Red Rocket Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

2,605 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

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-05-2001

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Ratings: 2,605 |  Reviews: 1,178
Photo of dchester
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep reddish-brown mahogany with a finger-tip sized vanilla-cream colored head. The nose is very complex - roasted malt, coffee, cream and citrus. The taste to me is reminiscent of DFH Burton Baton, but kicked down a notch. Maple syrup, malt and citrus hit you right away with the perfect amount of lingering hops as it moves down. A very nice beer!

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Photo of jmich24
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Duvel Tulip

A: Deep rich dark brown in color. One finger tan head. Lacing is here and there nothing spectacular.
S: Sweet carmel and roasted malts
T: Taste is very nice. Slightly sweet malt bomb. Lots of nutty and carmel flavor. Earthy bitterness is nice in the end to balance it all
M: Nice creamy mouthfeel, carbination seems a bit high but not an issue.
D: Drinkabily is solid.

This is a great beer to move one of your buddies away from Killians Red. One of the best Amber beer I have had.

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Photo of cdkrenz
3.72/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Reddish brown copper body with a large amount of carbonation sticking to the inside of the glass. The head is pale to medium tan and frothy, yet thin. Decent stamina in the head.

S - Firm base of rich malt with a sweet plum scent.

T - It has the flavor of an English Ale if I've ever tasted one. This is one of the most unique flavored Red Ales I've encountered. Dense hops amidst a backdrop of malt.

M - Very slight coarseness thoughout with no real stickiness.

~ This came recommend to me by a gentleman that I encountered at Hi-Time Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa. I'm glad I took a chance because the brew isn't bad. I think the brew is okay, not the best Red I've ever had but certainly unique enough to seek out and try.

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Photo of juhl31
3.38/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

-very dark for the style...a brown looking beer that you have to hold to light to get the reddish/amber hue. an off white, khaki colored head that runs thin, but sticks around

-a bit of hops in the forefront, followed by dark bread, and musty...if that has a smell

-faint hops, some scottish taste to it with some caramel. tastes darker than you would expect (due to style, not color) with a bit of roast and chocolate barely

-medium bodied and on the dry half of the scale, but not too far.

-bear republic is as can't miss as you can find in a brewer, but this is my least favorite of the few they actually bottle. i dont dislike it, but it isnt a go to by any means

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Photo of CuriousMonk
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into dimple glass from a 12 oz bottle. Pours dark brown, almost black with frothy head and good lacing. Aroma is dominated by dark fruit, brown sugar, and an overall theme of sweet malt. Some grapefruity hops poke through as well, but only mildly. Flavor is loaded with silky smooth, and somewhat roasty malt with some sweetness. Hoppyness complements the sweetness of the malt. Palate is full and smooth. Full body, big carbonation, smooth finish. This was a fantastic huge malty beer with great balance!

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Photo of circlenine
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz into a tulip on 1/9/11.

A: Pours a nice dark brownish red (hm, amber perhaps?). Hold it up to the light for some beautiful coloring. Unlike others experiences, my bomber poured with a nice 1" head with heavy sticky lacing.

S: I can smell the hops. I can smell the malts. The separate ingredients clearly do their own thing and shine.

T: This beer is refreshing. It drinks extremely well. Slight bitterness to it, as one would should expect from the Red Ale, but not overpowering. Neither the malts nor the hops dominate this one. Perfectly balanced.

M: Nice medium feel to it. Carbonation is present. It's not heavy and chewy and it definitely isn't too light that it's easily missed.

D: As Darth Vader said when Luke was knocked into the carbon freeze chamber, "All too easy."

Comments: This may have become a "go to" beer for me when tailgating, or looking to drink something in quantity at picnics, etc. I can only imagine this beer nice and cold as I sit by the smoker on a nice summer afternoon waiting for ribs to finish. Too bad it's January or else I'd fire it up right now!

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Photo of mendonjoebeer
3.57/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle- not a clue as to it's age. Not much head or carbonation. Looks like thin dark amber maple syrup in color

Smell of hops,citrus and some malt

Taste is hoppy to start,a fair amount of bitterness,some sweet & malt

Feels like a hearty ale to me

Although I was disappointed in this beer, I still enjoyed it and finished the bomber. My sense is that it was not a fresh bottle, but being bottle conditioned that should not make as much a difference?

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Photo of ADZA
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a nice cherry hue with decent carbonation that leaves behind a two finger head and some nice clingy lacing,the smell is pretty much like a xmas cake with hints of cherries,brandy and some muesli,it has a light-medium bodied mouthfeel which is nicely carbonated and the flavours of the xmas cake really stand out along with some toasty nuttiness,caramel and a slight piney hit right at the end,overall not bad but after trying the other offerings from this brewery i know they can do better and there is not enough interest factor here for me to revisit it.

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Photo of bierenutz
3.77/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours a clear brownish amber color with virtually no head or lacing on the glass.
S-Malty sweetness of caramel and molasses. Mild hoppy notes.
T-This is a malt bomb. There is some hoppy bitterness at the end with earthy-oakey afternotes.
M-Moderate feel with light carbonation.
D-Nice beer and easy to drink.

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Photo of jj311
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark reddish amber color. Has a 1 finger foam head after a soft pour. Sticky lacing.

Smell: The hops in this brew seem to be the dominant aroma. A nice blend of floral and citrus hops. Some grainy and spicy notes are present.

Taste: Citric and floral hops fairly well balanced with some spicyness, and sweet malt flavors. The hops is dominant, but is complimented by the malty undertones. Has a slightly bitter finish that I found to be enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a carbonation tingle.

Drinkability: Not the greatest this particular style has to offer, but certainly drinkable.

Overall: Another solid beer from a great brewing company.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark amber red color with a medium off-white head that disappears quickly. Scent is hoppy with a different sort of fruit aroma...almost like strawberries. I also get grapefruit and caramel. Taste is very hoppy and slightly floral. I get some notes of chocolate along with citrus flavors and cherries. It ends with a bitter hoppy burnt finish. Mouthfeel is crisp and clean with very high drinkability.

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Photo of bbb099
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 Oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Clear, dark amber / auburn color with pieces of yeast floating around that eventually settled to the bottom. Pours with a nice frothy sandy brown colored head.

S - Strong, agreeable floral hop aroma. I was surprised at the lack of yeasty scent.

T - Heavy flavor of citrus and herbal hops. The malt takes a backseat in this beer.

M - Light to medium bodied. It tasted a little watery for me.

D - A great tasting, strong amber ale. Good drinkability.

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Photo of socon67
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass

A - Dark red and very cloudy. Good amount of white foam.

S - A citrusy-sweet smell. Maybe a bit of grapefruit.

T - Malty and sweet. A bit of a bitter finish to it. The blend actually makes this a very tasty red.

M - The sweet-to-bitter contrast is nice. The beer is relaqtively light. A fair amount of carbonation is presesnt. The ABV is subtle.

D - Very much so. I polished off my bomber easily. Could see this as a staple red if it were more available in NY.

Well played Bear Republic. Might have to seek other types out given how good this was.

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Photo of dbossman
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark ruby red with a huge light-tan head--very bubbly with good retention; a decent amount of sediment drops to the bottom of the glass

S: An obvious grapefruit and floral aroma from the hops but also a sweet, slightly sour graininess from the malt bill

T: Grapefruit and subtle pine but also lemon rind sit on top of a peppery and slightly sweet and funky breadiness

F: Decent mouth feel

D: Pretty good hoppy red from Bear Republic--would drink a few of these

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Photo of ferrari29
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into Pint glass
My 50th review!

A - Beer poured with a two and a half finger beige colored foam; the head was rocky & bubbly in appearance and held very well; the body of the beer has a dark reddish color; lots and lots of yeast sediment, which surprisingly enough remains suspended in 'mid-air'; no joke, the sediment does not move; good sticky lacing formed on the side of the glass; one of the best looking beers I have seen in a while; it looks good and healthy

S - Hop notes come up immediately; hop scents are mostly pine, grass and some citrus in aroma; fruits come up after a bit; hop scents are masked a bit by a thick airy scent of fruit (strawberry shortcake or cherry); unique but pleasant

T - Fruit tastes and hops hit the middle of the tongue for a smooth taste with a little bite; slight sour feelings on the sides of the tongue; flavor immediately turns into hop bitterness at the back of the tongue and then very quickly turns into a semi-dry hop aftertaste; 'retro-olfaction' is in high gear here with nothing but hops

M - Thin and gassy bubbly feeling; the beer is not very thick, making it easy to drink; I expected more body out of this; you can feel some of the yeast sediment swish around the mouth for a unique and memorable experience

D - I have to admit I'm not the worlds biggest fan of Red Ale's, but this one was a solid beer and something I have a few more times in one sitting; its filling even with its thin liquid feel; don't be fooled, this beer was made to take control of your senses

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Photo of ztaylor1
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- the darkest amber with red hues. A beautiful frothy head that sticks heavily.

Smell- lots of hops. Citrus, floral, and spicy notes.

Taste- hops dominated. Citrus is more prevalent than I expected. Has a nice spicy, twangy malt taste. Just a hint of a metallic bite in the finish.

Mouthfeel- medium to heavy body. Fairly smooth, with gentle carbonation.

Drinkability- pretty good beer. I'm not a fan of the finish, which has a bit of a metallic taste. Its the only negative factor in the drinkability.

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Photo of rrski198
3.71/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: completely unfiltered and cloudy amber colored ale. Small off white head with great lacing.

S: Deeply breaded sweet malt, boozy and balanced nicely with some spicy hops. There is a pronounced earthy wood scent, almost as if it spent some time in a bourbon barrel.

T: Little bit of booze up front with a dark sweet malt flavor. Peaty, earthy flavors again, with the scotch, boubon, and rye flavors.

M: Good carbonation, very thick and bitter. Bitterness kicks on the back of the tongue. Again, the ABV is very noticable and tingles in the mouth.

O: Great offering for a red ale due to the wonderful balance of the beer. I really enjoyed the complex flavors (wood/earth) that you don't usually get from a rel ale.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a murky brownish-amber into a pint glass with two fingers of sticky dishwater head. Sweet, malty aroma of toffee and just a hint of mildly spicy hops.

Moderate carbonation and a slightly thin mouthfeel. Floral, slightly spicy hops up front followed by toasty biscuit and some caramel and toffee. Slightly bitter pine on the finish.

Lighter than expected and quite easy-drinking, although I expected a little more flavor impact. Sampled this after another IPA and I think this beer's hops were lost in the shuffle-- my fault!

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Photo of TheFightfan1
4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Beautiful amber color. With a thick off white heading that leaves some of the best globbage ever. Tremendous head retention.

Smell is very aggressively hoppy. There is a sweeter maltier backbone in the nose but it plays no match for the bitter hops.

Taste is a little different than in the nose. Although it is still very aggressive with hoppiness.The malts put up a solid front and really meshing well with this bitter bomb. Some sugary notes as well. A perfect combo.

Mouth is full bodied at 6.8%. This seems a bit heavier than anticipated but not in a bad way. Great carbonation that makes leaves a little sting from the bubbles and bitterness.

Now I have to think which is better Nugget Nectar or this. I will do a side by side comparasion soon.

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Photo of Kromes
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Hazy dark red color with an inch thick off white head. Good lacing down the glass.

S: Floral and citrus hop aroma.

T: The initial taste is of sweet caramel malts and a fruitiness. Then the citrusy hop kicks in, but the malt is still overpowering. The finish is bitter and sweet with the caramel malt lingering.

M: medium feels, coats the tongue, smooth.

D: Very good red ale. I like the idea of taking a traditional red ale and adding hops. Nice change of pace from the traditional beers.

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Photo of gskitt
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Deep red to brown, thick two finger head that lingers for a while.
S- Sweet valencia oranges, rum raisins, malty sweetness yet subdued.
T- Deep and complex malt sugars, raisins, chicory even. Wow, smooth and balanced.
M- Ever so slightly syrupy, not in a bad way, pleasant overall mouthfeel.
D- For me, not a lot. It seems to rich.
This is another great offering from Bear Republic.

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Photo of TheSupremeAJ
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle from Abe's of Bethlehem, PA poured into standard pint glass.

A- Nice dark red/brown hue. Head was minimal and quickly faded to a thin layer.

S- Aggressive floral hoppy profile jumps out at you from first whiff. Rich caramel malts are subdued and present.

T- Very rich caramel profile with hops present too. A very flavorful brew that seems warm and dear to me as it reminds me of the fist beer I ever homebrewed.

M- Very perfect carbonation, especially considering its unfiltered, bottle conditioned nature. Creamy bubbles are perfect.

D- They don't call it a Rocket for nothing. Each sip begs another. Alcohol isn't masked well, however lends itself to the style.

I live in PA and want a whole case now. Bear Republic hasn't ceased to impress me yet!

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Photo of spinrsx
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz Bottle

As I approach my 300th review, I'm breaking out some good beers to celebrate!

Appearance - The beer pours a slightly hazy red/brown colour with a very large frothy beige coloured head. I can't see much carbonation due the darkness/haziness of the beer and there is some very nice lacing running in stages down the sides of the glass. The head lasted for several minutes before it began to dissipate.

Smell - hops, caramel, malts, brown sugar

Taste & Mouth - The beer is perfectly carbonated and it feels very smooth and creamy on the tongue. It has a sweet malt taste with lots of hops and caramel. I'm also picking up some very faint coffee and chocolate notes. The beer finishes with malty bitter sweet aftertaste.

Drink - Bear Republic; you've done it again! This is beer is very tasty and extremely drinkable. The alcohol is well hidden and it has a gorgeous appearance. It's one of the better beers I've had the pleasure of drinking.

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Photo of LacquerHead
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a Sam Adams pint

A: dark brownish red

S: the hops were at the forefront. It had a citrus hop aroma with caramel malt in the background.

T: similar to the aroma. The hops were very lively, similar to citrus or tropical fruits. The hops were kept mostly in check by the malts. This had a toasted malt flavor that was not too sweet. It was like a mild caramel malt flavor. Overall, the malts played a very good supportive role to the hops which sported a nice level bitterness.

M/F: not to carbonated, just right

D: I could drink this all night and not get tired of it.

Conclusion: This is one of my favorite red ales - very solid. It sort of reminds me of Arrogant Bastard, but not has hoped intensive.

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Photo of juju7
3.86/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Solid consistent head all the way to the end-excellent lacing. Dark mahogany. Nice ripe tropical hop aromas balanced well with a hint of toffee malt. Smooth with evident bitterness that doesn't dominate. Not much to dislike here. Perhaps a little astringent on the finish but it's all good. Nice beer worth revisiting.

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Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.06 out of 5 based on 2,605 ratings.
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