Racer 5 India Pale Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
2,309 Reviews
Racer 5 India Pale AleRacer 5 India Pale Ale
BEER INFO

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

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This hoppy American IPA is a full bodied beer brewed with American pale and crystal malts, and heavily hopped with Chinook, Cascade, Columbus and Centennial. There's a trophy in every glass.

2009 Great American Beer Festival® American-Style Strong Pale Ale – GOLD
2009 Colorado State Fair – Best of Show
2006 Great American Beer Festival® American-Style Strong Pale Ale – SILVER
2005 Great American Beer Festival® American-Style Strong Pale Ale – SILVER
1999 Great American Beer Festival® India Pale Ale - GOLD

Added by kbub6f on 03-27-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,309
Ratings:
7,601
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
9.55%
 
 
Wants:
348
Gots:
1,372
For Trade:
9
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,309 | Ratings: 7,601
Photo of haines710
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Based on the name and label I almost passed this up. Being on the east coast I wasn't familiar with Bear Republic Picked one up at a grocery near Wilmington, Delaware a few months ago. Since then I have been picking up this classic IPA on a regular basis. Poured one tonight into a pint glass. Nice coloring and beautiful smell. Taste is smooth and hoppy. I always end wanting to open another one.

 406 characters

Photo of Antg8989
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I'm trying to rate this objectively, because honestly, it's not really my thing. Pours a semi-cloudy light gold. Little bit of a white head but not much lacing. Aroma is more malt forward - some citrus and piney hops - nothing exhilarating. Taste is balance between sweet malts and some hops, with a moderately bitter finish. Feel is smooth, but a little under-carbonated for my taste. Overall, I feel this is more suited for people who like things that are less hop-forward. Hop-lovers beware, this may not be up your alley. It's a clean tasting brew, but a little too gentle for the IPA style.

 595 characters

Photo of Wayniac
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Just got a bottle at my LHBS and opened it while brewing my own homebrew IPA. Nice golden orange color and a huge thick soapy head. Faint aroma of floral hops. Nice medium body and mouthfeel. Surprisingly strong taste of alcohol. Further tastes of light floral and herbal hops, medium bitterness that lingers for a while. Also tasting nice malt flavor, more so than in most IPAs these days. Not what I was expecting, a little disappointed after all of the hype... but a decent malty IPA.

 487 characters

Photo of The_Kriek_Freak
4.06/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very nice golden color with a medium size head. The nose has strong pine elements but also some faint mango aroma to it. Fairly bitter upfront followed by some fruitiness. Medium body without too much carbonation. Not the most complex IPA but definitely a tasty one.

 274 characters

Photo of matcris
4.8/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A hazy almost burnt orange with a finger of white soapy head that settles down to a ring and leaves some spotty lacing behind. Orange is the biggest scent I get in the aroma, but lots of other fruit qualities like lemon, grapefruit, stone fruits, and tropical fruits, big time. A little of that dank weed vibe, as well. Just fantastic smelling, and the flavor isn't a let down either. Same deal. Really nice hop forward and without that astringent thing going on. The feel is medium body, juicy, dry, and there is a good full level of carbonation. I've seen this beer a few times in my travels but this is the first chance to have a fresh bottle. Really good stuff, here.

 671 characters

Photo of Everydayoff
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

355ml bottle poured into a pint glass.

Hazy orange amber in color, the pour builds up massive silky white head that holds strong will to stand with excellent retention. It just slowly dissipates to an eternal frothy layer atop along with several refined lacing ring, patch, and spot along the way down. There are sediments floating around.

Very fresh, juicy, yet fruity aroma by its hoppy goodness, I am reminded of citrus, grapefruit, lemon, pineapple, passion fruit, kaffir lime, pine, resin, floral, spice, and slight earthy. Yes, it is truly hop bombardment. Malt is there too in the back end with a biscuit character to slight caramel.

Very well balance, hop still prevails but it is not too harsh while biscuit and caramel malt try to bring in sweetness and creaminess to reinforce as supporting. All the hop characters in the aroma also reflect in the taste together with steady bitterness at the end of the sip that also nicely lingers in the aftertaste.

The body is full with smooth mouthfeel from its lively carbonation generated some crisp and refreshing feel upon the palate, pleasantly dry finish that will lead you to another quick quaff.

Great IPA indeed, all the characters, they harmoniously exhibit in great order. Alcohol is very well concealed making it equipped with evil quaffing quality. This one is surely a must, the quintessential of AIPA.

 1,370 characters

Photo of dd43
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is one of those quintessential west coast style IPAs that help put the California craft scene on the map. In today's world, it's still an excellent beer but it doesn't really do anything extraordinary or even better than any of the host of other classic IPAs from CA and Oregon, among others.

It has all the tropical fruit notes you're going to expect in the aroma category. In addition, it has some oniony dank alium character which was all the rage for a few years back in the day but is now somewhat quaint. Worth trying, especially on draft, but I'm not going out of my way to procure a six pack.

 607 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Slightly opaque apple juice color with a towering 3 finger head that leaves lovely shaving cream lace all the way down.

Aromas of fresh peaches, with grapefruit, papaya, mango, and faint onion trailing at the end.

Flavor is very fruity, leading off with some mango and orange, but then takes a turn towards dumpster bin, tasting like a mismatch of garlic, onion skins, and old toffee. The old toffee and garlic remain on the palate after the swallow. Thing is, I still keep wanting to drink it for the first part of the taste.

Feel is rich, creamy, spiked with some decent carbonation. The finish is dry and musky, leaving a nice parch behind.

Overall, Racer 5 is a good pale ale. I'm glad I have an extra, but I don't think I'd spend money on a six pack or bomber.

 773 characters

Photo of MMOSNN
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look - a hazy honey orange color with a two-finger off-white head that has great retention and lacing.
Smell - a lot of citrus in the form of orange and grapefruit, there are also strong bready and caramel malty notes, and slight pine resin.
Taste - hops dominate with grapefruit and pine resin overpowering the palate, but there is a nice malty backbone too.
Feel - great carbonation, smooth, and full body that helps the flavors linger on.
Overall, this IPA is stellar. It looks great, has a well-rounded aroma and flavor profile, and has an incredible mouthfeel that helps bolster the complexity.

 599 characters

Photo of BloodSoakedAleMug
4.66/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Look: Orange with a one finger, off white head. Good retention.

Aroma: Smells great. Tropical. I'm getting mango, sweet orange, zesty grapefruit rind and a gentle, yet dank hop resin profile.

Taste: Incredibly well balanced but still bitter enough to let you know you're drinking an IPA. Spicy with notes of white pepper and grapefruit. Flavors of orange and mango. A light, buiscity malt bill plays a helping hand in the background contributing notes of vanilla and some creamy flavors to complement the tropical and resinous taste.

Feel: Medium body with light carbonation. Well balanced and smooth, especially for an IPA. Highly drinkable. Hides it's abv exceptionally well.

Overall Comments: If you call yourself a fan of IPAs and you haven't tried this one already, you're missing out. This is the type of beer you can drink over and over again, any time, any occasion. Really great stuff.

 900 characters

Photo of DarkSideOfTheMoon
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Another great West Coast style IPA. Poured a hazy, golden color with 2 fingers of sticky foam. Lots of lacing. Smell is citrus hops (not too much, though) and faint caramel malts. Taste follows the nose dead-on...but with a bit more pine character from the hops. Feel is great and very drinkable. Will definitely be sharing this one with friends in the future.

 360 characters

Photo of StoutElk_92
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle

Pours hazy amber orange with a creamy frothy off-white foam head. Smells like apricot, peach, grapefruit, orange citrus, bready caramel malt, with dank spicy herbal pine and woodsy earthy grass. Tastes like apricots, peach, sweet orange, grapefruit, bready caramel malts, with dank spicy herbal pine and woodsy earthy grass. Feels medium-light bodied, slick and creamy with moderate low carbonation. Overall a really nice IPA.

 441 characters

Photo of BeerGuy8315
4.56/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter. Bottle date not evident.

A: Pours a slightly hazy, golden-orange, amber color. One-inch, foamy, cream colored head with good retention. Thick white lacing throughout.

S: Aromas of citrus accompanied by piney and earthy hops. Milder tropical fruit notes of mango and melons.

T: Taste matches the aromas well. Citrus notes of grapefruit and orange rind followed by bitter piney and earthy hop notes.

F: Light-medium bodied, smooth, and crisp with good carbonation.

O: Overall, a great IPA. One of my favorite go-to's since it became available in MN. Well balanced citrus fruit and bitter hop notes. Love this one.

 659 characters

Photo of thebeers
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hazed orange with a moderate white head that leaves heavy lacing. Big citrus aroma of grapefruit and orange that continues to the taste. Nice hop bitterness continues with orange rind into the aftertaste. Delicious. Slightly creamy and medium bodied with strong carbonation. Excellent beer.

 295 characters

Photo of tony12hd
3.91/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

This is not outstanding. This is a 7.5 abv and it is supposed to be better. What is lacking is exactly the sour taste. Some pH adjustment done the right way could make beer like this taste so much better

 203 characters

Photo of pat61
4.66/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A slightly hazy gold pour with rapidly rising bubbles produces a thick white to off-white film that produces splotchy flecs of lace. As it pours melon, tropical fruit, light bread crust and slight dank earthy aromas rise from the glass. The palate starts with melon, light biscuit to bread crumb and citrus flavors that linger. The malt flavors have a light sweetness but the hops balance the sweetness well. Hop driven fruit flavors are medium to medium high. The bitterness is medium high but is well balanced by the light malt sweetness. this moderately creamy beer has just under a medium body and has medium to medium high carbonation. This is a full flavored, easy to drink American IPA that is good enough to stock up on.

 728 characters

Photo of diemilio
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Can't find the date on the bottle. Hazier than I thought it was going to be; I wonder if the bottle-conditioning plays a role in this. As soon as I open the bottle I could smell the cascade/centennial in it; tons of orange and grapefruit zest. Also, some pine resinous notes and tropical juicy fruits (can't really tell what fruit exactly) and sweetness from the malt. Very nice mouthfeel, medium body.
Overall, excellent beer!!! For some reason, I was expecting more of a traditional very piney west-coast IPA, but I was very surprised by the fruity notes in it. Very well balanced, loved it.

 594 characters

Photo of Beers-es
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I was in the mood for a good West Coast IPA tonight, so I grabbed a 6-pack of Racer 5. A bottle date would be nice...

Pours a chill-hazed orange. A finger of dense, off-white foam leaves some lacing. Smell is a bit muted, but I get ruby red grapefruit, orange and pine. Bit of malt on the nose as it warms. Taste is much the same, with the malt playing a supporting role to the hops. Moderate amount of grapefruit pith and pine resin bitterness in the finish.

Feel is medium--very drinkable but with some heft. Overall an excellent, very enjoyable beer.

 557 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.96/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was one of the first ipas I remember that started to get that orange appearance whether it be from the use of crystal malts or whatnot, but it took on that first edge of an orange glow with a 1/2" white head. Aroma is nice, leans grapefruit citrus wise, seems to have those C hops going in a good old school way.

What follows is a citrus that evolves from the usual old grapefruit to taking on a very small amount of tangerine. As they have expanded their distribution, you can get a little more variety out of these, some have seemed quite malty relative to the hop bomb some of them used to be. Some pine in there too, never one to skimp on bitterness in this beer.

 679 characters

Photo of mklmcgrew
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle in a pint glass.

L: Pours a hazy gold color with a tight 1-finger head that dissipated fairly quickly but left some decent lacing.

S: Nice nose, but not overpowering, with a mix of citrus & pine hops.

T/F: Nicely balanced flavor, with citrus hops up front and a nicely bitter finish. Very smooth mouthfeel.

O: Really nice IPA. Not the hop-bomb of some of the heavier-handed versions, but just very tasty and smooth.

 434 characters

Photo of josanguapo
4.75/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

From XXXII. In Teku glass. At home, back from Gines’ feria. Strong bitterness at end of sip balanced with an adequate amount of fruityness at its beginning that also lingers -even stronger- after it. I miss a more refreshing feeling

 234 characters

Photo of Kevin_Langford
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great IPA. I've been trying more IPA's lately and this one is definitely one of the best that I've had. Golden color, good carbonation, decent head that hangs around for a bit (but not too long). Great, hoppy flavor. Smooth finish with a slight aftertaste of citrus, among other things. I'd definitely get this again.

 322 characters

Photo of bsp77
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was super excited to finally try this. It is definitely a quality IPA and well executed, but in 2016, it is trumped by lots of beers. Standard citrus and pine balanced by toasted malts. Nice, dry finish.

 205 characters

Photo of CraigP83
4.16/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pale Orange, smell is earthy fruits, citrus pulp, stone fruit, pleasant. Taste is also fruit, nothing stands out. Very well balanced moderate bitterness

 152 characters

Photo of Czequershuus
4.54/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a fairly clear pale orange with an average head. The aroma leads with pine, supported by orange peel, grapefruit peel, underripe mango, and some caramel. The flavor leads with bright pine and resin, some dank notes, rounding into citrus peel, as well as vanilla and caramel. The mouthfeel is lighter than some West Coast style IPAs, and all the better for it. Overall I have finally found a West Coast IPA that truly works for me - not too sweet, lots of bitterness, great pine dominant hops with citrus accents and a few other notes. I can see why this is a classic.

 583 characters

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 7,601 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe