Living in Texas has some benefits when it comes to beer distributorship since we are somewhat centrally located we get a good portion of beer from the east coast and west coast. Not that we get all that beer, especially with some of the archaic label laws that exist in this fine state, but we get our fair share. One of the ones that we haven't had distributed to Texas is the great Bear Republic Brewing Co. Well that has now changed. Walking through my local Whole Foods, I was SHOCKED, SHOCKED I saw to see big glorious bottles of Bear Republic. I quickly picked up two carried them home and got ready to see what all the fuss was about.
Racer 5 IPA: A 7% alcohol IPA containing Columbus and Cascade hops and an IBU of 69. The beer pours a hazy copper color with a nice creamy head. The nose was more grapefruit than pine, with some citrus and even lychee note. The mouth is vibrant, citrusy, refreshing, not nearly as strong as I would have expected. Some good bitterness but not all that strong, maybe even mildly weak. A very solid IPA, but not top tier as I was expecting. I'd give it a B+, here's what the folks at BA had to say.
Red Rocket Ale: A pretty interesting ale, called a Scottish Red Ale weighing in at 6.8% and 65+ IBU's. The beer pours a nice reddish color with a thick tan head. BIG hops on the nose more piney than grapefruity but there is some citrus here. The mouth is piney, citrus, undertones of malty sweetness, caramel specifically. A little bit of astringency. Very good sipping beer. I really liked this one, this is what I wanted when I popped open a Bear Republic. I'd give it an A-, and here's what the BA people said.
I will definitely be going back to that Whole Foods and give the XP Pale Ale and Hop Rod Rye a try.