Welcome to the Root Beer Rundown. Over the last few years, I've had a lot of fun drinking a lot of root beer and posting my root beer reviews for your reading pleasure. Use the tools on the right to see the complete history of my reviews, find all the brews within a given scoring range, or simply search for your favorite brew to see if it's one I've reviewed. I always like to hear what other root beer lovers like and dislike about different brews, so feel free to sound off in the comments of the reviews. I've also provided some links to a few other great root beer resources. Let me know if I've missed any so I can add them to the list. Enjoy the site!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Napa Valley Soda Company

Who Made This Stuff? Wet Planet Beverages, Rochester, NY

Website: http://www.wetplanet.com/

Where’d It Come From? Not real sure, now that you mention it.

Review Date: 8/26/09

Commentary: So, I’m already a little suspicious about this one. I have been looking forward to trying this root beer because I thought it was from some little craft soda company nestled in the hills of California’s wine country, brewed by a few vintners with some extra time on their hands between grape harvests. With a name like Napa Valley Soda Company, how could you NOT come up with a nice little mental image like that? Well, one visit to their website destroyed that image. I’m not nearly as excited now. This stuff is brought to you by the same folks who were kind enough to bring us Jolt Cola over 20 years ago. I do not consider myself a geography expert, but just exactly how close is Rochester, NY to Napa Valley? Hmmm.

It actually looked good going into my chilled glass as it started to form a dark head. Unfortunately, that head disappeared before I could set the glass down and pick up the camera for the picture. I got a slight whiff of wintergreen when I first opened the bottle. Once poured, that same smell came on very strong. That usually is not a good sign for me. However, the first few sips are not too bad. I can definitely taste the wintergreen, but it is not too strong. I can pick it up a little more in the aftertaste now. So far, this is just an okay root beer. It has a decent bite, it is not overly sweet, and not creamy.

Speaking of sweet, their website has a tagline of “Organic – Natural – Gourmet”, but a quick review of the ingredients shows high fructose corn syrup instead of sugar, as well as artificial flavor. What gives here? Since when are HFCS and artificial flavors considered organic? I was about to say that for an “organic” soda, this one tasted pretty good…but not now. For a soda with the same basic ingredients as most mass produced mega-brands, this one is not anything special.

The carbonation is pretty good. There is still a fair amount of fizz left in my glass as I near the bottom of this less than stellar experience. The bubbles are tiny, which is nice. I will give it good marks there. Even at the bottom of the glass, the wintergreen is still strong. Maybe that is one of those gourmet organic artificial flavors? Overall, I would say this is just an okay root beer. It is not bad by any means, but it is also not really good either. It is sort of a middle of the road type thing. Though it is not a memorable brew, I will remember to give it a score of..........................................75.


  1. Dear Blogger,

    Thank you for tasting NV soda. Unfortunatley there are many areas of the business that were not described in the sales and I think the formulary apparently needs work. I was one of the founders of this company, which was my husbands. We crafted the brews in our garage, with our son who was only 4 years old. The business was very good in the valley and after our divorce, things changed and the brand was diminished. Thank you for your candid feedback. My son who is now 13 years old is taking over his dads business. Mark died just last month after battling cancer for four months. We will take your feedback into consideration. You can contact us at nvsoda@comcast.net. Cheers - Molly

  2. Napa Valley Soda Vanilla Creme flavor is the greatest drink i have ever had!!!