Best Root Beer: A Soda Review

What is the best root beer? Let’s find out by comparing the flavors.

The “root beer rankings” is a list of the best root beers in America. This list includes the top 10 root beers that were chosen by the people who voted on them. The list also includes a short description of each root beer and its ranking.

Variety of root beer.

Today, we kick off a series of soda reviews in honor of the Art of Manliness’ enthusiasm for wonderfully constructed, independently created soda. We’ll help you become a soda connoisseur by pitting all of your favorite tastes against each other in head-to-head challenges to see which one comes out on top. Let the finest carbonated beverage triumph.

All of the drinks we’ll be looking at are sweetened with pure cane sugar or similar natural sweetener, since sodas sweetened with high fructose corn syrup are sacrilege and aren’t worth the flimsy can they come in. Independent bottlers will provide the majority of the drinks.

Today we’re hosting a competition between several sorts of root beer, which is one of our favorite beverages.


Root beer has a long history dating back to colonial times. Wintergreen, birch bark, vanilla beans, and ginger were among the plants, roots, and barks used by America’s early immigrants to make drinks. The boiling and fermenting of these concoctions killed any floaters in the water that may have made the colonists sick, and added a 2-10 percent alcohol level to these “beers.” Charles Hires, on the other hand, was the one who popularized root beer. Hires presented root beer to the public during the 1876 Centennial Convention by concocting an appealing mixture of numerous herbs, roots, berries, and spices. He dubbed it “The Temperance Drink” and described it as “the world’s best health-giving beverage.” Despite these claims, temperance activists were wary of a drink called “root beer.” To establish that his new drink had no more alcohol than a loaf of bread, Hires had to conduct a scientific test. During Prohibition, root beer became a popular alternative to drinking alcoholic beverages. Despite its reputation as the red-headed stepchild of big brother cola, root beer has always been at the top of my list. There’s nothing quite like a sizzling pizza and a refreshing glass of root beer.


Berghoff root beer bottle.

Chicago is where it all started.

“Famous Root Beer” and “Draft Style” are written on the bottle.

Since 1891, has there been an OG?

Our verdict: This isn’t our favorite beer. The taste is really flat and weak. It’s a tad overly sweet and effervescent. Blah.

The Final Word on AoM:

Red color bottle cap. (out of a total of four bottle caps)


Mason's root beer review bottle craft soda.

Atlanta, Georgia is where this product was created.

“Keg Brewed Flavor,” it states on the bottle.

OG? Nope

Mason’s had an excellent fizz level, in our opinion. However, the root beer taste was too subtle and unremarkable. A tad too sugary. An intriguing nutmeg flavor. It goes down without a hitch.

The verdict of the AoM:

Red color bottle cap.

John Barleycorn of Journey

Journey's John barley corn root beer craft soda.

Putney, Vermont is where this item was made.

“Journey’s Historic Brews” is based on a wide collection of root bark tea and root brew recipes, according to the bottle. In the 1500s, Native Americans and conquistadors shared this very scented root drink. Over the previous five centuries, Anglo-Saxons, Germans, Scandinavians, and Americans have mixed and made an estimated 60 different varieties of root beer. John Barleycorn revives Scottish and Irish root beer traditions in the United States. The smooth flavor and fragrant scent come from the malted barley.”


OG? It began in the 1970s.

Journey’s John Barleycorn soda is described as “Nutty Malty Foamy,” and it surely is all three. Unfortunately, despite the fact that the container and idea are intriguing, and we were expecting to enjoy anything from Vermont, the taste simply didn’t deliver. The brew is really black, and the taste is distinct, but it’s not very root beer-like or enjoyable. This beer was doomed by strange herbal undertones.

The verdict of the AoM:

Red color bottle cap.

Capt’n Eli’s (Capt’n Eli’s)

Captn' eli's root beer.

Portland, Maine is where it all started.

The label on the bottle reads, “Nada.”

OG? Nope

Our verdict: Just the proper amount of sweetness with a silky smooth taste. Wintergreen taste is strong and somewhat medicinal, but not to the point of being unpleasant.

The verdict of the AoM:

Red color bottle cap.


Boylan's root beer review craft soda reviews.

Moonachie, New Jersey

The label on the bottle reads, “Nada.”

Since 1891, has there been an OG?

Our thoughts: A fruity beer with strong sassafras notes. It’s not too sweet. It has a really nice aftertaste.

The verdict of the AoM:

Red color bottle cap.

Americana Root Beer is a microbrewed root beer made in the United States.

Americana root beer craft soda.

Redmond, Washington Washington

OG? Nope.

The label on the bottle reads:

“In the early 1900s, the period of soda poppery started. Soft drinks, or tonics as they were known back then, came in a broad range of tastes. Root Beer is made with sassafras root bark, which is a traditional American taste. Only 600 gallons of Americana Cream Style are made at a time, in true micro form. Our extracts are meticulously combined with pure cane sugar to create a rich, creamy taste reminiscent of vintage sodas.”

Our verdict:

Not simply because of the vintage-looking label, but because it is our absolute favorite. The root beer flavor of Americana is what you’re searching for in a brew. The taste is rich and full-bodied. It’s labeled as “cream style,” and it has a distinct cream soda flavor. Wintergreen taste enlivens the palate; mild undertones of sassafras and licorice contribute to a pleasant, nuanced flavor.

The Final Word on AoM:

Red color bottle cap.

Editor’s note: While Virgil’s root beer was unavailable at the time of testing, we were able to get a sample afterwards, and it easily outperformed all of the other entries. It is, without a doubt, the finest root beer available.

Do you have a problem with our ratings? Is there a root beer that you believe needs to be evaluated that we missed? Leave a comment in the space below.



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Root beer is a type of soda that has been around for centuries. There are many different brands of root beer, and this article reviews the best root beers. Reference: root beer brands glass bottle.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the number one rated root beer?

A: The number one rated root beer is A&W Root Beer.

Why root beer is the best soda?

A: Root beer contains antioxidants and other healthy substances that make it an excellent soda to drink.

Is root beer better than soda?

A: Root beer is a carbonated soft drink, while soda is an alcoholic beverage.

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