Monday, May 2, 2011

Sparky’s Fresh Draft – An Inspiration to Root Beer Makers Everywhere

What first impressed me about this brew was a phrase that is found both on the label and the cap, “Leading the Root Beer Revival”. An amazing image flowed into my mind’s eye, of people caught up in the movement of root beer throughout the country. Crowds of people throwing cola’s and citrus drinks into massive fires and chanting “Root Beer!!! Root Beer!! Root Beer!!”. My imagination may have run a bit wild with this one, but none the less, a root beer revival on any level would be one I want to be involved. For now however I will take part in this microbrew version of the revival. Sparky’s claims that this “fresh” crafted brew has been made for many years within the Knox family. I have never met Kevin and Carol Knox but it would certainly be an honor. What an achievement it is to take a family recipe and realize its full potential by marketing it across America. They are certainly an inspiration to home brewers everywhere.

Being a microbrewer one would not expect Sparky’s to deliver anything spectacular with their packaging. The fact that it’s in glass is a merit to the Knox’s. The label is what would be expected, not too fancy; in fact using the word basic may be a compliment. However, the cap is something I was very impressed with!! A customized cap is not typical of microbrewers but Sparky’s has got one! Winding red strips with “Sparky’s” in the center. Around the side of the cap they list their web site, city, and their “revival” phrase. That is some great use of space, if you ask me. I like the color, that is rare on a cap, in my book, caps are just as important as the bottle, and I am happy to see the Knox’s share this perspective.

So moving on to this California brew, to begin with it is a natural sweetened root beer using both cane sugar and honey. This tends to be a great combination if done carefully. The other ingredients include both natural and “imitation” flavors and “spices”. The flavor is light but distinct, it has a clear root beer extract aroma, and it carries a certain tantalizing light liquorish finish. I am not a fan of black liquorish but when that flavor is balanced well with other common flavors in root beer I find myself overtaken with desire. The carbonation is light and overall the brew is very smooth and no byte to note. It would be a great brew

for burgers, or for watching a UFC fight, it’s a brew that won’t distract from your other activities but at the end of the night you will think, “hey that was some pretty good root beer”.

I extend my thanks and admiration to Kevin & Carol for sharing their family brew with the rest of us and realizing the American “Root Beer” Dream. I present Sparky’s with a respectful 4 Frosty Mugs

Check out Sparky’s for yourself


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