Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Sparky's root beer
Product details: 12 fl. oz. Manufactured by Knox Brewing, Pacific Grove, CA 93950. 831-649-0529. ? calories, ?g sugar. Glass bottle with pry off top. www.sparkysrootbeer.com
Ingredients: Carbonated filtered water, pure cane sugar, honey, natural and imitation flavorings, spices, sodium benzoate to preserve freshness, phosphoric acid and caramel color.
My thoughts: "Get to da choppa!" Upon opening, a strong minty sensation wafts up to my olfactory nerves, along with a sharp root beer scent. Wow, this has a lot of flavor going on. The initial wave is primarily the mint (wintergreen?) and root beer, and is extremely strong. This is followed by a similarly strong aftertaste, with mint continuing to dominate and some licorice undertones, while the root beer flavor is unfortunately minimized (or maybe just overpowered). All this mint is a bit overwhelming, but at least it doesn't feel like toothpaste, like some other mint root beer's are prone to do. Carbonation is slightly low, lending a moderately flat feel. On the flip side, this is a smooth root beer, feeling rich and creamy. This is the Arnold Schwarzenegger of root beers: extremely strong, in your face, none too subtle, and certainly a specific stylistic choice. Just as Arnold is a great choice for action and comedy, but poor for drama, sentiment, and nuance, so this root beer is similarly handicapped by its choices. I feel it is interesting and certainly different, which I enjoy, but at the same time I feel that it is a root beer that I want only on very specific occasion rather than an excellent all-around beverage.