Enter Towne Club. Now, you may have read about this brand before when we talked about Frostie, and like Faygo, it’s a Michigan favorite. It might be the most underground Michigan favorite, too. I can’t speak for everyone, but Towne Club is notorious around here for being an affordable alternative to most fruity colas. They’re a direct competitor to Faygo and store brands, and have even taken a run at energy drinks. Hopefully the root beer is as good, or better, than the other Michigan brands.
Made With Pure Cane Sugar, That’s Pure Michigan
The bottle is huge. We’re talking 16oz of pure root beer. Generally speaking, you see a root beer in a bottle at 12oz, so an extra 4oz for less than some of the fancier bottles on the shelves means that it’s marketed as a better deal. The bulbous bottle, by the way, is completely clear, so we know that this brew is actually colored to look like root beer. In fact, the only color on the bottle, besides the label, is the red on the lid: a thin metallic twist-off, and some green indicating that the drink isn’t made with corn syrup.
Intrastate Distributors owns a variety of brands, including the aforementioned Frostie, and the entire Towne Club brand. I recommend reading the Frostie review for more information on the owners. I will note, however, that while I’ve seen numerous fruit-inspired flavored pop from this company, I’ve never seen root beer.
- Carbonated Water
- Pure Cane Sugar
- Caramel Color
- Natural and Artificial Flavors
- Sodium Benzoate (Preservative)
- Citric Acid
- Phosphoric Acid
I’m disappointed again, but what did I expect? Like many others, they’re skating the line of regulatory requirements. My personal opinion on the subject hasn’t changed. It doesn’t seem ethical to skip including the raw ingredients. Brands like Virgil’s are fully capable of doing it, why not Intrastate Distributors? You’re advertising pure cane sugar on the label of Towne Club. Act like you actually care.
Upon opening the twisty cap, I’m hit with that first hint of root beer: an iconic smell. I expected that it would smell like a traditional root beer, but the flavor matches it point by point. There are definite hints of mint, and there’s a bitterness that’s present, but it’s very smooth. I am pleasantly surprised that it’s not overly sweet. At 25 grams of sugar per serving, I expected it to be relatively bitter, but it’s actually providing a decent balance. There is plentiful carbonation, but it’s not overwhelming this time around.
I admit, I’m always apprehensive when an organization doesn’t list its ingredients, but I’m really impressed on first taste. With Wild Bill’s bringing me close to my feelings about Polar, I didn’t expect Towne Club to bring me there either.
Unlike Wild Bill’s, I kept myself away from Towne Club long enough to give it some time to sit. I’m pleased to note that the carbonation was relatively stable, and the flavor seemed to remain the same. It’s still smooth. What I didn’t like was the sustained aftertaste, and the syrupy like feeling that appeared prevalent. I think that alone, is going to knock a rating point off. The past couple of brews I’ve tasted have had the same issue with “sticking around,” and for that, I believe other root beers I’ve reviewed are still beating these competitors.
This is a smooth, solid, traditional root beer. It has just about everything you would expect in a traditional brew, and definitely conjures up the feelings and tastes that I want when I think of root beer. I would recommend Towne Club, but with the caveat that it isn’t going to unseat the majority of favorites. It almost mirrors Wild Bill’s review. It’s not quite as good, but it’s worth having more than once. Unfortunately, the ingredient list and the syrupy mess mucks up how I’m rating it. If you like traditional root beer, try Towne Club.
Rating: ♛♛♛♕♕ – 3/5