May 2018
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5: Barq’s

When I visited New York in 1997, there were a lot of things that I wanted to do. Go to some comic shops, see some sights, watch some US telly (ahead of everybody in the UK!!!), and drink some rootbeer. Oh, and not get killed, although that was mainly for my father who was convinced that I was going to meet a messy end on those mean streets.

I digress. Rootbeer. All I knew about rootbeer were those fond memories of the days when it was available in the Abington Street McDonalds – I presumed that America was a rootbeer guzzling nirvana, but I had no idea about brands or where you would buy the stuff.  Luckily, my TV habit worked in my favour.  American TV had lots of adverts with a gecko in them. I don’t recall what he was advertising. However, it also had lots of adverts proclaiming that ‘Barq’s has bite’.  After seeing this advert several hundred times in the first day I was there, I realised that Barq’s was a rootbeer, and, as per Adrian Pasdar in ‘Profit’, television had saved my life, again.

Which is a long and convoluted way of saying that I have a lot of time for Barq’s. Yes, the front of the can does say that it’s a ‘Famous Olde Tyme Root Beer’ at the same time as the back of the can proclaims that it is ‘Canned by a member of the Coca-Cola Bottlers Association’. I’m not sure that it does actually have bite, but I do know that if I lived in a place that had rootbeer widely available (for instance, in the soft drinks aisle of a supermarket), Barq’s is the brand that I would be filling up my fridge with. It’s got that slightly off-kilter vanilla flavour that is the mark of a good rootbeer, and its superbly fizzy as well. The true glory of Barq’s however, is just how good it tastes straight from the fridge. Just like heaven.


(Rootbeer purchased from American Soda – highly recommended)

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