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Red Rocket Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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Red Rocket AleRed Rocket Ale
2,631 Ratings
Red Rocket AleRed Rocket Ale

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

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Red Rocket Ale is a bastardized Scottish style red ale that traces it's origins to our homebrew roots. This full bodied and hoppy brew finishes on the palate with sweet, caramel malt flavors.

2009 California State Fair - SILVER
1999 Great American Beer Festival® Other Strong Ales or Lagers - SILVER
1998 Great American Beer Festival® Other Strong Ales - SILVER

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,631 |  Reviews: 1,182
Reviews by NeroFiddled:
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Carefully poured it's fairly clear with just a few specks of yeast sediment. I personally prefer it with the yeast - and give it a swirl - but it still remains just hazy (not cloudy). The body is a very deep copper and it's topped by a frothy ivory head that holds exceptionally well and leaves some very nice lace throughout the glass. The aroma offers some sweet, lightly smoky and caramel-tinged malt as well as some grassy and spicy hops (although it doesn't really become apparent until it warms). The full body is accentuated by a natural carbonation from bottle conditioning - restrained (@ 2.2 vol CO2) with very tiny bubbles - and it's quite creamy and smooth across the palate. Very nice! The rich grassy hops are the first thing that's noticed in the flavor, followed by some soft sweet malt and a touch of smokiness as it crosses the palate before finishing with a rousingly dry and bitter finish. Long lingering hop flavors and some residual smokiness keep it interesting and remind you that you have a beer in front of you! Very well done and quite enjoyable. Also very unique as well. Well worth trying!

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More User Reviews:
Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.74/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle into a teku.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color with a touch of murkiness. The head is two fingers high and pale yellow in shade. Retention is pretty good, and the head's foamy textures leaves behind some lacing on the glass. When I pour the dregs in, it seems to layer perfectly below the head. (3.5)

Smell: It has the typical red ale malts (caramel, toffee, toasted bread), backed by some piny, grassy hops. Letting it open up will reveal some nice fruit esters like cherry and apricot - still, I wish this quality was a little stronger. However, it provides enough of a twist to raise it above the glut of average amber/red ales out there. (3.75)

Taste: There's a powerful hop flavor to start, one that's herbal, grassy, and even tobacco-like at times. After a few sips, the malt backbone appears. There are nice notes of toast, caramel, and toffee in the middle, before it finishes with light estery flavors. Just like on the nose, I want a bit more of an ester flavor - otherwise, this one is quite good. (3.75)

Mouthfeel: A respectably full body is featured here. Not overly sweet-feeling for the style, and thank cripes for that. There is a bit of residual sugar floating around, but nothing that's crazy. Thanks to the low carbonation, it's more of a sipper than a chugger - not a problem, though... (3.75)

Overall: I always see this around, and I always approach with trepidation (because freshness). But when it is fresh, this is really good. And it actually has a best by date on it - granted, it's not as good as a born on date, but I'll take what I can get. I'll definitely have this again, especially on tap. (3.75)

3.74/5: Definitely not some dime-a-dozen, middle-of-the-road red ale; deserves its status as a classic

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Photo of oberon
4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep deep ruby with a fantastic sticky slightly off white head,really pick up the zest hops there with an underlying caramel malt, very piney and cedary.A big tasting beer nicely balanced with a huge amount of hops for the style but a nice nutty biscuity malt backbone to hold up to the dry,zesty hop.A true west coast ale big and bold tasting and full of hops,a very very nice brew.

 391 characters

Photo of beerjeep
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of RoyalT
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance – Extremely thick and brown in color with a nice head that left a little lacing on the inside of my Ruination glass. There is a ton of sediment floating around in this one. Another big hoppy Bear Republic?

Smell – There’s a wonderful piney hop nose followed by a solid malt base to this one. It is very subtle when cold, but opens up a bit after about five minutes in the glass. There are also some citrus hops as well along with some sugary caramel sweets, making this one rather complex.

Taste – Man, is this good. The hops of course lead the way. They are sharp and piney with citrus undertones backed up by a serious malt structure that’s just dripping with sugar syrup. I can almost literally taste a Heath bar in there.

Mouthfeel – More surprises in that this one actually has a bit of carbonation. Otherwise this is just about full-bodied, probably the heaviest Red that I’ve had to date, and extremely dry. This is a real mouthful.

Drinkability – This is my idea of an American Red Ale. I’m no expert, but if you go to the BJCP site it describes this beer exactly. I’d give my right nut for a glass of this on-tap.

Update – I rated this beer so high back in November 2003 when I snagged a bottle in California I thought I’d re-review a 2004 vintage now that they sell it here in Seattle at Bottleworks. This thing is by far the tastiest and biggest Red/Amber Ale that I’ve ever had, and the mouthfeel is just incredible (better than the 5.0 that I scored it). After 1,200+ reviews it is still my favor Red Ale to date.

 1,565 characters

Photo of aszatk01
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of DavyJones
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of t2grogan
2.5/5  rDev -38.3%

Photo of cynicgiraffe
3.49/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark red/crimson with a fluffy white head that has quite a bit of retention and lacing. Tons of yeast and other bits floating around. Unfiltered, indeed. Smells sweet, some resinous pine and some prune/plum/cherry action. Watery front, not the kind of malt backbone that I look for in a red ale. Lots of hoppy pine notes though. Lots of carbonation I'd have it again, but I think I prefer Green Flash's Hop Head Red.

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Photo of tbryan5
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of SteadySippin
4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into chilled glass from a bottle.

A - Dark amber/ reddish brown color with a half inch off white head. Considerable lacing on the glasss.

S - I mainly pick up roasted malt with a slight hop presence as well. It smells somewhat sweet.

T - At first I taste malt, then bitterness from the hops lightly comes in enough to be noticeable but not overpowering. The hops give off a piney/grapefruit taste which is pleasant. The malt side of things tastes like brown sugar or caramel.

M - Bitterness covers the pallet immediately. Carbonation is on point and the beer feels slightly heavy but it is smooth and easy to drink.

O - I will be buying more of this for sure. Its a really good ale! It was recommended to me and I am quite happy with it. The balance between the malt and hop is almost perfect in my opinion. The beers appearance is great too.

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Photo of explosivebeer
3.96/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This slightly creamy red ale has a great head that actually has persistent structure, almost like a head on a root beer float. Unfortunately, it blocks a lot of the aroma, at least until you drink it down. The color is a deep brownish red. This beer has an excellent balance of malts and hops, with lots of flavor and a nice smooth finish. This is the first beer I'd tried from Bear Republic but I'll be keeping my eye out for other offerings.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue II:

Originally a Scottish-style Red Ale, the Northwest hopping quickly took over, and now we see this beer as an American Red Ale. Mildly chilled, hazy mahogany color. Dense latte-looking foam does not want to drop out of the picture. Rich, dark caramel malt nose with hints of raisins and a balance of piney herbal hop. The carbonation is imbedded very deep from the bottle conditioning which produces a sublime smoothness. Flavors of caramel, cocoa powder and Portuguese sweet bread from the malt comes to mind. Hop bitterness comes in with a mild tingling sharpness and a long trail of woody earthy flavor. Mildly warming alcohol. A dryness sets in middle to end with toasted biscuit maltiness and rough herbal hop flavors.

Scottish Red gone wild. OK, so it is hybrid style which makes it an American Red by default. Regardless of what the style is it's one hell of a flavor-packed brew. High level of maltiness is curbed by a substantial hoppiness and smoothed out by the bottle conditioning. American Real Ale at its best here.

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Photo of steelerguy
4.38/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Nice clarity if you don't include the last bit of yeast, doesn't matter if you do though, does not affect taste. Perfect level of carbonation with a nice 2 finger light tan head that drops to 1 pretty quickly.

S - Dark caramel malts jump out immediately with some dark fruit aromas accompanied by a mild hop aroma.

T - The smell was right on when it came to the malts, lot of caramel and complex fruit flavors. The smell didn't let on how great the hop presence was going to be. Nice bitterness, with some citrus hop flavor that really offsets the sweetness from the malt nicely.

M - A little extra carbonation really keeps the feel nice, it may be a little heavy without it. Enough alcohol in there to give a nice warming feel without any higher alcohol taste.

D - This is a great beer that manages to be refreshing even with a solid malt presence and sweetness. This is one balanced beer and one to always have on hand.

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Photo of Dmann
4.73/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a great brew! It poured a magnificant dark mahogany color with a great frothy head that left tons of lace down the glass. The smell was very good with a nice malt scent mixed with a light citrus. The taste was just awesome and unlike any amber/red that I have ever had before. It started out with a touch of malt sweetness, then once it opened up it had a great smokey flavor to it followed up by a great finishing hop bitterness! Very complex flavor and as it warmed it tasted even better. A new favorite of mine for sure.

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Photo of drewkennedy
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of bulldogg915
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of danthehopslamman
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of dandaugherty1221
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DaftPatrick
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of 3HovsepiansBrews
4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- It is a very dark red, almost brownish that makes it look a little muddy. But there is a very nice cream-colored head.

S- A good balance of dark malt and fruity hops.

T- At the front, you get a mild fruity sweetness from the hops mixed the sweet malt flavor. In the back, you get the lovely hop bitterness that lingers on your tongue and at the back of your throat.

M- Medium to heavy body, but not as full as you would expect from Bear Republic.

D- Could definitely have a few bottles due to the lower ABV, medium body, and great balance of hop/malt flavor.

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Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a mostly clear deep red with one finger of off-white head. Head fades pretty quickly, but does leaves some lacing.

S - Pretty big aroma, with nice caramel malt and pine hops being represented equally.

T - Starts off with nice pine hops, with the sweet caramel malt becoming more apparent halfway through. Finishes with a subtle lingering bitterness. Very nice.

M - Medium mouthfeel with some resiny hops and a bit of creaminess as well.

O - I do tend to like hoppy ambers much more than traditional versions of the style, and this is no exception. Another quality beer from Bear Republic.

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Photo of nstroup
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of SmellsofMahagony
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Doomcifer
4.36/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a darker shade of reddish amber with an amazing frothy head that did not go ANYWHERE at all. Some sediment is floating around in there as well. Terrific lacing to boot. What a beauty.

Smells of sweet malts, almost tropical and lots of citrusy hops.

Taste is of more sweet candy malts with copious amounts of citrusy hops. Finishes semi-dry and hoppy/sweet. I taste some rye in it as well, but am unsure if they use rye in this recipe. Some breadiness in there as well. Fantastic.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, oily, and good amount of carbonation.

I could drink this beer all day. It is incredibly tasty and damn smooth. Chalk up another absolute winner for Bear Republic.

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Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 2,631 ratings