Racer 5 India Pale Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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Racer 5 India Pale AleRacer 5 India Pale Ale

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6,694 Ratings

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Ratings: 6,694
Reviews: 2,209
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 223
Gots: 655 | FT: 8
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
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Ratings: 6,694 | Reviews: 2,209 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gdrydenc
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a much lighter color than I anticipated. I've had this beer several times, and I thought I remembered it being darker than this. Decent color, the head dissipates pretty quickly.

S - Smell is a little bit muted from what I've remembered as well. It's definitely there, a bit of juicy fruit, slightly sticky hops. Delicious smell, but a bit muted, like I said.

T - Well, the flavor makes up for any weakness in the smell. The fruitiness and bitterness kick hard at the beginning and don't stop until well after the finish. A great taste. The only improvement I could see would be a little bit more intensity, but at 7%, there's not a whole lot else you can do.

M - Mouthfeel is spot on. Good carbonation, great in the mouth. Not too watery, but not syrupy thick so as to make it undrinkable.

Overall, this is a great beer. Besides Harpoon (for the price) this is probably my favorite IPA to have around and drink a few of at a time. Great beer.

Photo of mulder1010
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml poured into a red oak glass.

A-- almost a honey like color (yellowish orange). Very nice white head that left lacing after setteling. Moderatly carbonated

S-- Get the floral hops off the bat. Lemon, orange. A little bit of a sweet smell s well.

T-- Pow! Hops and more hops in first taste. Lively carbonation as well. Comes right after you.

M-- Letting it sit get the citrus afterwards. very hoppy but very nice in the ending. Cottonmouth is not as big as other IPA's. Goes to Citrus and sweetness at the end.

D-- Not bad. I am not a hop head and the first time I tried Racer 5 I struggled finishing it. 7% is barely there. Great beer but one is enough for me to do in a sitting. Good beer to build hop palate on

Photo of halo21
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: I poured this strong into my tulip glass; its a nice golden haze yellow to orange with a thin solid inch thick white cap that dissipated . Decent lacing on the way down with small active carbonation.

Smell: A whole bunch of hops coming at you in a number of ways; citrus - mostly lime and lemon rind - followed by a dose of alcohol.

Taste: Big hop flavor followed by a nice, mild toasty malt balance. This one brings a whole bunch of hops; the cascade coming through nicely to me. There is a nice toasty buscuit finish.

Mouthfeel: Nice medium creamy bodied with a drying finish.

Drinkability: High; potent but very smooth.

Notes: An amazingly good beer that lives up to its hype. A balanced hop bomb that is quite drinkable with perfect mouthfeel.

Photo of ryanmac06
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Golden hazy color that's very typical of west coast IPAs. Pored from a bottle into a pint glass and left about a finger of head. The head didn't last through the entire drink but that was fine with me.

S - This beer has a great smell. A strong citrus/hoppy smell hits first followed by light malt that balances the smell very well. In my opinion Racer 5's smell is slightly better than many of it's American IPA counterparts

T - This is one of the best tasting single IPA's I've ever had. It's perfectly balanced without being overly bitter and doesn't destroy my pallet. The smell and taste compliment each other making them almost dependent on each other.

M - Coats the mouth very well. No problems at all with the feel of the beer. The 7% alcohol is present but very well covered by the balance of malts so your pallet and mouth can handle more than a couple.

D - This can easily be a session brew. It's an easy to drink 7% beer that is a bit deceiving. I will keep coming back to this as a "go to" AIPA

Overall - Set's itself apart from many IPAs that I've had. The combination of smell and taste are the 2 attributes that distinguish this brew. This is a must have if you're an IPA fan.

Photo of Chickenhawk9932
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured golden orange with some reddish tendencies, with an off white head - good lacing.

Smells largely of citrus hops sweet orange, bitter grapefruit and lemon, with a subdued malty sweetness.

Hits you with powerful citrus hops, lots of flavor popping around, backed up by a solid, sweet malty spine. An excellent beer. I had this on tap at Shady McGrady's after the Harrisburg beer fest and it stood out against all the other IPAs I tried that day.

Photo of gubbt
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful hazy orange/copper color with a white fluffy head and spotty lace down the glass.

Smells slightly biscuity with some big citrus hops, namely orange zest.

Ah yes, now this is an IPA! The hops are there in the finish and are mostly citrusy with some underlying pine, but it is extremely well balanced. The malts are muscular with caramel and biscuit up front that blends extremely well with the hops in the rear and lends a slightly sweet finish, but it's mostly dry.

Mouthfeel is good, just enough carbonation

Drinkability is pretty high despite the 7% ABV. Man, I think I have a new favorite IPA. This is very well balanced, flavorful and refreshing. Highly recommended. Bottoms up!

Photo of silenius
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one helluva nice beer. We just started getting this in Chicago as far as I know. I picked this up today at thelonegunman's shop.

I'm always up to trying out an American IPA and I'm glad I popped the top on this one.

The beer pours a really solid deep golden with yeasty bits afloat. The head is like a bubble bath with great big bubbles floating two fingers thick. As I drink the beer I get great big spiderweb lacing down the glass.

The smell is a bit more on the sweet side than other West coast IPAs I've had. Many W coast IPAs are just like grapefruit juice to me. This is more floral and sweet.

Taste is very balanced between hops and malt. Nice big hops with a solid core of malt to back it up. Not over the top. Just plain good! Hop burps are tasty, too.

Mouthfeel is creamy and the beer leaves a bitter taste in the back of my throat. Good.

This is a really drinkable beer and I would definitely reach for another after the first is done.

Photo of trpng0bily
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich golden honey, approaching orange, with a short white head and moderate lacing. There is ample yeast, tiny specks, suspended in the beer, imparting a regal thickness to the brew. It looks like what I would imagine to be nectar of the gods.

Piny hops, but with a distinctive sweetness that seems to be of the hops, not malt. Also a hint of citrus.

First and foremost bitter, crisp, outdoorsy hops that stick around for a good minute after a swallow. There is a breadiness to this beer, along with a slightly dry finish that goes nicely with the hop bitterness.

For an almost hop monster, this is quite drinkable. It stays crisp, with barely a trace of the syrupiness that bothers me in a lot of hoppy brews.

Photo of JollyToper
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle picked up at Top's Liquor in Tempe, AZ into an American pint glass.

Nice head and lace. Orangish color with medium amount of bubbles. Pours very clear and the bottle conditioned yeast stays in the bottle without any effort. Didn't leave a drop behind.

Huge hop nose but with a malt backbone. Tasted hops front middle and finish but was still balanced and driankable. Hoppy but not bitter. I could drink multiple of these.

Photo of MisterClean
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Bear Republic tasting at the Rubicon tonight.

Note: This beer isn't worth drinking if it's not on tap. Truly a classic IPA.

A - Light golden, carbonated, slight head, with slight legs.

S - Malts, pine, flowers, and slight earthiness.

T - Pretty much the same.

M - Good. Balance between hops and malts with a nice bitter aftertaste you'd expect from an IPA.

D - Very excellent. Am always down to get a pitcher. I always use this IPA as the standard for comparison.

Photo of zodiak3000
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- golden/honey in color. strange, ive had this both clear and w/ hop haze out the ying yang. did they change the recipe or brewing techs? lacing is the best ive ever seen, spider-web all the way through. i think this comes from the amount of wheat they use in this recipe...

S- resin, floral, pine, grapefruit, touch of candy sweet malt coming through, but mostly hops. not really as pungent as i remember a few years back...

T/M- bitter hops really hit with a nice punch on both the front and back end. very clean, mouthfeel is really smooth with a mild caramel body. hops dominate in a balanced good way...

D- if you like hops this is your ipa. drinkability is awesome for 7%abv. almost session like. not too heavy, but not light either. have no problem achieving my hop fix with this bad boy...

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear gold. Head is bright-white. Drops to a spotty cap and collar in short order. Lively carbonation.

Smell: Orange, grapefruit, big floral notes, and some tropical sweetness. Touches of mango. Pine resin and oily hops. Malts are bready with a bit of caramel sweetness. Some pithy bitterness. Very floral and citrusy.

Taste: More of that floral goodness. Nice punch of grapefruit and pine resin. Touches of mango and orange. A little grassy. Hop resin. Malts are nicely sweet and help balance out the hop bite. Some roasted undertones and cooked grains. Biscuity with enough hop aggression to show through. Lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Creamy with a moderately-high carbonation. Medium body. So smooth and easy to drink. Slight crispness.

Overall: The first time I had this beer it blew me away. I still love this beer. It's not quite the earth-shattering beer I remember, but it's damn tasty. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that it's next to impossible to get super-fresh in MA. Oh well, I'll keep it.

Photo of TwelveOunces
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 Oz bottle poured into a Duvel Tulip

A- Pours clear golden yellow at first but becomes hazy when sediment is disturbed. About a quarter finger of a white head.

S- Impressive citrus off the bat. Pineapple and grapefruit and lime. A slightly sweet maltiness.

T- Not as bitter as I expected but the flavor is overwhelmingly citrusy. A lot of pineapple, grapefruit and lime as well as mango and orange come through in the middle of the mouth. The malt backbone is very subtle but sweet and breaddy and goes pleasantly well with the flavor from the hops. Its rather refreshing and pleasing to drink.

M- Medium body, Not too bitter. A refreshed aftertaste of citrus.

O- An excellent IPA, one of the best single IPA's out there. I wish this was distributed to my area.

Photo of Beer_Runner
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Could not find an "enjoy by" date. Poured slowly and carefully into a standard one pint glass.

A: A copper to orange color with an off white head of about half a finger, but leaves a nice lacing.

A: The aroma is a sweet pine with some citrus.

M: Smooth and almost creamy and leaves a slick coating. It has a heavy body.

T: It begins with a sweetness that gives way to pine and resin and then a little orange citrus joins in.

0: Outstanding overall. A very pleasant hops forward taste, but doesn't need to hit you over the head with it. The begining blend of sweet malt and pine and resin is a great start for the transition to the slight orange. The heavy body really works well here, too.

Photo of Wasatch
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a slighty cloudy golden yellow color, nice carbonation, huge foamy head, nice lacing throughout the drink.

S - Scents of hops aplenty, sweet malts, yeast, and citrus.

T - The taste is sweet and bitter. Very nice bite at the finish. The finish is also dry.

M - Medium body. Very nice balanced and slightly carbonated feel.

D - Very drinkable. This is my first BR brew. I've heard great things about Racer 5 and now I know why. This IPA is very tasty, one of the best I've ever had. I'm glad I bought 2 bombers.

Photo of mschofield
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy copper-amber, filled with floating particulates. Topped with a two finger creamy tan head, leaves thick webs of lacing.
Pine and floral aroma. Notes of leather, pear, and peppery alcohol.
Wood, caramel, pine, floral notes in the taste, a citrus note, leather, fruit, and pepper. Not as bitter as all the hop tastes suggest.
Medium bodied, a touch oily.

Photo of Foxman
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours a slightly hazy and carbonated ingot gold. A finger of off-white head settles evenly to a berber rug of froth. Hillocks of lacing landscape the inside of the glass.

The aroma sees sweet malt twisting caramel and toffee, along with biscuit and berry fruit. A light sense of citrus and pine dances gingerly about an airy hint of alcohol.

Upon tasting, it's malt first with caramel, blueberry, and melon, after which the hops stomp on the sweetness, drying the grounds with resinous pine, crisp grapefruit, and a lesser tinge of juicy orange. A slight yeasty tang and baked dough lead into a biting, dry bitterness, lingering long. As hoppy as it is, the malt stands strong for a nicely blended balance.

Medium bodied, the malt is chewy, the hops oily, and the palate well pleased.

Its reputation precedes it, and it does not disappoint. It's full, lively, balanced, blended, and damned good. The ABV is moderate, but aptly wrapped inside a very drinkable offering. So, Trixie cries, Go Speed, beat the Acrobatic Team! Oh, and bring me another Racer 5, too!

Photo of Giovacchini
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter.

A- orange-ish/amber color with a thin white head.

S- hop aromas, citrus, pineapple, grapefruit, guava.

T- Nice hoppiness up front with a mild caramel maltiness. Citrusy hop flavors. Tropical fruitiness. Grapefruit.

M- this beer has a bitter dry mouthfeel with a mild booziness along with good carbonation.

O- I really like this beer and it's not to expensive. I live in Sonoma CA and I have a wide variety of local IPA's to choose from. My go to IPA's are RR's but I got to Racer 5 when I want more bang for my buck. This is a solid IPA and although it's not the best IPA there will always be a spot in my fridge for it.

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at The Drafting Room, Exton; served in an imperial pint

Hazy, golden body with an eerie thickness to it. A bone white head sits proudly on top.

Sweet candied grapefruit, orange rind, lightly toasted biscuits and a touch of evergreens.

Citrus rind and pine needles come to forefront, then a sweet rush of candied grapefruit followed by a mild bitterness. Doesn't push the extremes.

Full bodied and chewy. Cask does great things for the mouthfeel of IPA's.

A pretty solid IPA that doesn't push the envelope of sweetness or bitterness. I could drink a few of these on cask.

Photo of mmcave
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours golden amber, with high lights around the edges. Pure white head that is decent, looks as though it might stay a while. Smell is floral, mild bitter hops presence, some citrus, maybe even hints of pine apple and mango. Taste is well balanced, bitter hops and mild spices shine through the fruit favors nicely finishes with a hint of bitterness right before the fruit. A little sticky, but just the right amount. This is a swell beer, I was a little thrown buy the packaging's unappetizing colors scheme, but once I tasted the beer I could careless. This is a super IPA, one of the better California beers I've had. I will definitely be drinking this in the future..

Photo of mtrentm
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Golden copper color with off-white head which reduces to nice lacing.

S: Grapefruit initially jumps out of the glass then leads to pine & more sweet citrus hops.

T: Citrus upfront leading to a sweet malt with a little bit of bitterness at the end.

M: Medium-bodied smooth & creamy with a slightly bitter & dry finish.

D: Extremely drinkable & smooth. I was expecting more bitterness for an IPA, but still very good.

Photo of tony223366
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Some clarity. Nice golden yellow color with a white fluffy head. 1 finger. Nice action from the carbonation.

S: Citrusy hops and hop oil primarily.

T: Floral hops with a great citric hoppy finish. I get some light bready malts but it's mostly overpowered by the delicious hops.

M: Great feel! Big bodied. I'm getting lots of those hop oils. Prickly carbonation.

O: This is not a balanced beer. That being said I love hop forward IPAs. The prickly carbonation really keeps the bitterness from being too strong. Extremely refreshing. I could have this beer any time of any day. Love it!

Photo of roadhouse
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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

Appears a slightly hazy orange-amber with a one finger off-white head. A bit of particulate matter floating around in there but that may just be because of the moron at Binny's that put my bottle in the box upside down when I wasn't looking.

Aroma is west coast hops all the way. Nice and citrusy, a bit of pine, and a biscuity malt undertone.

Taste is more hops. A bit more piney than the aroma first suggests. The pine comes in first then I get a big kick of grapefruit-like citrus. Towards the finish there is a nice dose of sweet caramel and biscuity malt but that quickly gives in to the bitterness of the hops that coat the tongue in their oils and linger on.

Medium mouthfeel, good amount of carbonation.

Damn good IPA, just enough malt to keep it from being overly bitter, just where I like it. Good stuff.

Photo of freed
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer came in a 22oz with a cool label. The beer poored a beautiful copper color, which was a surprise for an IPA. The smell and taste are all IPA though. Great Citrus smell and flavor. Also, the maltiness isn't sublte, which I like. This is a big beer, though most of the bitterness is actually in the aroma. There isn't a strong bitter body to it, though i'm not sure what the IBU level is. I'll definately have this again.

Photo of willjschmidt
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 220oz bomber into a pint glass.

A: A golden color with an orange hue as well. Large thick white head forms on top.

S: Your standard IPA aromas; piney hops, light citrus, pale malts.

T: Delicious hops dominate the palate. The hops are not bitter, but instead very flavorful and tasty. There is a small fruit middle, but not as dominate as a lot of other IPA's. The aftertaste is dry and slightly bitter.

M: Medium bodied, well carbonated. Lots of hop oils in there as well.

D: A very drinkable IPA due to the great flavor of the hops. Not a lot of bitterness in this brew so it goes down east. A classic IPA in my book, one of the best out there.

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 6,694 ratings.