Molson Mad Jack Hard Root Beer

Reviewed by on May 19, 2016 in Summer Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Molson Coors Canada

  • Origin: Etobicoke, ON, CA

  • Rated On: May 19, 2016

  • Best Before: No idea

  • ABV: 5.0%

  • Ideal Temperature: cold to cool

  • Style: Flavoured Lager

  • Rating: OKAY

The Review

Well, so far the newest trend that seems to be the potential darling for summer 2016 is hard root beer, with the big boys stumbling over themselves to get on the bandwagon. And I gotta point out – what is with the barrel imagery on the label?

This 355ml can pours a clear, medium orange-brick amber colour, with three fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and certainly bubbly tan head, which leaves absolutely nothing in the way of lace anywhere near the glass as it quickly fizzes away.

It smells of musty, artificial vanilla-heavy root beer (of the Barq’s type), a metallic stoniness, and a further kludgy caramel sweetness. The taste is mixed vanilla and caramel sweeteners, an earthy root thing (sassafras, I suppose), some muddled sugary spice (clove and cinnamon, maybe), some free range herbal notes, and a slight sense of alcohol warming that gives you the idea that you’re not consuming a kiddie beverage here. The carbonation is quite tame and barely frothy after the opening theatrics, the body a decent sugar-buoyed middleweight, and generally smooth, with just a touch of edgy generic spice taking a wee toll here. It finishes well off-dry, but less and less like straight-up grocery-store brand root beer then at first take.

Well, leave it to Molson to try and ape the common soft drink in rendering an adult version of it, and still kind of sort of fail. The big vanilla, caramel, and spicy root is more or less there, but fades quickly, leaving a mess of musty, almost dirty essences come last call. There are better options out there for this type of thing right now, if you want to indulge your inner child, that is.

Brady White

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