The Soda Wars: Coney Island Hard Cherry Cream Ale

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Tue, Aug 16 - 2:05 am EDT | 3 days ago by
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    Hard Cherry Cream Ale

    Peace In Our Time

    For so many generations, the great Soda Wars raged, taking down nation after nation and army after army. Begun in simpler times of beer and malt beverage armies marching against the rebel forces of the hard soda clans, it did not take long for the conflict to not only escalate, but complicate by virtue of competing interests and alliances both broken and forged. Throughout the war, it was quite often difficult, if not impossible to truly gauge whose side who was on, or even what the sides themselves were when examining the historical records compiled by

    However if you are reading this now, you are a member of a most fortunate generation. Yours is one to whom the great Soda Wars are but a thing of the past and hopefully at this point, nearly forgotten ancient history. In this piece, we shall not seek to examine the origins of the conflict, nor much in the way of the technological advancements wrought from and lost to such a horrid period in human drinking history. Instead, we shall endeavor to examine the nature of one of the final weapons used in the waning days of the war which raged forever.

    Among the many original armies to rise up and units to see action, the Coney Island Brewing irregulars are possibly among the oldest and most revered. Opening with their own salvos against the nation of Not Your Father’s as they sought total domination, it was Coney Island’s Hard Root Beer which is largely considered to have been the first real shot fired in the fights which ensued. It is fitting then that from such simple beginnings in a conflict which would span generations, that we come to this final machination of the Coney Island army which saw action only at the closing days of the wars.

    Dubbed the HCCA, or Hard Cherry Cream Ale, it was not entirely unique in its ability to go undetected in respect to its “hard” or alcoholic nature. Certainly at either a visual or olfactory inspection of the thing, it appeared to be another run-of-the-mill civilian cherry cream ale, with both a dark brown color, bubbly nature and a most definite scent of sweet cherries within. In truth, even upon sampling the core of the thing, one would be hard pressed to define it as anything with any amount of punch at all.

    Yet as we know now though, this medium-low grade payload packed within it a 5.4% ABV putting it actually 1.2% higher than the standard issue Bud Light payloads offered to conventional beer forces. Delivering such smoothly, sweetly and without much in the way of any real overall bite, it offers up such with an altogether balanced blending of elements including vanilla, cherry, cream and even hints of toffee, all the while resembling nothing like beer at all.

    With this final salvo offered up with what was one of the final mainstream munitions put into service in the final days of the Soda Wars, it is fitting then that it offer such a sweet and subtle sendoff.

    So to the countless legions of lost Soda and Beer nation service men and women, to the peace we enjoy now, to Coney Island Brewing and of course to you, I say in the traditions of old…


    Nicholas Goroff is an actor, writer and craft beer reviewer at Certified as a Cicerone beer server, he is working towards obtaining certification as a beer judge while employed at Bert’s Better Beers in Hooksett, NH. When not reviewing beer, wine and spirits, he is typically writing political essays, screenplays and short fiction. Follow him on Twitter @wizardofcause.

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