In the tiny town of Arcadia, OK, on Route 66, there exists a place called Pops. There, on the iconic route, they’ve got it all; a restaurant, a landmark, a soda ranch, and a website that actually works. Their soda ranch boasts over 600 flavors, a good 1/6 of that coming from various root beers, birch beers, sarsaparillas, and associated diets. Very impressive. Not wanting to stop there, they decided to get their own flavor of root beer and contracted with the Huebert Brewing Company to make it for them. They decided to buck the whole Route 66 trend and instead named their root beer after some round barn. The picture is on the bottle and everything. In a town of less than 300 people, I can accept that a big ol’ round barn may just be defining feature of the place. The Wikipedia article on Arcadia confirms this as it has exactly one photo in it which is nearly identical to the label picture, same angle and everything. Curiously, the article doesn’t mention anything about said round barn, so maybe it’s just for looks or something.
The Body is rather bland. It’s really REALLY sweet and syrupy but only a medium flavor profile. It’s a tad creamy with the slightest shadow of wintergreen, but you really have to look hard. There’s also a fruity hint. There is the slightest spice Bite but not much in the carbonation department. That all fizzes up to build a very nice Head that’s tall and lingers awhile, though it’s not a high froth Head. The Aftertaste is sticky corn syrup that turns bitter.
So about a week before I tried this I got an email from someone claiming my review of Henry Weinhard’s was wrong because it uses HFCS and that tastes inferior to sugar and as the primary ingredient it would have the most pronounced flavor. I responded that the sugar doesn’t make the brew and other ingredients can have much stronger flavors. This brew, however, fits exactly what he was getting at. It has a very high 47g of HFCS and that is by far the dominant flavor. Really this tastes like moderately flavored corn syrup drink, like if you watered down some Aunt Jemima. I’m not a big fan. See how it rates against other root beers.