The Pooj isn't sure he's asking the right questions.(Rocket Fizz Pasadena, October 2011)
Sherman Avery started making soda in his barn in New Britain, CT in 1904, personally delivering wares to customers by wagon until 1914 when he finally bought a truck. To this day, Avery’s Beverages are still made in that same red barn in small batches, and are still in some cases home-delivered.
Avery's Root Beer doesn’t have a particularly strong flavor coming out of the gate – only slightly root-y, but otherwise mostly watery. The aftertaste is also ever so slightly root-y, but again, there's really not much there. Same goes for the scent – it’s slightly root-y, but fades fast. It's not that Avery’s doesn't taste like root beer; it’s just that Avery’s doesn't taste like anything in particular at all. Not cola-ish, not sugary, not really anything. Just a slightly sweet, slightly herb-y soda.
Given its interesting history, I'm more than slightly disappointed. Maybe I’m just not familiar enough with Connecticut style root beer, because Avery’s by all accounts still appears popular in its home state. Unfortunately I just won't be asking for Avery’s Root Beer in California again. Sorry, but that'll only get you a low 2.