Monday, August 17, 2009

Super Chill Root Beer

Ugh... i've been in Chicago for the weekend for a wedding (congrats Tyler and Lauren) and just got back this morning. We caught an early flight and i don't sleep well on airplanes, so i am cranky and moody right now. My lovely wife says i am acting like i am menstruating, but i assure you that isn't possible seeing that i am all man. Anyway, i made it a point to go to a grocery store to find some local root beers. I was lucky in that i found one that i have not already reviewed, but unlucky in that it was out of stock. But now that i know it's out there, i am making preparations to obtain a sample. On the up side, the trip to the store wasn't a complete waste because i found this "gem" (p.s. quotation marks in this case suggest that i am being sarcastic). It's the store brand (i assume) for a grocery chain called Jewel Osco, or if you had the same first impression as me, a strung out hippie folk singer with crooked teeth working in a pharmacy. It's actually a pretty nice and clean store though, and there are several of them in the downtown Chicago area (which i was surprised to find to be a very clean and fun city). So just like any chain grocer, this store puts out its own store brand version of several flavors of soda. That being the case, i didn't have very high expectations going in.

I picked this stuff up in a 2 liter bottle, although it is also available in cans. The label has a modern advertising style to it, silver and brown colors with a kind of space age/computerized font. Personally, i think the name needs some work. Just sounds sloppy and dumb, but these guys are just out to make money by low balling the root beer market, not wow and impress anyone. Well guess what... mission accomplished.

This stuff is less than average in every way possible. Like i said, i don't know what i was expecting, because it's not meant to be a big seller. But to better paint the picture for you, i was drinking this stuff from a Styrofoam cup in line at the airport while i was waiting to go through the security checkpoint since i couldn't take it on the plane thanks to the new regulations for liquids and gels in quantities greater than 3 oz. It was warm, and i got down about a half a liter before i had to throw the whole thing away and make my way through the security checkpoint. These are not my ideal reviewing conditions, but sometimes i just gotta make do and suffer for my craft. It's hard to be gifted. Anyway, i will say that Super Chill has a very nice aroma, almost like that of A&W, so i was hoping for the best. But other than that, it was pretty disappointing. The standard root beer flavoring was fairly sweet and sugary and it came on quite strong and faded quickly. In the end, i was just chugging carbonated sugar in an airport security line.

My official review is that Super Chill gets 3 (three) IBCs. To be completely fair, i didn't really do due diligence in my research efforts for this root beer. I picked it up, barely drank it, and discarded it so i didn't miss my flight. But to be completely honest, i don't feel that i need to. Had it been good, i would have put more effort into it. But when you get to bed at 12:30 AM and have to wake up at 3:00 in order to catch a flight at 5:00, you do what you can to make it all work. In this case, a bad root beer made my job easy. So thanks Super Chill, i guess. Anyway, Chicago is a lovely city. If you end up visiting, go see the big silver bean and eat at Lou Malanati's, but don't bother hitting up the local Jewel Osco for some Super Chill.

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