Bottle and Label: Bottle is brown with a unique label. Unfortunately, the labels that the bottler uses have a poor adhesive quality and most bottles of this brew that I have seen have either wrinkled labels or labels that are beginning to come off. However, the label does give the impression that this really is a home brew that someone cooked up in their kitchen and decided to share with the world.
Ingredients: Carbonated water, high fructose corn sweetner, caramel color, natural and artificial flavoring, cinnamon, ginger, vanilla extract, phosphoric acid, potassium sorbate and sodium benzoate added as preservatives
Smell: Mild smell with a hint of cinnamon when smelled from the bottle. After being poured, it has a very strong and almost bitter smell
Carbonation: This brew has a medium level of carbonation with a nicely balanced bite
Color: When poured color is a dark brown, almost coffee looking
Head: Excellent, very fizzy head when poured in a frosted mug
Flavor: This brew is one that stands apart from others in terms of complex flavor. When it first hits your tongue, you think you are having a fairly traditional root beer beverage. However, if you savor it for a moment, you will notice the hints of cinnamon and ginger mentioned in the ingredient list. It is a bit surprising if you are expecting a straightforward root beer, but the brew manages to maintain a balance of unique flavor while still maintaining that distinct qualitiy that make root beer taste like root beer.
Conclusion: This brew had two strikes against it before it even reached my mouth. The first was the label that was about to fall off the bottle. This brew sat in the back of my fridge for some time because I wasn’t sure if I wanted to spend the time reviewing a product that did not have enough care put into it to get the label right. The second strike was the bitter smell after the brew was poured in my mug. Fortunately for Chef Gale Gand, her root beer redeemed itself where it counted. This is a brew to pick up if you are wanting a break from your everyday brews and need something to tickle your palette a bit. This is a brew best enjoyed by itself. Adding it to ice cream would ruin the subtleties of flavor to be enjoyed while drinking it. This brew earns the coveted “Editor’s Choice” award for standing out from the pack with a unique flavor that still maintains everything we love about a good root beer.
RBR’s Grade- A (Editor’s Choice)