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A cloudy amber/orange pour with an attractive but quickly dissipating head. A fresh scent of tangerine and lemon. A light and drinkable beer with a nice combination of tangerine (following the nose) and grapefruit. An excellent IPA which I will seek out again and hope to try on tap someday. Thanks Monty in AZ for this one.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2014 21:16:20 | More by RobbDogg
Photo of riversider76

New York

4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy golden,with a thin white head.Excellent retention,and lacing. Aroma is piney hops,and sweet fruits. Body is medium with some carbonation.Taste is really somthing! Sweet up front,with a grapefruit finish. Without a dobut, one of the best IPA's out there.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2008 00:10:21 | More by riversider76
Photo of JHamm


4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- nice golden orange tone. clear but rich in appearance.

Smell- very fruity. huge smell of pineapple and citrus.

Taste- not as hoppy as other IPAs I've tried but really balances well with a rich malty flavor.

Mouthfeel- not too oily but leaves a nice coating in the mouth. citrus like flavor dominates with an undertone of floral hops

Drinkability- extremely smooth and pleasant. very well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2010 23:23:41 | More by JHamm
Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 5,933 ratings.