Root Beer Float with a Twist

This is another in an occasional series of posts I’ve written about my home soda-jerk escapades. Here is a link to the entire series.


I was fortunate to score several bottles of my favorite root beer for the holiday. Sprecher’s is brewed in Glendale, Wisconsin, just outside of Milwaukee. I drank a lot of it during my one visit to that area and grab it on the rare occasions that I see any in the Philly region. 

In addition to enjoying a cold bottle on its own, I usually take advantage of those times that I have Sprecher’s on hand to make root beer floats. Those typically consist of just root beer and ice cream, but I like to gild the lily* by adding a little chocolate syrup to the mix.

It’s not a revolutionary change. I’ve seen root beer floats with the addition of chocolate syrup online and it may be more common in other parts of the country. In fact, seeing it online or perhaps while on vacation probably inspired me to start making them that way in the first place.

The four ingredients I used. Vanilla is always my ice cream flavor of choice for floats.

While I had all of the necessary ingredients on hand, I unfortunately was out of my preferred chocolate syrup – Fox’s U-bet – and had to settle for what I did have; Hershey’s Simply 5. My local supermarket has stopped carrying Fox’s and I decided to give this a shot. That was a mistake. It’s got an odd flavor and isn’t even as good as regular Hershey’s syrup. 

I begin the process by mixing a small amount of root beer and chocolate syrup at the bottom of the biggest glass I have.

Then I pour a little more root beer into the glass and add a couple scoops of ice cream. At that point, I like to add a touch more chocolate syrup before topping off the glass to slightly below the rim with root beer. Then I may or may not add a bit more chocolate syrup as a sort of garnish. I did here, although I ruined the garnish factor by adding whipped cream on top of it. I should have squeezed the syrup on top of the whipped cream for presentation purposes.

Overall, it was extremely good, although I could still taste that odd flavor from the chocolate syrup. I’m going to have to find some Fox’s U-bet soon – hopefully before I run out of Sprecher’s.**


*’Gild the lily’ is a phrase that Jane and Michael Stern, the creators of “Roadfood” as a concept, in addition to books and a website, used to occasionally slip into their reviews of ice cream shops and soda fountains. 

**After searching several supermarkets in my vicinity, I found Fox’s U-bet syrup at one near the deli where I picked up the hoagie I wrote about yesterday. And I still have two bottles of Sprecher’s left!

Published by BZ Maestro

I live outside of Philadelphia and have been food-obsessed for as long as I can remember. After toying with the idea of starting a blog for a fairly long time, the extinction of a food-themed message board that I frequented for years prompted me to finally take action. Thank you for taking the time to check out what I've been up to - and eating. If you've enjoyed what you have read and seen, please consider clicking the "like" button and signing up as a follower.

5 thoughts on “Root Beer Float with a Twist

  1. Ah, the syrup is proof that “To gild refined gold, to paint the lily, to throw a perfume on the violet, to smooth the ice, or add another hue unto the rainbow, or with taper-light to seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish, is wasteful and ridiculous excess.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The chocolate syrup is an interesting idea. I haven’t had a float in about a thousand years but if I ever make one again (perhaps for the grandkids) I might have to give it a try.

    Sprecher’s is very good but we have some other root beers that are up there as well, and IIRC they’re all free of HFCS. Potosi’s version also includes honey.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. LOVE Sprecher’s! There’s a beverage shop on the Lower East Side here in NYC that carries it so I can get my fix when I need it. Big fan of Abita and Saranac as well.

    Liked by 1 person

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