Nov 282012

I was visiting The Root Beer Store and found this. It was a pleasant surprise since I thought I had tried everything they stocked and then some. It is kind of marketed as a lower calorie root beer with the bottle boasting “Only 90 Calories Per Serving.” Fortunately (or unfortunately depending on your point of view) that is only because they give you 6.3 ounces instead of the normal 12. So basically you get half of the calories by drinking half of the root beer. I guess if people fall for it then all the more power to them. The label has got a lot of slogans like “It’s a Bear of A Drink”, “Refreshing”, “Quality and Tradition Since 1920” and so forth. Each one is in a different font for some reason. It’s almost as busy as Spring Grove Root Beer label but not quite as bad. The bottle itself is really heavy for its size and looks to be 1/4 inch thick glass. It’s almost as if they wanted it to be able to survive a black bear attack or something.

The Body is kind of weak and slightly creamy. It tastes pretty generic. The Bite is pretty weak as well, there’s a little bit but it needs more. The Head is good. It is medium height with a long half-life, very frothy. The Aftertaste is a light vanilla flavor that lasts the right amount of time.

So, it’s about as generic as it gets despite all of the taglines to suggest otherwise. With the exception of the Head, there is nothing notable about it. It isn’t bad though so if I was looking for some bear-proof root beer for a picnic, I might just snag a few of these. See how it rates against other root beers.

Feb 082012

This root beer sure has a busy label. I mean, there is just a lot happening there. You’ve got trees, both living and dead, some deer silhouette, mountains, a lake I think, plus all sorts of text. The actual name of the company which was done in two different fonts for some reason. The flavor of their soda, root beer in this case, which is done in yet another font. And some other stuff like “Caffeine Free,” “Made with Pure Cane Sugar” (and corn syrup as well per the ingredients), “Mange Tusen Takk,” (whatever that means (roughly: Many thousand thanks. I do know how to use Google after all)) “Spring Grove, MN,” “Classic Fountain Flavor” and the list goes on and on. About the only thing that they didn’t put on there was “The Original” which is to their credit. Mange Tusen Takk is actually pretty cool though since it’s all Norse and viking and my ancestors and whatnot. I gather that the nature scene is none other than Spring Grove itself, but I think they could have done with a little less. Though you don’t judge a book by its cover nor a root beer by its bottle so all of my ranting on that is really completely irrelevant but I just felt like saying it anyways.

It has a nice fully Body with a complex and spicy flavor. There is a hair too much licorice. It is syrupy and creamy. There is a decent spice Bite but it is a little lacking on the carbonation. It goes down nice and smooth. The Head is amazing. The first bottle was unbelievably tall and frothy and lasted nearly forever. The second bottle’s head wasn’t as tall but was still wonderful. The Aftertaste is sticky, sweet, and spicy with hint of licorice.

It was interesting because the two bottles I had actually were two different sizes and the first had the most epic of Heads and more licorice flavor than the second. They still were pretty similar but I do believe I was tasting two different batches. Of those the second bottle was the better so let’s hope that one is the normal and the first bottle I got was the fluke. Either way, it’s still better than average but I think I would still pass it up if I were looking for a sipping brew. See how it rates against other root beers.