The craft soda resurgence is in full swing, and that means more and more people and bucking the big companies and getting their liquid refreshment from the smaller, perhaps local, manufacturers. This decrease in market share has not gone unnoticed by the the major brands, and they’re trying to fight back. To that end, PepsiCo launched Stubborn Soda in 2015. It was originally an fountain only line, with a tap like dispenser to give consumers a “different perspective” on soft drinks. Or they could just go to an A&W and get their root beer from a tap, but I digress. Following the “success”? of the fountains, they began bottling and distributing in select markets. The marketing for this has nothing to do with PepsiCo, and for some reason it is a registered trademark of “The Concentrate Manufacturing Company of Ireland” Very strange. There was none near me, but a fan sent me some on trade. Then my parents found some a month later in Idaho and brought me some more. It tried one bottle from each batch, just to make sure I was getting a proper sampling.
The Body is soapy and sour with an unpleasant stevia flavor as well. Hidden behind all of that is the slightest bit of traditional root beer. The Bite is acidic and prickly, the worst kind. The Head is medium height but fizzes down too fast. The Aftertaste is chemical that fades into stevia.
Oh what is terribleness! What were they thinking? Were they so stubborn that they wouldn’t believe anyone who told them that their recipe was garbage? Why do this? This is without a doubt the worst brew I’ve had for some time. I’ll give you some advice, PepsiCo, free advice. If you want to get in with the craft root beer crowd, just sell Mug in glass bottles in more locations. It’s orders of magnitude better than this. Seriously, this is just yuck, but it does have a pretty bottle. See how it rates against other root beers.