Racer 5 India Pale Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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2,290 Reviews
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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Reviews: 2,290 | Ratings: 7,507
Photo of cokes
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Smoggy golden orange with a thick ivory headpiece. Good retention and spastic lacework.
Nose full of buttered grapefruit on metal spears. Likeable, but could use more.
Full flavored and straight-foward. Begins with lightly toasted caramel drizzled bread. Touches of grain and hay towards the middle. The final half is dominated by hops. Loosely floral, with heavy fruit tones. Obviously grapefruit, but with sugared kiwi and tart oranges as well. Just slightly bitter, but quite juicy in the hopping. Sort of a one-note brew. Interesting at times, but fails to leave much of an impression.
Body is spot-on. Thick and creamed. Carbonation is almost nil. Nice.
A good, if standard, IPA

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Photo of theghost3
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is burnt orange with an intferesting thick white head with very light orange tones. Smell is strong of citrus, specifically grapefruit, apricot, and floral/herbal hops. Taste is very strong of grapefruit and herbal hops. It is interesting in that it has a crisp, almost sweet flavor at first, then has an acidic bitter taste as it goes down. Overall, a nice IPA that has a bite to it.

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Photo of zac16125
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Racer 5 IPA
bomber poured into a mug
no born on date or other distinguishing numbers

A: Pours a slightly hazy light golden amber, with just over 1 fingers width of bubbly egg shell white head, which takes a moderate about of time to dissipate and leaves lots of cob-web lacing all the way down the glass.

S: Big citrusy hop aromas, most notablely grapefruit and tangerine. There is also a malty sweetness, and a subtle hint of alcohol which is rare for me to pick up on in the scent of an IPA.

T: First off, the flavors are not as strong as the aroma. Also, not as much bitterness as I like in an IPA, and what is present is mostly piney hop bitterness on the backend. The upfront taste is citrus hops, but it is mild, almost subdued. No flavors really stand out strongly, but if I had to pick one I’d say lemon zest is the most prominent. I’m not saying the taste is bad, but its nothing special IMO. It lacks the complexity and depth of flavor that I look for in a great IPA. To me, the taste is very similar to a weaker version of Bell’s Two Hearted Ale. Again, not bad, but not as much going on with the palate profile as I would like.

M/D: Light to medium bodied with a good moderate amount of carbonation. Smooth and very easy to drink.

O: Overall, this is a good IPA but nothing special. A nice appearance and aroma aren’t really backed up in the taste which to me comes off as generic and middle of the road. I will say though that you can’t beat the price (around $5 for a bomber) and I do plan on trying the Hop Rod Rye which most seem to agree is the best Bear Republic offering.

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Photo of VinoGuy
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Golden color, pour with a decent head. Soft slightly sweet floral aroma of hops and suggestion of crystal malt. Clean taste with a smooth mouth feel and even balance between hops and malt. No overly present taste of alcohol. Hints of spice on the finish.

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Photo of jhu1995
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a very pale orange color. Medium, white head, with plenty of lacing as the beer is consumed. Smell was mostly citrus with some peach flavors showing in the background. Taste was similar to the smell. Light to medium body and pretty drinkable. I have a tendency to get bored with hoppy beers after one or two of them, but this one kept my interest long enough that I would grab another.

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Photo of erikm25
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours very orange with a tinge of gold throughout and almost a very light lime sparkle. The head is huge, fluffy, and creamy with very decent long lasting lacing.

S: Lots of sharp pine, citrus, and lime aroma. The latter aroma, for some reason or another, popped out immediately. However, there was also a roasted malty sweetness that was apparent and added and interesting balance to the smell.

T: Huge citrus, grassy, and herbal hops blast. Very clean and complex tasting. Floral and grapefruit with the alcohol hidden in the backdrop. The taste is still very sweet and that balances nicely with a bready malt flavor.

M: Decent medium body and carbonation. Impressively rich and the hops bitter hits the tastebuds in every direction.

D: While this was not intensely aggressive it was still a great IPA and very drinkable. I still have other favorites but I would put this back into the rotation.

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Photo of BabyBastard
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Twelve ouncer pours into my chalice a light golden orange color. Not much head to speak of, thin cling of lace encircles the entire glass. Hazy with what appears to be floaties floating by. Appetizing. Smell is pretty mild, citrus aromas abound. Tastes wondrous, nice grapefruit and piney notes greet the tongue. The hops are not overpowering in this brew, my opinion is that it is wonderfully balanced for an IPA. No overkill in the hop department. Really no maltiness to be detected here. Has a slight oily, slick feel about it. This brew does feel light in the mouth for the slightly high alcohol content. Though I am not complaining here. I could make this a session brew, as it is that good. Definitely a good score on the drinkability scale. This is a top notch IPA.

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On draught at 69 Taps in Akron. The beer is a dark golden amber color with a medium thin light beige head with good retention. Patches of lace. The nose is floral hops, with touches of sweet malt and pine. Medium body with a floral, hoppy character balanced by a fair amount of sweet caramel malt. Touches of citrus here and there too. The finish lightly dry, and is moderately hoppy initially, then offset by sweet malt. Overall this is a well-balanced and enjoyable IPA.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Comes out of the bottle a slightly hazy golden amber with a good off-white head. Aroma is VERY hoppy with a fruity undertone - gets them salivary glads a-workin’! Flavor is seriously hoppy and woody, with a fruity undertone that is mainly apple and pear with a touch of banana. I get a hint of - could that be caramel? Texture is good and firm, with plenty of fizz.

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Photo of blackc5
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap during a local happy hour.

A - Pours a quite dark (for an IPA) reddish amber, pretty cloudy, with minimal head (served with almost none, but I gave it a good swirld) and respectable lacing.

S - Very, very faint actually. The one area this beer disappointed, as I really had to inhale strongly to even catch a whiff of anything at all.

T - I wasn't expecting too much given the aromas (not) coming off, but it actually tasted quite good. It was a mild IPA hop-wise, but had a very nice balance of different hop flavors, with no particular aspect overpowering the others. Some caramel malts there as well that matched up great with the balanced floral, citrus and earthy hops. Pretty mild bitterness, but just enough in the aftertaste. Overall, quite good.

M - Slightly on the watery side for me, but it still had a nice level of carbonation and bitterness.

D - The beer shines here - it could easily be made sessionable despite the ABV.

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Photo of vikinggary28
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a glass mug from a 22 oz bottle. Typical amber colour and thick off white head that hung around for awhile. Smells of hops and slight citrus. Taste very smooth, hoppy/fruity/citrusy, not overly bitter. Goes down smooth. Zum Wohl!

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Photo of citan133
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a smuttynose pint glass from a 12oz bottle purchased at Julio's in Westborough, MA.

Almost no head to speak of, just a very thin, bright white layer of foam that barely covers the beer and dissipates quickly, leaving a very thin ring around the edge of the beer as I drink it. Not a bad color, sort of a light orange. Looks like an ipa.

Smells pretty good, some citrus and fruit hops coming through. Not real intense but some nice smells going on.

Kind of basic, light mouthfeel, pretty bitter hops in the middle and the finish, a little sweetness in the front. Hops are just nice and bitter, not really any fruit coming through and the malt shows up a little in the beginning but is quickly overpowered by the hops. Not an intense bitterness but kind of subdued, just enough to please a hophead but not enough to turn on someone who doesn't normally drink an ipa.no alcohol to speak of.

Kind of nice, maybe light to medium. Hops leave that bitterness on your tongue for a while but nothing cloying.

I could definitely drink a bunch of these in a sitting when it comes to flavor, probably a very nice summer time ipa, refreshing. nothing crazy going on but a solid, drinkable ipa. I'd pick up a six for a hot day but nothing that floored me, even for a regular ipa.

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Photo of CONOR8832
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Not a huge head on it 1/2" white head, beer itself had a nice golden color with some tones of amber and copper.

Smell - Strong fresh hop aroma, citrusy with a mix of fresh apple peels, some good stron sweet malty notes are present as well.

Taste - Blast of fresh hops, strong earthness, very floral taste, greatfruit and lemon zest mildly twinge the taste buds, then there is an mild apple like sweetness that finishes off the beer.

Mouthfeel - Nice medium bodied beer, good carbination, like most great IPA's leaves a bitter and dry after taste that leaves you mouth screaming for more of the hoppy goodness.

Drinkability - This beer has the wow factor. Great IPA with great hoppy flavor with a nice balance for sweet maltiness. Not a record breaker but an overall west coast IPA.

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Photo of vkv822
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle into tulip pint.

The appearance is a clear golden hued yellow body with a thick foamy white head that leaves beautiful lacing.
The hop varieties used give forth predominately citric, floral and pine notes with a very light malt backing.
The flavor is also of citric and floral hops, though there are some slight herbal hop notes as well. The malts I can detect seem to be lending mostly caramel notes with some biscuit notes as well. The hops and malts are very closely balanced, though the hops do come through in the finish to give a bitter, slightly dry finish.
The mouthfeel is decent medium body with good carbonation.
This is a very drinkable and pleasant beer, though I do wish there was a slight stronger emphasize on the hops, as I could easily mistake this for an American Pale Ale.

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

Appearance -- Pours a light amber with a slim sudsy head.

Smell -- Pine, grapefruit, a modicum of tropical fruitiness, mild caramel sweetness.

Taste -- Pine and grapefruit zest up front, along with bready malt, and a mild underlying caramel sweetness. Long resin finish.

Mouthfeel -- Medium in body with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability -- This is certainly a solid IPA, but there are plenty others I would gladly take over this. Perhaps when I come back to this one it will excite me like it has so many other reviewers. Time will tell...

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Photo of foogerd
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a clear golden color with a one inch khaki colored head
S- nice upfront grapefruit and fresh piney hops
T- really delicious fresh juicy hops coming through nice solid malt backbone
M- fills out the mouth pretty nicely carbonation tingling the tongue just right
D- very drinkable
A well rounded IPA done to perfection no groundbreaking work here, but no room for disappointment.

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Photo of
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle

Cloudy, dark orange. Modest, off white head. Minimal lacing and legs.

Aroma was grapefruit and honey. Earthiness and grass in there as well.

Bitter more than sweet, with grapefruit and grass leading the way. Decent biscuity middle. Good balance, but tilted towards the hops. Honey and caramel in there as it warmed.

Medium body. Medium carbonation. Dry.

Very good, I enjoyed this one.

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Photo of BlackBearForge
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Clear golden amber in the glass with a bone white head leaving some pretty nice lacing.

The aroma is floral hoppy and very fresh with a bit of lemony citrus and background of resin.

The flavor is upfront hoppy but not overly bitter. There is enough malt to keep things in check leaving a pleasant bitterness on the finish which is on the dry side. Hops are equal parts resin and grapefruity citrus with a bit of orange thrown in.

Overall this is a very nice and immensely likeable West coast hop delight, crisp and very drinkable.

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

A fresh hop aroma with citrus notes emanates from the half liter glass mug as the white, one-finger head subsides to a skim, with lacing stuck to the sides.

The brew is a burnt orange color, clouded by a hazy suspension of micro particulate.

Drawing a good mouthful reveals more citrus up front, with not as much hop bitterness as the aroma suggested. Some Pale Ales have as much hop presence, but this offering has enough alcohol content to make the IPA grade. Brisk carbonation pulls the alcohol esters to the nose, allowing the lightly malted grain flavor to peek through.

Not a top-of-the-line IPA, nor as good as the in-house draft, but worth the price of admission.

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Photo of HardTarget
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma: I’m getting a collection of hop smells. It’s almost overwhelming, and it’s a bit worrying, seems like this will cause my head to implode. Some minor fruit smells, mainly apple.
Appearance: Great looking beer, a hazy golden orange. Two finger head settled down to about a half finger of thick, fluffy, creamy white head that left tidemarks and impressive lace.
Flavor: There is enough malt to bring all the hops back to somewhere in the area of balance, but as the beer warmed, the hops really picked up and came close to a hop burn. A touch of sweet malt poked though to give a nice overall taste. The hops seem to be noble, Hallertauer perhaps.
Mouthfeel: Heavy body, a thick fluid that triggered a chew.
Overall Impression: A very drinkable big brew. Quite easy on the eyes, it’s a beautiful beer. The noble hops kinda threw me, I’m used to more of American cascade, but different is good.

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Photo of tmoore600
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Everything was good, just not excellent.
Initial smell and apperance were very pleasant.
Actually enjoyed the beer right out of the bottle, but as the smell began to fade, so did the drinkability.
Would choose another west coast IPA next time around.

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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 Lothore
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden red hue with a huge head that seems like it would stay forever. The smell is sweet, hoppy, notes of pine and berries. The taste is very full, bitter bready, pine. Mouthfeel is very thick with quite a bit of carbonation. This beer seems drinkable enough for an IPA. The bitterness makes me just want to sip on it but all in all a good brew.

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Photo of B33R501
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

interesting on the hand pump but i prefer the regular bootle version. thats ok.

light amber, pale look. aromas of floral hops, taste follows, better than the smell. lots and lots of floral hops, nicely malted for balance.
very refreshing, drinkable.


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Photo of bwd110
3.81/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into 9oz snifter... How's that work?

A: Nice orange-y amber color, good frothy bright white head. Looks inviting.

S: Slightly citric nose, but mostly an earthy aroma. Reminds me a lot of Anderson Valley brews. Subdued bready sweetness in the background.

T: Heavy on the bitter, light on the citrusy hops. Very much an earthy beer with grass and pine notes. Well balanced, sturdy brew, but not extraordinary for me.

M: Typical mouthfeel for the style, slightly oily.

D: Could pack away a few of these. Goes down without a problem.

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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 7,507 ratings.
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