Making Craft Cola - FAQ

General Questions

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This kit yields 32 oz of Root Beer Syrup, which yields about 130 oz of finished, fizzy Root Beer! You can carbonate in two 2L bottles (which you’ll need to source) or use the syrup to whip up a glass or Root Beer anytime with store bought seltzer.

Your homemade Root Beer Syrup can be stored in the fridge in a sealed container for 6 weeks. If you carbonate bottles in 2L bottles, we advise drinking them within 1 week. If the bottles are stored in the fridge longer than that, the risk of over-carbonation increases & alcohol content can increase, making the root beer taste ‘off.’

This kit is NOT designed or intended for creating alcoholic root beer. There are 2 ways to carbonate your Root Beer. Naturally carbonating in 2L bottles with the included yeast will create trace amounts of alcohol - a natural byproduct of the fermentation process. The alcohol levels will be extremely low if our instructions are properly followed (less than 0.05%). If you do not want ANY trace of alcohol in your Root Beer, then we recommend using store bought seltzer to carbonate your Root Beer Syrup instead.

Caramelization

Watch our video of the caramelization process from start to finish. You’ll end up with a thin, dark brown/reddish syrup.

Remember, this process is NOT necessary & completely optional. But if you do caramelize sugar for your Root Beer follow these tips for a smooth, experience:

  • Resist the temptation to stop or remove the pan from heat too soon. You DON’T want to interfere with the reaction. It’s a slow & steady process.
  • As the sugar caramelizes you’ll see big bubbles, they’ll release steam. They’ll billow up for most of the process.
  • You’ll observe a change in smell - from sweet to a more nutty or almost-burnt smell - that’s when you know you’re ready to add water. Around this same time, you’ll also notice the layer of bubbles begins to collapse or cave in on itself.
  • When it’s time to add the caramel to your Root Beer Syrup, you can use a spatula or even some of the hot Root Beer “tea” to loosen anything that’s hardened or solidified. can pour hot root beer into the saucepan to loosen.

Bottling

Feel free to use half of your root beer syrup to carbonate in a 2L bottle and save the other half for making instant root beer with seltzer water. This allows you to experiment with both carbonation methods and to get a longer shelf life from your homemade Root Beer Syrup! (2L bottles are best enjoyed within 1 week. Root Beer Syrup can be stored in the fridge for 6 weeks.)

Where do I find bottles?

  • We recommend buying 2 bottles of soda at the store, enjoying them and use the empties. 2 Liter bottles of club soda or seltzer water are usually cheaper than soda. DO NOT use glass bottles or mason jars. If you don’t have bottles right away, you can always store your Root Beer Syrup in a sealed container in the fridge until you’re ready to bottle.

Bottles are firm, but the carbonation is weak. What should I do?

  • If the carbonation is not strong or fizzy enough after you open a chilled bottle, you can re-seal the bottle and store it at room temperature for a few more hours. Remember, the yeast slows down in the fridge but doesn’t go completely dormant or die. The yeast will ‘wake up’ when the temperature warms up and will continue to create CO2. We recommend checking on the bottles every few hours to see how the bottle firms up. Once it’s VERY firm you can return to the fridge.

Bottles are over-carbonated - what should I do?

  • You can gently twist the cap to release some pressure and CO2.

There’s sediment at the bottom of the bottles - is this normal?

  • Yes! If you carbonate in 2L bottles, some of the yeast will settle at the bottom of the bottles. You can keep this out of your glass by pouring slowly, but if any does get into your glass it isn’t harmful.

Our Guide to Making Root Beer

Simple instructions for brewing natural root beer the old fashioned way.

If you’re still stumped or don’t see your question answered above - email us at support@craftabrew.com. Don’t dump anything until we’ve connected. Including photos in your email will help us help you more efficiently.