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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.

2,243 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,243
Hads: 7,209
Avg: 4.19
pDev: 17.42%
Wants: 310
Gots: 1,057 | 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: 2,243 | Hads: 7,209
Photo of doubleipa
3.5/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up while on business in Maryland. Fair amount of hops in th earoma, but not a whole lot. Has a different hoppiness that most other IPAs, in my view, even though there is a lot of grapefruit present. Head disappears quickly.at recedes fairly quickly. Carbonation is good. Can't say that I would want to pick another of these up.

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Photo of trevorjn06
3.5/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Jan 20th 2011: The first time I had this beer I hated it and it got my lowest rating of all the beers I've reviewed, however this is a highly rated IPA with a lot of hype around it so I decided to give it another shot.

Pours a golden/light copper color with a thin head the recedes to a fothy layer on the surface.

Aroma is quite nice, lots of fresh hops, grass, fruit, citrus, flowers, pine, spiciness and a bit of pungent-ness make up the nose. There is very little malt showing up here, but it's a strong IPA so to be expected.

Taste is some pale malt, grassy/hay-like hops and plenty of bitterness (though not so much as to overpower the sweetness). There are some pungent, flower-like flavors and a slight hint of caramel. The finish leaves sweet, grassy hops, spice and bitterness on the tongue.

Mouthfeel is medium/full bodied with average carbonation.

Overal this is a much better beer than the first bottle I reviewed. It is not quite up to the hype that I have heard but it is an inexpensive 22 oz. Bomber at $4.50. I would drink this again but wouldn't seek it out.

June 22 2010: Pours a nice IPA color :P It's golden/amber with one finger of head that recedes quickly.

Smell is up front West Coast hops with citrus, grapefruit and pineapple. There is a distinct cheddar aroma that I find very unpleasant, it seems to overpower most of the malt aromas though I detect a bit of sweet maltiness back there.

Taste is pretty well balanced, lightly sweet and grainy with moderate hop bitterness (for the style) and some nice floral and citrus notes. HOWEVER the cheddar aroma comes through here too, it's just not pleasant. There is a bit of pine on the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium with moderate carbonation.

Overall I was very let down by this beer, I had high expectations and there are some good things going for this brew but the cheesy/cheddar thing ruined it. I bought a bomber and couldn't finish it.

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Photo of philipquarles
3.51/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a very nice cloudy copper with a thick off-white head. Good lacing. Smells primarily of grapefruity hops, though malt and spices are also present. This carries on into the taste, though the malt becomes a bit more prevalent. Nice roasted flavors. Mouthfeel is decent; thick and with a hint of carbonation. A bit too unbalanced for my taste, but I'm admittedly not a hophead.

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Photo of ZDub
3.51/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle. Duvel glass. No best by/bottled on date.

A - Pours a very clear golden straw color. A nearly white two finger head reduces to half a fingers width after a minute and leaves minimal lacing.

S - Smells of pine-resin-hoppiness with some floral notes. Possibly a hint of sweetness. Not overly complex but nice and inviting.

T - Very nice. It has a good balance of hops to malt. It's not cloying at all but it is sweeter than I expected. The hops are there, but they don't hang around long.

M - Medium mouthfeel. Very crisp, refreshing, and smooth.

D - Very drinkable. Perhaps this bottle is a little old. That could explain the mellowness of the hops. Of course, having been drinking mostly imperial IPA's lately my palate could be off. No matter, this is a very good beer.

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Photo of PeterLemonjello
3.51/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - poured from a 12 oz bottle. appearance was a crystal clear honey color. quickly evident that something wasn't right. zero head, zero carbonation

S - nice aromas of citrusy, lemon rind hops with a touch of pepper.

T - flavor follows aroma but doesn't really explode. nice bitterness, even without any carbonation to help deliver, and just a touch of caramel, biscuit malt flavors.

M - solid medium body but certainly not the best example without any CO2

D - very drinkable. lots of hop flavor/bitterness and not too chewy to make for a nice session IPA

Big fan of Bear Republic. Hop Rod is an outstanding beer. Even though I got, what I think was, a bad bottle...would seek out again based on other beers I've had from BR and reputation alone.

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Photo of Reagan1984
3.51/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served from a bomber

Caramel/deep copper in color with a slight haze.
2 fingers of dense off white head that lasted.
There was an insane amount of lacing.

Aroma was malty sweet and did not have a fresh hop aroma.

The flavor unfortunately matched the aroma.

The flavor was Malty/Caramel/sweet with a cooked/dead hop bitterness.

I don't think this is very well balanced at all and our tasting group placed this near the bottom of the IPA & DPA's that we all sampled.

If you are a hop head, look elsewhere.

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Photo of californiakulak
3.52/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pint at a pizza joint in SF.

A. Lighter than I would have expected for the style. Lots of bubbles and good head.

S. Very hoppy. Pine and floral notes. Fresh smell.

T. Not as bitter as the smell would have you believe. Not much else is going on either. A little bit of a let down. It also doesn't hide the alcohol as well as some other similar IPAs.

M. Light and not too bitter. Fairly dry aftertaste. Nice oily feel as well.

D. Smooth beer that is quite drinkable. Didn't quite live up to my expectations but good non the less.

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Photo of souvenirs
3.52/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

$8.60 plus deposit for a 650 ml bottle at the 8th Street Liquor Store at New West station. This liquor store advertises a selection of over 200 bomber of craft beer, and yes, it is a pretty good selection. I was already in the mood for IPA when I noticed their helpful list of top-rated IPAs that they carry. Based on the list, I picked out this one and a few others.

This beer pours a murky amber with one finger of head. The aroma is fairly mild, fruity and sweet, with a bit of orange, but not heavy on citrus or pine, like many IPAs. It's maybe a bit floral. Overall, on the milder side.

Mouthfeel is a bit flat. I see that the alcohol content is 7%, and after drinking half a bottle, I feel that, but it doesn't taste like it.

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Photo of Fluke828
3.52/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes.

Had this on tap with a frothy finger and a half head. Some serious lacing throughout.

Smell is intoxicating floral and pine with some citrus and serious hops.

Taste backs up the smell only with a big time bite of bitterness throughout. Very hoppy but not as fruity as I was expecting, judging by the smell. Piney and resinous for sure with a bitter bite that lingers into the aftertaste.

Felt smooth going down again with the strong bitterness present that really balances out the carbonation.

Drinkable and enjoyable, and it was quite good, especially to an IPA enthusiast such as myself but I must need to have several others to see what all the hype is about and buy into it. Would have it again...

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Photo of zdk9
3.52/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a light orange with just a film of head. Small dots of lacing.

S- The strongest scent on this one is orange, sort of a Mandarin sweet orange. With extensive smelling I can detect caramel and light butterscotch notes.

T- Quite sweet, once again with the orange and the caramel. I'd say the taste of this is somewhat of an English, malt forward, beer, but with American hops. The problem I have is that the hops just aren't doing it for me.

M- The alcohol hits me hard for this beer. Not so much in the palate, but down my throat I feel it. The beer is smooth enough for my taste, and the carbonation treats it well.

O- This is a decent beer, and probably even worth the small price I paid for it. But not an exceptional IPA, the complexity isn't quite there.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.52/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Pint glass.

A - Pours a clear, medium orange with a small yellowish head that fades to the edges.

S - Malts, grass, oranges.

T - Sweet malts with a floral finish.

D - Lower carbonation with a lighter body.

O - Sweet style west coaster.

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Photo of robwestcott
3.52/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

poured from a bomber - clean and clear, sunshine orange to a dogfish head signature glass with a rather thin white-ish head - minimal retention.

distinctive and straight up citrus hops aroma.

taste of citrus hops, very sweet and only a hint of bitter. I have a feeling this isn't a fresh bottle and the hops have faded - but that suits me just fine.

medium carbonation, fairly smooth and creamy, hint of bitter near the back of the tongue.

reasonably drinkable at 7% - I'll finish up the bomber no problem.

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Photo of BrewCrew2010
3.52/5  rDev -16%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A: Hazy copper orange body. No head even with a hard pour.

S: A simple nose of grapefruit, caramel, & dry bready malts. Not as hop forward as I hoped.

T: Bitter citrus hops followed by sweet & bready malts. Although balanced, the flavor is slightly weak. Dry & bitter finish.

M: Medium body, decent carbonation, & crisp mouthfeel. Very refreshing.

O: This one seemed a bit off for the style. Got it from the store's cooler so I think it was fresh, but this one seemed slightly weak and more hop forward. I would drink this again, but believe there are much better American IPAs out there.

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Photo of bubseymour
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - very uninviting appearance. Less than 1 finger head that quickly disappears. A scary, murky/cloudy light orange color.

Smell - Very pleasant citrus hop presence. Love that smell.

Taste - piney and somewhat bitter. Lots of hops frying the palet. Ok, but too much imbalance of hop fry vs. lack of flavors to balance the bitter hops.

A good mouthfeel.

Overall - this beer is ok but a little too unbalanced hops for my taste. They need to find the flavor balance to the hop bitterness to make this a better crafted beer.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear orangy amber, fluffy, creamy hand pumped head.

S: Piney hops, faint hints of citrus and spice. Decent malt presence.

T: Piney hops with spicy flavors. Hints of citrus and decent malt backbone. Bitter and Earthy.

M: Big boddied, slightly oily and coating. Some aftertaste.

D: Good, but not great. Odd combo of strong piney hops and malt backbone. Cask is not my favorite IPA serving device.

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Photo of Genghis22
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a beautiful gold color with a small white head that did not last long. Nice little bits of lacing.

S - Hops, hops and more hops. Sweet and piney all at the same time, this is an IPA!

T - Starts off sweet and finishes with a nice bitter hop aftertaste.

M - Thick and syrupy with minimal carbonation.

D - This is a drinkable beer. The first time I had it, I didn't like it, but it's been a while and I've grown as a beer drinker. This is a fine example of a good west coast IPA. Lots of piney hops in the nose and they come through on the taste as well.

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Photo of DaveBlack
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Rich honey color, maybe a cm of white head that has pretty good retention and leaves a nice ring of lacing. A steady stream of bubbles can be seen rising from the middle of the glass to feed the thin layer of head that remains.

S: Lovely aroma of piney, citrusy hops. not much going on behind the hops except a hint of sweetness from the malts. Definitely almost entirely hops here.

T: Nothing subtle about the hops on this baby, either in the nose or the taste. Grapefruit hops hit right up front, giving a nice jolt of bitterness, that fades away into sweetness with a lasting hop flavor.

M: Medium-light body with a good amount of carbonation that tickles the tongue.

O: A good IPA, a very drinkable beer, but it's basically a mild hop bomb. Not much complexity, just delicious hops. I have given up being impressed with simple, heavily hopped beer, but it is good and well balanced. If you're looking for something unique, though, look elsewhere.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a nice gold color with small thin white head.

S: Nose was floral, citrus and well hopped

T: Taste followed the nose very well. No surprises. Lots of caramel malt, more malts than hops I thought, floral notes mainly with citrus notes.

M: Finished slightly bitter but smooth. The hops blast was late and good.

D: Good

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Photo of Ego
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

found @ DeCicco Market, Pelham, NY

big fluffy white head (no, not mine...the beer), sticky like those octopuses you got out of cereal boxes and chucked at the wall, the head is bumby like a crappy matress, orange with ample carbonation flowing from the bottom of the chalice, very good looking.

hops, next question ? ok... citrusy but not pine or lemon, a bit more floral like sierra nevada pale with a kicker, almost hard to get past the hop blast but there is a nice musty bread tone buried in there as well, nothing yeasty or doughy just a whiff of a bakery in the morning, nothing insanely complex here but more like "here I am bitch"

taste etc...
prickly carbonation abounds, hops hops hops... this can be a touch bitter but that doesn't bother this pilgrim. mouthfeel is really good, medium and carries well over the palette, the ABV is not an issue in the flavor but it does creep up on you.

I have enjoyed other bear offerings to a greater extent, this isn't bad by any stretch but it certainly didn't knock my socks off... I wouldn't be averse to having it again but I won't go silly looking for it.

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Photo of intensify
3.54/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

poured from a 22 oz into a pint glass. 1 finger head with fast retention but a whole lot of bubbles left behind. Spider lacing is ridiculous in this IPA. Smells of earthyness and small hints of passion fruits such as grapefruit and mango. Taste was very mild. I was expecting something intense but instead i was greeted with a smooth and mellow spicey grapefruit taste followed by a bitter finish which added a little character to the beer.
Overall i was expecting a bit more flavour but it was an okay IPA. I will let it warm up a bit and then maybe i'll get a bit more out of this.

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Photo of thydarkprevails
3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a duvel tulip. Nice yellow orange with a 1/2 inch off white head. Aroma is piney but nothing special. Flavor has a nice caramel and malt back with a strong hop hit. Bitter citrus fruits are apparent with more of that pine coming through. Mouthfeel is somewhat sticky. Overall a good ipa, just not amazing.

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Photo of Strix
3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear golden, decent initial head, fades quickly, a bit of lacing.

Sweet malt and floral hops in the smell.

Light sweet malt background, pine twang, slight grapefruit finish. Fairly classic, but nothing particularly unique that I tasted.

Medium-smooth mouthfeel.

A good example of the style, but nothing on this really stood out for me. Good but not great.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed an off bottle on 4/26/11, came back to it again to give it a second chance.

A – Light gold body. White head with ok retention, but good lace.

S – Woody, leafy hop character. Light honey sweetness.

T – Soft malt into an orange and ginger middle. Herbal backend of thyme and rosemary. Great balance, but the end of the profiled is blemished by a dry dustiness.

M – Medium body with a lightly sweet finish.

O – Not a bad IPA. The dusty note on the backend keep this a solid point lower than where it could have been imho.

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Photo of Overlord
3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not as good as I expected.

Not the hoppiest IPA I've had ... by a wide margin, but the lack of those delicious hops hasn't been replaced by much. It has a fairly straightforward bitter with a bare splash of citrus flavor. In comparison to a DIPA, which usually will have more sweet fruit/malt flavors balancing out the hops, there isn't much else going on here. Mostly grapefruit, no real residual sweetness ... maybe a bit of orange/citrus.

Pours a not terribly attractive yellowish orange, but does have great carbonation and a long lasting head (started off four fingered, but quicly disippated to a more manageable finger length .. then lingered at half a finger for the entirety of the drink).

By no means a bad beer, it's just not my favorite IPA. The real problem is the price. For a few dollars more I can get union jack ipa or ruination, for a few dollars less I can get mission street, alaskan, or torpedo ipa, and for the same price I can get celebration ipa.

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Photo of WilliamD
3.56/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Light amber color with a thin white head.
Smells of malts is stronger than the hops. Faint pineapple and strange, musty aroma.
Mild hop presence in the taste. Citrus-y and watery. Little bit of an alcohol bite.
Mouthfeel is crisp and watery.
Good drinkability. The alcohol presence surprised me though.
Not that impressed with this one. Decent IPA.

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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 2,243 ratings.