Thursday, September 22, 2022

Zia Root Beer

I brought this with me to my office by the darkroom (which explains the cameras in the background) - it was my 2nd Zia from the stash my friends brought me

Zia Root Beer

Brand: Zia Root Beer.

Origin: Taos, NM.

Purchase Place: Smith's Food and Drug, somewhere in Utah.

Sweetener: Cane Sugar.

Review: I was ready for this to be "fancy" as it had a big list of ingredients after the "normal" ones: anise and licorice aren't ALL that unique, but then it has clove, mint, yucca root, and madagascar bourbon vanilla. That's an interesting list. And the root beer is REALLY dark - one of the darker sodas I've seen.

And it WAS a little interesting. What first struck me was a big of a smokiness it had - I think that's the cloves coming through that way. And there's a hint of the mint that feels like normal wintergreen in a root beer. Overall, it's pretty smooth and has a real earthy, herby, smoky flavor. I prefer something a little sweeter, but this is a nice and unique "adult" root beer. (I say "adult" because it's not super sugary - it would not be as popular with kids.) On taste alone, I think I'd give this a 6, but I'm bumping it up for the uniqueness of the experience.

Score: 7 out of 10.

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Bazooka Bubble Gum Flavored Soda

I'm currently in the big shared faculty office at the University of Minnesota, and I'm sipping on this: 

Bazooka Bubble Gum Flavored Soda

Brand: Bazooka Bubble Gum Flavored Soda.

Origin: Incline Village, NV.

Purchase Place: Blue Sun Soda, Spring Lake Park, MN.

Sweetener: Sugar.

Review: This tasted EXACTLY like I thought it would! It *IS* liquid Bazooka gum. It smells just like it too! This might be a bad thing, but it even has that slight chalkiness that the gum has. This is very sweet and I could not finish it - it's definitely a "sipping soda" and not something you just drink down. The taste is spot on, but it's almost too sweet. Kids might love this, but even this sweet loving man thought it was a bit much. But higher marks for NAILING the flavor.

Score: 6.5 out of 10.

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Zia Ginger Ale

I opened my first Zia from my friends the other day:

Zia Ginger Ale

Brand: Zia Ginger Ale.

Origin: Taos, NM.

Purchase Place: Smith's Food and Drug, somewhere in Utah.

Sweetener: Cane sugar.

Review: I was ready for this to be a bit strong as after the first 2 "normal" ingredients (filtered carbonated water and cane sugar), the rest were a bit more extreme: "fresh pressed ginger juice, red chile natural flavors, lime and lemon juice." I was surprised to sniff it and realize it was more subtle than I expected. And the flavor was a bit that way too - it was still flavorful, but not overpowering. Ginger can be a bit much for me, but this just had a nice flavor that ended well with a hit of citrus. There was no back-of-the-throat ginger burn that I get with some ginger sodas. (Oh, I take that back - as I'm drinking it a bit more, it IS biting the back of my throat a little, but not that harshly!) My family all enjoyed this as well. This earned the highest score for a Ginger Ale from me ever!

Score: 8 out of 10.

Monday, September 5, 2022

A Stash of Zia from Utah!

The same fun friends who sent me some Shaq Soda and some Tommyknocker Soda stopped by recently with something that they picked up in Utah for me to try:


A Stash of Zia from Utah!

They picked these up in Utah, and I'll be reviewing my first one shortly. Thanks T and B!

Thursday, September 1, 2022

Spring Grove at the MN State Fair

Spring Grove Soda just posted this on Facebook: 

Spring Grove Sodat at the State Fair!

My boys and I were right next to the Spring Grove Soda stand (we got a soft pretzel right next door), but we didn't have any Spring Grove Soda this year. Stop by their stand near the SE corner of the DNR Building!