Aug 282013

Saranac Root Beer BottleSeal of Approval This is made by Matt Brewing Company which just happens to be the second oldest family brewing company in the United States. The family, who suffer the affliction of having a first name for their last name, have been making beer there since 1853. Though in 1888 they changed their name or something and so that’s the date that features prominently on the bottle. They’re most popular line is Saranac Beer and their root beer is part of that line. Why it’s called Saranac is beyond me. The closest landmark called Saranac I could find is a lake about 140 miles away from the brewery. I like the label. It’s classy and not overly busy with a picture of their historic brewery to boot. The frosty mug on the neck of the bottle also sets high expectations and the brew doesn’t disappoint.

The Body is excellent. It is rich, sweet, and creamy with all the right flavors. It has a nice spicy Bite that isn’t too much. It is nice and smooth drinking. The Head is a good size and very frothy. The Aftertaste a sweet vanilla that doesn’t linger too long.

This is a very good brew, though I found it hard to nail down a specific feature that made it so. It’s just good, yummy, smooth, frothy, delicious. It doesn’t really have any standout feature other than they all work so perfectly together that I can’t help but love it, a lot. They really hit the nail on the head with this root beer. See how it rates against other root beers.

4.5 Kegs

Aug 032012

This past week, as the Olympics got underway and many a medal were awarded, the United States Open Beer Championship announced their own 2012 medal winners. This competition, the only one which includes professional breweries and award winning home brewers, included a root beer category for the first time ever. Four medals were awarded to the top root beers, a gold, a silver, and two bronze for due to a third place tie. The Gold went to Saranac Root Beer from F.X. Matt Brewing. The Silver was awarded to Mount Angel Root Beer from Mount Angel Brewing Company, and the two bronze medals were awarded to Point Premium Root Beer from Stevens Point Brewing and Steelhead Root Beer from Steelhead Brewing.

Seeing Saranac, Steelhead (identical flavor to Bulldog) and Point Premium win top honors is no surprise to me, as they are all Seal of Approval award winners as well. I haven’t tried Mount Angel Root Beer yet, but if it ranks with those other greats I’m sure it will be a real treat.