Racer 5 India Pale Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
2,303 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:
2,303
Ratings:
7,578
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
9.55%
 
 
Wants:
347
Gots:
1,365
For Trade:
10
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,303 | Ratings: 7,578
Photo of Haybeerman
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear orange/amber color. Pored a 2 finger light tan head with good retention settling to an even skim. Sticky lacing throughour. Decanted lightly.

S: Floral hops and grapefruit. Sweet malt well in the background. Not really much on the nose.

T: Wow! Big, slightly sweet malts really come through. Floral, resiny hops - in the flavor and in the finish - blanace nicely.

M: Full side of medium body. Balanced carbonation. Smooth and coating, but not syrupy or sweet. Bitter finish provides great balance.

D: Very drinkable. Lots of flavor, but great balance. Disguises the abv well.

 588 characters

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

(Served in an imperial fluted strange)

A-This beer has a deep golden copper body with the slightest hint of hazy and a creamy white marshmallow head that last and last. The carbonation is lots of tiny little bubbles.

S- The smell of citrus and orange hops has a faint pineapple and grass note. Underneath the juicy hops is a note of lightly sweet toasted malt that really rounds out the aroma.

T- This beer has a sweet creamy malt flavor with a hint of caramel that is quickly wiped of the palette by some big bold green hops. The hops have notes of pineapple with a faint grassy note and some floral hop notes. At the finish there is a faint cola note in the hops and then the hops hang onto every exhale not letting go of their grip.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a creamy texture that makes it feel even more full. No astringency or alcohol noticed.

D- This is a good solid IPA with juicy hops and a good malt backbone. It’s hard to believe this is a 7% abv beer and it has a bit more sweetness than most IPAs. That changes the profile of the hops with is a nice twist.

 1,108 characters

Photo of beertunes
3.39/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served in a straight pint glass. Poured a lovely orange/yellow with a thin white head that left lots of sticky lacin

Crisp citrus hops greet the nose, and the flavors are very similar. I didn't find this IPA to be as good as BRs Hop Rod Rye.

The body was solid, which gave the hops something to cling to, a pleasant change from most thin west coast IPAs. A very drinkable beer, especially for an IPA, I recommend this beer, but find Hop Rod far superior.

 456 characters

Photo of akorsak
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A tumbler glass served at Al's of Hampden.

A: The IPA is an amber orange color, translucent with a small band of head that doesn't lace.

S: The aroma is chocked full of hops, bitter pine primarily. The oily aromas stand out above the malt backbone.

T: Sweet mamma jamma, this is hoppy. Pine is resinous, oily as it coats me mouth. Bitterness is sharp, peppery without the a spicy finish. Underneath the hops, the caramel malts are more than up to the task, balancing out the ale with a bready body. The hops din't stay silenced for long though, returning to leave a sharp flavor on the tongue.

M: A heavily hopped IPA that seems too strong at times. A little more balance never hurts anyone.

D: I limited myself to one glass. It seems a little to boozy to be enjoyed in multiple servings.

 794 characters

Photo of sweemzander
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint.

(A)- Pours a hazy orange color that produced a great fluffy off-white head with great retention. Lacing formed all over the place as it finally began to dissipate.

(S)- A complex citrus profile of pine needle, lemon, grapefruit, and lime.

(T)- Very similar to the smell. Very dry and piney with a good citrus aspect like the smell had.

(M)- A good carbonation level. A bit too bitter. I realize it should be, but this is just a bit too much. Great piney citrus though.

(D)- Definitely a great IPA. Has everything you would expect. Good stuff.

 590 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 wordemupg
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into pint glass 2/9/12

A chill haze in a golden copper body, just a few tiny bubbles but the foam is as big as you desire, gentle pour leaves a massive three finger cream colored head that slowly falls too a thick film leaving plenty of random lace

S tropical citrus nose with some sweet orange, lemon and lime, faint pine and lots of caramel

T much like the nose really, not as hoppy as I expected but there's something to be said for a balanced beer, well concealed booze

M much more carbonation then one would think after looking at the lack of bubbles in the liquid, a mellow bite and more citrus on the finish

O a straight up "good" beer, I was expecting something much more intense but I liked it nonetheless

I'm a little surprised this ones in the Beers Of Fame list as high as it is but I'm stoked I finally got to try it

 857 characters

Photo of Axnjxn
3.77/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

pours a cloudy golden color with a slight, quickly dissipating head.

grassy, hoppy aroma on the nose. not a huge hop bomb like I expected.

taste is, again, quite subdued. hops and malts are both there but aren't in your face huge. good citrus aftertaste with no alcohol present. higher side of medium bodied with low carbonation. decent drinkability.

overall, like other bear republic beers I've had, this one is lacking on that big kick of flavor. its balanced but the flavors just aren't intense. this isn't a favorite of mine.

 567 characters

Photo of barczar
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear deep golden orange color with a solid one inch cream head that dissipates slowly, leaving significant lacing.

Citrus, resin, and pine dominate the initial aroma, with grapefruit, pineapple, apricot, and mango taking center stage. There's a bit of dankness, leading to a bit of sweet caramel malt.

Flavor is also heavily citrus hopped, with vibrant grapefruit and lemon at the forefront, followed by a melange of pine, bitter resin, and a fairly peppery finish. The aftertaste is minty and herbal. Notes of tropical fruits add complexity. Caramel malt is fairly subdued, but surfaces more as it warms.

Body is moderate, with moderate carbonation, a touch of alcohol warmth, and a moderate amount of hop astringency.

Overall, an excellent, complex ipa. It really hits on all the right hop notes. Definitely not for the faint of hop!

 848 characters

Photo of Immortale25
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewing snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a medium amber color with a 1/4 inch white head that soon fades to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a small patch of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing clings to the side of the glass leaving a thick ring behind.

S- Incredibly sharp, zesty hop aroma. A bit of malt sweetness too with a hop fume that cuts like a knife. Very unique and enticing.

T- Flavor follows suit with more citrusy sharpness and juicy grapefruit notes. The bitterness has a very tangy attack which sort of complements the somewhat high alcohol presence. Decent malt backbone provides just the right amount of sweetness to back up the brightness of the hops.

M- Big bites of hops all the way through, actually more stinging but in a great way. Medium carbonation and a body that's just a tad on the lighter side.

O- An excellent and unique IPA that I always love to drink. Has that west coast citrus bomb aspect to it but in a way that's still different and remarkable.

 1,030 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle. Served in the "new" Sam Adams Boston Lager glass, the beer pours a clear light amber color with an inch frothy white head. Head retention and lacing are both very good. Aroma is mainly citrusy (grapefruit) hops and caramel malt, very nice. It tastes like citrusy and piney hops, with some malt noticable in there too. Finishes with a nice bitter hoppy aftertaste which lingers around a while. Mouthfeel is medium and a bit oily/slick. Drinkability is pretty good, it's very smooth and easy to drink. I think this is a very good and refreshing IPA, I'd definitely buy it again, it's worth the money.

 615 characters

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

Clear golden with a nice full off-white light tan head, nice carbonation, and nice lace. Big pine hop aroma and flavors. Nice hoppiness without being overly bitter; seems nicer than the XP Pale Ale; Good balance. Medium bodied and fairly smooth with a bitter hop finish; maybe a touch airy.

Worth trying and good but not my favorite ... a possible repurchase.

Per Label: Bottle Conditioned.

Per BR website: American grains. Two Pacific Northwest hops, Columbus and Cascade. Columbus is used mostly for bittering, but used heavily as an aromatic in this strong brew. Cascade is the balance that ties the malt and bittering hops together.
1999 GABF - Gold.
og 1.070, ABV 7.0%, IBU 69.

Per B.A.B. book: 5.9%ABV (wrong). Columbus hops adn dry-hopped with Cascade (wrong?)

($3.99 / 22 oz.)

 803 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 VelvetExtract
4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A-Golden in color with a sturdy head.

S-Citrusy hops and a doughy malt combination. Quite fruity.

T-Delicious fruity hops. Swell bitter taste gives way to a thick dough malt. The fruity hop taste lingers exceptionally well.

M-Medium bodied. Light enough to consume several, heavy enough to make you remember its a beast.

D-One of my go-to brews. Love the taste. Not too much booze. Very enjoyable.

 401 characters

Photo of avalon07
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: When I poured this one from a bottle to a pint glass, it had a deep amber hue and a cloudy consistency. Also, it had bits of sediment floating around. There was a decent-sized head and good lacing.

S: Had a strong aroma of hops, citrus and bit of malt. Not overpowering, but certainly noteworthy.

T: This one had quite a complex taste, though it was dominated by hops. There was a faint taste of citrus (orange?) and a hint of malt to balance things out.

M: Vibrant carbonation level and a smooth finish. This is definitely a full-bodied beer.

D: If you like IPAs, this is one for you. It goes down very easy and has a lively personality.

 645 characters

Photo of ppoitras
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle from bleedingshrimp as part of 120/190 BIF. Thanks for the opportunity, been meaning to get to this one.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1 1/4" beige head over the clear golden amber brew. Pillowy head lasts nicely, with heavy but sporadic frothy lacing. Aroma is lightly lemony hops with an undercurrent of controlled sweetness. Taste is upfront a nicely balanced flavor of grains and citrus hops, which slowly gives way to allow the hops to gain center stage. Mouthfeel is smooth and clean, and drinkability is superb. One of the more controlled West Coast IPAs, I like it.

 603 characters

Photo of tigg924
3.65/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: minimal head, clear, orange brown in color

Smell: citrus hops, pine hops, and brown sugar

Taste: floral hops, slight pine hops, bread, and caramel malt

Mouthfeel: light bodied, moderate carbonation, sweetish start with a moderately bitter middle and end

Drinkability: I could have a couple of these. A decent IPA that is very true to style.

 358 characters

Photo of DrDemento456
4.7/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer recommended to me by the BA community to be a highly drinkable IPA

A - Hazy light copper in color. Golden could easily be seen with a nice foamy white head. Slight yeast bits hope doesn't inflict review.
S - Grapefruit straight up. Then citrus and other malts are smelt.
T - Wow an overwhelming yet great hops taste. Loved it!
M - Refreshing yet dry. Just what expected from this IPA.
D - Man I need a case of this! A+!

 430 characters

Photo of mltobin
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle picked up over in Westchester, NY.

Appearance is a cloudy orange color with a large head.
Its`s smell has grapefruit, resin, caramel, floral hops...it is indeed an inviting aroma. The taste has quite a bit of hops, more grapefruit, pineapple too, biscuit, a very enjoyable ipa. MF is medium with quite a bit of carboantion. A very good IPA from Bear Republic.

 377 characters

Photo of rfgetz
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear orangy amber, fluffy, creamy hand pumped head.

S: Piney hops, faint hints of citrus and spice. Decent malt presence.

T: Piney hops with spicy flavors. Hints of citrus and decent malt backbone. Bitter and Earthy.

M: Big boddied, slightly oily and coating. Some aftertaste.

D: Good, but not great. Odd combo of strong piney hops and malt backbone. Cask is not my favorite IPA serving device.

 403 characters

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

Appearance- Great, doughy, light beige head. Excellent retention. Something you could stick your finger in and feel the foams welcoming grasp. Thick quarter inch head throughout the whole bomber. Great Autumn colored haze with a little sediment suspended nicely throughout the whole brew. Leaves a lot of very sticky lace all over.

Smell- Good, just not as stand out as I feel it should be. You can taste more than you can smell at any point while I'm enjoying this beer. The aroma of citrus zest is only mild while lacking a better balance with the toasted malts.

Taste- Very floral rendition of grapfruit skin. When you sink your teeth into the real thing, its rather unpleasant. But when you drink that same flavor in a beer, it becomes pleasant. Better definition of the mlats, but only as a ,uted hint of what could be.

Mouthfeel- Is chock full of pleasant bitterness, but just lacing that balance needed between malts and hops to be a great IPA.

 963 characters

Photo of bylerteck
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from IGA in Potsdam.

A - Pours a light copper with moderate carbonation. Bright. One finger of creamy off white head. Good lacing all over the glass but just a small film of retention.

S - Smells of aggressive hops right off the pop of the bottle. Prickly pineapple and grapefruit with some breadiness.

T - Big hops with caramel to boot. Lot's of citrus fruit with some earthiness. Many layers make this quite complex. Citrusy grapefruit and pineapple are most of the layers for hop profile but there's also a nice breadiness with caramel to back it up.

M - Nice bitterness in the finish. Medium body with some chew and good carbonation.

O/D - A pretty solid example of the style. A good hop forward IPA that is nice to drink. Highly drinkable and well executed.

 775 characters

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at The Drafting Room, Exton; served in an imperial pint

Hazy, golden body with an eerie thickness to it. A bone white head sits proudly on top.

Sweet candied grapefruit, orange rind, lightly toasted biscuits and a touch of evergreens.

Citrus rind and pine needles come to forefront, then a sweet rush of candied grapefruit followed by a mild bitterness. Doesn't push the extremes.

Full bodied and chewy. Cask does great things for the mouthfeel of IPA's.

A pretty solid IPA that doesn't push the envelope of sweetness or bitterness. I could drink a few of these on cask.

 583 characters

Photo of DefenCorps
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle received from hwwty4 in the Good, the Bad and the Ugly BIF. Thanks Bill! This has a date of 14th August 2008 stamped on the side. Into my trusted Duvel tulip

A: Hazy orange with a massive white head that settles to a disk, leaving gorgeous lacework,

S: Tons of citrus fruit on the nose with orange, orange zest, some pine. Excellent hop aroma.

T: Starts off with a ton of hop flavor with a lot of citrus fruit character - lots of orange, grapefruit and some sharp zest. Some pine bitterness is present at well. As with my favorite IPAs, there really isn't much malt present- it's a ton of hop flavor that carries on through the dry finish with a pleasing bitter character

M: Excellent for an IPA - light, mildly resiny, bitter, dry, ample carbonation

D: This is one of the better IPAs I've had. I do wish this was closer to the 6% range, I'd drink a ton. At it's price, there's few better

 905 characters

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

Slighty hazy orange colour with a generous, fluffy head. Good retention and lacing. Toasted, malty aroma with mostly pine and some citrus hop character that is more on the orange side. Also just a bit spicy. Excellent balance with plenty of bitterness balanced by bready, biscuity malts. Hop flavour is strong pine, citrus, and spice, without being over the top. Sweetness backs off towards the end, which lets the resinous bitterness come forward, along with more orange hop flavour, and a bit of alcohol warming appear. Finishes off-dry. Body is a little on the heavy side, moderate carbonation. Bottle conditioning seems to contribute to the creamy smooth texture, which improves even more as it warms. Very nice...

 718 characters

Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 7,578 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

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.

    Subscribe