As a part of our final tour in Wisconsin, we made a visit to Sprecher’s Brewery in Milwaukee. While they do make beer products served in their restaurants across the state, they are better known for their root beer. Made with honey instead of sugar, it is some of the best in the state.
On the tour, we were able to see where the magic happens. Beer and soda are brewed in the same kettle! Soda can brew and bottle in the same day, while beers can take much longer depending on the recipe. Even still, they outsell root beer to beers 3:1 overall.
They also showed us the bottling and labeling line. It is a smaller production but still like something out of Mr. Roger’s show. There is just something engrossing about how things are made on assembly lines to this day.
After the tour, we were able to sample up to four beverages in their restaurant after the tour, too. In the end, we both concluded the sodas were better than some of the beers. Eric is even plotting to bring 1/2 a keg of their root beer back to Texas with us soon.
Hey guys it’s Eric again. As some of you may already know, I try to avoid soda as much as possible, but there has always been one that inevitably brings me to my knees every time… Barq’s Root Beer. So, you could imagine my shock when the local Sconnies started making claims that they had a root beer that would trump all others.
I ignored their claims for the better half of 6 months and even went as far as telling them that my Barq’s would beat their Sprecher’s in a taste test any day (that claim would later land me the nickname “Roarq” among the guys in my fantasy league).
That day came yesterday when the two sodas met in a head to head, one round, winner takes all taste test. Upon pouring, I noticed that the foam factor of Barq’s high fructose corn syrup was no match for Sprecher’s all natural cane sugar (Sprecher’s 1- Barq’s 0). Both were poured into non-tented transparent glasses, so naturally the next test would be the coloration. When held to the light, Barq’s came out on top with the darker color (Sprecher’s 1- Barq’s 1).
Next came the initial taste, in which Barq’s was slightly sweeter than its nemesis Sprecher’s (Barq’s 2 -Sprecher’s 1). I’m not sure what happened at this point… maybe Barq’s got overly confident knowing that it it’s more widely available, or that in this tough economy it is the more cost efficient, or maybe that in the end it will always out-sell its competition due to the fact that it has the name Coca-Cola attached to it. Either way, Sprecher kicked it into high gear. After the initial taste, I found that Barq’s flavor was quickly dispersed, whereas Sprecher’s flavor continued to linger even minutes after consumption (which any fan of root beer knows is the whole reason for drinking it in the first place).
In the end, even though Barq’s had the lead, Sprecher’s came from behind to with the knockout punch to take the crown from the reigning champ. I will still have endless respect for the makers of Barq’s but there is a new champion in my book.