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Café Racer 15 - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Café Racer 15Café Racer 15

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

712 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 712
Reviews: 148
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 8.51%

Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.75% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Café Racer 15™ features aromas of bright citrus and resinous pine from the generous use of Citra, Amarillo, Cascade and Chinook hops which are complimented by a dry malt finish. The result is a high revving Double IPA that is loud and assertive, much like the rebellious street racers who inspired it. Never ride alone...

(Beer added by: womencantsail on 02-12-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 712 | Reviews: 148 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BierJager89


4.46/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Medium golden with very little off white head.

S: Orange and other, similar fruits in the nose.

T: Orange and pine dominate among other fruits and floral notes.

M: Medium bodied and smooothish.

O: Outstanding. I loved all of their Racer beers at the event.

Note: This was consumed during an event at the brewery. The beers served were those that were headed for the GABF, and were thus at their absolute prime. Also, I tried more than a dozen beers that day, and my memory of it is, understandably, hazy.

Serving type: on-tap

01-17-2014 23:10:16 | More by BierJager89
Photo of Philousa


4.44/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Imbibed at Market Beer Co. on 7/20/13

Pours a clear copper with a whispy white head. Surprisingly little lacing. Aroma is slightly biscuity sweet with a great helping of pine, grapefruit, and lemon. Aroma is very pleasant. Flavor starts with pine and sweet biscuit/honey, moves to pine bitterness that is mild and pleasant. This finishes slightly sweet with a medium mouthfeel.

This is a great beer that hides its ABV very well. Looking forward to getting a bottle to enjoy at home.

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2013 21:11:42 | More by Philousa
Photo of Nugganooch


4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Stone Brew

11-05-11 – Bitter Saturday
*16oz tulip

First sampled and thoroughly enjoyed this at Port’s Real Ale Fest so pretty stoked to get the full experience here.

A: Café Racer 15 pours an orangeish amber color with some light haziness. A one finger eggshell white head formed and left just some light speckles of lace. Decent carb visible.

S: Smell is just real fruity with lots of citrus oil aromas. Gives a sort of tanginess to it. No real malt or alcohol components in the aroma.

T: Nice juicy resinous hop bitterness with a real bright citrus character that is orange and tangerine flesh. Has to be Citra! Perfect sugary balance with this subtle graham cracker malt base. This is so good. Very tasty stuff.

M: Nice creamy texture with light to med. body feel. Slight resinous and sticky coating with a great dry crisp finish.

D: Very drinkable with such great balance. Each sip leaves you wanting more

My new favorite brew from the Republic! Love me some Citra hops. Easily the winner from the day. Highly recommended. Hope to see more of this one.

Serving type: on-tap

11-09-2011 00:08:06 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of beerwolf77


4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brew pub.

Orange amber small white head. Full on citrus and hop resin. Flavors match the nose. Loads of grapefruit and bitter orange zest. Sticky and lightly carbonated. This was the first hop bomb I'd had in awhile and it woke me up for sure. Never had Racer X but I imagine this is a solid replacement.

Serving type: on-tap

12-29-2011 06:14:02 | More by beerwolf77
Photo of Dope


4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Can't find a bottling date on this one but it was just released like two weeks ago so it's pretty fresh.

A: Pours a slightly hazy amber. Big fluffy tan head. Head fades slowly with excellent lacework remaining behind. Nice island of foam too.

S: Excellent. Grapefruit, pine and the biggest is the dank citra hops. Mild bready malt too?

T: Big juicy hops up front. Grapefruit and tropical fruit now. Spicy dankness and pine follows up in the middle. Bready briefly, then a nice dry, crisp resinous finish. Dank hops and some pine linger between sips.

M: Nice medium body, smooth and dry/crisp in the finish.

O: Delicious. Great hop strength up front and great hop complexity overall. I just had Simtra the other day and this reminds me of it a lot. This one is just more complex and a little smaller (which is better, IMO, Simtra is over the top). Drinkability is much better with this one for sure. Really, this is a wonderful west coast style DIPA. Big and juicy but not over the top. I loved it.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2013 04:56:00 | More by Dope
Photo of scottfrie


4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle into Duvel tulip.

A: Pours a murky citrus orange with a couple fingers of greasy light tan head that faded into a wispy scum and left rings of chunky lace down the glass.
S: Juicy grapefruit and orange cream sickles all the way with notes of tropical fruit nectars including mango and pineapple.
T: Follows the nose with flavors of juicy grapefruit, mango, papaya, pineapple and tangerine cream. The finish is sweet and juicy and the aftertaste is leafy and faintly bitter.
M: Full body for the style, greasy and slick body, soft and fluffy carbonation. Easy to drink.
O: Super fresh and juicy dipa. Very flavorful and smooth. Another excellent hoppy beer from an excellent hoppy beer brewery.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2013 22:22:51 | More by scottfrie
Photo of DenverHopHead


4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle with a born on date of 8/5/13, into a tulip.
Appearance - gold, bubbly, refreshing. Modest layer of white head. Lacing is extremely strong despite the minimal head!
Smell - hop punch to the face! Citrus fruit, primarily grapefruit.
Taste - absolutely terrific! Follows the nose with hop forwardness; just a hint of malt to help balance it out!
Feel - grapefruit bitterness, but enough malt to ensure this isn't one-sided! At 9.75% ABV, this is incredibly easy to drink!
Overall - great west coast DIPA, exactly what I expected, if not more!

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2013 23:24:58 | More by DenverHopHead
Photo of AgentMunky


4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into an Allagash cervoise glass. Purchased almost a month ago at the brewery.

A: A finger and a half of pleasant, whitish head tops an effervescent, mostly clear, amber beer.

S: Herbaceous and heavily fruity. Tropical, with a juicy smell dripping with pineapple, guava, and --most obviously -- mango. A whiff of fresh pine. Incredible.

T: Not as fresh as it was on-tap, this incarnation is less fruity and more bitter, but only relatively. In general, it's still very fruit-forward, but also quite hoppy. The maintaste is an earthy, herbal, bitter foretaste, fruity maintaste, and balanced endtaste.

M: Thick and malty without being oppressive.

O: A damn good beer. Highly recommended! Racer 5 may be the best IPA, but this is something else.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2013 23:53:22 | More by AgentMunky
Photo of jdhowe


4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber poured into Ballast Point tulip/flute/snifter... this glass doesn't know what it is. There's a date on the bottle but it's not printed well and so it is illegible. I know this is fresh, though, so I am not concerned.

A: Pours a mostly clear golden amber with 2 fingers of off-white head, which recedes to a film leaving sticky lacing all over the glass.

S: Fresh hops everywhere. Lots of pine and grapefruit, But also a little candied sweetness alongside citrus.

T/M: Plenty of resiny hoppy character throughout. Pine up front with a slightly watery mouthfeel at the start, but the beer quickly swells with citrus and bitter hop character. Maltiness is there, but really only to hold the beer up and provide sweetness rather than to be a major part of the flavor. Mouthfeel and carbonation are both medium despite initial thin feeling. Light bitterness lingers, but this is much less bitter on the finish than many other west coast IIPAs. The finish is otherwise sweet with citrus before giving way to hop bitterness.

O: My favorite thing I've had from Bear Republic without a doubt (although I've not had quite a few of their offerings). This IIPA is neither too bitter nor too sweet and is rich with hop character throughout. It's maybe a little syrupy, and oddly feels just a little thin at the start, but this is a really really good beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2013 06:03:23 | More by jdhowe
Photo of Auraan


4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a cloudy orange with a half-finger white head. It looks nice, but not the best Imperial IPA I've seen. Scents of tropical fruit, caramel malt, pineapple, citrus, some sweet and floral notes, and faint hints of pine. A very fruit and citrus forward DIPA scent, lacking some of the pine of others. It's quite nice and a good change. Taste is hop forward and yet only modestly bitter for the style with the usual flavors of grapefruit pith, some grapefruit, and a bit of tropical fruit, also some hits of pine resin in the background. There is a nice sweet malt backbone backing the citrus and bitterness of the hops, as well as some grassy and floral hop flavors to mix it up a bit. Also a nice hint of alcohol in the background. A very good flavor profile, quite hop forward, yet with some depth to it. Mouthfeel is medium-heavy bodied with moderate-high carbonation and an oily finish with a nice burn of alcohol throughout. Quite the nice mouthfeel for a sipping DIPA. Overall this is an excellent DIPA. The flavors I expect in the style are all there and they balance each other nicely leading to an enjoyable drinking experience. Recommended.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2013 05:47:08 | More by Auraan
Photo of stephens101


4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a dense, tan head. Color is a cloudy amber. Has a thick, creamy and sweet middle with a resinous wrapping. Candied sugar exists and some syrup is left on the lips. Some orange rind is in there as well. Alcohol is sharp. Big, slow and brilliant drinking.

Serving type: on-tap

03-22-2014 22:42:09 | More by stephens101
Photo of Chico1985


4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Sierra Grille, always happy to try a new Racer 5 variation.

Served in a snifter, orange/amber color with a head that stays at a finger for a while, eventually getting down to a cap, but while leaving great lace.

Smell is very good at first but starts to lose it's strength after a bit. Fresh tropical, fruity, earthy hops and some malt.

As the scent died down the taste was coming alive. Very nice hop profile, lots of fruit (peach, orange, grapefruit) with earthiness as well. Very solid biscuit/caramel malt backbone, just the perfect amount of malt.

Very smooth, well-carbonated mouthfeel. Good balance.

Very nice and fresh, I liked this better than Racer X.

Serving type: on-tap

12-08-2011 20:01:00 | More by Chico1985
Photo of labattblueribbon

New York

4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured to glass. Enjoyed this incredible brew with the last episode of Breaking Bad, and god damn was it a perfect pairing. There is almost nothing to dislike about this beer except the nose didn't really show up. Easily the most memorable DIPA i've had in months, great lacing, solid citrus after-taste hanging around, maybe a little spearmint in there as well, no a bit of alcohol to be detected, DANGEROUSLY drinkable. great scott what a bear. Bottom Line an absolute MUST HAVE, get it anyway you can. about $9 for a bomber, i would have paid 30 bucks for this gem.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2013 03:43:37 | More by labattblueribbon
Photo of VelvetExtract


4.39/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A-Pours a semi-hazed glowing marmalade color. Pretty easy to see through. Mild head. Head leaves speckles of lace around the glass.

S-Juicy, wet hops. Not super intense but intense enough to warrant some merit. Tropical and citrusy with a load of dried grass. Citra all the way.

T-Tropical fruits are citrus flesh. Grapefruit transforms into bitter grass. Malt bows down to the hoppiness. The hop expression is quite memorable.

M-Resinous and bitter. Medium/full in body. Dry. Booze hidden well.

O/D-Great beer. I can definitely lump this into the same quality category as their Racer 5 and Racer X. Love them Citra hops.

Serving type: on-tap

01-15-2013 18:40:17 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of Somebody_Else


4.39/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I type this as I am drinking my first Café Racer 15 ever. I have avoided drinking this for a few months because a bomber of 9.75% will put me to sleep. I am a huge fan of Racer 5 so I have had anticipation of this event.

It's a beautiful honey-colored pour and quite clear, but I don't tend to pay much attention to a beer's appearance because, WTF, right? Still, it's an attractive and refined appearance.

The aroma not very strong. Fairly typical for a double IPA. Some pine, lots of citrus and apricot. Definitely an attractive and promising smell for the dedicated hop-head.

The taste is what it's all about. I'm not tasting much alcohol at all -- just cranky-ass hops mostly balanced by a smooth malt supporting role. It is delicious. I would have no problem drinking this all night long except I'd be passed out within an hour. I'm a light-weight and I find no shame in that.

Is mouth-feel the same as after-taste? I love the after-taste of the better strong IPAs! A good double allows me to recycle the flavor past my nose and tongue minutes after it has been swallowed. This one does that just fine. Not as much as my super-favorites, but definitely good and appreciated. If there were a down-side, the alcohol is slightly detectable in the after-taste, but certainly not objectionable in any way whatsoever.

I rate this beer high and would never turn one down. Quite excellent. Thank you again, Bear Republic.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2014 02:17:35 | More by Somebody_Else
Photo of largadeer


4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Draft at Rose and Crown. Clear amber body topped by a finger of head that recedes to a thin collar.

Tangerine, orange, sugar cookie aroma. Bit of tropical fruit, more citrus dominant. Bright and juicy, superior to Racer X.

Palate is resiny with juicy citrus notes. Orange, pineapple, herbal astringency. Faint sweetness from the malt integrates well with the citrusy hop profile. Body is medium-light, and the finish is pleasantly bitter with mild drying astringency. Really nice stuff, about as good as the better batches of Racer X.

Serving type: on-tap

12-29-2011 04:06:51 | More by largadeer
Photo of johnmichaelsen


4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the Meridian Pint the other day.

The beer pours a light golden amber color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is all west coast hoppy goodness, showcasing considerable orange citrus and pine, but with little malty sweetness. Consequently, I was a bit surprised by what I tasted, as this beer had a considerable sweet malt base, along with the considerable hoppy bitterness. It's still a fine tasting beer, but I found the alcohol to be a bit more prominent than I expected. Mouthfeel was otherwise medium bodied, with a long, bitter, alcoholic finish.

A nice enough beer, and I'm wondering if freshness might have been something of a problem here. I think the beer had been on tap for a while at the MP, and that may have contributed to the excessive sweet malt and noticeable alcohol. Still a nice beer, and one I hope to try again from a fresher keg.

Edit from 2/4/13. Happened to be in Healdsburg on Saturday, and so got my wish to sample a fresher version of this beer. The difference was dramatic. At the brewpub, this beer has a wonderful nose of tropical fruit, pine and dry citrus. This smells like a hophead's dream, and the flavor profile didn't disappoint. It replicates the nose, but the mouthfeel is fairly light and lean for such a big beer, but I think that works well in this DIPA. Otherwise, the moderate sweetness in the mid palate is gently pushed aside, leading to a long, bitter, hop infused finish. Alcohol is well integrated into the flavor profile, with no noticeable heat on the finish. Just delicious. Still would have preferred the Racer X (which they were out of), but this wasn't a bad substitute.

Serving type: on-tap

10-20-2012 13:16:40 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of stella77artois

New York

4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Served on tap in a snifter.

A - An amber-red, impressive to the eye. More red than the average IPA/DIPA. 1" head which dissiapted very slowly. Not much carbonation. Nice looking beer.

S - A heavy amount of hops, and lot's of grapefruit. Also detected a flowery aroma. A very, very light hint of alcohol. Very nice.

T - Whew, I hope to be able to find this in my area. So hoppy, it's almost juicy. Hints of grapefruit and a general citrus flavor along with the hops. Also a unique bit of a creaminess to it, which goes along with the juicy feeling. 9.75% ABV, so there is a touch of alcohol heat, but it's not unpleasant.

F - Thick, as DIPA's tend to be. Very little carbonation. A little dry. The only part of this beer I didn't.

O - Any extreme beer fan will love this stuff. Lot's going on with the immense amount of hops and their flavors. I really hope to be able to find this in my neck of the woods, because this beer in outstanding.

Serving type: on-tap

08-18-2013 13:21:23 | More by stella77artois
Photo of Axnjxn

North Carolina

4.36/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

bomber into a tulip. 8/5/13 bottling date.

Copper color with a big white head. Smell is very hoppy leaning on the piney side, but with some citrusy notes as well. The taste is very big and hoppy as well, with a great citrus flavor up front followed by the piney bitterness and ending with a good dry malty feel. Real flavorful and complex DIPA here, and probably my favorite IPA from Bear Republic. Medium bodied, mild carbonation.

Overall this is an exceptionally complex DIPA!

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2013 17:20:21 | More by Axnjxn
Photo of DrinkNewport

Rhode Island

4.36/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Copper pour with a light, white head.

The smell is rich in citrusy and pine-y hops.

The flavor is just a little off-balance. I guess it's a little TOO hoppy. It's a risk all Double/Imperial IPAs face, where where supercharged hops need a serious counterweight.

If you're a hophead, then you probably won't mind.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2014 00:26:42 | More by DrinkNewport
Photo of NorCalYeti


4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

taste- citrus hops with an equally balanced malt component, citrusy, bitter hop effervescent quality

color- straw/gold

clarity- clear

smell- citrus aromas

body- medium body with a medium length hoppy finish

appearance- flat with little to no carbonation

overall impression- really good, true to the style

notes and comments- good drinker with a strong hop kick to the finish

beer spy- double ipa festival, bistro, hayward ca, 2/12/11, 6 oz. glass

Serving type: on-tap

02-15-2011 03:56:19 | More by NorCalYeti
Photo of popery


4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nice to see this stuff show up in bottles. Pours a solid orange, maybe with a touch of amber to it. Quite cloudy. Bone white head that leaves behind some decent lacing as it slowly fades to a centimeter thick blanket of foam. The aroma is big on grapefruit and tangerine with some lemon, pineapple, berry. Lots of hops. There's some lightly caramel accented pale malt sweetness in the background, but this beer brings a hefty dose of hops. Citra, Amarillo and Cascade/Chinook all make their presences felt. It's a nice mix with very good strength, though it's not quite as juicy as more Citra/other fancy new hop variety heavy DIPAs. The taste starts with some gentle malt sweetness, an inviting blank canvas of sugar cane, caramel and honey. Then, sweetly lemony and floral hop notes slide in, followed by pineapple, tangerine and grapefruit rind. There's a bit of green hop harshness in the middle. It's pretty bitter, though it doesn't really get in the way of the hop flavor, outside of that harsh touch. Somewhat sweet, but it's handled well and doesn't grow syrupy or heavy. For the abv and style, it's relatively dry, particularly in the finish. Lingering floral and citrus hop flavors with a pleasing level of bitterness. Relatively mild but noticeable booziness. Mouthfeel is smooth and fairly light, but it coats the palate with hop oiliness. Big mouthful of flavor. Tasty stuff. It's my favorite Bear Republic (D)IPA, and it's great to see put it in bottles without losing its magic.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2013 03:06:26 | More by popery
Photo of GarthDanielson

North Carolina

4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured on-tap and served in a tulip, the beer is a hazed orange-copper coloring with a small bubbled, off-white, clingy head. Nose of tropical fruit, with a heavy dose of mango and grapefruit. Slight bitterness to the hops character, too. Flavors of biscuit/toast in the backbone, with a citrusy and floral hops overtone. Spicy, green highlights, with touches of caramel sweetness underlying. Smooth, spiced aftertaste that is resiny and bitter. Very smooth bodied, with a clean, bitter finish. Very tasty brew.

Serving type: on-tap

02-01-2013 02:19:27 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of cbutova


4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes from last week at Sunset Grill.

A- Orange red ale into a tulip with a creamy white head. Decent size and it leaves a nice thick coat of lace.

S- Peach, orange, pine, herbal and citrus hop explosion.

T- Hops are pungent again with peach, pine, herbal, lemon, floral and orange. Sweet malt as well.

MF- Moderately thick beer with a nice creamy feel and a big bitter finish. Nice high carbonation.

Good hop bomb with a great citrus feel.

Serving type: on-tap

07-30-2011 17:08:40 | More by cbutova
Photo of barleywinefiend


4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured a glowing burnt orangish color with good carbonation presenting a nice white cap, good lacing and head retention to boot. Good looking IIPA.

S: Light dank, juicy fruits, mainly in the way of tropical fruits and citrus. A little bit of caramel perhaps

T: Initial blast of tropical fruits and citrus with a moderate little booze presence. There is a nice bready backbone with some caramel perhaps to help blance it out. This beer screams sweet, lightly dank and flavorful. The finish is a bit wet and sweet

M: Medium-full body, a bit sweet and oily at times. Well carbonated, lots of hops wallop the palate

O: Very nice.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2013 16:48:57 | More by barleywinefiend
Café Racer 15 from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 712 ratings.