Sunday, November 20, 2016

Tree Fort Soda (#60 – rated 5.75 out of 12)

Tree Fort soda is a hometown brew.  Meaning in the metropolitan area where I live.  Eva and Sam Ducker stated they would spend time tasting soda’s while the adults in the family tasted wine.  They wanted to “make something better” and now they make four flavors:  Root Beer, Juicy Orange, Ginger Ale and Classic Cola.  They say the root beer is “wintergreen, anise, cinnamon, sarsaparilla, marigold, peppercorn, and of course, real honey, for a subtle, rich brew great out of the bottle”. 

Eva Ducker, 17, brought Tree Fort Root Beer to market in 2015 after developing the brand for her senior project at Blake—a private school in Minneapolis, MN.  Eva’s brother and sister-in-law, David and Lily Duckler, own a tea house and café in the Seward neighborhood, and helped develop the brand by providing the know-how, ingredients, and the facility to help the young entrepreneur with her ambition.

Duckler wanted to develop something creamy, sweet, all natural, and something different than traditional sodas like Coke and Pepsi that she deemed “kind of rough stuff.” According to Duckler, the root beer is hand brewed with herbs and flowers including marigold and chicory, with vanilla and honey also in the mix. She creates most of the flavors herself by “steeping out a bunch of herbs using water extraction.” Indeed, the soda is not in line with a traditional root beer flavor, but Duckler acknowledges this, adding that the soda is much more “layered and balanced.” She says, “It’s what I’d like to think root beer tasted like back at its origins in the 1800s when people were just drinking it made from roots!”

After 70 failed attempts, and much trial and error, Duckler finalized the beverage she was looking for now I am about to review the beverage. (Click here for information on the rating criteria and a table of all the root beer tested or to be tested.)

Ingredients: Filtered Water, Cane sugar, White Honey, Natural Favors, Caramel Color, Quillaja Extract, Malic Acid, Sunflower Oil, Phosphoric Acid, and Xanthan Gum.

Nutrition 12 oz. serving (from the bottle)

180 Calories
170 mg Sodium.
45 g (15%) of Daily Carbohydrates
0 mg Caffeine

Aroma and Flavor – 1.5 out of 3 mugs

The aroma is very medicinal and not much like a deep dark root beer I prefer.  The color is almost Crème Soda/Ginger Ale tomes.

At first daring, this is not really a root beer.  It is closer to a root beer/ginger ale mix.  The honey is noted along with a light wintergreen or cinnamon taste.  I almost felt like I was drinking  dandilion?

Head –1.75 out of 3 mugs  

The head is average.  Quick dissipation with a slight remnant at the outer edge when fully dissipated. 

Zip – 1.25 out of 3 mugs  

The zip is from clove, ginger and cinnamon.  It is light and dry.

Post Consumption Impression – 1.25 out of 3 mugs  

I do not know what to say?  It is not a bad soda, but not really a root beer.  It is unique and very dry.  My mouth felt dry after drinking the brew.  What is odd is for a soft drink, I have the sensation I am drinking a carbonated tea with honey.

Would I recommend this at 5.75 out of 12 mugs?

I really like the story of the young entrepreneur breaking out with something different, yet as a root beer lover, this is a beverage I would look twice before making a purchase.  However, if you want to try a dry beverage that would give you the sensation of drinking a solid tea with honey, give it a try!


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