Monday, December 31, 2012

Route 66 root beer

Background information: (from the website) "In addition to our "World Famous" Route 66 Route Beer we also bottle and distribute Route 66 Orange, Lime, "old fashioned" Cream Soda, and our new Black Cherry from our headquarters in Lebanon, Missouri.

These gourmet soft drinks are bottled under the highest of standards using our unique special formulas, dating back to 1996 with the formulation of our Route 66 Root Beer.

The original highway, established November 11, 1926 lead travelers from Chicago through Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California, ending in Santa Monica, some 2,448 miles. US Route 66 was officially decommissioned from the United States Highway System on June 27, 1985, however, portions have been designated a National Scenic Byway of the name 'Historic Route 66' and has begun to return to maps in this form."

(from the bottle) "Get your kicks with Route 66 beer."

Product details: 12 fl. oz.  Bottled by authority of: Route 66 Sodas LLC, Lebanon, MO 65536-0766. 160 calories, 28g sugar.  Glass bottle with twist off top.

Ingredients: Carbonated Water, Real Cane Sugar, Caramel Color, Natural and Artificial Flavorings, Quillaia, Citric Acid, Soduim Benzoate (preservative).

My thoughts: The name Route 66 brings to my mind images of old muscle cars and hot rods, as well as classic times.  So I expect this root beer to have a strong, classic taste.  It partially lives up to that.  Like a well designed muscle car of a bygone era, there is a well defined attribute to the taste.  This is definitely root beer and doesn't seek to hide it.  I like it.  But as us muscle car aficionados know, they run strong but don't get great gas mileage, making for a fairly short ride (by today's fuel mileage standards).  This gas analogy applies twofold.  First, the initial flavor quickly disappears, running out of power as soon as you swallow.  This quickly fading flavor is not replaced by anything else, so the aftertaste feels weak.  The second gas analogy is even more on the nose, as this could use more carbonation and could stand another trip to the gas station.  Overall, this drink is much less Z/28 or Shelby Cobra, and more a standard, run-of-the-mill V6.  So while muscle cars have taken up their esteemed mantle in history, I doubt that Route 66 will find such a favorable place in the history books.

Rating: C
flavor: B
aftertaste: D+
sweetness: B
smoothness: B
carbonation: C-

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