Booze Banter

We Put the [S]Ass in Sassafras!

AK: Hello, Professor. It’s been a long time.

G-LO: Indeed it has, Doctor!

AK: Went out for burgers with the 17 year old daughter last night. Had a pretty boring soft drink to go with. I hate boring soft drinks.

G-LO: Define boring. 7-up? Seltzer? Grape Ne-HI? Orange Fanta?

AK: Root beer from a machine. Let’s say it was A&W. Doesn’t really matter. I have no idea what it was. Could have been Barq’s for all I know.

G-LO: I kinda like A&W, though it’s certainly not a craft root beer. Absolution makes a fine root beer! And on nitro! Soooooo pretty!

AK: Very! I like the craft root beers. Reason enough for me to visit a brewery! It’s an old art in this here country. Big in your part of the country.

G-LO: True! I believe Hire’s was the first commercially available root beer. Brewed for the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. That sounds about right! Right?

AK: You’re asking me? I barely know the five presidents on Mount Rushmore.

G-LO: Five? Presidents? I was thinking Larry, Moe, Curly, Curly Joe, and Shemp.

AK: Dr. Howard? Dr. Fein? Dr. Howard?

G-LO: YES! Dig this, Methuselah! Larry Fine (aka Louis Feinberg) was born in Philadelphia. Guess where he died?

AK: Niagara Falls?

G-LO: Nope. Slowly he turned when he reached Niagara Falls. Step by step. Inch by inch. Guess again, Bluebeard!

AK: Anaheim, Azusa, or Rancho Cucamonga?

G-LO: You’re getting very, very warm, Doc. You’re in the vicinity. I’ll just tell you before everyone gets bored and clicks through to another website. He died in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles.

AK: Woodland Hills! The Valley! Home of malls and porn. Larry is in heaven.

G-LO: There are worse places to die.

AK: True enough as we’ve proven with these ramblings. Wonder how the root beer is in heaven?

G-LO: Perfect pours. Rich. Creamy. Refreshing! And you can have it as a float with the BEST vanilla ice cream ever.

AK: Mmmmm… Mama, I’m coming home!

G-LO: You sound like you’re one of them there root beer aficionados.

AK: I do like trying new ones when they come to the shelves or at shady beef jerky stops on the highways and byways of this great country. Every try any of these “hard” root beers?

G-LO: I have, indeed!

AKTell me more… Tell me more…. Did you get very far?

G-LO: Take it easy, Rizzo! I don’t kiss and tell. Ok, so maybe I do. I may or may not have reviewed it. Personally, I like my root beer soft. That being said, the one I tried was pretty good and VERY easy drinking. In other words, it goes down like candy and will get you pretty shnockered if you have too much of it.

AK: Yowza! I hear we have a new root beer concoction in our midst.

G-LO: I’m not up on the latest news. Tell me more, Mr. Cronkite!

AK: Well, we have in front of us something called Root Out. These folks at Root Out think they are onto something. Root Beer flavored… Wait for it… Whisky!

G-LO: Boozy Root Beer?! Brilliant!

AK: That’s what they say too!

G-LO: What’s not to love?

AK: Sounds like it’s sort of like that chocolate-peanut butter thing.

G-LO: I love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups! Mashups are so fun.

AK: Those brainiacs at Reese’s did pretty well for themselves.

G-LO: Yep! They got me hooked.

AK: We should see if this boozy mashup will do the same.

G-LO: Have you any details about this intriguing elixir, Dr. Octopus? Did they make whisky out of the stuff they make root beer out of? Did they take whisky and add Art in the Age Root to the barrel?

AK: Info I got. Money, not so much. It’s Canadian Whisky from an unknown source and natural root beer flavor is added to it. I’m not sure what natural root beer flavor is. Is there a root beer flower grown in Kansas? Rootus Beeris Sepia?

G-LO: I don’t know, but I do know that we’re definitely not in Kansas anymore, Toto!

AK: Nope. That dog won’t hunt no more. Four year old Canadian Whisky. 70 proof. Hmmm. Thought Canadian whisky has to be 80 proof.

G-LO: I’m guessing they watered it down some. Actually, I thought all whisky had to be at least 80 proof.

AK: Odd indeed. Playing a little fast and loose with the definition? Should we take a whiff? Sure looks like whisky.

G-LO: Let’s do the Jimmy Durante and get our first-class shnozzes into the glass! Ahhhhhh-cha-cha…. It sure does look like whisky.

AK: Definitely get sassafras which is possibly the giggliest word in the English language.  They do add vanilla and sassafras to this, by the way.

G-LO: Did ya check out the gams on this dram? Totally getting that root beer vibe on the nose!

AK: Yep! Legs as long as the road from Saskatoon to Winnipeg.  No rest stops on the way so hit the potty before you leave.

G-LO: Sassafras. Vanilla.

AK: A cough drop but I can’t remember the brand. Remember those root beer barrel candies? I’m getting that.

G-LO: Yep! Like the kind in the Cracker Barrel Gift Shoppe! My boys love Root Beer and Root Beer Barrel Candy!

AK: I’m guessing you should keep the kids away from this stuff. I had a root beer flavored cough drop one time. Tasted horrible. But the smell was like this. Maybe burnt butterscotch?

G-LO: There’s a good bit of sweetness on the nose. Like powdered sugar.

AK: I need to make butterscotch pudding. Mental note!

G-LO: Love butterscotch pudding! And regarding the legs on this here hooch, I’m thinking Charlize Theron.

AK: She’s from South Africa. Which is Canada without the hockey. I have no idea what that means. Lots of sweetness. Kinda scared to taste it. The Root Out, not Charlize. Wait… Forget I said that! I’m sipping the Root Out but my head could explode!  My pancreas better stay in tact.

G-LO: Speaking of tact, you have none. I think you mean intact. I’m sure your pancreas will be fine. You’re a tough customer. I’m goin in! Chewing…

AK: Lots to chew. Really syrupy. Might be good on pancakes.

G-LO: Syrupy indeed! Kinda sweet yet bitey. That root beery spice tingles a wee bit. Very gently I might add.

AK: There is a bite! It’s kinda mediciney. Like cough syrup. Little salty too which is pretty weird. My sodium level does need some upping. Mediciney. Not Talisker or Laphroaig mediciney. CVS/Walgreens mediciney. The generic brand.

G-LO: Exactly! Robitussin mediciney. With a little bitterness in the aftertaste. Not awful by any stretch, just a little odd. Starts off sweet and kinda yummy, but then the whisky kicks in and finishes a little mediciney. Not getting the salt.

AK: Definitely has that Robitussin coating.

G-LO: Flavored whisky is definitely a thing, though usually not for me. At least not straight up. What do we think of it on its own?

AK: Not sure. I like the concept better than the product. I love root beer but the whole flavored whisky thing hasn’t taken me by storm.

G-LO: I feel the same way. I’ve had a couple legit good ones, but most are pretty meh.  Crown Royal Vanilla is quite good. Especially with a slice of Wegman’s Ultimate Cheesecake!

AK: If you’re going to go the flavored route, I hope it’s with natural flavors, Mr. Dessert.

G-LO: I can see this being good on the rocks. The chill might take away that bitter aftertaste thing. Lemme get an ice cube!

AK: Great idea!  The pharmacist always says “keep the stuff in the fridge; it will taste better”.

G-LO: I’m full of ideas. Few are great. Many are illegal.

AK: Legal is a fine line waiting to be crossed.

G-LO: What the pharmacy really wants to say is keep a glass of whisky handy. It will taste better. But drugs and alcohol generally don’t mix. Though alcohol is TECHNICALLY a drug, soooooo….

AK: Bizarre about those Charlize legs on this thing! Ice cube has entered the Root Out zone here. Not Ice Cube. He’s unavailable.

G-LO: I was crazy about Charlize in general, but then Sean Penn happened. He ruins everything. Ice helps with the aftertaste by the way.

AK: OMG! I’m watching the ice cube diffuse, melt, transform in the Whisky! It’s bizarre!! Never seen that before.

G-LO: Is it like watching paint dry?

AK: Way better. It’s crazy! The Satellite Engineer is fascinated!

G-LO: That’s saying something! Lord knows, what she finds fascinating about you.

AK: The universe is full of mystery. The cube is actually moving on the surface. The Engineer says it has something to do with density. I know of dense rather well.

G-LO: Indeed. As do I. We’re simpatico. I love that word.

AK: It’s so simple. You can see the oils gathering on the surface. I assume those are oils. I hope those are oils!

G-LO: Video! We need video!

AK: I’m trying!

G-LO: There is no try.

AK: Only do-do! Here’s your video, Pal…

G-LO: Hey now! No do-do here here. Use the facility for that! Liking this much better chilled. Kinda soothing like an Amaro.  Would probably make a nice highball with club soda. Highball = Whisky Spritzer!  Are you thinking what I’m thinking?

AK: Charlize Theron should be our personal bartender?

G-LO: Yes! Wait… YES! No. I got desserts on the brain. I have a chemical imbalance.

AK: First step is admitting it. What’s your idea, Professor?

G-LO: We do loves us some ice cream.

AK: Sahara, Gobi, Ice Cream. And?

G-LO: And we’re positively smitten with ice cream and booze combinations!

AK: We are!

G-LO: Head over heels smitten. Triple Lindy Smitten!

AK: That’s pretty smitten! Go on…

G-LO: Abso-forkin-lutely! So what I was thinking was Haagen Dazs Vanilla Ice Cream topped with Root Out.

AK: I LOVE dessert science!

G-LO: Thanks! Long and tan and dark and lovely…..

AK: Get Charlize off the brain! Here‘s my two bit idea. Two of them actually. Bump up the booze on the Root Out with more Canadian Whisky. And separately, add root beer soda to some Canadian whisky. I just pulled out some Forty Creek Barrel Select for said experiments. Lab coat is at the cleaners so I’m going with the worn out t-shirt from the ‘90’s. John Hall at Forty Creek would kill me if he knew about this mad science.

G-LO: Bah! He got his buyout. You bought a bottle. All he cares about.  You’re a friggin’ witch doctor! We love that about you.

AK: Dr.Bombay! Dr.Bombay!

G-LO: Limpd is here!

AK: Always late! But always welcome. Not exactly the witch doctor I was thinking of, but he’ll do.

G-LO: That’s how he rolls! Or limps in his case. Shrunken heads and a flask. An old fashioned witch doctor who makes  house calls.

AK: I’d love to hear his thoughts on the Root Out.

Limpd: Very medicinal. Brings me back to my childhood. And the croop!

AK: *Cough* *Cough* Not the consumption, wee lad?

Limpd: Dad’s Root Beer going in. Formula 44D (watch it!) on the back end.

AK: Whoa! Formula 44D!

G-LO: Can I get a 44 Double D?

AK: Formula 44D is high octane. Illegal in some states, pending in others. Rocket fuel in Kazakhstan.

G-LO: Can your sciencey wife confirm that last bit? FYI, Root Out is killer in Vanilla Ice cream!

AK: She says “No comment.” Root Out fortified with Forty Creek is yummy. Lots of vanilla and the medicine notes go away. The sherry influence helps a lot.

G-LO: Excellent! We’re the Beaker and Bunsen Honeydew of Booze!

AK: But MUCH better looking! This combo would be good on ice cream too. Hints of root beer instead of wallops of it.

G-LO: Thanks. You’re cute too, Doc!

AK: The root beer and sherry is interesting. Almost gets a little bitter. Or oaky.

G-LO: Bitter Root!

AK: Yes! Time for Experimente Numero Dos: Forty Creek with a bit of Henry Weinhard’s Root Beer. Wow! Carmel and vanilla sweetness, still rich Forty Creek.

G-LO: Sounds delicious!

AK: What was that Forty Creek sample you gave me long ago? I tried it on pancakes.

G-LO: Hmmm. Confederation Oak? The one from Whisky Lassie?

AK: I think so. I kind of recall this flavor. So yummy for breakfast!

G-LO: That was a few years back.

AK: What? Your memory isn’t perfect?

G-LO: Hi! My name is Dory. What’s yours?

AK: 42 Wallaby Way. I really love Henry’s even with it’s artificial flavors. Never experimented with it aside from seeing how many bottles I could drink in a setting.

G-LO: Sydney! Limpd wants to know if you speak whale.

AK: Only Welsh after a few Pendryns.

G-LO: Ha! You’re like Tom Jones! It’s not unusual, but you sure are!

AK: Pussycat, pussycat…

G-LO: Meow meow meow.

AK: Tell me about that ice cream experiment.

G-LO: It was delicious! Though I may have watered it down a bit too much. Got really subtle hints of root beer. Really nice.

AK: Curious how the ice cream reacted with Root Out but I bet you ate right through that science project.

G-LO: Indeed I did! I may have licked the bowl too.

AK: Licking up science like Einstein.

G-LO: He had awesome hair. I hear he was smart too.

AK: Made a fortune in physics. Liked root beer too.

G-LO: And lived 40 minutes away from me!

AK: And did you ever invite him over for a soda pop or whisky? Noooooo. What kind of neighbor are you?

G-LO: He was an Ivy Leaguer. You know how they roll. Plus, I’m not of the Tribe. And Limpd has never been a Cleveland Indians fan. Whatever that means.

AK: You both are members of the Hekawi Tribe.

G-LO: Watch your back, Corporal Agarn!

AK: I’ve got three Glencairns full of nothing great. Should we wrap this up and do some real drinking?

G-LO: Indeed we should! Final thoughts?

AK: Root Out is an interesting add to the growing flavored whisky market. Maybe good for cocktails. But the syrupy medicine texture was a bit much for me. But fun to experiment with.

Limpd: I vote for using it as a rinse for cocktails. But I’m not as creative as you two dorks.

G-LO: I thought it was ok on its own. Better with ice. Even better with vanilla ice cream!

AK: Interesting idea. I could see that. Definitely a good bump for desserts. I could see it added into a reduction for a topping to something.

G-LO: Pancakes! Maybe a BBQ sauce? Victory Brewing makes short ribs with a Root Beer based BBQ sauce.

AK: Sounds yummy! Has to be added to something that doesn’t already have a high sugar content.

G-LO: Totally!

AK: I could see it used in a bbq as a browning agent. Baste a brisket with it.

G-LO: You mean that brisket you didn’t save for me when I flew out last time? Bastard.

AK: Same one

G-LO: I say again. Bastard.

AK: That’s me!

G-LO: Have we moved on to the Celebrity Roast portion of the evening?

AK: Where’s Dean Martin?

G-LO: He’s dead.

AK: Where’s Rickles?

G-LO: Dead. Rich Little?

AKe: Not dead. But all the celebrities that he impersonates are. Go figure.

G-LO: So he can do the voiceover for the dead celebrity holograms?

AK: He can do Prince, Tupac, Biggie. Oh, wait…

G-LO: LOL! I think we’re done here.


Many thanks to Van Huynh-Leap of D & S Beverages for sending us this very generous sample!

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