Not Your Father's Root Beer (5.9%)
Small Town Brewery

Not Your Father's Root Beer (5.9%)Not Your Father's Root Beer (5.9%)
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Small Town Brewery
Illinois, United States
Herb and Spice Beer
4 | pDev: 18.25%
Nov 01, 2022
Oct 29, 2012
Very Good
Not Your Father's Root Beer (5.9%)Not Your Father's Root Beer (5.9%)

Not Your Father’s Root Beer is a category-defining craft specialty ale brewed with unique spices. Brewer Tim Kovac’s creativity and painstaking commitment to flavor complexity results in an unmistakable offering that masterfully blends hints of sarsaparilla, wintergreen, anise, and vanilla. A smooth and balanced Ale, NYFRB has broad appeal – from discerning craft beer drinkers to non-beer drinkers.
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Photo of IvoryBilledWoodpecker
Reviewed by IvoryBilledWoodpecker from Florida

4.06/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Looks like a dark root beer soda. There is a decent dirty brown head that dies immediately. Lacing is absent. Nice root beer scents are immediately present, I’m a huge fan… unfortunately it also smells like a cheap soda. I would otherwise rate even higher. Flavor is good but strangely one dimensional. After taste is also just not good. I would also think going in I want that high sweetness from a quality root beer soda but I think I’d like something a little drier here. I like this but there must be better real root beers out there.
Nov 01, 2022
Photo of md3kcn
Reviewed by md3kcn from North Carolina

3.46/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
Label reads "Small Town Brewery", so I'm putting the review here. Purchased as a single bottle from Ingles for $1.99. Poured into a tulip glass.

L - Root beer brown. Clear. A minimal dark brown head.
S - Like root beer, but very herbal. Anise, vanilla, and wet oak. Molasses.
T - Exactly the same as the nose. On the sweeter end of the spectrum.
F - Medium-bodied, and with plenty of carbonation. Pretty drinkable.
O - I've admittedly had this before, and it's about the same as the last time. Not quite like your typical non-alcoholic root beer; like a craft version of Barq's. Not too bad, but probably won't get it again. A good novelty.
Sep 13, 2022
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Reviewed by MikeWard from Pennsylvania

3.25/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25
Bottle says Small Town, so I'll put it here. Coding hard to figure out, but thinking the 'LX" means La Crosse.

Looks like cola.

Smells like root beer.

Tastes like root beer, and the abv of 5.9 is well nigh invisible.

Mouth above medium, finish a sweet strong sarsaparilla, and a little warming, the only sign of abv.

Overall, while no great fan of root beer, this is exactly what it set out to be. The missus, who enjoys the style, gave it a thumbs up.
Aug 28, 2022
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Reviewed by EmperorBevis from England

4.25/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Bottled and purchased from the Bottle shop in Altrincham town centre after bartering for it
Pours li my e classic root beer with a little more head retention
Smell is classic too sarsaparilla, dark sugar & vanilla
Tge flavour takes me back to the germolene oriented stuff
Oct 07, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by T66tah from Pennsylvania

Apr 23, 2021
Rated: 3.75 by Chipwells from Georgia

Feb 05, 2021
Rated: 1.5 by AndrewFord666 from Illinois

Feb 05, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by Velivolus1 from Vermont

Aug 05, 2020
Rated: 4.5 by Glen_ from Texas

Jul 28, 2020
Photo of Pegasus
Reviewed by Pegasus from Texas

4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Appearance: Very deep amber in color, with a modest, quite fizzy off-white head, which collapses almost immediately.

Aroma: Classic root beer aroma of licorice, vanilla, sarsaparilla, and molasses. I detect a note of pink bubblegum as well, and not a hint of alcohol to be found.

Taste: Opens with classic root beer flavor, as root beer was in the distant past, with lots of sarsaparilla, vanilla, anise, dark caramel, and as in the aroma, pink bubblegum. There is no alcohol to be found in the taste, and no warmth from it, either. Throughout, the taste is sugary, of molasses and caramel flavors, quite unlike cheap, low quality modern root beers. Late in the taste, the spices really come into their own, with the sarsaparilla, anise, and vanilla hitting high notes that linger on, well past the end of the taste.

Mouth feel: Smooth and very full, quite pleasant, with just a hint of carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: Very pleasant and drinkable, reminiscent of the quality non-alcoholic root beers like St. Arnold's or Abita. Just excellent, and certainly a treat. It is quite the pity that Not Your Father's Root Beer and the Small Town Brewery are no more.

Presentation: Packaged in a standard twelve-ounce aluminum can, served in a Save the World Brewing teku.
Jul 15, 2020
Rated: 3.29 by Simiy9 from North Carolina

Jun 30, 2020
Rated: 4 by RiceOwls27 from Texas

Apr 07, 2020
Photo of just1cho
Reviewed by just1cho from California

3.11/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3
Drank from a 12oz bottle. When pouring, it was dark... like root beer! Very very little head retention. It's there for a second, then becomes almost non-existent. It smells of spicy, sweet and earthy aromas... kinda like root beer! Can't go wrong with that. In terms of tastes.. its pretty much what you would expect, like root beer but with a slight boozy taste. Has a sweet/bitter finish. Very rich, and I personally can't tolerate sweetness too much so this beer got disgusting towards the end and was hard to finish. I felt as though every aspect of this beer resembled a root beer, except for the carbonation. This beer is not very carbonated, so this definitely deviates from a classic root beer in this sense.
Overall, if you have a big sweet tooth and like the taste of root beer, this beer would be perfect for you. If you don't have much of a sweet tooth, like me, I would probably go with something else.
Apr 07, 2020
Rated: 4.6 by a_silva_016 from Arizona

Feb 01, 2020
Rated: 4.62 by ArztZiegler from Ohio

Nov 11, 2019
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Reviewed by Bouleboubier from New Jersey

3.49/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3
(12 oz bottle, not dated; purchased cold single... poured into 14 oz mug)

L: dark, ruby liquid; foam disappears immediately... razor-thin collar remains; no lace

S: root beer... maybe a slight undertone of Oldsmobile upholstery, back seat, or suede, not sure... I love root beer, so it smells just fine to me

T: root beer... slightly molasses syrup in the middle, which shifts to a vague coffee syrup flavor in the finish... hint of old, oxidized caramel malt in the aftertaste; thing almost tastes infected or faintly band-aid-like... it's maybe marginally bitter, as the sweetness doesn't linger long

F: not quite adequately carbonated for a root beer, and there's the slightest bit of residual oily drag in the finish, but it's not far off from said soft drink... hmm... alcohol warmth creeps up after the 3rd or 4th sip, but stays chill

O: root beer, and not much else... the oxidized/band-aid note is a lil odd, and it sticks out a bit in the aftertaste... this isn't beer - it's a hard malty soft drink - no interest to finish the glass or have this again (1482)
Aug 25, 2019
Rated: 3.5 by CDBeerDisappear from Ohio

Aug 09, 2019
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Reviewed by SAUbrewcrew from Michigan

3.44/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
It’s a hard root beer not much more too it. It’s pretty sweet so you can’t have too many but it is an alcoholic root beer and that’s what it tastes like.
Aug 03, 2019
Rated: 3.89 by sherrymj from Ohio

Jun 25, 2019
Rated: 3.9 by rsuarez1982 from Texas

May 09, 2019
Rated: 3.86 by SANDSTORM from California

Apr 24, 2019
Rated: 4.69 by Private_Biscuit from Alabama

Apr 19, 2019
Rated: 3.98 by GatorB from Florida

Apr 05, 2019
Rated: 3.87 by FCJD12 from Ohio

Mar 03, 2019
Rated: 4.16 by click2exit from California

Feb 08, 2019
Photo of spectru
Reviewed by spectru from Florida

2.4/5  rDev -40%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2
Dark, almost opaque, root beer color, no head; Smells like root beer; Tastes a lot like root beer, but also a little like beer. , Quite sweet. Not much carbonation, just enough to keep it from being flat; The ABV on the bottle made me think that this might be more beer than root, but really, its root beer brewed with alcohol. If you like root beer, maybe you'll like this. I don't care for root beer and I don't like this.
Feb 01, 2019
Photo of Mclusal
Rated by Mclusal from Colombia

1.17/5  rDev -70.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.25
Jan 12, 2019
Photo of sjdevel
Reviewed by sjdevel from Utah

3.93/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Look - dark color - looks like a root beer - not much of a head at all and what it there dissipates
Smell - mostly root beer - not much else comes to the nose
Taste - tastes like root beer - slight malt and yeast (baaaaaaarrrrrrrrrely) - super sweet that doesn't really dry out
Feel - a bit thinner than I hoped for - syrupy though at the same time
Overall - you really think you are drinking root beer here. I don't get much ale/beer at all. It has a great flavor and would make an awesome float or a syrup (after reducing) for ice cream. I like it - just not beery enough for me for a regular drink
Jan 10, 2019
Photo of DerekMiller
Reviewed by DerekMiller from Louisiana

3.27/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75
Re-review on this, especially since they've changed the labeling on this product recently and don't advertise it as a beer any more and instead as a "malt beverage with natural and artificial flavor and caramel color" which, let's be honest, that's what it really was. I used to love this but as I drink it more I start to dislike it more.

Look: Pours a dark, creamy brown with a bubbly tan foam. Settles into a dark oak brown. Looks like root beer to me!
Smell: Strong vanilla, spice, dark fruit... I mean I could go on but it just smells like a really good, potent root beer. The ethanol smell is completely masked.

Taste: Odd... it almost feels like there's two separate "spheres" of flavor here. In the center is this pungent, alcohol + molassesy sugar combo with a punch of concentrated root beer flavoring. It's like someone dissolved root beer candy in vodka then reduced it till it turns into a dense syrup. No complexity beyond this. It's not bad at first but the time you drink your second bottle then your third and your fourth... there's a point where it become unbearable. Now whenever I drink it I can't ignore it unless I sip it very slowly. 1.5.

The second sphere is everything around this. It's a nice, pleasant, sweet root beer flavor. A lot of the vanilla seems gone but the herbal, spicy notes that come from root beer and still here. 3.5.

Overall flavor is 2.5. Pouring on ice bumps it to a 3.0. Vanilla ice cream bring sit to 3.5 - 4.0.

Feel: Simply feels like a slightly more syrupy soda. Pleasant enough, nothing to write home about.

Overall: I won't say no if someone offers this to me. It works better for root beer floats than to drink by itself.
Jan 02, 2019
Rated: 4.26 by shulmm02 from Ohio

Jan 02, 2019
Rated: 3.38 by generallee from Virginia

Dec 28, 2018
Rated: 4.25 by carlyly from California

Dec 23, 2018
Rated: 4 by jesuschrist666 from Oklahoma

Dec 05, 2018
Photo of JimboBrews54
Reviewed by JimboBrews54 from Michigan

4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Black appearance with a small head that fully diminishes quickly. Smells and tastes exactly like root beer, average body moderate sweetness, a syrupy feel and a lasting finish. Kind of good, but I couldn’t imagine drinking more than 1 or 2 in one sitting.
Oct 17, 2018
Rated: 3.92 by JohnDon from Texas

Oct 11, 2018
Photo of Moir1994CT
Reviewed by Moir1994CT from Connecticut

4.61/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.5
This beer captures what it is perfectly. it is alcoholic root beer. I know it isnt just root beer with a few shots of vodka in it but you could have fooled me. However this is not a negative. if this was a "root beer" with alcohol the last thing id want is a super hoppy beer. it would be nasty. Its higher power than the average lager but not by much and is sweet like root beer. A fantastic beginner beer or for someone whome generally doesnt like the taste of beer but likes root beer. A tad pricey but its not a everyday drink. More of an occasional treat.
Oct 10, 2018
Photo of OhMy
Reviewed by OhMy from Colorado

3.2/5  rDev -20%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 2 | feel: 5 | overall: 2
This would be a really good Root Beer if it didn't have the aftertaste of Anise or Licorice. It's a full taste, smells good, and I would have enjoyed it except for that. I'm not a licorice fan, so, unfortunately I won't be purchasing it again.
Oct 04, 2018
Not Your Father's Root Beer (5.9%) from Small Town Brewery
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 2805 ratings