Beer Trends, Hard Soda
Bars & Drinks Seller Server Classes
Mike Parker

There is nothing new about adding your favorite brand of alcoholic beverage to your favorite brand of non-alcoholic beverage to create a palette pleasing concoction to go along with the sparkling conversation at a social gathering. Consider the Cuba Libre (rum, lime and cola). Or its cousin, the Fidel Castro (dark rum, lime and ginger ale). Maybe you prefer a Dirty Shirley (vodka, lemon-lime soda and grenadine syrup), or the unimaginatively monikered Jack-n-Coke (Jack Daniel’s Whisky and Coca-Cola – what, you were expecting something different?).

Now craft brewers are getting into the act, conjuring up so-called “hard” sodas to go along with their craft beers. Leading the charge for the past few years is the phenomenally successful, Not Your Father’s Root Beer, from Small Town Brewery. The hard root beer, which was first introduced around five years ago, is technically described by the company as a “category-defining specialty ale brewed with unique spices.” The original recipe contains 5.9% Alcohol By Volume, but Small Town also offers a higher-octane version with a 10.7% ABV, and has recently introduced additional flavors, including Not Your Father’s Ginger Ale, and Not Your Father’s Vanilla Cream Soda.

Ah, but there so many more soda flavors to explore, and brewers are unlikely to leave many stones unturned in the search for new and exciting tastes. Consider Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Company’s Henry’s Hard Orange Soda, a traditional malt beverage with natural orange flavor with 4.2% ABV. Or Seagram’s Hard Soda Cherry Cola, a flavored malt beverage with 5.9% ABV. Or Jed’s Hard Black Cherry Cream Soda from F.X. Matt Brewing Company. This hard soda contains 5.9% ABV.

They may remind of you the flavors of your childhood, but remember; hard sodas are adult beverages. Please drink responsibly.

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