Red Rocket Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

2,602 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: 2,602 |  Reviews: 1,178
Photo of soupyman10
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Big Hunt in DC. Grabbed this one and then the Double Rocket right after. Both were delicious. This one's your standard big amber ale - huge spicy caramel malt deliciousness. Nice looking amber color, big nice fluffy head. Well-balanced, spicy pepper along with citrus fruitiness in the hops. A really tasty beer with a solid body and good carbonation. Almost sessionable (but for the slightly high ABV), but either way, one I could drink all night.

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Photo of Magpie14
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: this is one of the nicer looking beers. Shades of fire engine reds with crimson and orange. The head erupted a nice dirty cream color with foamy blobs adhering in the upper rim of the glass. Slowly the head melted away to leave bubbles and small pockets of fuzz scattered around

S: nice, things smell sweet and spicy. Strong smells of toasted caramelized malts with a hearty helping of juicy hops. A nice meshing of smells going on

T: hops are in the back more than I hoped for. The toasted malt foundation is rather strong and drenched in gooey caramel. What can be gathered on the hops part is a soft piney spiciness with a squeeze or two of citrus (lemons and orange). The flavors still mix wonderfully and it gets even more tempting as it warms. So far so good, one of the better Amber/Red Ale's I have had

M: has a good quality within and projects a medium plus-a-few feel. Carbonation is well placed and allows for an easy down the hatch drink. Whether sip or gulp this has a good vibe

D: this is another buy. As stated earlier, one of the better Amber/Red Ale's I have had to date. Bear Republic is growing in my book of favorites. Get a hold of this a try it. I would like a little more hop presence but for what this beer offers it is a nice union of hops and sweets

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Photo of smittyjr
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thx to RichBeer for this one, an extra in a recent trade!

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A- Body has a reddish-brown color that just glows in the light. The head was thick, frothy, light toasted tan color, great retention and awesome lacing!

S- Toasted malts, light citrus smell, light hoppy-ness as well! as it warmed, i noticed a tiny-bit of chocolate to the smell as well.

T- Goodness describes the flavor! sweet hops mixed with toasted malts; nummy goodness! there is a sweet-toasted bread maltiness, that mixes with the hop flavor which is slightly-dominant. as it warmed a caramely-chocolate taste showed up as well. overall a great mix of flavors!

M- Wonderfully smooth and creamy, easy on the palette. there is a wonderful, light bitterness from beginning to end.

D- This Red was a damn-tasty treat! i wish i lived in Cali, would drink it all the time! The creamy goodness was irresistible as i finished the glass way too quickly, yet enjoying every drink!

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

Hey this isn't red...though it was one my first favorite "craft" beers!

Glass shows a nice caramel color with a great foamy head which quickly dissolves.

Floral aroma with some spicy hints as well.

A nice hoppy taste with some peppery hints on the tongue. A malty presence rounds the mouthfeel out nicely.

This is much too easy to drink and though I am not a huge Amber fan, this is worthy of being in my garage man-fridge anytime!

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Photo of JoshuaJ
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours one of the most beautiful dark ruby's I've seen in a beer. Two fingered, creamy, off-white head and thin lacing all the way down.

Smells of roasted, caramelly malts and alcohol. Smells sweet and warm (even though it's cold). Not picking up much a hops presence in the nose.

The sweet, creamy malts hit you up front, and the bitter, earthy hops take it to the finish. The alcohol hits the back of the throat and cruises down into the belly. The hop oil stays on the tongue and gives it a nice dry finish. I think it's pretty well balanced, too. The creamy malts don't go down without a fight to the hop kick.

It's full bodied, but it's so easy to down one of these. Very quaffable. At nearly 7% ABV, you probably shouldn't session this, but damn it if I don't want more.

Notes: This is an excellent red. Creamy, toasty, caramelly, earthy, hoppy. All the flavors work in perfect harmony with each other. They say it's a "bastardized Scottish ale," but I think you'd be hard pressed to find a Scot that turns this one down.

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

Pours a deep brown color with a nice fluffy tan head with impressive lacing. It's only when you hold this beer up to a bright light that you can see it's dark cherry red color.

Smell is fruity, yet contains similar aromas of a good porter.

Taste is deep, dark, fruity, and earthy all at the same time. Reminds me of a cross between an Amber and a Porter. Hops are there throughout, but the forementioned flavors dominate this complex beer.

Mouthfeel is medium on this one...not too thick..not too thin.

I personally would only want to drink this bomber as far as drinkability is concerned, but bigger fans of the style may beg to differ.

Morey's Bottom Line: An impressive offering from an unfamiliar brewery. Not my favorite style, but quite obviously a well made brewski.

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Photo of DiabolikDUB
3.79/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from Bottle into Pint glass.

Pours a brilliant deep ruby color that is crystal clear with a thin tan head that remains atop the glass and leaves nice lacing as you sip. The Aroma has a resinous piney hop aroma with some bready, toasted malts to follow it up. The flavor has more hop flavor upfront with some dried fruits and ends up sweet and with a lingering citrus bitterness. Its a medium bodied beer that is slightly sticky. I'm really glad the flavor came through for this one because the aroma was just a little boring. Tasty Malt Beverage.

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

This beer isn't subtle that is for sure, it has a full palate of malty flavors, plenty of boozy ABV despite its modest 6.8%, lots of throatiness and thick chicory like red malts throughout. There is a touch of the heavy scotch ale with this beer too. It pours a dark roasted amber read with a foamy tannish head, good retention, and lacing all over the place. This is a thick beer, modestly carbonated. The nose is quite hoppy with lots of caramel sweet malts and maybe a touch of smoky chicory.

The taste follows the nose, although there is less oily hop than one might have expected, but plenty of thick bittering leafy hop, a slightly syrupy chicory red malty ale, some ABV throaty burn, lots of residual hop oil on the tongue, and an aftertaste of a slightly charred and smoky malt. This is a good beer, but not entirely suited to my tastes. It does make a statement and the palate of flavors is quite full.

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Photo of bonsreeb85
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - deep brown/cola colored body w/ an impressive beige crown that lasted the whole way down, very impressive looking brew!

S - roasted malts w/ some sweetness. caramel malts, blend w/ citrus hops and an overall earthy aroma.

T - starts bitter, but then rounds out and balances w/ a rolling sweetness in the middle, with more bitterness in the close.

MF - a big, full bodied red w/ a creamy mouthfeel, moderate carbonation makes this beer heavy and satisfying

D - VEry good, easy to quaff dispite the size.

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

Pours from a 12oz. brown bottle into the curvy sam adams glass. It has a very dark redish brown color with thick creamy head. The head sticks around quite well.

Aroma is pleasantly sweet and hoppy.

Flavor is really nice for an amber beer if you like hops. It definately had a bunch of the green stuff thrown at it and we can all be thankful for that. There's a nice malty backbone that supports the hop additions very well. It has the characterisic caramel and toffee with the usual lightly toasted malts. The hops bring it from American red ale to red IPA which really should be a new category when you consider beers like Nugget Nectar and Red Rocket.

Mouthfeel is medium-plus bodied and a little over carbonated for my liking but it's still okay. Drinkability is fine as well.

Another impressive beer from Bear Republic. I look forward to seeing more of their brews in Colorado soon.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an excellent deep red hue with an insanely creamy head of beige foam. Lacing sticks to the glass like honeycomb; thick and heavy and chunky. The retention on the head is amazing too, staying solid and sticky all the way down. An amazing looking beer.

Very nice balance of hops and malt on the nose. Some nice citrus pine notes with a sweet treacle toffee character underneath. The hops are certainly the more dominant part, but the richness and body of the malt adds some gravitas to the brew.

Great dark sweet notes on the front palate, which are leavened by sublimating hop vapours, and a residual bitter character on the back. Nice roasted caramel notes, with a prickly resin backbone. The body is surprisingly light, given the big flavour profile and the rich malt notes. But it works well, again adding a leavening note on the palate.

They say this is a barstardised style of beer. They're probably right. But it works very well, with big characters from a surprisingly low ABV. It's exciting and rewarding, but still smooth and drinkable.

Keep barstardising, Bear Republic!

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Photo of atsprings
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Flying Saucer served in a standard pint glass a crisp light brown with a nice thin diminishing head. Aroma is nice blend of citrus hops and sweet malts with slight caramel. The taste is a nice amount of pine hops and caramel malts that both linger nicely on the tongue. The beer is medium bodied with nice carbonation. This one is certainly enjoyable, but not as good as its hoppy brothers Racer 5 and Hop Rod.

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Photo of rtratzlaff
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Red Rocket draft comes poured a deep dark reddish brown with an off white head that leaves good lacing upon the first couple of sips.

The aromas are pleny of caramel malt and enough hops to make a show as well.

The taste is a good mix of the two with not quite enough hops to make me think this is a really good red ale, rather than a really malty darker IPA. The hops leave plenty of resins on the tongue keeping the hop bitterness strong amonst the caramel malt sweetness. There are no buttery diacytle notes yet, perhaps when she warms they will show.
Coffee notes come in after several sips. The hops are sitting back and the malt character comes out a bit--who would have thought?

The mouthfeel is solid. Not thick or heavy to me, but substantial. This is not really a "to style" beer for any style, bt a great beer nonetheless. This is the type of beer I don[t wan't to pair with food, but just enjoy it by itself.

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Photo of aubuc1
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber poured in to a shaker pint glass.

Pours a dark red/amber with a light tan clingy steady head.

Big smell of biscuit soaked in hops. Very nice balance for such a big smell.

Taste is crisp biscuit malt with a citrus tang. Very nice.

Full mouthfeel and the good flavor lingers making the drinkability beautiful.

Very impressed for my first beer from bear republic.

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

Picked up a six pack of this when I was in Ashland, OR. I believe it was around $7-8. I pour one of them into a pint glass to review.

Leaves a large two inch light tan head. Medium sized bubbles mainly, but the top has a smooth frothy layer. Opaque dark reddish brown in color. Good retention and lacing.

Sweet malts of caramel dominate the nose. Has a bit of a grainy barley smell. Indistinguishable hops to balance.

Well balanced clean taste similar in characteristic to the nose.

The mouth is quite nice. Well carbonated, medium bodied, clean medium finish. Not watery, not thick and creamy, yet riding right in the middle. Points for drinkability.

This one ranks number two in its class I believe. I would agree with that, but this just is not my favorite style of beer I guess.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle $4.49. Deep red color, chestnut almost, creamy yet short off-white head. The smell is "sticky" and a little sweet to my nose, maybe its malts? Flavor is pretty good, I think there are hops but they seem to be layered under a chewy maltiness. Overall, this was a good buy and a good value.

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Photo of MetalHopHead6
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a shaped pint glass.

During the pour, Red Rocket Ale looks amber; however in the glass it is near-black. It's a foreboding looking ale. The tan head is moderate (one finger) but sticky lace attaches to the glass.

The smell is non-descript but pleasant--perhaps a hint of rustic earthiness. The flavor is strong earthiness, with grass and a hint of citrus, very deep down. The feel is thick, chewy, and bitter--it lets you know it's there.

Red Rocket is a rustic ale. It begs to be enjoyed in a dark quiet bar in the middle of the day. There's nothing cheery or sweet about it. There is no doubt that this is a beer.

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Photo of froghop
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a cloudy brown with a red tint when held to the light, a medium size tan head, and great lacing.

smell of grapefruit, spice, earth, some pine, and a touch of caramel.

taste is thick, dry, malt, spice, caramel, roasted nuts, brown sugar, and hops in the back, ends nicely bitter.

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Photo of DESTRO
4.53/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this beer is hella awesome. pours an purty copper/red with a sticky head. smells malty, toasty, light hops. taste wise, strong caramel malt scrappin with some intense hopping. full bodied and slick, filling. a great brew. i could drink these all day. and probably will.

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

A= cherry-amber, modest tan head (1 finger when poured slowly in a 1/2 L glass stein).

S= I had a difficult time finding much of a nose at all, after first pouring. Maybe a hint of cherry and obvious hops. After about 5 minutes the bountiful scents of the Cascade and Centennial hops began to emerge, along with nicely evident caramel malts. Occasionally I would get a nose of what seemed like a Belgian Dubel, and I now note that their website says they use a mixture of Belgian Caravienne and Hugh Bairds Crystal malts.

T= Big glorious hops galore; caramel malts are plentiful; occasional liquor-taste; nice grassy notes in the finish.

M=- slightly dry and grassy and sweet and bitter and bready all at once.

D= exceptionally drinkable

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 22 ounce bomber bottle picked up at the Beer Stop for $4.50. Poured into my nonic Imperial pint glass, Red Rocket appears a hazy crimson/amber color with a good two fingers of dense cream colored foam. A great looking pour! Nose consists of sweet caramel malt, citrus tinged hops. Tastes of bitter citurs such as lemon and orange, caramelized malt, medium toasted grains, a touch of bread and grass. This red falls somewhere between medium and full bodied with ample carbonation for it's style. A fantastic red ale. If you dig this style, by all means, seek this one out.

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Photo of chaswisler
3.89/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured bottle into a pint glass. Nice and smooth, darker than I had expected.

A - Deep deep copper color, thin tan head disappears quickly.

S - Kinda lacking, I was expecting more

T - It's good, I can taste the toffee and the citrus. slightly sweet aftertaste

D - I'll have to get this one again!

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Photo of BabyBastard
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into chalice. Pours deep amber and copper, small tan head is gone quickly, leaving nice lacing around whole glass.
Smells of hops, citrus fruits and a great maltiness keeps it in check. Wonderful smelling.
Tastes of bitter hops, but there is a nice backbone of malt that evens the brew out, sort of a roasted chocolate taste can be detected. I am reminded of Racer 5 in this brew, only with more malt characteristics.
Mouthfeel is very light and not unpleasant. Spicy bitterness and slight alcohol warmth.
Drinkability is above average for this one, despite the higher alcohol content. Great session brew in my opinion.

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Photo of CHADMC3
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful deep copper to chestnut with reddish hues and a creamy tan head packed with dense carbonation bubbles which dissipates leaving a thick, foamy lacing in its wake and a constant thin head throughout the beer.

The aroma wafts from the glass consisting of a creamy, smoky malt, earthy hops, caramel and even hints of spice.

This has an impressive balance of bitterly aggressive hops and roasted malt as well as bread like flavors and caramel and hidden deeper are hints of clove and even dark fruit and nuts.

This is an impressive palate and mouthfeel, its dry and smooth, yet silky and creamy all at the same time with generous carbonation, yet medium in body.

I am truly impressed by this brew! I am quite surprised at how fast I am going through this 22oz bottle of frothy goodness. It's really amazing how much more character this version of the American Amber offers versus some of its counterparts. A great beer for fans of the style. I traditionally think of American Ambers as a "you know what you're getting" type of beer. This one through me off in a good way.

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

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a mug glass.

A: The beer is a dark reddish amber color with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malts, fruity citrus and a good amount of hops.

T: The taste is sweet up front with flavors of caramel, vanilla, toffee and citrus. Then a strong hops presence comes in. The malt character is very hearty and there's a touch of smokiness. The after taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, nice representation of style, this is a good beer some flavor complexity and a lot of substance that makes it worth drinking for a long time.

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Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.06 out of 5 based on 2,602 ratings.
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