Sep 032014
 

Slaughter County Brewing Company Root Beer Seal of ApprovalThis past Friday my parents were visiting for the Labor Day weekend. I decided that we should all take a ferry ride to Bremerton because it is an awesome ride. The question arose of what to do when we got there and well, I figured we’d go and get some root beer and have lunch. I decided to check if there was any new place that I’d missed and the lovely Google Maps showed Slaughter County Brewing Company in Port Orchard. I called them and asked if they made their own root beer and they said that they did. Therefore, that’s where we went for lunch. The whole place is very pirate themed, with skulls and skeletons and cannons and ships and whatnot. It’s got personality like few places ever do. They run on a skeleton crew, so you order at the bar and then they bring it up to you. We got six root beers, one for each of us, and then I got to reviewing.

The Body is darker with prominent anise and wintergreen flavors with spice. The anise isn’t too strong though and there’s also some caramel hints. The Bite is nice. There’s good amount of cloves and a nice carbonation level. The Head is nice and tall and lingers; not the longest, but it’s quite nice. The Aftertaste, surprisingly, is a creamy vanilla with a caramel finish.

Yum! I’m quite surprised by this one, at the first drink I thought it was just going to be an above average dark and spicy brew, but then that Aftertaste completely changes it up as though it were a creamy caramel type. I like it a lot. It’s got my favorite aspects of both genres of brew. Add in a nice Head to seal (pun intended) the deal and I’m proud to give this one a solid 4 kegs. The food there is pretty yummy too. I had the Musket Balls (meat balls) topped with The Seven Deadly Seasonings and absolutely loved them. I also got some wings and other family members had pizzas or sandwiches. We were all quite satisfied. We even got a growler of root beer to take back with us. A root beer this good and unique you don’t run into every day after all.

4 kegs

My lunch of Buffalo Wings and Musket Balls with the Seven Deadly Seasonings. So good. Plus some pizza and my Dad's Cuban Sandwich.

My lunch of Buffalo Wings and Musket Balls with the Seven Deadly Seasonings. So good. Plus some pizza and my Dad’s Cuban Sandwich.

The brewery in the back of the restaurant.

The brewery in the back of the restaurant.

Right inside the door. Also the dart boards.

Right inside the door. Also the dart boards.

The bar. Notice the pirate stuff everywhere.

The bar. Notice the pirate stuff everywhere.


Aug 272014
 

Red Ribbon Root Beer bottle There are many oddities about this brew. The first is that the bottle, while looking the standard shape and size, is actually about a millimeter or two taller than other long neck bottles I have. Why? I don’t know. The second that jumps out is the fact that while the bottle is ever so slightly taller, it contains 1 milliliter less root beer than a standard 12 ounce bottle. They all say 355 ml yet this one is only 354. If that isn’t nickel and dimeing you out of root beer I don’t know what is, especially since they oversized the bottle to compensate. Then there’s the “Pinpoint Carbonation” and the “Home Brewed Style” but the most glaring of all is the name itself. Red Ribbon is for second place. It’s like they didn’t even want to try to be the best, or have at least conceded that they’re not. You never see that on a product, “Second best soda” or “First Loser Brew” but yet, Red Ribbon is right here.

This has a Body that’s a little weak. There’s some wintergreen and maybe a tad bit of licorice in there as well. It’s pretty generic and also fruity. I never like that sour fruity. There’s not a lot of Bite but it really isn’t smooth either. The Head is tall but fizzes down quickly. The Aftertaste is fruity with faint traces of vanilla that don’t really mix well together.

It’s fair to say that I was whelmed by this brew. I’ve got to give their marketing team props for calling this even Red Ribbon. No doubt that was at the extreme end of the stretched ethics that is a corporate marketing department. First Loser Brew would probably be more appropriate. See how it rates against other root beers.

2 out of 5 root beer kegs


Aug 202014
 

A pint of Boundary Bay Root BeerLast week I was contacted by one of my Tesla Motors Club friends, Brianman. He had my hat which was left at a barbecue down in Loomis when we were reveling in the glory that was TMC Connect. So he had my Teslive hat, and he wanted to meet up and give it to me as well as go questing for brew because he had a Tesla and it is the ultimate root beer questing machine. I knew of the perfect place, Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro (or the BBBB as I have taken to calling it). I’d known of this place for over a year, and while I was able to use excuses of a train festival, a hockey game, a Tulip Festival, a Ferry Ride, and a state park to justify traveling to various local breweries with the family, I couldn’t come up with any reason to go all the way to Bellingham. I mean what’s up there? Death Cab for Cutie …’s … hometown? Yeah. But since there’s a supercharger close by a Tesla changes everything. And so on a gray Thursday evening we set off on our quest. After navigating copious amounts of traffic on the way, we arrived at our destination. We had to wait to be seated so we went to the beer garden to get pints of root beer. There was a live band and people milling about and hula hoops and it was a fun place, though the table was crooked as you can see in my picture of the root beer.

The Body is a dark and minty one. It’s a little spicy and doesn’t have too much licorice or wintergreen. The Bite is a little spicy and the fizz is good. The Head is short but foamy. It’s gone too quickly, unfortunately. The Aftertaste is a sort of minty licorice that doesn’t last too long.

So basically it’s a conservative dark root beer. Nothing bad, nothing exceptional. No chances taken, nothing lost. Drinkable, but only that. With the low head and dark flavor it’d make a good float, which is advertised on their menu. The food was wonderful. I had their Steamers, a nice plate of local, wild, Manila clams in a cream sauce with tomatoes and caramelized onions. I can’t claim that the root beer is a perfect accompaniment for this dish, but it is worth trying if you’re into clams.

Three kegs

My dinner of steamers. So delicious.

My dinner of steamers. So delicious.

The Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro

The Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro

The festive beer garden. I wonder if Death Cab ever played here ... Notice the hula hooping girls on the left.

The festive beer garden. I wonder if Death Cab ever played here … Notice the hula hooping girls on the left.