Jan 052022
Hollis John's Root Beer Bottle

Another root beer from that wonderful package sent by The Soda Pop Bros. Hollis John’s is a Canadian brew from Prince Edward Island. This was formerly JJ Stewart’s Root Beer but has now become Hollis John’s. I’d like to think that JJ Stewart lost this root beer to Mr. John after losing a high stakes bet on a Yacht Race. Or, a fishing boat race. No yachts. Go dig up an old Photo of that JJ Stuart. He’s totally the sort that would wager his root beer on a yacht race. Anyways. I’d been wanting to try it for awhile so I’m once again indebted to those fine Bros of the Soda Pop variety.

The Body is mild with licorice and wintergreen and a bit of vanilla in an otherwise generic and unnoteworthy flavor. The Bite is prickly from carbonation yet light on spice, it isn’t smooth but not overly harsh. The Head is medium height and staying power, so not really bad but not great. The Aftertaste is light wintergreen with maybe a hint of sarsaparilla.

This is fine. I mean, it doesn’t really have anything bad about it but nothing great either. It’s good in a pinch but I doubt it’s anyone’s favorite. Still, making a passable brew is not to be disparaged yet, I think I see why ol’ JJ was willing to risk it. Since he wasn’t losing anything that replaceable. See how it rates against other root beers.

Three kegs

Dec 012021

Potosi Root Beer BottleSeal of ApprovalI’ve been searching for this for a long time. I’ve known about it for years but could never actually get a hold of it. Then finally, when I went to the Museum of root beer grand opening, they had it on tap, but I wanted to drink lots of other root beer there as well, so I didn’t drink it. But they also were selling bottles which solved everything. I bought two. Potosi is made in Potosi, WI, where the National Brewery Museum is, evidently. I’ve never been there but I assume they give this to non-beer drinkers who go visit the museum. It says on the bottle that all profits go to charity. I assume that means the Brewery Museum, but maybe there are also other charities. It doesn’t say. I don’t really care. I just want good root beer.

The Body is full flavored with honey, sarsaparilla accented by a bit of vanilla. It’s super sweet and sticky as well. I like it. The Bite is spicy with a decently smooth finish. The Head is supremely tall and foamy so pour carefully. The Aftertaste is honey and aged sarsaparilla. I wish there were a bit more vanilla to it, but it’s still really good.

This is quite nice. I like it. Good honey, smooth finish. Shame there isn’t more creamy vanilla but I could drink this, a lot. Now I feel I should visit that brewery museum, or at least just drink this on tap next time I see it. See how it rates against other root beer.

4 kegs

Oct 062021

Soda Pop Bros Maple Root Beer BottleRoot beer number 2 from The Soda Pop Bros! It’s a limited edition Maple Root Beer! Because what could be more Canadian than putting maple syrup in your root beer? Apologizing for your coworkers missing a meeting because of opening day of moose season (true story by the way)? Eating poutine at a hockey game while sipping a cup of Tim Horton’s? Being all dressed as a Mounty while eating All Dressed chips and a Coffee Crisp? Maybe but maybe not, because those Canucks love their root beer like their neighbors south of the border, and maple syrup is the glue that holds their country together. The only thing I really don’t get is the beaver. Like what’s a beaver got to do with maple syrup? Maybe they cut down maple trees for their dams? I don’t know, but it’s a cute beaver that somehow feels very Canadian. Anyways, root beer.

The Body has a rich maple syrup flavor on initial contact which is followed by vanilla and aged sarsaparilla. The flavors mix well. The Bite is mild and smooth with a good mouthfeel from the maple syrup. The Head is top notch. The Aftertaste is sarsaparilla and maple. The more you drink the more the maple diminishes and the sarsaparilla grows to almost taste fruity, sadly.

Dang, I wish that Aftertaste weren’t so strong of sarsaparilla. My first drink of this and I was like “Ah, now this is the stuff!” But as I drank more I was all “Is this the stuff?” and unfortunately by the end, I was like, “This is not quite the stuff”. But it’s still better than average, and I prefer it to their normal root beer. The fact they used real maple syrup rather than maple flavor really improves the mouthfeel. It’s definitely worth a try if you can find it. See how it rates against other root beers.

Three and a half kegs