Category Archives: 2 out of 10

Sprecher Honey Root Beer

Sprecher Honey  Root Beer

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Website: https://www.sprecherbrewery.com/soda.php

Sweetener: Raw Wisconsin Honey

Bottled at: Glendale, Wisconsin

Purchase Location: Obtained through a trade

In late April, 2015, Sprecher Brewing Company announced that in celebration of its 30th anniversary, it would release a limited edition honey root beer.  Root Beer Respect’s blog post covering the announcement can be found here.  Sprecher, a Wisconsin brewery, announced that its anniversary honey root beer would be the first ever root beer sweetened with 100% Wisconsin honey.  However, Sprecher also made it know that only 3,000 cases of this special root beer would be made.

Upon reading the announcement, I became very excited at the thought of enjoying a one-of-a-kind root beer sweetened with such a pure, natural, and delectable sweetener.  I was, however, more than a bit concerned that if I did not find a bottle from one of the 3000 cases produced, I would never participate in the Sprecher Honey Root Beer experience.  Searching for the special edition root beer in my sparse local inventory was fruitless.  Luckily, a fellow root beer aficionado from Southern California was willing to trade.

Sprecher Honey Root Beer is all about highlighting its raw Wisconsin honey sweetener.  The background of the label shows a river of honey flowing between honeycomb river banks.  In the forefront a banner states “Sweetened Only With Raw Honey”, and the Sprecher crow mascot is found holding a beehive in one hand and a honey dipper in the other.  All of these not so subtle honey cues gave me the expectation that I would be carried away by a river of liquified honey root beer goodness.  My first sip of Sprecher Honey Root Beer had tones of honey, but the flavor quickly turned to an unwelcome soapy flavor.  I convinced myself my palate had misunderstood the flavor, and I gave it another try.  Once again, it tasted like I was drinking soap.  This routine continued over and over.   Before each sip, I would try to convince myself that the true, delicious flavor would come forward this time.  With each sip I was disappointed.

I came away knowing that either raw Wisconsin honey is the worst of all honey, or Sprecher Honey Root Beer is just bad.  Because I have faith in Wisconsin bees, I must conclude that Sprecher Honey Root Beer is just bad.  On the one hand, it is disappointing that this limited edition soda did not live up to expectations.  However, on the bright side, because of its limited release I may never come across this soda again.

Overall Score: 2 of 10.

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Bundaberg Root Beer

Bundaberg Root Beer
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Sweetener: Cane Sugar
Obtained at Costco
Bundaberg Root Beer is Austrailian root beer.  Does Australia have any other root beer brands?  Who knows?
Bundaberg comes in a “stubby” bottle with a kangaroo on the label and a pull tab top.  Nearly perfect so far.  The initial taste of the root beer improves the experience.  Cane sugar, molasses, ginger root, sarsaparilla root, licorice root, and vanilla bean combine to deliver a delicious licorice flavor.
Now it is time for a root beer flashback.  My only attempt to make homemade root beer took place in college with my friend Jacob.  We made several attempts to make root beer using yeast to carbonate the soda.  A 3 liter bottle from one batch was aging in my dark bedroom closet when it suddenly exploded, covering everything in sticky liquid.  But even worse, and much to our dismay, our homemade root beer was never successful because it always tasted too yeasty.
Flash forward to my Bundaburg tasting.  All of the sudden I recognize a strong yeast flavor.  It overcomes the licorice taste and any other good qualities possessed by Bundaberg.  Unfortunately, like my homemade root beer, this yeasty soda is irredeemable.
Overall Score: 2 of 10.