Racer 5 India Pale Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

7,657 Ratings
Racer 5 India Pale AleRacer 5 India Pale Ale

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

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

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7,657 |  Reviews: 2,322
Photo of TheBear11D
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle

Pours a mostly clear faded gold color with a creamy off-white head that did not set evenly and leaves pretty nice lacing.

Has an abundance of hops in the aroma with citrus hops being the foundation and floral hops also added in.

The flavor is pretty good, but a little let down from what the nose made me believe I was going to experience. The citrus hops are the first thing I notice, but the floral hops take over the flavor on the back of the tongue and flow into the aftertaste.

Has a very smooth and full body.

This is a very nice brew and I intend on enjoying my six pack. I recommend you do the same.

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Photo of ddean
4.73/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

An attractive amber-orange. Not much head, but oddly enough, it tastes more carbonated than it looks, if that makes sense.

A nice piney hop note, though more subtle than I'd like, even when the beer is warmed up.

Quite a delicious West Coast style IPA. Big, crisp, piney hops, but with a slightly sweet maltiness---I get orange with maybe a little brown sugar.

Smooth, with a nice, long lingering of the malt.

If you like Lagunitas, Stone, and other big West Coast IPAs, I'd recommend this one, and like these other representatives, it has a substance to back up the hop punch. Cheers.

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Photo of Chriscrundwell12
3.87/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a 3 floyds pint glass.

A- One finger head dissipates quickly to nice bubbly ring around the glass, moderate carbonation, hazy yellow orange color
S- Very nice aroma, hops, citrus, pine, malt aromas, peach, grapefruit, good west coast representation.
T- Sweet bitterness upfront, citrus, grapefruit, big malt backbone, little too malty for an IPA in my opinion.
M- Light/Medium mouthfeel, dry aftertaste.
O- Nice solid IPA, little too malty for my taste, was expecting the hops to be more pronounced, still overall it was a tasty beer.

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Photo of SFGuy187
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one fell a bit flat for me. Appearance and smell are alright, but the taste is just not quite there. I expect a west coast IPA to have a certain hop-forward character and this did not at all. Perhaps this 6-pack was old, but this just did not satisfy my hop craving. A solid beer overall, but lacking in hops.

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Photo of mvforegonian
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

As soon as I cracked this open wafts of hops hit me and it was incredible. this is the classic IPA. The hops were not listed, my pet peeve with IPAs... Hoppy, amazing aromas and lingering finish! I was expected something huge though based on the aromas.

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Photo of Roke87
3.76/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle, chilled and poured into a Duvel tulip

Appearance- Pours a very hazy golden yellow, average pour yields a tiny half a finger of white head that very quickly dissipates to a very small ring that does leave lots of lacing throughout the glass till finish.

Smell- light hop aromas mixed with some pine as well, fruity grapefruit citrus aromas as well and a strong malt smell dominate the aromas.

Taste- Just like the smell this one is not overpowered by the grapefruit and hop although it is much more present in the taste, on the contrary the malts take over this one from the start then give way to a resiny pine flavour mixed with that citrusy hop flavour as well. Finishes kind of sweet and a bit bitter with more of that bready malt flavour in there.

Mouthfeel- Light to medium bodied with below average to almost no carbonation in sight, this is a crisp and easy drinking IPA, and finishes a little dry though.

Overall- To be honest this beer was overhyped a little too much by my go to liquor store guy, I guess I was expecting more from it although it was not bad in anyway at all. There is a big hop presence although not overpowered and equally balanced by a nice malty flavour. I would pick this one up again although I would not go out of my way to get it, happy I tried and didn’t overpay for it but unless it was under $8 a six pack I don’t think I would revisit it, there’s just too many other east coast IPA’s that are miles ahead of this one.

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Photo of wahhmaster
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 650 ml bottle into a Samuel Adams Boston Lager glass.

Appearance: Pours a translucent, pale brownish-gold color. Has a large, frothy head that dissipates slowly and leaves some nice lacing.

Smell: Smells strongly of citrusy, piney hops with a bit of grainy maltiness.

Taste: Very hoppy up front with Cascade hops dominating. Finishes hoppy but with a balancing maltiness. Has a citrusy, grassy flavor throughout.

Mouthfeel: A little thin and flat but not overwhelmingly so.

Overall: A great IPA. I'm not sure that it live up to its enormous hype but it is still a well-made, well-balanced West Coast IPA. Worth a try at least...

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Photo of WankelEngine
3.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass

A: An ever so slightly hazy pale golden color. A fairly vigorous pour yields only one fight of white head which disappears quickly. Small patches of white remain floating on the surface.

S: Smells most of hops. Bitter orange peel with a backbone of pine.

T: Again most of the flavor comes from hops. The citrus flavors are more detailed, with grapefruit being more pronounced. There is a very light malt backbone which does little to balance the hop bitterness. Bitterness and a pronounced alcohol flavor make up most of the aftertaste.

M: Dry and light with a noticeable alcohol feel.

O: A fairly decent IPA. Very hop oriented

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Photo of Yagman3000
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a snifter.

Appears an orange gold with a dissipating head.

Smells and tastes like a hop bomber - I feel like it must be Cascade hops because of the grapefruit and pine.

Mouthfeel is nice with a hop blast and a smoother finish than I'd expect.

I'd grab this again but I think they're hop rod rye has a bit more going for it... Lots of hops with a balance of rye.

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Photo of alf212
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden yellow. Small but persistent head.

Smells florally with a buncha citrus

Tastes like the nose with a little malt coming in the middle. Bitterness is moderate and leaves a nice aftertaste. It's more citrusy than florally taste wise

Mouthfeels nice n slick nearly chewy. Goes down easy

Overall good IPA. Typical flavors done well

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Photo of drummermattie02
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Yellowish orange; a bit hazy but with good carbonation and a thick head that shrunk to about a finger and stuck around for the whole point.

Smell is citrus forward, with a small amount of malts in the background -- seems to be a fresh keg.

Good hop bitterness with a lot of the same grapefruit flavors from the smell. Very minimal malt body, at least to my tongue. Alcohol is not noticeable at all, which is nice.

Lighter-bodied, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but I found myself wishing for a bit more substance.

Overall a good beer.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a nice golden yellow with about 1/2 an inch of head taht dies down fairly quickly

S: Some nice citrusy hops along with some malts. I'm guessing this is pretty fresh because there is certainly no lack of hoppy goodness in the nose

T: All of the same, very nice grapefruit and orange notes from the hops that are balanced nicely by the malts. Deliciously hoppy for sure. Alcohol is barely noticed, nicely done for a 7% brew

M: Light-medium body with a decent amount of carbonation. Not too slick and oily and not too carbonated, which is a nice mix

O: This is definitely a fine brew that I would associate more with the East Coast than Cali, but it is delicious for sure

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Photo of WillCarrera
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a hazy, amber honey color with a half-finger thick layer of sticky, white head.

S- Big blast of citrus and floral, just slightly piney hops. Not a lot else is going on in the nose, but its very clean and simple and smells like it's going to be a refreshing beer.

T- Lots and lots of hops, in a really delicious, not beating you over the head with it way, it's very well done. Hops are nice and bitter with floral and hop oil notes, lasting well into the finish. Hops are accompanied by loads of fruity citrus. Malts are light but do a good job of evening things out.

M- Medium bodied, very very smooth and just a bit chewy at the end. Great carbonation.

O- A solid IPA, very drinkable for 7.00% ABV, you seriously don't even notice it, drank another one of these while I was barbecuing some brats this afternoon, a great, refreshing summer beer.

Also a testament to the tried and tested wisdom that car-themed beers are usually good.

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Photo of bbkd3b
4.02/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

Hazy body hits the glass with a color of hazy gold, with yeast just floating in the bottle. The conditioning is pretty obvious. Nice, 1/2 finger white head with good retention gets fed by the bubbles that keep floating to the top of the glass, taking an aromatic citrus scent with it. Nose has a nice balance in the hops department, with a lot of citrus and spruce scents brought along for the ride. Any malty tones are downplayed or covered up by the strand of yeast in the glass.

Heavy, thick body carries the hops on the tongue in a beautiful way. Lemon dances on the tongue while a bitter kick shifts towards the back. Really even character at first. As it warms, a slightly sweet underbelly appears to round things off. Alcohol is effectively covered up, and the finish is clean and easy.

Overall/notes - Really good IPA! The flavor, while perhaps a bit unbalanced, is spot-on in its citrusy tones. This makes me eager to dive into my bottle of Hop Rod in the fridge!

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Photo of depechemode1983
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice looking golden orange color. Head is like sea foam with excellent retention. Lots of sticky lacing as well.

S - The smell is mostly of bitter piny and citrus hops. A good amount of grains are noticeable as well along with fruits like apricots and sweet oranges.

T - Not as bitter as anticipated however very well balanced between hop bitterness and malt sweetness. Right away you get a fruity sweetness at the tip of your tongue which is immediately followed by grapefruit bitterness that takes the taste all the way to the finish. Pretty straight forward and simple but very delicious.

M - Medium bodied, smooth with some nice tingling carbonation. I dig it.

O - This is a straight up good beer. Very well balanced IPA. Well worth the 10 dollars I spent on the six pack.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
3.93/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Surprised that I haven't reviewed this yet. 22oz poured into a Vertical Jewbelation glass. Orange, slight haze due to bottle conditioning and some noticeable carbonation. The head starts pretty nice but quickly goes the way of the ghost, nice lacing though.
I smell some yeasty fart, fresh cut grass, citrus (orange rind and slight grapefruit.) Bready malts follow.
The taste follows the smell very well, minus the fart yeast. I really like the grass/citrus hop combo, nicely backed by pale malts. Super nice going down.
I grab a couple bombers a month. It's a nice, affordable, West Coast IPA, and super easy to find. Just tried their Hop Rod Rye which I liked (and will review later). Go Bear Republic.

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Photo of engagechad
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased as a single from Total Wine in Richmond, VA - dfh snifter

Pours an orange tainted yellow with perfect head. Hazy appearance as a result of the yeast, looks nice though, no chunky floaters. Whippy head, amazing lace.
Smells a-freakin-mazing. Big, sharp citrus nose from the 4 C's (cascade, chinook, centennial and columbus). The nose on this is incredible. Taste follows, perfect hit of carb that tickles the tongue, then smooths out on the finish.

Overall this is an IPA for IPA lovers. Seriously, the label is just dern silly but you must try this beer if you like hops.

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Photo of Fillpott
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured this beer into a Gulden Drak tulip glass hoping to focus the smell better. I cooled the beer to 45 degrees, and when it poured, it had a finger's worth of off-white head that left a faint lace on my glass. The smell was a very mellow citrus smell, like OJ from concentrate at room temperature. I wasn't beaten over the head with the hops, and I liked it. When I drank it, the whole beer seemed balanced. It was one of the few times that I wasn't focused on one specific aspect of the beer, and that made it extremely drinkable.

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

Poured into a nonic.

Pours a dirty sediment filled cloudy light golden orange. Has a massive sticky near white head. Nice think layer stays the whole time and some real good sticky lacing. Very nice looking stuff here.

Brew smells of floral, citrus, herbs and earthy. Good smelling brew.

Brew is creamy smooth; floral hops, citrus and herbs. Hops are juicy and resiny. A very quenching brew, the middle is smooth and is balanced nicely by the malty flavors, maybe caramel. A nice sweet flavor in here as well. The brew finishes slightly dry and has some mild bitterness. This is top shelf flavors and drinking here.

Wow a go to IPA. One of the best out there for sure.

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Photo of Trevor33
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nose is a complex blast of musty grass malts and orange blossom hops. Tawny amber color, cloudy like cider, looks moderately malted.

Well balanced IPA starts with watermelon candy notes quickly building to a solid bitter hop middle that mellows to a citric fruity finish.

It seems full bodied and properly carbed in the mouth.

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Photo of Sixofsigmas
4.62/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The ale forms a head..it "laces" a bit, but this shouldn't be a quality we look for...

The nose is full of hops, citrus, pine, delicious malt...

The tase is overwhelmingly crisp. Not as good as Pliny the Elder, but amazing close. Well defined citrusy/piney hops.. and a nice malt undertone...

Mouthfeel is exactly what you'd expect from an IPA... smooth and sticky hops on the backend...

Drinkability is off the charts... Unfortunately drinking too many of these in a short amount of time will render you incapacitated.

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Photo of harrymel
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

bottle date: unk

A: Pours a copper ale with single finger of off white foam which remains for a good five minutes without falling. The beer is hazy. Sheeting lacing. Good looker, only better with clarity.

S: malt, pine, resin, citrus, grapefruit, rinds, honey. Huh, better than I had anticipated. Plenty going on here. Good nose.

T: Plenty sweet. Caramel malts, pine, resin and citrus hops on the profile. hints of cotton candy and bubble gum. I've had this beer many times, but have not taken the time to actually assess the profile. Much better than I recall.

M: Medium to heavy body for the style. Low carbonation. Dry finish. Would prefer a little lighter on the body. Otherwise, nice.

O: well crafted brew. Diamond in the rough for me. Always have this beer available, don't know why I've not been hooked to this before - likely due to no bottle date.

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Photo of gkunkle
4.17/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy orange-ish color with some visible carbonation. Head is about 1 finger tall, retention is moderate, but it leaves some lacing. Smell is of sweet citrus with a bit of a floral smell. I am impressed with the taste of this beer, citrus is highlighted well while still retaining a malt balance. The floral and citrus hops come out at the beginning, but the citrus isn't sweet like the smell. Towards the end of the drinkni get some of that malt balance that helps regulate this beer so well. Mouthfeel is just below medium, and carbon is appropriate. Overall this is a good IPA, if I lived in Cali I'd definitely drink it regularly, but I've already got Portland beers.

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Photo of mikey711
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Bright orange hue with a nice fluffy head. good retention and a little bit of lacing

S: Juicy citrus fruit notes, mango, lemon, pineapple and a little grapefruit as well. slight maltiness in the background as well

T: The hops are gooey and delicious. very nice mixture of pine and citrus notes. there is a slight malty sweetness as well which is very pleasant.

M: A touch of heat and slightly rough around the edges and a hint of alcohol heat is present, but i am being nit picky

D: This is one of my favorite IPAs. its pretty sessionable because of the light body, but the hoppiness is very present without being overwhelming

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Photo of AmericanGothic
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Bottled on 03/01/11.

A: Pours a hazy honey orange. One finger of off white head dissipates pretty quickly. Some lace. Carbonation looks odd-- some of the bubbles seem to be suspended rather than working their way toward the top.

S: Light, sweet orange and peach aromas. Mellow but good.

T: Interesting. The hops are a very thin pine that is almost more a feel than a flavor. They are, however, persistent. A steady but light malt sweetness underneath balances the hops well. After a while, the hops and malt combine into more of a grapefruit flavor. Understated, but good.

M: Light mouthfeel with some creamy qualities.

O: A nice IPA, good but not great, plenty refreshing for a warm spring day. Would buy it again, if only it were available in Iowa. An easy drinker whose flavor stays alive until the end of the glass.

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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 7,657 ratings.
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