Jul 012015

Root 66 Root Beer BottleThe first Route 66 themed root beer I ever encountered. It was one of the three from that Seattle Mariners game when I was in high school and one of the first probably 20 root beers I ever had. Interestingly, this was made in Charlottesville, Virginia, which is most decidedly not on Route 66. They say that they created it as a tribute to that road, but still, Virginia just seems out of place to have such a thing. That’d be like me making a Jamestown Root Beer up here in Washington as a tribute to the original American colony. Sure I could do it, but it wouldn’t make a lot of sense. Anyway I think they really just made it because the pun was too irresistible. Some people just love their puns, myself included, and will go to great lengths to create the appropriate context to use one that they find especially clever, despite the fact that the vast majority of the population does not share the sentiment. We pun-ishers are such an under appreciated lot. So someone at Roadside Beverage Company (the company that makes this) loved the Root 66 root beer so much that even though he was in Virginia, he figured it was his only shot to send his pun to the world. I thank him for his determination.

This has a complex Body with too much Bite. Head is ok. The Aftertaste could use vanilla.

A lot of the complexity came from the chicory root, sweet birch, and sarsaparilla root they added in addition to the other natural and artificial flavors. It had too strong an anise flavor though, which was not appreciated. This was the only root beer with a stong anise flavor in it that I could at all stand at the time of reviewing, there have been some others since then though this was the first. It’s not a bad brew, but not anything outstanding. See how it rates against other root beers.

Three kegs

Aug 142013

Route 66 Root Beer Bottle The second of the Route 66 themed root beers I’ve tried. Not to be confused with Root 66 Root Beer, which I did for awhile and thus ignored this one when I saw it at the store. I guess the pun is a little too irresistible. Luckily the store was close to home so when I realized the error I was able to quickly correct it. I’m not entirely sure what their name should be since they haven’t followed the IAGRB Standards of naming convention. Is it Route 66 Beer (as their website alludes), Route Beer 66 Root Beer (as the bottle says), Route 66 Route Beer (as their website says), Route 66 Root Beer (as other sites say)? Clearly they’re going for the pun and the route and whatnot but I haven’t a clue. I’ve settled on Route 66 Root Beer as that’s a clear differentiator from the other two I’ve tried, plus it seems in harmony with the rest of their soda line and closest to my the IAGRB standards. They sport a nice retro bottle that has even won some awards by some glass bottle award giving organization.

The Body is nice. It’s got most of the standard flavors in the right proportion but they vanish quickly. There is a nice creamy hint to the body. The Bite is very nice. It bites the tongue with both carbonation and some spices but is not harsh by any means. The Head is a decent height, but fizzes away too quickly. The Aftertaste is a sweet creamy vanilla.

All in all this is a solid brew but just not quite enough, though, it is better than its homonymic brother (Root 66 Root Beer). See how it rates against other root beers.

Three and a half kegs

Jun 062012

Not to be confused with Wild Bill’s Rocky Mountain Root Beer. The same way Vinepark River City Root Beer is not to be confused with River City Root Beer, or Route 66 with Root 66 with Old Town Root Beer 66. Ok, people, what’s up with this. I mean, can’t you think of unique identifiers for your brews? Have you ever thought of doing a Google search on your root beer name before you start your company? I mean, whenever I write a technical paper, the first thing I do is search the title in quotes to make sure no one else has the same title. I did the same thing with my name, E. Sortomme, there aren’t any other technical authors that use E. Sortomme so if you read something from him, it’s from me. See, nice and simple like. Not saying that Northwoods Soda and Syrup Company is the primary offender (they could have had the name first for all I know), but finding them was just the straw that broke the camel’s back if you will. They do have a much classier label than the bullet riddled other Wild Bill’s, so I suppose this is after Wild Bill went into retirement and became all high society or something. A last note on these guys, they proudly declare in the ingredients that this soda is sweetened with “Michigan Beet Sugar.” And why not? What’s wrong with beet sugar anyways? I think pure cane sugar is really overrated. Plus I once spent a summer weeding a sugar beet field for $5 an acre. So beet sugar will always hold a special place in my heart. Especially after the sugar beet factory co-op failed miserably and went bankrupt, wiping out the financial resources of many farmers in the region … Anyways, the root beer.

A sweet carmely flavor with some creamy vanilla and hints of licorice make up the full Body of this brew. The Bite is good as well from some spices and carbonation. The Head is ok. It foams up to a decent height but then quickly fizzes down. The Aftertaste is caramel with some licorice accents and vanilla.

So, not bad at all. It’s definitely a solid brew, yet it doesn’t really do anything for me. I don’t know why, but when I drink it I just don’t feel moved the way I should by root beer. Oh well. See how it rates against other root beers.