Showing posts with label 6/10. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 6/10. Show all posts

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Virgil's Zero Root Beer review

It's a midweek evening and I don't want a full 45% of my sugar intake (I eat too much chocolate as it is and I'm cutting that down!). What to do? Enter this sugar-free Virgil's Zero root beer.

I quite liked the full sugar root beer from Virgil's and at the first gulp the flavours of this sugar-free brew were almost identical. But it was too good to be true with the distinctive diet after-taste disappointment. It was like all big brass build-up then a quiet, rapy gasp of nothing.

Personally I don't see the point. At this price for any root beer it's more like a treat every so often so taking away the best bit renders this pointless. Anyone on a diet who loves root beer should just drink a normal one every month and double up the jogging.

Bought orginally from American Fizz at £1.49 for a 355ml bottle.

I rate this caffiene and sugar-free root beer:


Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Maine Sarsaparilla root beer review

So after the UK market dries up of decent US made, sodium benzoate -packed root beer there's very little choice out there. Cyber Candy in Covent Garden, London only had Virgil's, this Maine Sarsaparilla root beer and a very weird and wonderful British root beer in stock.

The first swig and I'm almost shocked at the taste. This isn't the sarsaparilla taste I remember. If this is the future for UK root beer fans then I'm not impressed. I'm all for natural and organic ingredients but it tastes weird with even a hint of ginger. It's not a bad taste but I just wouldn't bother.

At this rate I'll be moaning about EU regulations, writing strong letters to my MEP and even voting UKIP (that'll never happen by the way).

I rate this low sodium benzoate root beer:

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Francis Hartridge's celebrated root beer

Hooray! Let's celebrate this celebrated, English made root beer that's a reasonable price! But is it any good?

Bought from a 24 hour super corner shop in Brighton called Easy Hours at £1.10 its competitively priced. According to the website Hartridge's is stocked in places I usually avoid i.e. Asda, JD Weatherspoons and Nisa as well as some others I've not heard of. Bravo to Asda for stocking this and their cheap but not so cheerful Carters root beer. With Tesco selling A & W and even Boylans in some stores plus Waitrose selling that Aussie licorice faux-root beer it just leaves Sainsburys to man up and bring us an alternative.

First impressions from the reading the label and alarm bells are ringing. There's 37g or 31% of your daily recommended amount of sugar but checking a bottle of Pepsi and there's the 2% less sugar so maybe not such a big thing.

The taste however is not root beer or sarsaparilla as stated on the label. This is more like Bundaberg's root beer with a licorice flavour. Hats off for a UK company to produce a root beer but I think they need to do some research and actually taste some real American sarsaparilla. I suspect it'll be down to ingredient availability outside the USA or they've only tasted Bundaberg's.

I rate this UK root beer:


Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Psyche root beer review

I don't do diet drinks but in the name of root beer research (and the cheap promotional price of 49p a can from American Soda) I realise there are some people out there who want to avoid sugar at times.

From the start I know I'm the wrong gender for this drink from the design and branding. Disappointed it had nothing to do with the PJ and Duncan song, Ready to Rhumble but instead Psyche is pronounced Sy-kee and is the goddess of purity who married Eros. (PJ and Duncan are now Ant and Dec btw)

If you love Diet Coke, wet t-shirts on guys and like trying to injury poor gardners just trying to mow public lawns and parks then this is the drink for you. The root flavour comes through ok and is passable even ok to good. Good to see that the company behind it, White Rock Beverages also produce a top 10 favourite of mine, Old Brooklyn Williamsburg Root Beer.

I can imagine after a hard session of yoga this would be the perfect drink if you were craving root beer however water's probably the best thing to be honest.

I rate this 6.5/10 (7 for value but 6 for taste)

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Hosmer Mountain White Birch Beer review

With my local source of root beer running low after Easter I had little choice so opted for this White Birch beer from Hosmer Mountain. Hosmer Mountain's Sarsaparilla was my highest rated drink since starting this blog so had high hopes. However, the Lurch Birch I had previously wasn't the different taste I was expecting.

To recap, Birch beer does taste similar to root beer using herb extracts usually birch bark. The best way I describe this is comparing this with chocolate. Root beer is like good, quality milk chocolate and birch beer having less flavour. This White Birch beer is like white chocolate i.e. sweeter than milk chocolate but also, for me sickly sweet after a few gulps. It also reminds me of cheap vanilla ice cream at times but never really satisfies me.

I rate this White Birch beer:


Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Dad's root beer review

This was the second generous freebie from American Soda, the online shop for your Yankee vitals. Dad's Root Beer is the cheapest of their root beer selection but does this low price mean low taste?

Well, yes and no in this case. It's certainly better in terms of taste than the UK budget root beer maker, Carter's which I reviewed earlier this year. There's a traditional taste of root beer but for me its like drinking full-fat Coke. After about three gulps my teeth had that 'dissolving' feeling and I was looking for the ice to water it down. Checking the ingredients and I can see that its full of High Fructose Corn Syrup, basically a cheap substitute for sugar with some questionable health concerns. At least it's caffeine-free.

For the less discerning root beer drinker it offers a cheaper, full of flavour experience. For the older, root beer connoisseur I'm prepared to spend a bit more on those independent brews with natural ingredients. Otherwise you'll probably want to stick to A&W or the previously reviewed Barq's.

Dad's root beer (can designed by the same people behind WD40) is available to buy in 355ml cans at 99p from American Soda.

I rate this:


Friday, 21 February 2014

Mawson's Original Sarsaparilla Cordial review

Since sarsaparilla is synonymous with root beer I couldn't resist trying out this cordial drink with the potential to satisfy my root beer cravings. Mawson's has an interesting history associated with this drink according to the company website. Back in the late 19th and early 20th Century, temperance bars were all the rage in Northern England. These bars served no alcohol but offered local communities public places to drink and socialize as long as they swore not to touch the evil booze. Anyone part of the Temperance Movement or Methodists drank the likes of this Mawson's sarsaparilla cordial or Vimto, which still survives today.

Basically you're buying something that tastes very similar to Vimto, another drink of the bygone age. I used a sparkling spring water to mix up the drink but had to put in a lot of cordial to get it to the taste I liked. The main problem was the spring water as the fizziness had that bitter taste. With normal still water it still needed the same amount of cordial but at least the strong quirky fruit taste came through very much like Vimto (a more lively version of Ribena is you like).

Value for money was pretty poor. I bought the bottle from Taj the Grocer, a supermarket full of wonderful world and healthy food in Hove (actually) for about £5. I've already had two glasses at a potential cost of 70p each go. Might have a go at mixing it with vodka but that might just be wrong for religious reasons!

Difficult to rate really being virtuous but expensive. I bless this a saintly:


Monday, 3 February 2014

IBC Caffeine Free Root Beer

I'm not the strictest person when it comes to diet and lifestyle rules. I get plenty of exercise cycling to work and don't go mad on fatty foods. But when it comes to caffeine I usually only have one coffee a day, a decent one not an instant to set me up for the the day. Plus, depending on how late I sleep in on Sunday I try to avoid caffeine on the day of rest so I know I'll get a good night's sleep for the start of a working week.

Ok, long introduction for a review of a root beer but this IBC is caffeine free so it made sense to drink it on a Sunday. Quite a basic taste of root beer and the Deep Heat force is strong in this one. However, it's crossed over to the dark side with its combined chemical-like sharp taste and fizziness at the end of the gulp.

Checking the ingredients and that four word combo reminds you to be vigilant when shopping - High Fructose Corn Syrup! Let's say I'm not a fan as its a sweetener that fails of taste. It sort of reminded me of Dr Pepper and checking Wikipedia, I notice that IBC go bought up by Cadbury Schwepps which owns the Dr Pepper brand. With that in mind, this is the Darth Sith of the root beers. Black and red in appearance and a member of the Dark Side.

Another purchase from Cyber Candy, Brighton store for the slightly cheaper than normal price of £1.59 for a small bottle.

<Jedi mind trick>This isn't the root beer you're looking for. You can go about your business. Move along. This root beer score is:


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Friday, 24 January 2014

Waialua Soda Works Root Beer review

I didn't know what to expect from a root beer brewed in Hawaii. The smell and taste of this Waialua Soda Works Root Beer is full-on medicine so this is one for the haters! So much so I would hope it would cure a sore throat or perhaps splashed on like an antiseptic after-shave.

Another Cyber Candy purchase, this time from their Covent Garden store in London. At the time of this review it was out of stock on their UK root beer shop.

It's better than average so I'm not giving it an Hawaii 5-0 but I give this:


Reviews of Waialua root beer from around the web

Across the pond and our Yankee cousins have been drinking root beers for ages. Here's a selection of links of reviews for the above same root beer:

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Langers Premium Soda Root Beer review

It sounds like a Marks and Spencer product. Madagascar vanilla extract is combined with thick notes of rich cream flavour and topped off with a touch of honey. Bold, rich, sweet and smooth. But does this Langers Premium Soda Root Beer live up to its luxury sounding description?

First of all, it's nice to see there's no artificial ingredients according to the label. What IS in the bottle ingredients wise comes through as very strong flavours but at a balance leaning towards the cream which in my opinion tips it over to an offensive cream taste. Even the smell has that near the sell by date of off cream.

Don't take my word for it though. reviewed it years ago and also thought it was disappointing and rated it 3 kegs out 5 (gotta love his gimmick).

Another Cyber Candy purchase rated at a disappointing:


Monday, 20 January 2014

Jack Black's Dead Red Root Beer review

How could I not buy this bottle of Jack Black's Dead Red root beer!? Anything with pirates will always win and they've gone 'overboard' with the packaging. Like all imported US root beers this was quite a few pieces of eight to buy. This brew also boasts added caffeine and Brazilian guarana so will revive the deadest of scurvy seafolk. Love the inside bottle cap warning which states: Stay away from crack; drink Jack Black. Shame this has nothing to do with School of Rock front man, Jack Black.

Is she sailing or failing?
I'm not too sure about the taste to be honest. (Adopt a pirate accent for maximum understanding) There be root beer in sight when you take a dip but once on board its given the heave-ho. If you landlubbers like liquorice then swing into port and pick up this bottle of rum. However, its after-taste for us old seadogs may be too much after one grog.

The slogan suggests that "Once you've had jack black you'll never go back!" - well, I'd rephrase this to "Once you've had jack black you'll probably not go back and drink something cheaper and tastier instead" - but that wouldn't really fit on the bottle. Saying that though there's always benefit to the ability of keeping that unpatched eye awake.

If you want a decent caffeinated root beer then check out Bawls which I reviewed earlier in the month.

Bought from the Covent Garden London store of Cyber Candy at £1.79. I rate this:


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Thursday, 16 January 2014

Gale's Root Beer review

A cute bottle label which reminded me of Enid Blyton children's books and running around crazy with a sugar high from too much fizzy pop.

The first thing that hits you (or your taste buds) is the cinnamon. There's supposed to be ginger and vanilla in there too but the cinnamon muscled them out and told them to never come back. It's not smooth like other better root beers as the fizzy texture remains but it is an acquired taste i.e. if you like cinnamon.

The back story is that brand owner and US TV chef Gale Gand, whilst cooking in England ran out of ingredients to make root beer (I know that feeling) so got a dog(!) and named it Rootie. Not exactly a substitute for root beer unless the dog provided an essential ingredient?

I rate this gourmet root beer:


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