First I want to apologize for the quality of the photos. My digital camera (which is about a decade old now) is dying, and sometimes doesn’t know how to focus. I’ve been getting around this by taking each picture three or four times in order to try and get one that’s in focus, but sometimes I forget. I really just need to bite the bullet and get a new digital camera. Anyone have any suggestions?
On to my thoughts on the beverages!
The Pop Shoppe Rootbeer: This is a very pleasant, well-rounded root beer. I’m not so in love with it that I’m itching to buy it again (there are others I like better), but I definitely wouldn’t turn it away. I would happily drink this again.
Cock and Bull Ginger Beer: Like most ginger beers that I try, this one has a wonderful ginger taste to start with, and then a sharp ginger bite/burn that kicks in a few seconds later. I love the ginger taste, but I’m not a big fan of the burn that usually follows. I also don’t like the burn of capsaicin, and the after burn reminds me of that, in that it lingers and builds up slowly the more you drink. For those that like spicy food, this is probably another good ginger beer for you (Matt thought it tasted good).
Frostie Root Beer: Frankly, I was bored by this root beer. Sometimes there’s just a missing punch to the flavor, and this one was definitely lacking. I won’t be trying it again.
Boylan’s Original Birch Beer: I really like this birch beer. It has a very pleasant mild flavor to it that is delicious. The more I try it, the more I am convinced that I do enjoy Hippo Size Burley Birch Beer more (it’s one of my favorite beverages ever), but this comes in second place in my heart for birch beers.
Reed’s Extra Ginger Brew Ginger Beer: As I was about to give up on finding another ginger beer that didn’t have a spicy after burn (spoiler: I tried Fentiman’s before this one), I tried this one. It has restored my faith that someone besides Bundaberg can make a bite-less ginger beer that still has a lot of flavor. If you don’t like the burn that comes with spicy food, you might enjoy this ginger beer. Bundaberg Ginger Beer is still a much better beverage, in my opinion, but this is the only other ginger beer I’ve been able to finish without feeling like my mouth and throat are on fire. I would drink this again, though I don’t think I’ll go out of my way to do so – I’d much rather buy Bundaberg.
Fentiman’s Ginger Beer: As you may have picked up from the review of Reed’s, this is another one with a spicy after bite to it. That means I don’t care for it, sadly, because as usual for ginger beers the initial flavor is quite lovely.
I’m torn as to whether I should give up on trying new ginger beers. Most of them that I come across just aren’t to my liking, but Bundaberg Ginger Beer is so amazing that I keep holding out hope for finding some other great ginger beers. I’ll think about it. Regardless, I’m going to continue trying new gourmet pop every once in a while and sharing my thoughts on them! ~Kell