Welcome!

November 14, 2011
Filed under: random junk — anthony @ 12:56 pm

Hello and welcome to the oldest, largest and frankly the best root beer reviewing site in the world! over 625 brands reviewed so far! i also throw in birch beer and sarsaparilla reviews occasionally while i am at it since to me, they are the same genre. once in a while i even detour into other branches of the root beer tree, such as spruce beer, dandelion & burdock and the like. a new review publishes every week on Monday with the random post or review of root beer related stuff every once in a while. feel free to submit your own ratings, check out the rankings from me and other visitors, see what sodas are available near you and more. make a float, tap a keg or mix some extract up and enjoy!

anthony (me) started reviewing root beer related drinks in '96 but has always loved the delicious joy of root beer and birch beer and just kept it going ever since. if you have any suggestions of features you'd like to see or sodas you want reviewed, let me know!

 
 

O-Zell Root Beer Float

June 26, 2017
Filed under: root beers — anthony @ 5:00 am
Type: Root Beer Comes In: 12oz glass bottle
Available: CA

Obtained in: trade with Sagi
Head: Small Sweetener: cane sugar
Calories: 140 Sodium: 0mg
Carbs: 35g Sugar: 35g
Caffeine: No
Website: http://www.o-zell.com

yet another one gotten for me by the ever-questing Sagi! what's curious about this one is that O-Zell also has a root beer, but it is just relabeled Waialua, as figured out by the all knowing Doctor. so that is weird on multiple fronts actually. one, that they made one unique recipe soda and one non-unique one. and two, that this California / Illinoi company somehow decided to use a root beer from Hawaii as the vanity labelled one. well, here is to hoping this one is good at least. root beer float sodas have such a high chance of abysmal failure, i mean, a carbonated dairy beverage? sometimes it works, sometimes it does not. i very much like their graphic feel here, very old time cartoon style. it works well for the idea here and i applaud them for that. for those unaware, the O-Zell company originally began in 1912 and was invested in significantly by one Mr. Elias Disney. his son Walt worked in the factory for a time before the venture failed. this was to be the understandable high point of this boy's working life. the cartoon depiction on the bottle, i am assuming, is of Elias himself holding a root beer float aloft. the people behind this incarnation, which i don't think has any recipe in common with the original, revived it to raise funds for the restoration of the Walt Disney birthplace.
i have found that i either quite like or quite dislike root beer float sodas. they often taste too creamy and it is wrong, or else the flavor is too artificial and strange in its attempt to recreate the beverage. this one sort of falls into that second camp, it tastes very weird. but not at all like a root beer float. it is kind of like when you are cleaning with some eco-friendly spray cleaner and accidentally get a little on your glass of root beer you left on the counter nearby without thinking enough about loose spray particles. you of course go ahead and drink it and then realize it tastes weird. it is sort of fruity, sort of chemically, but not so tasty. or creamy or 'floaty' in any way at all. i don't know how they failed so miserably at making this a root beer float or even a good drink. oh well, a shame it is not better to make them more money.
Ingredients:carbonated water, hawaiian cane sugar blend, caramel color, natural flavor, phosphoric acid


Anthony's Rating: 37
User's Rating: 0
# of ratings:0

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Crown Brewing Root Beer

June 19, 2017
Filed under: root beers — anthony @ 5:00 am
Type: Root Beer Comes In: 12oz glass bottle
Available: IN

Obtained in: trade with Tony
Head: Medium Sweetener: sugar
Caffeine: No
Website: crownbrewing.com

Tony not only has an excellent name, he also finds some excellent, rare brews. that by itself is fantastic but that he then trades extras with me is the icing on and in the cake! i mean, a cake without any icing is fine but not quite as awesome, i think we all agree on that.
from what i can tell Crown Brewing has been around since 2008 although I have no clue how long they have been making their root beer. their website does not even mention it as existing, which is rather curious i think. also curious is that the bottle does not have nutritional info on it either, which i think is illegal but i may be wrong. they seem like a fun place in any case from what i can gather from their online presence. i suppose all breweries and businesses in general want to seem appealing so people will come there though. i do like their pop art style label design pretty well. it bucks the trend of brown and often orange being the predominant colors for root beer bottles yet still has 'ROOT BEER' very prominent so i won't miss it if i was scanning a cooler or something.
ah, so how is it? very tasty actually. it has a strong caramel flavor on top of a smooth feel. the carbonation is low but i kind of like that myself. they have a recipe for a root beer float on the label, but i feel like that would be just too creamy. this is a good soda, definitely something i'd like to kick back with at their location or maybe consume with a meal sometime. it isn't a soda i'd tell people about as extraordinary or crazy good or unique, but it does what it does well.
Ingredients:water, sugar, sodium benzoate, sparking foam (yucca plant derivative), citric acid, artificial flavorings


Anthony's Rating: 86
User's Rating: 0
# of ratings:0

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Indian Wells Special Reserve Root Beer

June 12, 2017
Filed under: root beers — anthony @ 5:00 am
Type: Root Beer Comes In: 22oz glass bottle
Available: CA

Obtained in: trade with Sagi
Head: Large Sweetener: cane sugar
Calories: 180 Sodium: 25mg
Carbs: 45g Sugar: 45g
Caffeine: No
Website: http://www.mojavered.com

the first time i went to the closest Rocket Fizz location was mainly to try to find this soda. it is/was limited i had heard and Rocket Fizz seemed to be the place to get it. of course when i got there they had no idea what i was talking about. (they also had no idea who i was, which may be the bigger travesty.) of course though as soon as I mentioned it to the amazing and wonderful Sagi, he offered to hook me up, and boy did he, yet again!
this is definitely one of, if not THE, fanciest root beers i have ever had. the melted wax poured over the top is a super rad touch, but the Indian Wells logo embossed into the wax on the top of the cap takes it up yet another notch. the back of the bottle explains how they aged the soda in Quercus Pyrenaica Chesnut(sic) barrels from the Iberian Peninsula to give the root beer a vanilla trace, along with extolling the other ingredients in it. i don't know anything about barrels or aging root beer, but if it results in yummy things, i am all for it. i just hope all of the expectations raised by the glorious package carries through to the contents inside.
i have to say, one of my biggest pet peeves in the root beer world is when an otherwise seemingly tasty soda's flavor is masked by the presence of a load of bubbles and harsh carbonation. i really have no clue what it is that makes some drinks be altered by their bubbles where others are enhanced. this one, somewhat sadly, falls into that first camp. i think it is pretty good although nothing too hugely crazy unique or anything, but it is covered a lot by the rough bubbles. in any case, it does have a nice vanilla taste and is pretty rich. i have tried to let it sit a bit so the carbonation wears off and then i can taste the true flavor better. so i am sort of let down here. yes, it is good, no it is no great/amazing/extraordinary
Ingredients:Indian Wells artesian spring water, cane sugar, natural flavor, real vanilla, citric acid


Anthony's Rating: 86
User's Rating: 0
# of ratings:0

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Thomas Kemper Root Beer Cane Sugar Soda

June 5, 2017
Filed under: root beers — anthony @ 5:00 am
Type: Root Beer Comes In: 12oz glass bottle
Available: AK, AZ, CA, ID, IL, MT, NE, NV, NC, OH, OK, OR, TX, WA, online

Obtained in: Rocket Fizz
Head: Large Sweetener: cane sugar, honey, maltodextrin
Calories: 160 Sodium: 45mg
Carbs: 41g Sugar: 40g
Caffeine: No
Website: http://tksoda.com

one of the first sodas I ever reviewed, on the fateful bus trip across the country way back in '96 when i noticed just how many root beers were out there which in turned spurred me to create this site, was the original version of this drink. it had corn syrup along with the promoted northwest honey. times change and people demand cane sugar instead of corn syrup, so good ole Thomas, or perhaps his descendants at this point, obliged with this new version. i find it rather funny that they proclaim multiple times on the bottle how it has cane sugar. but i suppose when you took the time and expense to create a new recipe because of public demand, you want people to be aware of it. honestly i have not had any of their root beers in some time now, no not 21 years since that first bottle of course, but a good decade or so I'd imagine. thus i am not quite sure how it used to taste. i do recall it being my stanard of how a honey sweetened root beer should be.
ooo, this is quite honey tasting! I like that. I do love honey after all. but it is not over done so if you do not love honey as i do, i don't think you'll be grossed out by this. beyond that it is very creamy, very smooth, i often don't even feel the carbonation too much yet it has a super solid, large foamy head. the flavor is enhanced by the honey but nothing too crazy is happening here otherwise. it is a very good cornerstone of the gourmet root beer world and I am glad they have survived this long. the re-formulation is definitely a success and that is very much a relief.
Ingredients:carbonated water, cane sugar, maltodextrin, honey, caramel color, natural flavor, phosphoric acid, salt, and vanilla extract


Anthony's Rating: 91
User's Rating: 0
# of ratings:0

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