The Tasting Panel magazine

October 2015

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Page 34 of 140

34  /  the tasting panel  /  october 2015 Rt, Rt, Rt for Hard Rt Br If you were like me as a child, you wouldn't let anything get in the way of a chance to get your hands on a cold gla of rt br, and if you added the word "float" to the end of it, watch out! Even now—as a civilized adult—I can't resi the aure of this smth treat. So when breweries began churning out hard rt br, you beer believe that I went out on the prowl–for the gd of your cuome, of coue! by Emily Coleman Family Rts Developed by Tim Kovac of Small Town Brewery and his son, Not Your Father's Root Beer relies on generations of craft beer production knowledge—Kovac's family has been creating unique beer recipes since the 1600s. Caramel, anise and licorice shine through on the nose, while sarsaparilla, cinnamon and vanilla extract lead on the palate. It's a drink even my father would approve of! A Thriing Ride Root beer and fairs seem to walk hand-in-hand, so not only did it make sense for Coney Island Brewery to produce its Hard Root Beer, it would feel just plain wrong if they didn't climb aboard this tasty new ride. In its flavor coaster, licorice and vanilla give way to birch, leaving the right amount of sweetness to recall memories of Ferris wheels, face painting and cotton candy. Hometown Love As a Milwaukee native, I grew up drinking (and thoroughly enjoying) Sprecher Brewing Co.'s root beer; to me, it was the gold standard of the category. The adult version hits the nail right on the head. Aged in oak bourbon barrels, the Hard Root Beer satisfies that vanilla-herby taste that I longed for as a kid, as well as adding a nice burn of alcohol to even out the sweetness. On a Miion A staple in the San Diego beer scene, Mission Brewery has been known to push the boundaries of craft beer (e.g., its Mango Green Tea El Conquistador brew on tap). Staying true to their repu- tation, Mission produced a Hard Root Beer, which features a creamy mouthfeel with a sweet finish. Sweet notes of vanilla balance the sarsaparilla—now to find the ice cream scooper!

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