I decided today to try the Capone Family Secret Root Beer. Based on the name, it is easy to understand where it comes from, Chicago. The bottle is very dark with a vintage label.
I tried to find some background and there is little on the web. The only story I found was:
During the 1920's Capone's warehouses were raided by the police 137 times, eager to seize their inventory of illegal alcohol. There were only a few items found on every single raid and it was not alcohol. It was cases of the "Capone Family Secret" Soda. After 80+ years the "Secret" Soda was finally made public, so families can enjoy great sodas, while experiencing a piece of history.
My first thought before I opened the bottle is that this secret family recipe is protected! I imagined Vinnie Drucci, Bugs Moran, Hymie Weiss and other either fighting for or protecting the secret. I guess I should just open the bottle and get an idea of the Family Secret.
Ingredients: Carbonated Water, Sugar, Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Natural Flavor, and Citric Acid
Nutrition information from the label (Per 12 0z):
- 180 Calories (15 per oz)
- 30mg Sodium. (2.5 mg per oz)
- 30g sugar (10%) of Daily Carbohydrates (2.5 g per oz)
FOUND THE FIRST SECRET… Sugar of an unknown kind is listed. Could be they listed it generically as it is “a secret”.
Now for the review. (Click here for rating criteria information)
Aroma and Flavor - 2.0 out of 3 mugs
Upon opening I had a cream-influenced scent with licorice and wintergreen aroma. While a pleasing aroma, it is not overpowering and very balanced. I also had a medicinal sense to the bottle after my first sip.
I have a real hard time describing the taste. I had a sense at first it was biter, then that was not really true. Carbonation is very low. It leaves a cough syrup feel on my tongue. I can’t place this or truthfully compare it with anything as the flavor VERY unique. My tongue experienced a whirlwind of emotions (if a tongue can have emotions). First a spicy light caramel flavor, then a punch of vanilla, then a unique wintergreen tingle, then dryness, then a sense of honey, followed by the desire for another drink due to the medicinal aftertaste.
This is the most difficult to score! One side gives it a 0.5 as it is so unique yet the unique flavor and aftertaste make it a 3. Since I am more inclined to try it again, it scores a 2.0 out of 3 for aroma and flavor.
Head - 1.5 out of 3 mugs
This has a nice head that is very short and is gone in seconds. Better to drink it from the bottle.
Zip - 2.0 out of 3 mugs
This bottle has very low carbonation. The zip is confusing at best, but leaves you longing for another during. Unlike any other root beer I have ever experience, the zip is little at first but is the longest lasting sensation of any beverage I have reviewed. There is no bite although it goes down quite well.
Post Consumption Impression - 2.25 out of 3 mugs
The tongue feel from the “secret recipe” makes it hard to know what I am drinking. Seems like several beverages at any stage of consumption. One thing that is very unique is the dry feeling I had after drinking this root beer. It left me thirsty, which could the primary reason I desire more? With my first taste this was an average root beer at best. As I drank more, I savored more. This is a very balanced brew that is intended to be enjoyed slowly, like a fine dry wine.
Would I recommend this at 7.75 out of 12 mugs?
If you desire a beverage that you want to enjoy for an hour while conversing with friends, this is the one. You will not drink 1,000 calories at the gathering, as you will sip this beverage, not drink it, to get the full enjoyment. If you drink it quickly, do not waste you time.
Handy Father - 3 of 5
Fear No Root Beer - 1 of 5
Eric's - 4 of 5
Cosmo's - 3 of 9
Anthony's - 87 of 100
Root beer Reviews - A
Thirsty Dudes - 4 of 5