Bottle and Label: Brown bottle with a nicely designed label that features a mug of root beer brimming with foam and about to over flow.
Ingredients: Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, natural and artificial flavor, sodium benzoate (a preservative), citric acid, quillaia extract, gum acacia, yucca extract.
Smell: Excellent rooty smell. Very traditional with a hint of wintergreen.
Carbonation: Heavy carbonation that is noticeable from the tip of the tongue all the way to the back of the mouth. The bite is heavy enough that it can be difficult to try and discern the actual flavor of the beverage.
Color: A pleasing dark brown color that lets in just enough light so that it does not appear black.
Head: Medium head that dissipates pretty quickly when poured.
Flavor: I already stated in the carbonation section that the amount of “bite” in this brew is on the heavy side. It makes it extremely difficult to tell what the actual flavor of this brew is like. The best way to describe the flavor of this brew is that it is like a any other mainstream root beer. There is nothing that really sets it apart in terms of flavor and nothing that is really bad about the flavor. It is simply average.
Conclusion: Stewart’s Root Beer is one of those brews that looks like it belongs on the shelf right next to best. The bottle and label are appealing and the nice smell and head give it the right formula for success. In fact, their website states the following about this root beer, “The flavor has been hand-crafted from a secret blend of over 20 extract varieties of roots, herbs and berries — resulting in the creamiest, best tasting root beer ever made! This is the fastest growing micro soda Root Beer in the USA.” Unfortunately, the flavor is merely average. A good comparison would be a mainstream brand like A&W (which could be why it sells so well; it doesn’t stray far from the tried and true flavor formula of the mainstream brews). That is to say, it is not a bad root beer and would undoubtedly be a fine choice for most people. However, if you like something a little more complex or something that does not overwhelm the flavor with carbonation than you will have to look elsewhere.
RBR’s Grade- C