Sonoma Syrup Co.’s Root Beer Soda Syrup, reviewed

Sonoma Syrup Co's Root Beer
Root beer is one of my favorite soda flavors, so I couldn’t walk by the bottles of Sonoma Syrup Co.’s Root Beer Soda Syrup in Williams Sonoma without picking one up to try (they had cola and lemon-lime, too). I like a lot of the other products from Sonoma Syrup Co, including their vanilla bean crush, so I had fairly high hopes for the root beer. Plus, the idea of making my own gourmet soda was pretty appealing, especially because the instructions on the bottle just called for mixing the syrup with chilled soda water and giving it a stir before serving. The root beer and other sodas are all hand made using natural ingredients, cane sugar and natural flavorings. The root beer includes sweet birch, caramel, cinnamon, sassafras and vanilla.

The root beer syrup didn’t disappoint me. It was sweet, flavorful and peppery. It actually reminded me a lot of those little root beer barrel candies that you find at some candy stores (I used to buy those all the time when I was young!). The best thing about the syrup is that you can mix up however much soda you want – even if it’s just a little bit -at one time without having to open a can or a big bottle. The whole bottle makes about 25 8-oz servings. You can also adjust the amount of flavoring in your soda, if you prefer it stronger or weaker. I found that adding a little extra when I was making root beer floats made them even better. Because this syrup is really a concentrate (all of the carbonation comes from the soda water you mix it with), you could also use this as a flavoring for other recipes if you don’t want to drink down the whole bottle.

Fresh Root Beer

6 comments

  1. How much root beer does a bottle of concentrate make?

  2. Oh my gosh, I just found this on Monday myself. I love it. It might replace my addicition to IBC.

    I also highly reccomend pouring about a third of cup of the syrup into Marhta Stewart’s One bowl Chocolate cupcake batter. You can also put a splash into your favorite chocolate ganache, or cream cheese icing. It’s super yummy!!

  3. The problem with root beer syrup is that the main flavoring ingredient had always been the oil from Sassafras albidum. The problem is that that ingredient is also believed to be carcinogenic – so therefore artificial substitute versions are generally used instead. In this case, pure essential oil of sweet birch and sassafras extract. To me this says birch beer, not root beer. A stickler perhaps, and maybe splitting hairs; but they are two different flavors to my palate. I went online and searched pure birch syrup and ended up with 100% pure First Run Birch Syrup, a rich, spicy sweet wonderful caramel-like flavor. This is completely organic with no sugar added (or needed). It’s a tad more expensive but goes a long long way. To give you some perspective: it takes 100 gallons of birch sap to produce 1 gallon of birch syrup; maple by comparison is approximately 40:1. It is wonderful on ice cream, in milkshakes, and coffee, and of course pancakes, etc. I also use it in beef and pork marinades and everyone loves it. Anyone can reach for a sugared up W&S product… but if you want to get real ‘artesian’ go for the straight from the tree stuff.

  4. Do you think this would work as a flavoring in cake?

  5. I’ve been searching for a syrup without HFCS/aspartame to go with my SodaStream. I’ll have to give this one a try.

  6. It can definitely work as a flavoring in a cake. I’ve added some when making vanilla ice cream, too…. so good! Out of the 3 syrups that Williams-Sonoma has, this one is definitely my fave and a top seller…it seems like it’s hard to keep in stock! The lemon-lime syrup is good too; it doesn’t taste like Sprite, but something much fresher. The cola tastes like Coke or Pepsi.

    They’re perfect for your sodastream, I use them for mine ;)

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