Sep 042013

Oogave Agave Root Beer Bottle Sometime in the past three years since I originally reviewed Oogave, they broke up with Esteban. I’m not sure what happened, but it must not have been pretty. Not only is Oogave’s root beer no longer named after him, but Esteban’s Seal of Approval is also gone. It may have had something to do with reformulating the recipe, for somehow, though the ingredients listed on the bottle are still the same, they managed to drop 2 calories from their brew so they could list it as a 100 calorie beverage. To be fair, the “natural flavors” from Esteban’s Root Beer could have been completely different from the “natural flavors” in the Agave Root Beer. Or maybe they just dropped half a gram of agave nectar to reduce it from 25.4 g to 24.9 g, as both would read the 25 g which is listed on the labels. Perhaps there was a great argument over the matter with Esteban storming out over the final decision, vowing they’d never get his approval again. Gone with Esteban is a sensible label. While it’s cool to have the bottle painted, what little yellow and white paint there is, when on a clear bottle, hardly shows up at all in the picture. Grrr!

The Body is very mild with a prominent agave nectar flavor and some herbal notes. There’s something bitter and out of place as well. It isn’t very sweet and it isn’t very good. The Bite has a strange sort of burn to it. The Head is a little shorter and fizzes down a little quicker than I prefer but isn’t bad. The Aftertaste is sort of sour and bitter with an herbal agave flavor. I’m not going to mince words, this is not good.

Ugh, this is really bad. I can see now why Esteban wanted no part of it. Whereas before it was a good soda bad root beer type of drink, now it’s just bad all around; though it does taste more like a root beer should. I seriously doubt that they just removed a measly 0.5 grams of agave nectar to change it this much. Either way, I recommend you steer clear of this one. See how it rates against other root beers.

2 out of 5 root beer kegs

Jul 172013

Oogave Esteban's Root Beer BottleI’m not sure who Esteban is, or why Oogave decided to make it his root beer. He even stamped it with Esteban’s Seal of Approval, which would be like me making “Eric’s Gourmet Root Beer” and then stamping it with my Seal of Approval, that is to say redundant. I’d hope that the mere fact that Esteban put his name on the bottle implied he already approved, though they could have just liked Esteban and named the brew after him before he ever tried it. Who knows. The bottle says that they’re the original agave soda, which I can’t argue with since they’re the first wholely-sweetened-by-agave nectar soda I’ve ever seen. For those that don’t know, agave is a succulent plant that grows in the Southwest US and into Central America, the sap of which is used to make tequila. So they clearly figured that a virgin tequila soda was in order. It’s also certified organic, for those of you who care about such things.

The Body is sweet, crisp, and refreshing but hardly tastes like root beer. There is a fruity hint to it which most likely comes from the agave nectar used for sweetener. The Bite is prickly on the tongue but otherwise weak. The Head is decent but fizzes away quickly. It doesn’t go flat though. The Aftertaste is the same sweet, fruity, agave flavor that intensifies as you drink it. The more you drink the less it tastes like root beer and the more it tastes like agave nectar.

Good soda, bad root beer. I like it, but I doubt I’d recognize it as a root beer unless I were told. As for Esteban, I don’t really know what his Seal of Approval is based on, but most definitely NOT, the quality of a root beer. See how it rates against other root beers.

2 out of 5 root beer kegs