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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.

2,230 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,230
Hads: 7,125
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 8.35%
Wants: 294
Gots: 991 | 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:
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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Racer 5 India Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,230 | Hads: 7,125
Photo of Jnashed
3.77/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle poured in a simple pint glass. Date on bottle 10/30/13, so maybe a bit dated for an IPA but kept in a cool fridge.

A: cloudy pale orange. Moderate head and retention

S: biggie and citrus notes. Muted compared to others but maybe because of age on it. Still lots of orange rind and piney notes

T: yum.... Solid pine hop notes upfront with resin on the back end. Some fruit but not as fruity as many newer IPAs. Nice malt balance though.

M: nice full body and moderate carbonation.

O: Soild if not exceptional. Hits all the right notes of a good West coat IPA which of course it is. (593 characters)

Photo of Premo88
3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass

L: light gold ... yellow-gold with just hint of amber up to light; not 100% clear (bottle-conditioned debris?) but mostly clear; big 1-inch head or more of mostly white foam, really sticks and a bit of lacing

S: grapefruit; some definite malt and grain, pretty sweet

T: citrus, grapefruit; some grain in there, and for an IPA, there is a lot of malt trying like hell to push through all that bitter hoppy hops ... impressive

F: smooth and watery, almost silky ... the bottle conditioning possibly could use a bit more time to push the CO2 into this thing -- it's not bad at all but watery all the same

O: I could deal with this beer any day of the week, but with that said, there are other IPAs I enjoy more. I can see why this is considered by many to be a classic, for it's easy drinking and plenty tasty -- and the bitter bite here is not a crazy in-your-face deal that ruins your palate. (933 characters)

Photo of dank203
4.26/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

well balanced bitey Ipa. had fresh, enjoy by 8/24. from tulip glass. orange color, white head, smell travels , piney, mango, citrus, resin, dankness. flavor has all the bitterness it needs, fruitry citrusy and fresh , clean. lovin this, wish I picked up a whole case (266 characters)

Photo of GOBLIN
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look isn't anything special, orange in color. Typical look for an ipa. Malty with a hoppy aroma . . . Go figure. What this beer lacks in appearance and aroma it makes up for in taste. Oranges and other citrus flavors with a excellent bitter finish. Smooth and a good amount of carbonation. I like this brew alot. It's an easy drinker but still hoppy and bitter enough to make most hopheads happy. Racer 5 is one of those ipa's that got me over the ipa hump so to speak. (469 characters)

Photo of watermelon
3.93/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A: Translucent orange body with an off white head decent retention and a fair amount of lacing

S: Pineapple, grapefruit and malt

T: Piney and grapefruit.

M: Pretty decent some booze as this warmed up.

O: Pretty damn good for the price. Its nice to see a bomber at a reasonable price. (329 characters)

Photo of reebtaerG
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured 12oz bottle into New Belgium globe

A-It pours a crystal clear light copper gold with a filmy foamy head that leaves great lacing behind.

S-The nose has an incredibly floral & herbal hop bouquet: minty, grapes, etc.

M-Mouthfeel is well balanced and has great carbonation

O-No surprise this is their flagship beer, this is a great IPA for a good price. (364 characters)

Photo of jj139
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a pint glass

A - Lovely straw color with tints of orange. One finger, egg shell head which dissipated quickly. Long lasting, minimal lacing.

S - Nose this time around was rather shy but it did contain grapefruit, pine resin, and hints of malt.

T - Grapefruit and citrus first hits you, then it's followed with toasty sweet malt. A nice slightly hoppy-bitter finish really rounds everything out.

M - Medium carbonation and mouthfeel. A refreshing brew. Excellent balance.

O - A very, very solid IPA. This beer is very balanced with no one element overshadowing another. This brew is a regular of mine ... very enjoyable. (636 characters)

Photo of Auraan
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured a cloudy orange-gold with a thin white head that left slight lacing. A good looking IPA. Scents of pine resin, cedar, slight citrus, tropical fruit and sweet malt, a bit of an onion-like off-aroma as well, possibly an old or otherwise improperly kept bottle. Otherwise not bad. Taste begins with grapefruit, orange and nectarine, along with citrus peel, moves into a bit of nice pine resin and finishe swith bitter pine resin and citrus peel. A nice malt sweetness, caramel mostly, is also present throughout. The aftertaste is bitter and slightly grainy, with hints of caramel. The flavor is quite nice, not the most hop forward, nor the most malt heavy IPA, but it strikes a good balance and has a nice flavor profile. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with moderate carbonation, an oily feel upfront and a sticky feel later. Quite good, very easy to drink and pleasant feeling. Overall this is an excellent IPA with a good flavor profile, mouthfeel and scent. I just wish the store had kept the bottle in a cooler so it didn't get that onion off-note in the aroma. Otherwise a solid IPA. (1,091 characters)

Photo of lochef81
4.26/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This ale pours a orange straw color with a small white head and minimal lacing. The nose is a beautiful balance of malts and hops. The flavor is surprisingly deep and complex. Lots of hop bitterness up front but quickly followed by a rich malty sweetness. If this was the intention of the brewers than I say bravo. I think this beer may have sat on the shelf a little longer than normal but it seems to have turned it into an even better, more balanced ale than was originally intended. Its just unfortunate that Bear Republic has pulled out of Michigan. I'll miss this and Hop Head Rye. (587 characters)

Photo of JuicesFlowing
3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

Look: Hazy, murky tangerine copper. The off-white head calms to a splotchy film. Random patches of lacing remain on the glass.

Aroma: Hoppy and bitter, laced with spicy cedar and pine.

Taste: Hoppy up front, then a malt body holds up the beer. The finish is citric with bitter grapefruit coming through.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, but pretty thick.

Overall: Pretty much a palate wrecker, loads of bitterness and hops. Pretty solid. (469 characters)

Photo of ISmith87
3.94/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - 4 - Nice golden amber, almost orange color that has a fluffy white head on it that leaves okay lacing.
S - 3.75 - Grapefruit, citrus rind, pine, bready malts in the background.
T - 4 - Grapefruit, citrus rind, pine, pineapple, strong bready malt backbone. I like it, it's very classic, but I'm surprised it got rated 94/100.
M - 4 - light - medium mouthfeel, alc completely covered, aftertaste is hoppy bitterness with grapefruit flavors.
O - 4 - It's a great standard west coast IPA. However, if I was looking for something very special I probably wouldn't go with this one. It's more the equivalent of any given region's go to, every day IPA. (651 characters)

Photo of Rast
3.87/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Round two of the Great Snowstorm IPA Taste-Off (Ed. 2014)

At least 1/4 inch on the ground. Typical, or perhaps archetypical, for an IPA: golden good. Bottle-conditioned and hazy as heck. Lovely foamy head. Nothing particularly smell-nice or taste-nice, just good ol' fashioned hop love. Bitter and balmy. Mouthfeel is especially nice: rich and inviting. Extra-sessionable for a bitter 7-percenter. Obtain multiple. (415 characters)

Photo of Rob3408
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Has a nice hazy golden color with some nice sticky lacing to hang around.

Smell: A nice citrus, mostly orange, with a hint of pine.

Taste: A lovely, hoppy IPA. Not in-your-face hoppy and bitter like some but not too light and easy to forget either. A very well balanced flavor palate with orange and pineapple moving into a crisp pine note in the middle. Directly followed by a bit of caramel and finished off with a crisp hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, dry, and balanced, like an ideal IPA.

Overall: A great all around IPA that can be enjoyed slowly if you're in the mood but won't fill you up if you drink it too quickly. A beer that every good IPA should be modeled after: it's well-balanced, crisp, refreshing, and full of flavor. (754 characters)

Photo of Hop-Droppen-Roll
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very glad to finally get to try this beer. Just had my first Double Jack as well, but as I was enjoying it with my dad and didn't want to be distracted by revew writing I chose to just give a rating - went with 5 - Hope to give a full review someday, it won't be quite 5 but it's certainly above 4.75

I always struggle to assign a number to the appearance of a brew, as I feel it's meaningless (will probably be the one factor that brings FWDJ down from a 5). Racer 5 looks great, but I'm not sure that it's 'perfect' - also not sure what's holding it back from that perfect rating either. Looks very good though - to hell with it - I don't want the look of the beer to bring down the score in case I decide I'm in love with it, 5/5 *EDIT*: Later, when I got to see what happened with the lacing, I decided 5/5 was a good assessment. Smells good but the aroma isn't knocking my socks off.

Now to the good stuff - taste. It's really, um, good (sorry). I'm getting pine with grapefruit, as per usual, but there's some nectarine in there as well, maybe a little peach, is that mango? I'm trying too hard. 4/5 - it's not 'in your face' but I could see it getting to be a bit much over time. Not a session ale, but I'm glad that the one bottle of it that I do have is a big one!

Mouthfeel is awesome - see, this is why it bugs me so much that my cousin drank it straight from the bottle - there's no way the creamy goodness came through. If you've had hopslam, there's a similar thing happening here.

Overall: Fantastic - thanks to Danial for sending this up and over! (1,567 characters)

Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours a clear amber with a one-finger foamy white head. Heavy amount of lacing.

S - Big amount of citrus, mostly orange. Some sweet malts and piney hops are also present.

T - Lots of citrus (orange and grapefruit) and piney resinous hops. Nice amount of sweet malts really balance everything out. Finish is mostly bitter hops.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Nice silky mouthfeel with some stickiness.

O - Very nice IPA. Well balanced with everything you could want in an IPA. (495 characters)

Photo of andrenaline
4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Props to my father-in-law for bringing a bottle back from Florida for me...

A - Pours a slightly hazy golden colour with a thumb of head with solid retention and some nice sticky lacing.

S - Sweet citrus and cedar, hints of bitter citrus rind and a fruity finish.

T - Cotton candy hops, very fruity with pineapple and mango, the slightest bitterness comes through on the finish alongside a solid dose of caramel and burnt sugar.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and surprisingly wet.

O - I can understand why this is so highly rated, ABV is very well hidden and offers up a floral bouquet of hop deliciousness. If I could access this on the regular it would be dangerously addictive. (681 characters)

Photo of BierJager89
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Light golden with a small white head.

S: Citrus, particularly orange in the nose.

T: Orange, blood orange(?) flavors. Sweet, a bit floral. Some nice tropical fruit as well.

M: Medium bodied. Smooth enough for an IPA.

O: DELICIOUS! One of the better common IPAs out there in general, but fresh from the brewery the day before the very same batch was sent to the beer festivals, it's amazing. (397 characters)

Photo of a0lbudman
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-hazy gold with a small white head that leave a little lace on the glass
S-pine resin, with a citrus aroma that does have a slight malt smell
T-grapefruit with a piney hop bitterness that gives you a crisp hop aftertaste that stays with you
M-full body and medium carbonation
O- great fine with almost everything I love in a APA (329 characters)

Photo of leaddog
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle.

Appearance - Pours a clear amber/copper with two fingers of frothy white head.

Smell - Citrus hops, pine resin, caramel malts, tropical fruits.

Taste - Bold and bitter citrus hops along with pine resin, citrus peel, tropical fruits and biscuity caramel malts. Finishes with a clean bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Slight stickiness left on the roof of the mouth.

Overall - A beer that does not fail to amaze me, especially since it has been on my "want" list for quite some time. Excellent hop bitterness and flavour by the mouthful. (584 characters)

Photo of DMXLOX22
4.54/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Picked up a single of this brew at my local establishment, Civera's in Drexel Hill. Heard good things about this one from a few friends. Kinda excited. Let's see how this goes.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, golden color that leaves behind a nice 1-1 1/2 inch head that is somewhat thin, but also quite appealing. Really left a nice, tight lacing around the glass almost all the way down. Inviting.

Smell: Grassy hops is the most dominant smell that comes first upon checking it out. Decided to a take a second round. Earthy hops are still abutment, along with a citrus zest. Pretty much sums up a perfect IPA. Some maltiness backs all the scents up making it very well-balanced.

Taste: Upon first sips, a perfect blend of citrus hops, grassy, earthy, malts can be tasted. Second taste is a pretty nice taste of lemon zest, orange peel and some other fruitiness that really makes the bitterness stand out even more if thats possible. Very nice, good. I really enjoy the taste and the earthy hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, smooth finish. Somewhat dry finish. Good stuff. Well balanced.

Overall: Coming into this brew, it came highly recommended and I must say I am glad I chose this brew. Fills the palate with earth tone hops and an undertone of citrus flavors. Quite nice overall, really enjoyed this brew. I would totally try again and have already started recommended this brew to friends. Can't wait to try again. Cheers! (1,431 characters)

Photo of delta490
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- a clear lighter gold with a creamier white head. Moderate-low retention but some nice lacing.

S- an appealing blend of pine/citrus hops and the malt backbone. A little on the mild side, but not absent in any way

T- not a big hop bomb, but the hops flavors are distinct and well-balanced against the malts caramel sweetness.

M- a nice full feeling on the palate with a slight bite from the hops

O- this is a great, well-balanced full flavor IPA. (451 characters)

Photo of TheBeer
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Serving type: Bomber
A: Good looking copper orange color. Not much head presence.
S: Strong citrus and pine combination. Pleasant smell that tickles the taste buds.
T: Very smooth hop presence to the beer. On first contact it seems as though a large bitterness is to ensue, but instead a very pleasant bitterness carries the beer through to a citrus aftertaste.
M: Decent carbonation that coats the palate.
O: Not bad at all. Fairly cheap price and well worth it. Could use a little more complexity in the taste, but a worthy beer to try. (539 characters)

Photo of elNopalero
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

How could I not have reviewed Racer 5 by this point in my beer reviewing career? I didn’t even realize it until I started looking at the “top ___” lists. There’s a few omissions that I visit frequently and this, my trivia night staple, is definitely one of them.

The Racer 5 pours an amber-tan color, with a rich, caramel-orange-tinged hue. It has this wonderful candied-orange hop aroma to it, with an orange-heavy hop profile. Malty sweetness turns into a bitter piney finish. Dependable, reliable, and I’m glad I’m finally giving it its due. (557 characters)

Photo of VinoGuy
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Golden color, pour with a decent head. Soft slightly sweet floral aroma of hops and suggestion of crystal malt. Clean taste with a smooth mouth feel and even balance between hops and malt. No overly present taste of alcohol. Hints of spice on the finish. (254 characters)

Photo of Mike_Moe
5/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Dark golden color light brown head.
Aroma: Very good spicy smell. Fruity banana hops aroma coming through.
Flavor: Spicy banana flavor, ending slight sweet and hoppy. This is a full bodied smooth beer.
Overall: This is a very flavorful smooth IPA. Has a very good spicy banana flavor, with quite a hoppy finish. Bold, smooth, delish. You can't stop drinking them. (378 characters)

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,230 ratings.