Racer 5 India Pale Ale | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
2,309 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:
2,309
Ratings:
7,604
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
9.55%
 
 
Wants:
347
Gots:
1,372
For Trade:
9
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,309 | Ratings: 7,604
Photo of scotvega18
4.29/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Pint Glass

A - Poured a slightly hazy golden color with some yeast sediment and a thin off-white head. Standard for a bottle conditioned IPA.

S - Some great, great, sweetness and fruitiness. The classic "Bear Republic spicy flare" is in there, and works incredibly well with the overall citric mango, pineapple, and grapefruit in the beer.

T - Rather than being a "classic west coast IPA" that finishes dry and bitter, this starts out bitter and just builds to a fruity- and sweet flavor. The hops works so well with the malt that it ends up being very difficult to pull individual flavors out.

M - Nothing special, the carbonation helps the yummy nectar go down.

Notes - There are some who would choose to knock this beer for lack of complexity, but the truth is that this beer really is one of the great in the single-ipa department for how well everything is blanced and melds together. That may contribute to a lack of depth, but honestly, how complex do you want thing thing to be? A great example of a bottle conditioned IPA.

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Photo of PatDreadful
4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a Victory Tulip.

Appearance: A light brown/dark orange hazy body throws up a huge tight head that is sticky as all get out.

Smell: This is firmly a West Coast IPA. Lemon zest, grapefruit and candied orange dominate the nose. This is exactly what I was hoping for! I do detect a bit of the malt but my nose refuses to let go of those beautiful citrus notes.

Taste: Bright! The lemon smacks you across the mouth and opens you up for some wonderful pink grapefruit notes. There are hints of some earthier hops but they are never fully realized. The malt backbone makes a cameo before that oily bitterness creeps up on you. I have never had an IPA where the bitterness actually "creeps". Very nice!

Mouthfeel: The body is light and higly carbed. The result is a nice and refreshing pint.

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Photo of apants007
3.25/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

poured form a bottle into a pint glass.

a: clear reddish amber. light head goes away pretty quick.

s: a little orange, some hoppy burn. not much.

t: more of the orange. nice blend of bitterness. tastes nice without leaving too much to think about. kinda like a dirty orange crush.

mf: decent carbonation. thick but not syrupy. again pretty good. not great.

not going to be my beer of choice. not mad at it but not super excited about it either.

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Photo of Mooch273
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: 1/8" head retention, light gold color.

A: citrus, but mostly piney hop aroma.

T: slight honey with hints of an over-ripe orange that adds a sweet citrusy flavor. Bitter pine after-taste.

M: smooth with good bitterness; not much alcohol presence; appropriate carbonation for the style.

D: Great warm weather beer; easy to finish several at a single sitting. Overall, a very enjoyable beer that I would be happy to share with friends.

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Photo of trpng0bily
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich golden honey, approaching orange, with a short white head and moderate lacing. There is ample yeast, tiny specks, suspended in the beer, imparting a regal thickness to the brew. It looks like what I would imagine to be nectar of the gods.

Piny hops, but with a distinctive sweetness that seems to be of the hops, not malt. Also a hint of citrus.

First and foremost bitter, crisp, outdoorsy hops that stick around for a good minute after a swallow. There is a breadiness to this beer, along with a slightly dry finish that goes nicely with the hop bitterness.

For an almost hop monster, this is quite drinkable. It stays crisp, with barely a trace of the syrupiness that bothers me in a lot of hoppy brews.

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Photo of maskednegator
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Golden. Agressive pour results in puffy head, which slowly deflates, leaving great lacing on the glass.
Smell: Floral, citrus hops. A ton of them.
Taste: Big grapefruit up front fills the sinus, mellow maltiness follows, balanced by a pine-sol hop bitterness in the finish.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, slightly acidic
Drinkability: I love IPAs, so this is an all-night beer for me. Others may be put off by the a lingering metallic finish. Some would think it's like sucking on a rusty penny, but I compare it to licking a 9 volt battery.

Verdict: 8/10. You can find this in many bars in San Diego, so I often recommend it to my friends. It's only a $4 bomber (insane for a bottle-conditioned beer). Reserve a little in the bottle, and drink it separately. Yeast is good for you

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Photo of Lakes
4.65/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My oh my I love Racer 5.

I have this frequently both from a 22oz bottle at Enoteca and on tap at Capone's.

Both from bottle and on tap it's appearance is exceptional. It's color is a bright vibrant golden orange that seems not content to sit in the glass. It's full frothy head beckons to be sipped.

Racer 5's aroma is room filling. It's a buoyant citrus full of grapefruit, tangerine with mild pine notes at the back.

The taste follows the aroma perfectly, filling the mouth with strong rich American hops. A bold grapefruit/citrus blast with bright spots of pine, orange peel and tangerine. The malt backs up the hops but doesn't take away anything. It's like a framework for the hops to rest on. Just wonderful

Mouthfeel is full and satisfying and it's drinkability has been tested and proven outstanding many MANY times.

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Photo of Briarscratch
4.72/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thank you Bonsreeb85 for this incredible IPA.

Cloudy orange, big aggressive head, leaving thick sticky lace all over the place.

Stong grapefruit and piney hop aroma, smells very strong and resiny.

Oh sweet sweet nectar of the beer gods! Its like a hop orgy in my mouth. Beautifully flavorful and balanced. Bitter citrus packing a little after burn from the alcohol but it's good.

Smooth, light, crisp.

Drinkability? YES YES YES. I've now officially got my buzz on! I really wish I had another.

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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 centbeerfest
3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass at home

A: cloudy with a light caramel/pumpkin color. Short head and compact bubbles

S: hoppy but not overwhekming.

T: crisp with a bit on the heavy side of hops. sour finish with lingering bitterness

M: hearty and will stand on its own

D: Little unbalanced on the hoppy side. Serious beer that won't leave you underwhelmed. As good on the last sip as the first.

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Photo of beerdrinker4life
4.09/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got to pick up an extra big 22 oz bottle of this stuff when I was in Rhode Island. Excited to try it after the clerk told me it was big on hop flavor!

For some reason my pour was almost flat. I swirled the bottle and agitated it a bit more then poured. Helped a little.

Nice hop aroma! Super citrus and flower smells like a perfume almost. Very sexy.

Taste was more malt than I expected. Good balance though. Seemed more intimidating in the nose.

Great mouthfeel on first few sips. Best when cold in my opinion.

Overall a good IPA. I think I like the Smutty better.

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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.

 261 characters

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.

 469 characters

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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Racer 5 India Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 7,604 ratings.
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