Bear Republic “Racer 5”
This is the sort of grapefruit centered IPA that hop heads dream of. It’s bottle conditioned, which is odd for an IPA. Silver medal winner of the ‘05 and ‘06 Great American Beer Festivals, and gold winner in ‘09. It pours a delightfully fluffy, dense head with solid lacing and good retention.
The aroma is wonderful, a great mix of floral and citric with a touch of indian spice, cumin or something of the sort. The sort that you’ll love to keep swirling and sampling. The aroma just doesn’t grow old.
Hop flavor is heavily citric: lemon, grapefruit, orange, pineapple, with apricot too. More along the lines of the pith of grapefruit rather than the rind. A touch of pine and grass notes on the back end. It’s elegantly proportioned sweetness, bitterness, and sourness is really what makes this beer so successful (or any beer for that matter). Bitterness isn’t overstated, or too oily. A grainy, pale barley character brings some duality to the palette and adds that touch of sweetness. It’s an ease to drink, very juicy, smooth feel with some hop sharpness on the finish. Fresh, sticky hop resinous, grapefruit tartness, and well rounded.
This is a terrific IPA on my top 10 IPA list. I’m consistently impressed by Bear Republic. Highly recommended!
Hops: Chinook, Cascade, Columbus and Centennial
Malts: American pale, Crystal malt