Sep 062023

In June I took a lovely long road trip with the family to Idaho. On the way back we went through Idaho falls and I had discovered this place the day before while scoping out if there was anything worth seeing near the supercharger. Snow Eagle Brewing is about a 15 minute walk along the Snake River park from the charger, right across from the scenic Idaho Falls themselves. Their website is very scant on details on their history, but they brew beer and have food and most importantly, brew their own root beer. Their glasses feature a samurai, which is a bit odd for Idaho, but Idaho Falls has a sister city in Japan, Tokai-Mura, so I guess they’re just taking that friendship to a new level.

It has a dark, old fashioned Body with a lot of licorice, some vanilla, and a little wintergreen. There’s too much licorice and it isn’t very sweet. The Bite is mild with a distict lack of spices for a dark, old fashioned brew. The Head is not there, not there at all. No foam that I could see. Very sad. The Aftertaste is licorice with hints of vanilla and a bitter wintergreen finish.

Sadly, this isn’t a particularly great root beer, it has too much licorice and just falls flat (both figuratively and literally) in every other category. It was a beautiful walk to see it, but I think I’d rather not walk near as far and check out some of the sites along the way next time. I have no idea how their food tastes because I didn’t get any, but it probably is decent. So if you find yourself craving a root beer while admiring the Idaho Falls, this will probably leave you disappointed, but it is at least, there.

2.5/5 Root Beer Kegs
The Snow Eagle brew vats
The Snow Eagle Brewing & Grill
The Snow Eagle taps. Root Beer on top, as it should be.
Aug 022023

I always appreciate it when brands make new root beers for me to drink. Take Aldi, that wonderful store with strange off brands and low prices. They also make their own gourmet root soda line, Summit. Why? Not sure, as that doesn’t seem to be the standard thing a cheap store does, but they do it. Now I’ve given middling reviews to their root beer before, and maybe that’s the reason they just keep changing their recipe, in an eternal struggle to gain my approval. Now being the considerate store they are, they also change the label and the name slightly, so it’s very easy for me to categorize it as a completely new root beer. Whereas previous iterations have been Summit <insert adjective> Root Beer, this one is just plain ol’ Summit. My wife spotted it for me awhile back while she was shopping at Aldi and guessed that I’d not had it yet. Always nice when new root beers just present themselves. So how did Aldi do this time?

The Body is sweet, though not overly so, with a nice vanilla. It has a generic creamy taste to it with a little hint of fruity but also a little lacking in depth. The Bite is sharp, harsh even, from carbonation but lacking in spice. The Head is okay. It’s medium all around. Nothing special yet adequate. The Aftertaste is light vanilla with the slightest fruity hints.

It’s an okay root beer, solid drinkable. Not quite as good as their Craft version, which I’m sure comes as a great disappointment to them. Last time they were three and a half and I imagine they hoped to push in that final half a keg, but sadly I think this version losses half a keg. Oh well, better luck next time. I suppose if they want to hire a root beer consultant, I can teach them the ways. See how it rates against other root beers.

Three kegs
Jul 052023

Back in May I was in Winnipeg doing DERMS. You know, you’ve read my last review. That review was for the place I knew about, planned about, and was prepping for. However, on the way between our meeting site and our hotel, was the Lake of the Woods tap room. After meetings were done, and we were walking back to the hotel before heading to lunch, I thought I’d drop in to just see if maybe, just maybe they also had root beer? They did. And not just on draft, they actually had big ol’ bottles of it. Well isn’t that just perfect. I immediately bought two to take home. I also took a picture and dropped it into the Facebook root beer group, which caused no small stir. Everyone was asking where I got it and some random person, not even in the group but living in Winnipeg got tagged. Why am I telling you this? Because later that day, when my coworker wanted to grab a pint (of regular beer) from there, as I was talking to the bar tender, a person behind in the line said “Are you the root beer guy from Facebook?” That’s right, the guy who got tagged had come down to try it and recognized me. What fun. The Lake of the Woods Brewing Company started Kenora, Ontario but they also have breweries in Winnipeg (where I visited) and Warroad in Minnesota.

The Body is weak. There’s a classic flavor profile but it’s watered down and there’s a bit of fruity to it. The Bite is also weak. Light on spice and on carbonation. The Head is medium but fizzes down very quickly. The Aftertaste is fruity with faint vanilla.

This isn’t good. Not unpleasant, but also not good. It’s kind of depressing, since it’s such a cool bottle and all. Oh well. Maybe it tastes better on tap? If not, I can’t recommend ever getting this, unless you need a cool bottle for your collection. See how it rates against other root beers.

2 out of 5 root beer kegs