Red Rocket Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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1,174 Reviews
Red Rocket AleRed Rocket Ale

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

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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Reviews: 1,174 | Ratings: 2,590
Photo of curasowa
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Ruby, chill hazed color with one finger of off-white head that fades slowly with nice lacing.

Aroma: Sweet, toasted caramel malt, nice and malty with a hint of spiciness, nutty, and a little yeast cake.

Taste: Toasted malt and a fair amount of bitterness start this one off. Medium body, moderate carbonation, earthy bitterness throughout. Finishes fairly quick with some lingering nuttiness.

The Rest: I echo some of the other reviews, nothing in my review would indicate that this is a special beer, but damn it was good.

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Photo of MikeWard
3.91/5  rDev -3.7%

12oz bottle into a goblet. What I assume is a BD of 11/27/13. Closing in on a year.

Hazy dark red body with some small floaties. (Bottle conditioned beer) Thin off white head, which maintains well. light carbonation.

Aroma of hard candy.

Sweetish taste, with some sour notes here and there. No hop note of course. Kind of feels like a not so strong arrogant bastard. Not unplesant tasting at all. I've had it in the past and enjoyed, but emmory does not serve me well in this beer's case.

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Photo of TempeBeerMan
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a nonic pint.

A - A mostly clear dark copper with ruby highlights, and a one-finger off white head which dissipated quickly. Minimal lacing.

S - Mild aroma of bready malts with just a hint of dextrin, some pome fruit, and a hint of spicy hop. Not a terribly complex aroma.

T - Bready toasted caramel malts forward but quickly blasted out of the way by some aggressive pine and mint from the hops. Some fruity notes (apple, pear) in the finish. The malt and hop bills match each other perfectly. Surprisingly delicious.

M - Good medium body with medium carbonation. Dry finish. While all that certainly doesn't sound like anything special, it doesn't have to be; the mouth feel is pretty much perfect for this beer.

O - Some may say this is more of a red IPA than an amber/red but to me THIS is what I want a red ale to taste like. So much tastier and more interesting than most. My favorite of the style so far.

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Photo of da_beers
3.72/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Gainesville House of Beer - on-tap

A - pours deep dark reddish brown. Thin head that just covers the top. Dissipated quickly. Too dark to see carbonation.

S - has an initial sweet malty nose. Some deeper notes of earthyness come through after that. Not a whole lot here, the regular pint glass isn't helping it.

T - Huge maltiness on this. Malt forward all the way. Some hops come in here at the end, but only slightly.

M - medium to full body. You know you're drinking a beer with this one. Fairly drinkable. Nice carbonation level going down.

O - not blown away but it is solid. Would recommend for amber lovers.

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Photo of ssteakley
4.37/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I wanted to expand my experience to red ales so I checked BA and this one had a good rating so I bought it. This is a great full bodied Ale that could easily become a favorite. It has just enough hoppyness and not to much, the finish is very smooth. The enjoyment is increased if you get your nose in it as you drink. What a great beer to share with friends that have never heard of it!

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Photo of Jnashed
3.79/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served from a bottle into a Sam Smith pint glass.

A : red orange pour. Lots of yellow head with mod retention. Cloudy reddish/ orange

S: slight fruit, muted malts and slight sweetness little bit of pine but slight.

T: nice hop. IPA like taste that you'd not get from smell. Piney resin, almost dank. Decent malt balance too. A lot more hops than I felt would be there.

M: good full feel. Mod crisp and mod carbs

O: good beer solid effort. But smell hides it true colors of essentially an IPA or APA . Scottish style is a little of a stretch. So it is good but not actually the style listed, if that is a fault. Of course on the label it says it breaks " all style molds". Agree. So to be a red IPA.

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Photo of ZoomanCru
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Red Rocket – Amber Ale (6.8%) - Bear Republic (California)

App: Pours a slightly hazy amber brown with a big three finger tan head that retains really well and leaves a lot of lacing up the sides as it settles. No bubble stream.

Smell: Nose is mostly fruity hops aroma with a slight buttery malt character that is sweet and assertive. Hints of pine and grapefruit. Tiniest bit of alcohol.

Taste: Very sweet, somewhat toasted malt profile on the foretaste, progressing to a balanced true taste that showcases pleasant hops bitterness balanced agains some light toffee flavors. After taste is considerably more bitter, with a slight astringency due to the resinous nature of the hops. Flavors really open up as beer warms, with sweetness coming more to the front and making for a very drinkable hoppy amber with notes of toffee, pine and citrus.

Mouth: (Notes Missing)

Home tasting, 12oz bottle into Tulip. 2/21/14.

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Photo of beerbart
4.59/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

It's a lucky almost-Oriental red that meets your eye. Only a little lacy, smooth. Smells like teen spirit, I think. Tasty: Herbaceous -- nearly grassy, yet not that, and good for the balance maintained on that line. Bitterness of hops with a sweet finish. Bright, brilliant, like an herb that's good for you and is also yummy. This is my favorite, I can live with this one. Even if it has to be "living in sin." I know you understand.

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Photo of FLima
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark Amber reddish color with a thick one finger caramel head with decent retention and leaving some laces.
Nice aroma of American yeast, toasted and smoked malts, lots of caramels, pine and hints of red fruits
Quite hoppy and malty flavor, notes of resin, pine, earthy hops, grapefruit, tangerines, caramels, toasted and roasted malt, peat, wood, American yeast and spices. Dry with a long lasting bitter aftertaste.
Surprisingly full body with low carbonation and a sticky feel. Alcohol of 6.8% abv is not felt.
Excellent beer, tasty and bold, definitely not shy on hops, malty and spiced. It felt to me as a mix of and American Red Ale and a Scottish Ale, especially as it warms up with a climbing complexity. Another great offering from BR.

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Photo of BierJager89
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark purple with a tan head.

S; Orange, pineapple, and spicy notes, peat, grass and dark fruits in the nose.

T: Peat, grass, orange, dark fruit notes and a touch of alcohol. Very interesting.

M: Medium bodied and smoothish.

O: I'd recommend giving this a try, though I wouldn't say it's one of their better beers. It's not super interesting.

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Photo of lochef81
3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a very dark mahogany color with a small tan head that gives way to a very slight lacing. The aroma is very roasty malty. There are some notes of hops but mostly sweet roasted malt. The flavor is deep n balanced. Very smooth and enjoyable. There is alot of malt but it is offset by some very nice hops. This is quite a smooth beer. Maybe even sessionable.

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Photo of Damian
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Drank from a 12fl oz. bottle
Served in a pint glass

Thanks to my friend Roy for bringing this to our holiday party.

Gorgeous appearance. The nearly crystal clear, russet-mahogany liquid became slightly clouded as some of the secondary yeast sneaked out of the bottle. An inch-tall crown of creamy, bubbly, light tan foam topped the liquid. The head faded to a clingy, lasting film. Drippy splotches of lacing trickled all down the glass.

The aroma was punchy and really interesting. Intense citrusy hop notes were well matched by sweet, bready, carmelized malts. Hefty dose of toffee, brown sugar and spices. Some Scotch ale qualities were definitely apparent. Fruity with strong notes of candied orange peel.

The flavor profile was quite similar to the aroma. Juicy, citrusy, West Coast-style hop notes were balanced by a stiff, sweet, bready malt presence. Somewhat toasty. Lots of caramelized sugar, candied orange peel and spices. Again, somewhat reminiscent of a Scotch ale. Ruby red grapefruit notes appeared on the finish. Some bitterness lingered on my palate after each sip. For a beer that registers almost 7%, the alcohol was incredibly well buried.

The beer contained a zippy, finely beaded effervescence that gave the liquid a nice suppleness. Creamy and smooth on the palate.

I admire Bear Republic for never resting on their laurels and for consistently creating new and exciting offerings, but I was really blown away by this commonly available (almost) session ale. Red Rocket is a super drinkable and fantastically well crafted West Coast version of an American amber ale, but done with a Scotch ale twist. Impressive, to say the least.

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Photo of Captain_Komamura
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - It is a dark amber to brown color, with good retention.

Smell - It is a sweet citrusy hop smell.

Taste - It is a good mixture of malts and hops.

Mouthfeel - Full-bodied, with a good amount of carbonation.

Overall - It is a pretty good beer, hoppy and sweet.

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Photo of walkinginplace
3.35/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Amber colored with a small head (strangely large bubbles as well). Smell is strong with caramel maltiness with hops and maybe some grapefruit. Medium to heavy body with moderate carbonation. The taste is more hoppy up front than I expected but the caramel malt rushes in soon thereafter while the aftertaste is equally sour malt and bitter hops. Balanced but intense. It was OK but there are a lot better (and more sessionable) options out there when it comes to ambers (including the less intense and ultra easy to find Fat Tire Amber).

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Photo of Mike_Moe
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark brown color, brown head.
Aroma: Spicy, hoppy aroma.
Flavor: A very spicy beer, with some peppercorn flavors coming through. Nice hoppy finish. A full bodied bold, smooth carbonation.
Overall: This is a very good bold ale. The spicy smooth flavor up front is accented with perfect hoppiness

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Photo of hopsolutely
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Although only purchased recently, I can't speak for the age of the bottle and fear it may be past its prime, as I'm not getting the hop "wow" of other reviews. These hops are faded in the aroma, which has a metallic twang overriding the caramelized malts. Bomber pours a dusty dark brown with a limited head that fades quickly. The flavour is also malt forward, as befitting the style, and has a touch of citrus in the finish but definitely doesn't have the full hop portfolio I expected from this brewer. Despite those faded hops the beer still finishes with a nice bitterness that lingers for a respectable amount of time.

Would like to seek out again when known to be freshly bottled.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Dark brown in color. I see a fair amount of sediment floating about within. Head is almost nonexistent. I smell lots of dark malt with a bit of smoked peat. Mouthfeel is a bit warm,sticky, and chewy with all of that dark malt. A bit of toffee and caramel in the flavor.

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

12 oz. bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. Picked this up at the local beer store as part of a mixed six pack. I haven't had anything from Bear Republic in a while, but my expectations are high.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a dark ruby colored body with lots of dark sediment floating in the glass. One finger of khaki froth than thins to a ring. Nice sticky scattered lacing. Looks pretty nice.

S - The hop aromas have faded considerably from some time in the bottle, but they have turned more earthy, with green apple skin sweetness. Creamy caramel. Musty yeast presence. I think it smells rather nice.

T - Taste is of creamy caramel malts, dirty earthiness, woodiness, some pine, sticky green apple, & some sugary tea leaf sweetness.

M - Feel is sticky with caramel & green apple, and bitter with herbal resinous pine hops. Medium bodied with good carbonation.

Overall, a nice drinking beer from Bear Republic. This is exactly how the ideal American style red ale would taste to me. Good balance between hops and malts, and a nice 6.80% abv, I would have it again.

Bear Republic Red Rock Ale ---4/5.

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Photo of soju6
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Pours a dark mahogany color with a decent head that fades to bits of lacing. Aroma is a bit on the mild side with roasted malt, some dark fruit, bit of caramel and spice. Taste of roasted malt, bit of caramel sweetness and fruit, with a trace of spice in the background. Mild bitterness and a clean finish with a bit of hops tart lingering. Moderate body, smooth and creamy with the 6.8 ABV well hidden. The hops give the beer a bit of character missing from most Amber Ales. Enjoyable beer well worth checking out.

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Photo of Flounder57
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a pint glass at Estelle's in the South End.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that reduced yo a thin layer. It is an amber brown color with little clarity, but bubbles can be seen coming up through the glass. Super awesome lacing all the way down the glass.

Smell: Tangerine, grapefruit, citrus, caramel, biscuit, and floral.

Taste: Tangerine, grapefruit, orange perl, caramel, toffee, biscuit, fruity, and a little creamy.

Mouthfeel: Creamy smooth, mild hop bitterness, low to medium carbonation, medium to full bodied, and drinkable.

Overall: Pretty solid amber/red ale. Hoppy, drinkable, and balanced. Thought I had this one before, but it just got lost with all the other awesome stiff they do. Add this one to the list folks.

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Photo of SteadySippin
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
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 macrosmatic
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed from notes. Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Cigar City pint glass.

A: Pours a dark amber to reddish-brown, hazy but not opaque. Forms a finger's worth of dense tan foamy head with retention of only about 60 seconds. Average levels of visible carbonation.

S: Sweet toffee up front, with pine, citrus pith, and grassy hops and a backbone of bready brown malts. Hints underneath of alcohol and toasted caramel.

T: Malty at first (toffee, toasted bready, and a hint of caramel), the a nice punch of citrus hops (grapefruit and orange) and resin - but the citrus retains a more pulpy fruity flavor rather than only the pith. But the beer still packs some bitter punch near the swallow, just as the sweeter caramel and toffee flavors increase. The hang is citrus pith hop bitterness on the back and sides of the tongue while a thick biscuity sweetness stays in the middle of the tongue.

M: A bit heavy-bodied for style, but not distractingly so. The alcohol is more noticeable than expected for this ABV, but not obnoxious. Medium carbonation sensation.

O: Red ales aren't always my favorite, and this started pretty malty, tempering my expectations. But in the end, it was quite drinkable and fairly tasty. Overall though, it doesn't do anything to make me want to seek out another one.

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Photo of Mantooth
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an American pint glass @ Duckworth's in Huntersville.

Deep amber caramel colered brew with a milkshake thick head and crazy-glue sticky lacing. Great looking brew.

Malty caramel piney nose that comes alive as the beer warms, it was served a bit too cold, which Duckworth's typically doesn't do... so, hall pass.

The taste follows the nose... lots of pine-bitter from the hops, caramel too.

Lightly carbonated and dry mouthfeel.

I've heard good things about this beer, can't believe I haven't tried it before now. Very solid brew that I'd recommend to anyone.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours dark amber/red color with finger width foamy head. Head retention and lacing are fair. Yeasty, almost tropical fruit aroma. Slightly piney, floral accents. There is a hint of booziness to it. Either way, it is awesome. Smooth, creamy, malty taste with a mild hoppy bitterness towards the end. Hint of caramel. It does leave a mildly bitter, piney, citric aftertaste. Awesome beer. One of my favorites for sure.

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Photo of BeerImmediately
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Can't believe I've never reviewed this one before...

Bottle(s) into nonic pint glass at about 45 degrees.

Pours with a very short, cream-colored head over the deepest, darkest amber body I've ever seen. No lacing.

Aromas are huge on the hops! Deep spruce / pine quality is the first thing you notice. Touch of pink grapefruit, too. But lots of sweet malty presence takes care of the middle and finish. Butterscotch, marshmallow, and honey ham are the sweets I'm picking up.

Thick on the palate. Very smokey for the style. Flavors have a more lingering hop quality than the aromas. Scotch-Ale-like indeed. What a cool mix of styles. Rich, sweet, and cloying... yet sharp and hoppy - the thick sweetness does tend to take over.

Not a beer that I could have all night, but it's a fun and different take on a couple of my favorite styles.

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Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 1,174 ratings.
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