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Racer 5 India Pale Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding
2,294 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:
2,294
Ratings:
7,528
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
17.42%
 
 
Wants:
340
Gots:
1,323
For Trade:
9
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,294 | Ratings: 7,528
Photo of RedBeerchetta
4.89/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap recently and was taken aback at how fresh the hops smelled and tasted. I was at the Dogfish Head brewpub in Rehoboth Beach, MD recently and had their 90 minute IPA that had been put through "Randall the Enamel Animal" (look it up if you don't know of it). I had never tasted a brew with such a fresh hop smell and taste. This glass of Racer 5 was second to that. It was so fresh tasting (pine, herbaceous hop scent) that I had to ask if they had a Randall (the used to, but don't anymore).

Racer 5 has always been one of my favorite IPAs but this keg was outstanding. Hoppy without being very bitter (though that would be ok). A unique and special IPA that would please hopheads and newbies alike.

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Photo of imperialstout27
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pub glass.

A: Nice golden orange with off-white 1 finger head. Hazy with a little bit of very tiny fuzz floating around. Head dissipates in a couple minutes and leaves a decent collar that remains throughout. Medium lacing.

S: Lemony citrus. Also some tangerine. Sweet maltiness lightly appearing under the hops.

T: Hell ya! Very juicy hop flavors with a good malt structure that's not overly malty. The hops are very forward but nicely balanced for the style. The sweetness knows just how to be the canvas without usurping the stage from the very prominent hops. The hop profile of this IPA really works for my palate; it's not super bitter, but it is super flavorful with a nice spicy, resinous characteristic. Alcohol asserts itself as it warms. There's also an enjoyable graininess in the aftertaste, along with the predictable bitterness.

M: Very nice feel that's medium to full for the style. Unlike some IPAs, there's actually some grain in this recipe. Smooth on the palate with an adequate carbonation level.

D: Quite high, although it can get a little sweet and boozy as it warms. But at optimal temperature, I can easily drink the bomber and more.

Overall, a very good IPA that has a good malt backbone without being overly sweet. Delicious hop profile.

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Photo of saztheorybook
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Beautiful golden brown with a thick yellow-cake head that drops off pretty quickly but leaves some pretty nice lacing.
S- Reeks of fresh hops, spicy and herbal with the tiniest fruit character.
T-There is a surprisingly deep malt character, a low hop bitterness but loads of fruit and floral tastes in the hop itself. A nice rounded and subtle yeastiness is there in back as well.
M-Pretty smooth and rich. For the number of streams of bubbles on this beer, there is very little carbonation bite. This is how I dig 'em.
D- Dangerously quaffable. Now I know why people talk about this one so much. I'd probably take a 90 Minute over this, but for the price, yeah, I'll have another twelve.

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Photo of fbinla
4.26/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours white head that dissipates very quickly, amazingly clear light amber color. Nice bold hop smell. Strong but controlled bitterness, then easy malt flavors followed by the pine/citrus bitterness that lingers in your mouth with a touch of sweetness. Mouth feel is good, if the bitterness wasn't keeping it under control you could say it's slightly syrupy. Carbonation is perfect.

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Photo of Buggabeer
4.79/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow this is a very good IPA! The color is a nice amber with a nice head which quickly diminishes leaving a beatiful lacing around the glass. The smell is awesome not over powered by hops as some others do. The taste is exceptional one of the best IPA's I've had. I wish I had another one however sadly I don't. This beer is truely worth getting.

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Photo of Reeks
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I was fairly new to the craft beer world when I was introduced to Racer 5. That was over 6 years ago and this beer has been a staple in my rotation.
It has a harsh bite at first sip. Nothing subtle about the boldness of its flavor.
The texture gets stickier as the temperature drops. Its very sweet and bitter all at once and leaves a very hoppy after taste.

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Photo of Adam5150
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy gold, with a tint of red, and a medium sized white foamy head. Excellent lacing. Strong floral and citrus hop aroma, well-balanced w/ a smooth malt finish and a bitter aftertaste that goes down smoothly. Medium mouthfeel. Refreshing and very drinkable IPA.

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

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

A: Golden copper color with off-white head which reduces to nice lacing.

S: Grapefruit initially jumps out of the glass then leads to pine & more sweet citrus hops.

T: Citrus upfront leading to a sweet malt with a little bit of bitterness at the end.

M: Medium-bodied smooth & creamy with a slightly bitter & dry finish.

D: Extremely drinkable & smooth. I was expecting more bitterness for an IPA, but still very good.

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

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

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

Taste-
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.

Mouthfeel-
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 SDHoffers
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I call this beer "the most convenient backup." When I go into a bar for the first time I look at the lineup just like every other beer geek. I take my time to scope the varieties and countries of origin. If I see Racer 5 up there I at least know that I have a beer that I will enjoy and will keep me planted on a bar stool for a few minutes. Racer 5 is easy to drink and it's murky volume allows for a great texture. Although 7%, the alcohol is not incredibly present which generally leads to multiple pints. Hops are significantly present with a touch of citrus. I love that this brew can serve as an everyday choice or become a great session beer depending on how I'm feeling. I would always suggest Racer 5 as a great starter I.P.A. and Bear Republic has been consistent with this beer for many years.

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Photo of cquinn17
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz poured into a Duvel tulip

A- Hazy burnt orange, small head with little retention, a little lacing

S- Lots of citrus notes up front followed by a little biscuity malt. Mostly hops though.

T- Tastes as citrusy as it smells. Lots of hops with a bitter dry finish. Great taste.

M- Really coats the mouth in hoppy oils. Slick mouthfeel with just the right amount of carbonation to back it up.

O- Great example of a west coast IPA. I could drink this everyday and it left me wanting another, too bad I got it as a single in a mixed 6 pack :(

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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

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Photo of InandOutBeerGuys
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is an awesome IPA!!! As all of Bear Republics' beers they are beatiful when poured even gently it produces a fantastic head, thet lingers and leaves a sticky lace around the glass. 5 is generously hopped, but very drinkable for such a big beer. The aroma is great, flavor is right on, looks great, there is little to flaw here just a great IPA.

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

Pours a hazy orange with a thick frothy head that sticks around pretty well and leaves plenty of lacing. Smells of piney hops with a nice solid malt background. Nothing mind blowing but smells great. Taste is near perfect I think. Perfect hop and malt balance. Mouthfeel is creamy and refreshing. Drinkability is awesome. Hops dont overpower, alchohol is masked and it keeps flowing. This is one of my favorite beers. Probably one of the beers that I buy most often. I am a fan of all the Bear Republic beers I have had so far and this is no exception.

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

APPEARANCE: Pours a beautiful, slightly hazy, dark amber with a thick two finger head with great lacing that you have to wash off.

AROMA: A noticeably piney and citrusy hop scent permeate this beer.

FLAVOR: A definitely noticeable strong grapefruit, citrus hop note with a lighter piney hop taste. A great sweet, honey, caramel, malt flavor to finish, with some continued hop bitterness. Flavors definitely pop more as this warms, ideal temp is 45-50º per the bottle.

PALATE: A great IPA, with noticeably piney hop bitterness, balanced perfectly with a nice sweet malt note and dry finish. It's no wonder this brew has won many awards.

MOUTH FEEL: A light to medium carbonation, very creamy feeling.

NOTES: An enjoyable light to medium carbonated 7.0% ABV IPA that keeps you coming back. The alcohol is hidden until it's too late, and the beer is smooth as can be.

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Photo of microbrew52
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This pours hazy tangerine a little foam cap that laces the glass.
The nose is big with citrusy hops. There's a second variety in there as well, something that gives a slightly more pungeant, earthy aroma. This has great flavor with grapefruit being prominent. The finish is long and increasingly hoppy and the body/mouthfeel is full and buttery smooth.

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Photo of patriot76
4.29/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle served in a pint glass

A- Cloudy amber in color with sediment. Nice 1 inch very dense head. Looks good and not too carbonated.

S- Great smelling beer. Floral hops combined with malt, brown sugar and rye. Smells more like a rye ale instead of an IPA. Can smell some alcohol as well. Extemely appetizing smell.

T- Right away you get the very nice floral hops with rye. A very smooth middle leads into a smooth yet nicely bitter finish. Although this is a full bodied strong IPA, it is very smooth. No grapefruit ending, rather bitter hops and lingering rye. Drinks a bit more like a rye ale.

M- Very smooth mouthfeel all around. This is not in the class of IPA that gives you cotton mouth. Low carbonation. Instead of the beer going to the back of palate as per usual with many, it seems to be everywhere.

D- Very nice, balanced and drinkable for a beer of this magnitude. All around a nice complex and flavorful beer that puts a different spin on an IPA. Not a traditional IPA, but very good none the less.

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Photo of Floyd12
4.67/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap poured into a pint glass.

A- A moderately hazy amber color with a thick foamy and creamy head of about two fingers. The head lingered for most of the beer and left fantastic lasing all over the glass.

S- Very hoppy with a slight malt. Citrusy underones with an earthy grainy smell as well.

T- Strong hard hop taste with a little bit of bitterness but not over the top. Again slightly citrusy but the hops take control without going overboard.

M- Very crisp and refreshing with a long dry hoppy finish.

O- This is one of my new favorite beers. I love this but have only seen this at White Horse in Boston. This needs to expand on the east coast.

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Photo of IAmAPenguin
4.69/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Aroma - Faint pines, grapefruit, hops, mango, sugared caramel.
Appearance - Really pretty yellowish orange with some great lacing.
Taste - Nice bitter hop bite with a really nice juiced grapefruit, peach, lemon fruity characteristic. Sweet orange peel, caramel, grains and slick syrupy molasses.
Overall - Really just a fantastic beer. It's my favorite. A great introduction to IPA's and craft beer. Just never any going wrong with this one.

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Photo of TomChiari777
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Found some tiny floaties in it but didn't bother me. The aroma was fantastic and the taste was crisp with citrus notes and fresh hop goodness. One of my favorite beers for sure.

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Photo of Ryanbob
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Sparkling copper with a sticky off-white head that isn't in a hurry.

S- sweet malts and hops.

T- This is a very smooth, balanced IPA. Piney hops balanced by creamy malty goodness. Not much bitterness in the finish, a little earthy and some sweetness in the aftertaste. No noticable alcohal. Exceptionally drinkable, could creep up on you fast.

Mf- So smooth, velvety soft, almost syrupy, nice bite, not too much carbonation.

N- What a great beer! Too bad I can't get sixers of this, I would keep it around at all times. Good for any season, heavy enough to stand up to spicy food, but refreshing enough for something light. This is the shit.

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Photo of watkins
3.68/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass:

A: Hazy orange-brown with hardly any head to speak of.

S: Smells sweet and malty with a muted hop scent.

T: Nice lemon-citrus notes, finished by a bitter hoppy bite, though not as floral as other IPAs can be.

M: Medium-bodied, great carbonation, for a heavier beer, sits on the tongue lighter than most despite its alcohol content.

D: This might be a once a month or two purchase for me, though I do love IPAs, I've definitely had fuller, more complex ones, namely Coast's HopArt here in Charleston, SC.

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

Racer 5

A - amber/ copper complexion, hazy appearance, two fingers of an alabaster head that fades away

S - sweet malts, strong citrusy hops, some piney hops as well

T - intriguing balance between the sweet of the malts and the bitter of the hops; neither is dominant yet both are easily identifiable. Grapefruit and pine bring the hops while a light Carmel comes out in the malts. 

M - medium body, again, excellent balance, light hop and sweet at the beginning, finish is slightly bitter. Warming finish Diego the ABV.

D - this isn't going to be a hophead's delight, still, this is an interesting West Coast take on an IPA. great balance, attractive combination of hops and malts and at $5 for a 22oz bomber, it's not going to break the bank. Racer 5 may become a new standby on my list!

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Photo of MysticRuler
3.87/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A surprisingly nice IPA. I wasn't expecting much given the high volume production, however, the West Coast Hops shine, as usual. Nice balance of sweet maltiness (but not too sweet which is a problem with alot of IPAs) twinned with hoppy bitterness; its a very drinkable IPA. Superior to a number of higher rated IPAs out there.

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Photo of Kisejohn
3.61/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma:  Subdued grapefruit aroma with a hint of malt.  Was hoping for more.

Appearance:  Honey gold color with a half finger of head.  Head dissipates quickly leaving nice lacing.

Flavor:  Grapefruit rind and some caramel malt predominate.  Lingering bitterness in the finish.  Was hoping for more hop flavor.  Hop flavor is limited in comparison to other west coast IPAs.  

Mouthfeel:   Light body with good carbonation.

Overall:  This is a very good IPA for any hop head.  The hop aroma and flavor are fairly subdued in comparison to leading west coast IPAs.  Enjoyable IPA, but not my favorite.

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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 7,528 ratings.
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