I took a little trip out west this 4th of July weekend and spent some time with my family in Utah and Arizona. While in Salt Lake City i took some time to track down this root beer that i have long known about but was geographically unable to physically obtain. After getting a hot tip on a place that sells this root beer (a little place called Jed's Barber Shop), i talked my brother into driving me down there to pick up a few bottles. It's literally a barber shop and they just happen to sell this root beer. I was kind of expecting an old fashioned candy store and soda fountain shop for some reason. Not sure what i was thinking. Oh... wait.... this is it. But anyway, it's a full blown barber with just a little glass case of refrigerated Brigham's Brew Root Beer for sale. I later found out that i probably didn't need to go to all the trouble to visiting Jed's since this stuff is brewed by the Wasatch Brewery (named after the Wasatch Mountains where all the great ski resorts in SLC are located) and that this stuff is readily available at many locations throughout the valley. The brewery isn't technically in SLC, it's in Park City, but Wasatch Brewery products are stocked in most local grocery stores around the valley (and i may be going out on a limb here, but dare i say throughout the state as well). Three of my brothers live in the SLC area and one of them keeps trying to get me to move there also. I have spent a lot of time up there throughout my life (that's the 3rd time i've said "throughout") and all i can say is that while it's a lovely area and the skiing is terrific, it's really not somewhere i see myself residing. While it's full of friendly people and charming scenery, there are enough things about it that i just don't care for. And for those reasons, SLC will always only be a nice place i sometimes visit.
It's a classic brown glass 12 oz bottle with big picture of the founder of the city of Salt Lake, the state of Utah, and leader of the Mormon migration across the Great Plains, Brigham Young. His iconic picture is pasted on this root beer either satirically or as an homage. I can't decide which. I think if it were a true alcoholic beer, it would be satirical since Mormons preach abstinence from alcohol. But since it's a well known fact that Mormons love root beer, i think i prefer to consider it an homage. Either way, the bottling is stellar. I'm a fan of portraits on root beers, all except for Henry Weinhard's pathetic attempt. Seriously man, you just look desperate.
The one thing that everyone going into this can be rested assure of is that Mormons know what good root beer is, and this my friends is a really good root beer. It's been a while since i've had one i've liked as much as this. First off, it's heavy on the wintergreen, which is a personal favorite of mine. It also has a nice vanilla finish on it which gives a good creamy aftertaste. And for those of you who care, it's sweetened with pure cane sugar. Personally, i think whatever they are doing is working very well. I just wish i didn't live so far away from it now.