most of the 'Popular commercial brands" are not actually root beer and they are basically caramel colored sugar water
If the ingredients do not contain
or a variation of the above then it isn't ROOT
Ever heard of Charles Hires? that's the guy who formulated and brought the first commercial root beer to market
A&W Root Beer, Dad's Root Beer, Mug Root Beer, Barq's (all the large brands) no longer contain the actual ingredients needed to actually be a ROOT
Virgils is one of my favorites widely available
it contains: cane sugar and a number of natural spices, including anise, licorice, vanilla, cinnamon, clove, sweet birch, molasses, nutmeg, pimento berry oil (allspice), balsam oil, and cassia oil .
Natural Brew is another one...it contains: Filtered Water, Sugar, Bourbon Vanilla Extract, Anise, Licorice ROOT, Birch Oil, and Wintergreen oil..
but i suggest you also try
Boylans Root Beer
Whole Foods 365 Everyday Value Root Beer
as they actually contain ingredients that classify them as "ROOT' Beer