Bottle and Label: Red Ribbon Root Beer has a clear bottle and simple, nondescript label.
Ingredients: Filtered carbonated water, sugar, natural and artificial flavor, citric acid, caramel color.
Smell: Not very strong smelling from the bottle. The only smell I can really distinguish is licorice. After being poured, the licorice smell is very strong.
Carbonation: Very lightly carbonated and it makes this brew seem flat. The only place it really bites is on top-back of the mouth whereas in most brews the carbonation is at least evident on the tip of the tongue too.
Color: Dark brown, almost black when viewed at certain angles.
Head: Short, not very foamy, head that dissipates quickly.
Flavor: Red Ribbon Root Beer has a flavor that matches the carbonation. Flat. There are some hints of caramel/vanilla that come through, but other than that, nothing. The flavor seems watered down and weak. There are some traditional root beer elements to the flavor, but they are so weak that it can’t really be enjoyed. On the plus side, the lack of flavor also comes with a lack of bitterness and a good mouth feel. If you only judge a good brew on the two latter points, you might like this one.
Conclusion: Red Ribbon Root Beer is a brew that is easy for me to give a low mark. The head was not great, the carbonation was flat, the flavor was lacking, and even the smell was a bit off. While some might like the slight caramel flavor present in this brew, the lack of rootieness will be enough to keep most people away. With most brews I can see how some people could like them even if I don’t. However, this is one brew that I would recommend passing on if you come across it.
RBR’s Grade- D-