Root beer is a common beverage, however, as notorious it is in the United States, it’s as seldom evident in the United Kingdom. You may have witnessed root beer served in fast-food restaurants all across America, and somewhat on the streets of New York City, albeit, as lip-smacking this brew is, it’s a rare sight for the British.
What is Root Beer?
Root beer is a sugary North American beverage, customarily prepared from a species of sassafras trees, Sassafras Albidum, or the vine of Smilax Ornata, also known as “sarsaparilla”. It is primarily, but not exceptionally, non-alcoholic, carbonated, and caffeine-free, however, industrial production makes use of synthetic sassafras extract.
Root beer was initially invented in the 16th century, however, it was publicized only after the 1800s, which explains why the British appear to be oblivious to it as, amidst the advent of the Europeans in America, root beer was being capitalized as a “medicine” rather than a soothing beverage.
Why Is Root Beer Rare In The UK?
Apart from the historical aspect, only a scarce population of British are fond of drinking root beer, which is why it is not eagerly accessible in the United Kingdom. Another reason behind the rarity of root beer are the regulations that England has imposed on ‘additives’. As such, only limited varieties of root beer are permitted to be imported into the country, making it a tedious chore to find.
Moreover, the British are accustomed to the native ‘Dandelion & Burdock’, a brew that somewhat resembles the traditional root beer, although, it is less intense in flavour. Consequently, the absence of an authentic root beer flavour has made it recherché in the United Kingdom.
Where Can You Find Root Beer In The UK?
Not going to lie, root beer is exceedingly rare in the United Kingdom. Albeit not as widespread as the ‘Dandelion & Burdock’, you might be able to find root beer in the United Kingdom.
Since root beer isn’t domestically manufactured in England, it is imported from where it is – America. It is obtainable from ASDA stores owned by Walmart, and TESCO stores across the United Kingdom. However, bear in mind that only limited assortments will be available due to the restrictions on import.
If you’re fortunate, you may discover some cans of ‘A&W’ at sweet shops on the streets of London. However, these WILL be costly due to the importation tolls – suppose TWO or THREE times the amount of a can of soda.
There’s a vintage appeal to authentic root beer and its assortment roots and bark, and berries. I would suggest anyone who has a tang for soda to relish this splendid brew! Mix it up with some ice and lime, and revel in it with a couple of comrades.