Monday, August 25, 2008

Snake River Sarsaparilla, Jackson Hole Soda Company

Surely a soft drink with pictures of dour ladies
on the label will taste delicious.

The sarsaparilla says "Don't call me Shirley".

I did not know that the spelling "sasperilla" is incorrect until now. I'd thought "Sarsaparilla" some fanciful version of what I'd thought was the proper spelling. Now these collegey soda chemists come along and ruin my carefully cultivated ig-no-rance. Bah. Next time I'll believe the little red line of my spell check, no more doubting for me.

The soda is okay. Not bad, not great. It's not too sweet, but also not too flavorful. Tastes a little watery, but in a clean way. Like my wife said, "It tastes like sasperilla". Note her pitiful ignorance in spelling "sarsaparilla" wrong. Unlike some root beers, it doesn't fight back - half the bottle will be gone before you know it.

When I was a kid, an international pipeline ran through my side yard. A long, cleared strip ran across the hills for as far as you could see in either direction, supposedly all the way to Alaska or some such thing. Workers came and dug this cleared area out to add a fiber optic cable, back when I was a kid. The dig site became our playground, and one day a worker gave me a freshly dug up "sarsparillo" root. My mother and I tried to boil it into tea, but it tasted like dirty water and was all for naught.

That's a pretty fantastic idea, a trench that runs all the way from Alaska and on to who knows where.

Remembering this, I tried to go back and trace the pipeline on google maps, but quickly lost track of it as I moved from a series of maps shot in the fall to maps shot during the summer. The summer shots don't have the definition needed to be able to tell trees from meadows, alas.

While idly hunting away, I finished the bottle of soda and didn't even notice.

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