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Thursday, December 31, 2015

Where you can buy Flying Cauldron Butterscotch Beer in North County

The short version: As far as I can tell, the only place to find it is at Rocket Fizz, which has a store in downtown Vista, near the Cinepolis theater.

The long version: My two intrepid Assistant Tasters have decided to celebrate our arrival at a particular point in the Earth's orbit by hosting a party for their friends at the Lab. Some of these friends were previously introduced to a delightful Weird soda, Flying Cauldron Butterscotch Beer, which we reviewed at the Lab back in 2012. Shortly before the party*, I was informed that these splendid young people were hoping that more Flying Cauldron would be provided**. Being a Quaffmaster (even if semi-retired), I assumed that locating a specific Weird soda would not be difficult.

I turned to our modern Delphic oracle***, the Google. The Google reported that several stores indicated that their store was familiar with Flying Cauldron, a word which here means "have heard of it at one point, and are pretty sure they'd be able to order it for you with two weeks lead time". It turns out needing it in 24 hours makes businesses feel perfectly entitled to add all sorts of extra charges amounting to it being cheaper to have my own Flying Cauldron brewing facility constructed.

The manufacturer's web site is well-constructed, and even has the ability to select a specific beverage and have stores selling that beverage located. How lovely.

Of course you can buy Flying Cauldron in your area!, I was told. There are any number of stores, all of the "Fresh & Easy" chain, which stock Flying Cauldron. Here are all the locations within 100 miles of you.

Unfortunately, I happen to know that the entire Fresh and Easy chain has recently gone out of business****.

Having concluded that my quest was in vain, I resigned myself to provide some sort of lesser butterscotch beverage and throw myself upon the mercy***** of the teenagers who would be descending on the Lab in six hours. According to Rocket Fizz's website, they did not have Flying Cauldron, but did have at least one other butterscotch soda, which might be adequate, so I went there first (the second try would be Cost Plus, where they apparently had Dang! That's Good butterscotch root beer; not my favorite).

Browsing through Rocket Fizz, I was astonished to come across Flying Cauldron. Grabbing twelve bottles and snarling ferally at any other customers who wandered near, I went up to the counter.

"Do you realize you are the *only* people in North County who stock this?"

The proprietor gazed at me, a satisfied smile on his face, a calm serenity in his eyes.

"Oh, yes," he replied, "yes, we do."

I don't know why it's not on their website. Perhaps they hope to restrict Flying Cauldron only to the worthy, who do not seek advice from the Google. Perhaps they hope to avoid attention from the same shadowy forces which brought down the Fresh and Easy chain. It's impossible to say. But given that this blog is read by approximately ten people, I feel safe in spreading what word I can:

All that is good is not Googled,
Not all that which bubbles does boil;
If you seek you shall not be bamboozled,
Deep quaffing awaits those who toil.

The cauldron has flown here in secret--
To Vista, where stores know their biz;
The Butterscotch Beer is on fleek yet!
You'll find it at Rocket Fizz.

* And by "shortly", I mean "less than 48 hours"
** And by "hoping", I mean "operating under the assumption, with unspecified but dire consequences if said assumption proved unfounded"
*** Having the option to have Google deliver search results in cryptic Delphic utterances is a very very good idea.
**** I blame ISIL, and their well-known hatred of butterscotch.
***** I thought I'd give all the parents of teenagers out there a bit of a chuckle to start the New Year.
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