Sep 202017

JD's Old Fashioned Root Beer Bottle This brew hails from Dallas Wisconsin. A woman by the name of Jen makes it just as a hobby to do in her spare time, much like me who drinks root beer and writes about it in his spare time. I’m sure the ‘J’ in JD is for Jen but I’m not sure where the ‘D’ comes from. It doesn’t appear, from my Paypal receipt, to be her last name and her Facebook page is a little light on the details. If you’re not from the Dallas, WI area, getting this is rather problematic. As it is just a hobby of hers, it’s sold mainly at farmers markets and some craft breweries. None of which are overly accommodating for mail orders. However, if you are a patient fellow, you just might be able to get some mailed out from J herself. It has a simple little label that reminds me of Spring Lake Root Beer, and is most likely just printed out on her computer at home.

The Body is dark and spicy with some caramel and vanilla undertones. Licorice and features prominently. The Bite is spicy but not carbonated enough for my liking. The Head is very short yet foamy. It’s just there isn’t enough carbonation to build a proper Head. It is gone too quickly. The Aftertaste is licorice and some wintergreen that turns a little bitter.

This is alright, but not quite good enough for me to want again. I’m just not a fan of that dark licorice flavor, though the light vanilla and caramel help quite a bit, the final deciding factor was the dismal Head. I suspect I may have gotten a bad batch, but I’ve got to review it as I see it, not as how I think it was mean to be. See how it rates against other root beers.

2.5/5 Root Beer Kegs

Sep 132017

Pint of Rockets Root BeerDay 2 (er 3 kind of) of my road trip saw us leaving Butte with a need for lunch in the future. Billings was the next logical stop and was a necessary one. As you may recall, back in May I was in Billings, and though I got one root beer, my dinner plans that day fell short, and I missed another draft brew by an hour. Rockets Gourmet Wraps and Sodas, on the same block as Montana Brewing Company, closes at 4 everyday. I’d sworn then that if I ever returned to Billings, I’d not miss it. And there I was, driving straight into Billings. The place is really classy with large selection of gourmet wraps. They also make six flavors of soda including their root beer and a huckleberry cream. They kept trying to give me a small sample but I demanded they wait until I was good and ready to review, and get mine and my families food ordered.

The Body has a strong wintergreen and vanilla flavor which completely dominates the drinking experience. It’s not a bad flavor though. The Bite is strong as well from all of that wintergreen, kind of sharp on the tongue. The Head is short, but present, though it doesn’t last long. The Aftertaste is bitter from all of the wintergreen.

So, lots of wintergreen and vanilla. Kind of like that Wooley Bugger Root Beer which is brewed also in the same town. Not really my thing but not bad. It goes with those tasty wraps they have. I got a Bayou wrap which was delicious and spicy. I also had to try their huckleberry cream soda and that was great too. So this place is worth a visit if you’re in town, or driving through it.

Three kegs

My Cajun wrap. Basically red beans and rice in a wrap. Spicy and yummy!

My Bayou wrap. Basically red beans and rice in a wrap. Spicy and yummy!

Sep 062017

Tamarack Brewing Company Training Wheels Root Beer PintLast week all of my preparations were complete for the big move, so my family and I hit the road on our epic road trip to Minnesota. In addition to the many road side attractions like Little Bighorn Battlefield and Mount Rushmore, I was determined to find some new brews. The first stop was Radio Brewing Company in Idaho, who, according to their online menu, had a house root beer and huckleberry soda. But it was all lies when we showed up. They stopped making their own root beer awhile ago. That’s what I get for not calling. So I determined to find another root beer, knowing that I’d passed at least one in Spokane. I found the Tamarack Brewing Company in Missoula which was just about when we’d need to eat dinner. They call their root beer Training Wheels because I assume they think it’s working up to something harder, rather than the best reason to visit the place. Across the street from the brewery is the carousel, which my children demanded to go on. I managed to get the brass ring and get a free ride! Then it was off to dinner and my work, root beer!

The Body is rich and creamy with standard flavor and some nice vanilla. There’s a slight fruity tinge that detracts but not much. The Bite is very mild and smooth, I wish it had more spice. The Head is very short but it is there and it doesn’t fizz away instantly. The Aftertaste is a creamy vanilla.

This stuff is pretty good, but just not quite there in several categories. It’s fine enough with their delicious food, and with outdoor seating, a fun place to kick back for a cold one after the carousel on a summer’s evening. The first day of my trip turned out well.

Three and a half kegs

My dinner of some delicious barbecue pulled pork and brisket sandwich with  coleslaw on it. Yum!

My dinner of some delicious barbecue pulled pork and brisket sandwich with coleslaw on it. Yum!

A look back to the kegs they tap into for the bar.

A look back to the kegs they tap into for the bar.