Root Beer… not my Favorite

root beer tastes good

I thought it would be a fun idea to have some posts that simply tell a story. These stories are supposed to be entertaining and are not to be taken too seriously. They are all true stories and most of them involve food.

Just for fun

As many of you know I came to the US as an exchange student when I was 16 years old. A lot of people have asked me to share some of the experiences and impressions I had when I first came here. Luckily, there is plenty of material for that! Please don’t be offended by anything I say. I love the US and especially its lovely people! I would not have chosen to stay here otherwise. Enjoy!

My first family

Before I moved in with my second family (where I met my husband) I lived with another family, whose name of course I won’t mention. Let’s just say things did not work out. The time I spent with them did, however, make for some great stories. Here is the root beer story.

American delicacies

Practically the moment I arrived, people started telling me about all the delicious American delicacies I just had to try. They were especially pleased to hear that I’d never had or even heard of root beer.

My host siblings were so excited about this fact that they felt that it was necessary to drag me (traveling for 30 hours can make you THAT tired) to a store the next day, so that I could try it.

Tiny supermarket, huge selection

It was a tiny supermarket in a small village. I was amazed to find a huge selection of chips, drinks and other items. Of course, they also had root beer. We grabbed a can, paid for it and ran outside. They wanted me to try it right then and there, in front of the store.

The big moment

There I was, in front of a supermarket, three people staring at me in excitement and a can of root beer in my hand. Ok, here it goes: I took a sip. One of them took a picture of this (see above).

What do you think?!

They immediately asked me what I thought. If I really had said what I thought it would have sounded something like this: “It tastes like sugary cough syrup, after it passed through a bladder.” Not only did I lack the English vocabulary to describe just how bad it really was, I also did not want to be rude. Instead I said this: “It is not my favorite.”

The solution

They looked a little disappointed at first, but cheered up quickly when they thought they had identified the problem: “You really have to drink root beer with vanilla ice cream!”. They assured me that this “root beer float” is simply amazing and everybody loves it.

I love food and am always willing to try new foods. Sometimes the weirdest combination tastes the best! So of course I was willing to give this another try.

A place called A&W

A couple days later, we were sitting in a place called A&W which apparently serves “all-American food”. In front of me there was a giant scoop of ice cream surrounded by a sticky brown liquid and three people staring at me… again.

I love vanilla ice cream so I dug in. The root beer/ice cream mixture hit my tongue and I thought: “Great, now it taste like cough syrup pee with a hint of vanilla.”

I am sure they are still convinced that I actually do like root beer… it just wasn’t the right vanilla ice cream.

– Christina


  1. Jenn says:

    That is so funny!! Ha!! You are too cute. That is so awesome that you actually have a photo of your first taste of root beer. I used to go the the A&W in my small town growing up. I could never really get into root beer or root beer floats. However the foot long chili cheese dogs…well we won’t talk about that. ;-) So fun to hear about your life. I look forward to hearing more about your first experiences in America!

  2. Vicki Philipps says:

    That is hysterical Christina! A great story. I actually didn’t realize you had been with another family prior to being with the Tucker’s.

  3. Carolin says:

    Hahaha great story and hilarious photo!
    I remember my first time trying a smore! I didn’t love it either, especially because there was chocolate and marshmellow hanging all over my face!
    Look forward to hear more of these fun stories!

  4. what a cute story! i have NEVER liked root beer. never got why people like it! love your description of it!

  5. Wow! That’s a funny story! I really like your blog…it’s very nice.

  6. kate says:

    haha i love this! have you encountered a lot of strange things in iowa in particular? do you call it soda or pop? i get in serious fights with people over this topic!

    • Mhh, I don’t think it is Iowa. I am in Iowa City, it is a university town, so not your typical Iowa. America is just very different compared to Switzerland, especially the food culture. I am sure I would have had similar stories no matter where I lived.

      I just asked my husband about the soda/pop thing, because honestly I never really use that word (I don’t drink it). I just read about it on the Internet etc. and there people use both words. My husband says people in Iowa say pop. What do you say?

  7. I don’t drink soda anymore, but I have a soft spot for rootbeer and cream soda!

    • I just had to look up what cream soda is. Sounds interesting. Probably better than root beer.

      I assume you would not describe its flavor as “cough syrupy”? That was the best way for me to describe the flavor.

      • Angran says:

        It’s interetsing of the describe on “root beer”.Mix ice cream and beer?! I will try.
        Cream soda is my favorite,too.In China,the cream soda is made ice cream covered soda drinks.I like the combination of milk ice cream and lemon soda.
        From the reply after 10 months! Haha

  8. katecooks says:

    shoot! i am one of those root beer lovers myself :) especially in a glass bottle. but it’s definitely because i associate it with memories i think! im not surprised you didn’t like it though, it is a little weird!!

  9. Mae says:

    I love A&W! 70 flavors of soft ice cream! ;-) I’m new to your blog and absolutely ADORE it. Your 10 fry tip post is amazing. I’m studding food science at University next year, and I love learning about the topics you’ve been writing about.

  10. Mo says:

    This made me laugh, and it reminded me of my aunt, uncle and cousins. They LOVE root beer,and they’ll drink any kind (they get blueberry root beer from Maine…). My first experience with the flavor was licking a root beer-flavored Dum Dum Pop when I was maybe 4 and promptly throwing it out. A few years later my cousin convinced me to try the actual stuff and had we not been in a moving car when I tried it I would have spit it out. It’s positively disgusting, and you were much more polite about it than I was. :)
    Oh, and thank you for commenting on my blog, which is not much right now but it means a lot that you took the time to comment.

    • Your story is funny! I guess I am not the only one who disliked it.

      You are welcome about the comments! I really like your blog. Your style of writing is very unique. Very honest, entertaining and funny. I hope more people will find you!

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