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Racer 5 India Pale Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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Racer 5 India Pale AleRacer 5 India Pale Ale
7,727 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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7,727 |  Reviews: 2,342
Photo of BMoldy
4.07/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep gold in color, clear, with an unimpressive one-finger head that disappears rapidly. Fine lacing. Aroma is very appealing, with a wide range of hop notes. Lots of tropical fruit like kiwi and papaya, some baked pie, and pine notes toward the end. Strong bready malt aroma present as well as the head dissipates and the hop notes subside. Taste is mildly bitter, with more wonderful fruit (this time more pineapple-like) in the beginning. Sweetness comes out midway through, but remains constrained by the hops. Medium to slightly heavy mouthfeel. Perhaps a little under-carbonated. Ends on a bit of an herbal bitterness, but remains smooth.

Possibly one of my new favorite IPAs, this brew is complex but fantastically drinkable. Not excessively bitter by any means, it really showcases well the several different kind of hops involved. Considering I'm probably not going to be seeing too many AIPAs in the coming months, I'm glad I grabbed this when I did.

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Photo of Jimmys
3.86/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: hazed orange with a bit of particulate that can be seen. head is a bit disappointing, off-white half inch sized head dies quickly without very good retention. and it aint the glass. some lacing.

S: hints of bubble gum mix with pineapple and toasted malts. rich in munich perhaps? something bready and rich, but not until the hops make their presence felt. bits of pine work into the hop medley, but this thing is mostly tropical.

T: tropical fruit. mangos and watermelon. very similar to the nose, after the hop attack the palate moves into a slightly chewy toasted malt flavor. however, bitterness does remain throughout. lingering bitterness and dry finish.

M: pretty moderate carbonation on a medium bodied brew.

D: pretty light drinking AIPA considering the 7%ABV nametag. well balanced while accenting tropical american hops. not my all time favorite, but certainly in the conversation of great AIPA's.

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Photo of Pintofbrown
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Cloudy body the color of mango, with dandelion highlights. Plenty of CO2 jetting to the cap. It started as a nice, frothy two finger head, but it has slowly dwindled to a film, leaving white lace sticking to the glass.

Smell: Lots of spice and hops. The hops err on the side of citrus. It is really crisp. Maybe lemon, a little orange, and even some musty lime flavor. Malts need not apply. A good IPA nose.

Taste: A zing of hop bitterness instantly sucks your cheeks in. Then there are the more subtle flavors. The hops are a little more on the wheat side, than citrus. There are hints of lemon bitterness and grapefruit mid swallow.

Once it starts rolling down the back of the throat, the cereal grain malt comes out and fills the mouth a bit. Good thing the hops bitterness is still there. They almost turn floral as they degrade.

Obviously a bunch of action in this drink. Is it good? You bet.

Mouth feel: I prefer my IPA's to be a little thicker than this, not even thicker, just creamy. This is more medium to light because of the higher carbonation. Not that it does not fit the style, just not how I enjoy it, and that is what counts ladies and gentlemen.

Overall: The head could stick around longer, but the body sure is pretty. It smells good, and it tastes good. Not many complaints there. Not sure why the hops need to be so grainy, just dump that aspect all together. And carbonation is a little too high, it is still a great IPA though.

RACE to your nearest beer establishment and grab the BEAR by the REPUBLIC. Close enough.

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Photo of fields336
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy orangey yellow, with a finger of tight carbonated white bubbly head. dissipates somewhat quickly, leaving a good sized ring around the edge of the glass. the lacing stays around on the sides of the glass.

S: Oranges, pineapple, grapefruit, tons of citrus, a good amount of malt and some sweetness as well. some grassy hops maybe in the background

T: Hits your palate with a wave of citrus and then smooths it away with a delicious bready malty backbone. citrusy hops tickle your tongue after the beer dissipates.

M: Medium bodied with really nice carbonation

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Photo of ReservaPrivada
4.82/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type : 22oz Bomber that I picked up for $4.99

First this beer is a hell of a steal at $4.99 for a 22oz bomber!!!

A- A slightly hazy orange with little to no head. Mild Carbonation.

S- I could smell this beer the minute I opened it. Juicy juicy hops overcame the dinning room. Very citrus aroma with a subtle pine and resin in the back. Very little malt pick up

T- Not what I was expecting at $4.99 This beer is incredible. Right up there with Smuttynose and Ithaca Flower power. It reminded me specifically of flower power. The hop profile is very similar! Very delicious and has started to quench my thirst!

M- A little lighter than I would like or expect from a IPA. Perhaps they slimmed on the grain bill. No taste or smell or malt or grain. Very smooth and tingly from the mild carbonation. Overall a great mouthfeel. This is my first time having this and I put it down rather quick :)

Get this beer! You will love it, and if you paid what I did for it you will be in one of those WIN WIN situations! Cheers!

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Photo of iDrinknewglarus
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Golden orange. Just slightly hazy. A little bit of carbonation rising up. Very small head, but sick lacing!

S: Distinct astringent hop smell. Grapefruit with grass and pine mixed in. It smells cold and dry. Do not detect much if any malts on the initial pour, but they show themselves (only slightly) as the beer warms. As the brew warms, juicy pineapple presents itself.

T: Great hop flavor with a nice bite, gotta love it. The malts linger in the background to the citrus hop flavor. I get mainly grapefruit rind along with some of the pith. A bit of lemon zest. Very dry. Totally digging this brew.

M: Medium with soft carbonation. Just about perfect for me.

Hell yeah. This was the kind of hop bite I've been craving. I'm a total hop head and few IPAs can quench my thirst for bitter hop flavor like this one can.

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Photo of dcook11
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass. No freshness date.

A- Two finger head from an aggresive pour. Minor amounts of lacing. Tons of sediment. Honey colored with low carbonation.

S- Sweet. Grapefruit, orange, hops, caramel as it warms..an odd funk as well cant place it.

T- Hops, grapfruit, orange, with mild bitter finish.

M- Light approaching medium bodied.

o- Good Ipa. Not great, but enjoyable.

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Photo of AdamBear
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-yellow gold with a thick white head and some lacing

S-herbs, grains, citrus, and some hops. medium strength

T-comes in with some citrus and some sweet hops and a bit of bitterness, all are equal and slightly dull. the after-taste is of creamy hops and some tangerine. nothing great

M-ceamy medium carbonation with a creamy finish

O-definitely an enjoyable IPA though its not as great as everyone makes it seem to make it. the hops and bitterness seem to be faded. this might only meet hops heads half way.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed an off bottle on 4/26/11, came back to it again to give it a second chance.

A – Light gold body. White head with ok retention, but good lace.

S – Woody, leafy hop character. Light honey sweetness.

T – Soft malt into an orange and ginger middle. Herbal backend of thyme and rosemary. Great balance, but the end of the profiled is blemished by a dry dustiness.

M – Medium body with a lightly sweet finish.

O – Not a bad IPA. The dusty note on the backend keep this a solid point lower than where it could have been imho.

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Photo of scootpolute
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1 Pint, 6 FL OZ. bottle into tulip glass.

A - Pours semi-cloudy golden, with a nice white head...- some good lacing.

S - Hops and lots of sweet citrus - some orange & grapefruit tones...

T - Smooth & Bright! A great hop kick at the top followed by some citrus, then ending with a bit of pine-like spices...Pleasant & refreshing!!

M - Great carbonation! There's a good fullness. Present, but not 'too' much fruity/sweet flavors...The final pine/spice balances the beer out wonderfully!

D - This one is great!! I think what make this beer so good is the fine line of not over-doing 'it' in any particular area (hops, fruity-flavor, pine/spice, carbonation, and last but not least, alcohol level). VERY refreshing and will get again and...…Goin’ to look for a tap ASAP!!!

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Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a cloudy golden honey with a one finger off white head. Head does not stick around for very long, and there is not much lacing to be had...

S - Lots of citrus fruits and floral hops. Pine and a touch of sweet malts also make an appearance. Very inviting...

T - Grapefruit, oranges, and a good dose of floral hops. Hops are very prominate, but by no means overdone. Ends with pine and some lingering grapefruit. Pick up a little sweet malt flavor, but this one definitely rides the hop wave. Delicious. Abv very well hidden...

M - On the lighter side of medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Super smooth...

O - One of my favorite brews at the moment, so definitely something that I would recommend. Don't see this one falling out of my regular rotation anytime soon...

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Photo of 3HovsepiansBrews
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful clear pale straw color with a nice white lacing.

S - Really nice hop aroma. Hints of some citrus fruits and a light floral bouquet. Also some alcohol notes.

T - Nice citrus fruit flavors start off the sip, which then smoothly transition into a great rich caramel flavor from the malts. The hop finish is bitter, but not overpowering.

M - As is common with Bear Republic, this has a thick and smooth body, with a medium amount of carbonation.

O - The flavor is really well-balanced and the mouthfeel is great. Plus, the relatively low abv make this a truly phenomenal IPA.

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Photo of Scotchboy
4.07/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber with no freshness date, poured into a Samuel Smith oversized nonic.

A: Pours a golden orange with traces of light straw color throughout, with a mild haze and a rocky off white head with good lace.

S: West Coast, loads of tropical fruit with a good amount of pine mixed in; papaya, orange, pineapple, and some pungent hop oil. Traces of a light toasted biscuit quality as well.

T: Here the pine and pungent hop bitterness shines the most, with a fairly decent toasted malt backbone. Underneath all that there are some citrus notes that try to come through.

MF: Light and crisp, with soft carbonation, good bitterness and decent dryness on the way out.

O: A really good IPA with a terrific nose, and even though it didn't 'wow' me with its flavor profile it's still an 'A' beer all around. Really good drinkability.

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Photo of SpaceMadness
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Well, I'm drinking this out of my Arrogant Bastard bomber-turned-pint glass so I can't comment much on color. I can say that it appears to be fairly clear. The initial finger and a half cream colored head was all but dissipated by the time I rinsed out the bottle and deposited it to the "To Be De-Labeled" cupboard in the garage.

S- This is where Racer 5 begins to impress. Flowers, pine, orange zest, and honey. Very pleasant.

T- Not sure if this bottle got too cold in the fridge or if my taste buds are suffering from Double IPA overload, but the taste is a tad underwhelming after taking in the aroma for a few minutes. I expected just a little more of the pine resin tongue feel than what I experienced. With each passing minute it gets stronger so cold temp. is probably a big part of it.

M- A little thin. This too could be a result of cooler than ideal temps.

O- I've let it warm a bit to get a better grasp on the taste and mouthfeel. This is a tasty, high-quality American IPA. However, for the price in Ohio ($11) I think I'd grab a $9 half-rack of Smuttynose IPA before buying this again. If I came across it as the only IPA on tap at a bar, I'd probably end up spending a lot of money on it. Well worth a try.

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Photo of rlee1390
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Cloudy orange/amber. Little head that dissipates quickly. File under Do not judge a book by it's cover. (Well the label is more the like the cover of a beer but ignore that...)

S-Floral citrys, some pine. Rather hoppy.

T-Lots of pine and earth. Solid bitterness in the finish. Some citrus notes creep in as well.

M-Light with little to no carbonation.

O-A very well put together IPA however the lack of carbonation is disappointing, however solid bitterness and balanced pine notes make up for it.

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Photo of PicoPapa
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle. Pours a slightly murky amber color with a 1/2inch of head. Some lacing. Great hoppy smell. Sharp aroma of citrus hops as well as pine. Smells a bit on the sweet side. Taste has a mix of pine and citrus hops, but the pine is the most prevalent. Good amount of sweet malt flavor as well. Bitter and oily pine towards the end. Nice balance of dryness. This is a damn solid IPA I wish was available in CT. I always grab some when I'm out of state. Overall, easily one of the better IPAs out there.

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

12oz bottle poured into chilled pint glass.

A - A big haze of orange-brown, almost copper colors. A thick one-inch head forms, leaving some nice lacing down the glass.

S - I love the aroma. Huge grapefruit smell mixed with other earthy citrus, maybe pineapple or mango. Excellent.

T - Wow, very impressive taste. Dominant citrus hops mixed with a hint of toasted malts. Some nice pine flavors throughout. The finish is excellent providing a bitter tinge and great lingering aftertaste.

M - Medium bodied with an almost creamy feel at first, ending with some dryness and bitterness.

D - Good drinkability. Very hop oriented, but still nicely balanced with many different flavors. This has become one of my favorite IPAs, it is simply delicious. Highly recommended.

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Photo of draheim
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up today because I wanted to try it again and also want to compare it to a Bell's Two Hearted while I still have a couple left.

22oz bottle (no dates or codes) poured into a tulip.

Pours a nice transparent golden/amber with a 1-finger white head. From a foot away I pick up that classic aroma of grapefruit and pineapple. Bring the glass closer to my nose and the aroma bursts out of the glass, all those great tropical aromas. There a faintly dank hop smell as well that I've picked up in a lot of IPAs.

Taste follows nose. Fruity, a little sweet, with some hops to balance things out. This is really a fine American IPA: neither overly hoppy nor overly sweet. Mouthfeel is very satisfying as well.

Overall I'm really happy with this beer. I could drink this again and again and may start regularly stocking my fridge with it.

Now to my Two Hearted comparison (which won't be part of this review)...

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Photo of vette2006c5r
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Racer 5, pours a dark copper color with a nice lacing head. The smell is hoppy, and floral. The taste starts of almost sweet and very floral, very hoppy, and finishes with the bitterness that you would expect from an IPA. Good strong flavor, but very easy to drink, hard to get sick of this one. Overall a good IPA, very solid, not the greatest, but an sure choice to goto.

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Photo of russwbeck
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Big white head sits atop a semi-hazy yellow pour. When I had a bottle of this before, it was full of floaties. This has some, but very little. The sticky lacing looks wonderful down the side of my glass. A creamy foam lays to rest well after the pour is finished.

S: Sweet piney hops! What a great smell. Not a lot of malts hanging around. Grapefruit or citrus come up as well.

T: The taste starts off with the piney hops, which give way to a grapefruit (or some other fruits) taste. Finish is crisp and clean.

MF: Light, carbonated well, dry finish.

O: Great summer drinking beer. Big thanks to a good friend who brought some by my apartment!

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Photo of Supertyfon
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - poured a nice orange/copper color with a solid 2-finger bubbly white head.

S- somewhat floral, mildly sweet, a little bready, little hints of grapefruit, very mellow hop.

T - nice carbonation and mild fruitiness up front, mid palate is smooth, enjoyable & balanced, finish has a drying pine undertone with a mellow dry piny finish with a minimal pine linger.

M - Meduim body but very smooth.

O - this isn't a very complex west coast IPA but is a very solid example, not palate wrecking but is piny with a superb balance, very drinkable and smooth, like the mellower little brother to Green Flash West Coast IPA, a really nice IPA example but does kinda lack that big fresh grapefruit/fruitiness character.

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Photo of jondeelee
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Racer 5 makes its status as a high-IBU IPA known at the first whiff, which reveals strong grapefruit and pine notes, countered by the sugary rosewater smell that occasionally accompanies high levels of hops. A white grape aroma adds to the bouquet, partnered with apricots and peaches.

On the tongue, the beer is of course quite hoppy, the bitterness tasting of both grapefruit and pine notes (making this a fairly balanced IPA, as compared to those that only feature, say pine notes). But there is a good malt base beneath those hops, replete with strong brown sugar tastes, molasses, vanilla, lychee nut, and toasted pecans. These malty flavors last well into the mouthful, peeling back at the end to expose a sheer hop base, which dominates the aftertaste, and lingers for quite a while on the tongue. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium to medium-high.

Overall, this is a good IPA, featuring strong, balanced, and flavorful hops. Beginners might find the intensity of these hops overpowering, but hop-heads will surely rejoice.

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Photo of aficionado
3.94/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Half of the time I buy this beer, it has a super hazy body with tons of floaties and minimal lacing. And then there are times when it's a clear golden yellow with no floaties and tons of lacing.

The aroma is both hoppy and malty. Pine needles, fresh pineapple, sweet cereal grains, honey, and loads of orange zest and orange oils.

The taste is sweeter than expected (More sweet than Stone IPA). Lots of malt presence, but this is still a hop forward beer. Honey-coated pine needles, oily orange zest, caramel, more pine, more orange. Very smooth hop profile. No dominating harshness despite the high level of bitterness (Less bitter than Smutty Finest Kind).

The mouthfeel is on the moderately-full side. Low, yet fizzy carbonation.

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Photo of avaldivia
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Bear Republic Brew Pub.

A: Hazy golden straw color with a very nice thick head. Left great lacing all the way down.

S: Grapefruit goodness. Smells very hoppy. Has me excited.

T: Hoppy bitterness on the front nice bit of malt on the end followed by lingering tingling on the tongue. I get grapefruit, pine, lemon just to name a few flavors.

M: Light and smooth. Very food carbonation.

O: Pretty much the only IPA I buy six packs of regularly. Really enjoy this beer. It is a perfect representation of a west coast IPA.

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Photo of mocktm
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz brown bottle with no bottling date, into my trusty Southampton pint glass.

Very aggressive pour yields a mountain of thick, jagged and sticky white head. Leaves an intricate web of lacing as it dissipates to a lasting film atop the beer. Boasts a glowing orange hue that just screams a boatload of citrus hops within. Ladies and gentlemen, this is what an IPA is all about.

Nose is a copious amount of grapefruit, lemon rind and pine. To be honest, that's exactly what I look for in IPAs; this is a hop-heads delight.

Taste doesn't disappoint in the least; an abundance of tropical fruit citrus accompanied by a biting and lasting hop bitterness. Slight floral and spice presence with a mild malt backbone. Just very very well balanced and absolutely phenomenal. Love me some west coast IPA.

Medium bodied with a clean, non-muddled flavor profile. Doesn't try to do too much, but what it does do, it does to perfection. Great session beer that drinks incredibly easy for something that clocks in at 7%.

I love this beer, and at around $10 a sixer year around, its nearly impossible to beat on the value front. Outside of Lagunitas, I really don't see how you can do much better. Cheers!

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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.19 out of 5 with 7,727 ratings
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