Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Better Than the Shore - Jersey's Very Famous: Weber's Drive-In

Located just across the bridge from Philadelphia is a small New Jersey town called Stratford. As far as I can tell there is only one thing going for Jersey overall. I make this assessment based on some recent reality TV. It's NOT the shore, it's the Root Beer!!

On my way to NYC I spotted this rather humble drive-in which displayed a very large sign with my
two favorite words "Root Beer"!! I noted the location, as soon as I could, I made my way back to Jersey. I personally have never been a fan of Jersey, even before the world gained an intimate (too intimate) look into the local shore life. Nope, it was back in 1997 when I received my first speeding ticket while driving on the New Jersey Turnpike. Ever since then I have had a distaste for Jersey.

In some very real way, Jersey has redeemed themselves... Thanks to Weber's Drive-In. It is difficult to say how many of these small town drive-ins are left. These once dotted the country from coast to coast, but eventually drive-ins gave way to drive-throughs and somewhere along the way a piece of America was lost. But every so often we discover folks reviving that lost era and making it all work with a frosty mug of home brewed root beer brought to your car with a smile.

I am happy to report that my discovery of Weber's proved to be just as I had hoped. The young car hops were happy and courteous. They humored me as I asked them lots of questions about the drive-in and the root beer. Their honesty was refreshing when I asked about the cheese steak sandwich listed on the menu, they described it as the best one "this side of the bridge" ( no use even trying to compete with Pat & Geno). I was happy to learn that not only did they sell their brew by the gallon but that they also sold "Black Cows"... simply another way of saying root beer float...... this was certainly the makings of a great drive-in.

So on my approach to Weber's I pulled into one of my favorite brands of gas stations, Wawa, and grabbed a cold bottle of A&W and was thus prepared for my onsite review. My first impression of Weber's Root Beer reminded me of the distinct flavor of yeast brew but without all the unfavorable yeast sediment. This was a huge plus because that my friends is the distinct flavor of root beer nostalgia!! It was a deep flavor with moderate sweetness which I suspected was from cane sugar. Compared to the standard there was more of the very typical root beer extract but as would be expected the foam was very limited and the carbonation was far less. The color of the brew was very dark which is an important consistency with old time brew and more especially home brew. I am certain that this brew would serve as a perfect companion to the cheeseburger listed on the menu. If nothing else you can take a gallon of it back home and drink your worries away.... This brew may not have all the bells and whistles of other brew, but what it does have is nostalgia!! Weber's Drive-In has been serving the people of Jersey for over 50 years and doing so with a solid brew that America was proud of then and should still be proud now!!! I grant Weber's Root Beer of New Jersey 3.5 Frosty Mugs and in the words of the great Bob Hope.... "thanks for the memories"!!


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