Skip to main content

the story of Sioux City Sarsaparilla

in background, a close shot of a bottle each of dark brown Sioux City Sarasparilla and fuschia Sioux City Prickly Pear soda. in foreground "the story of Sioux City Sarsaparilla" and "

One of the most widely known "Sioux City" things actually isn't a Sioux City thing! If you've seen the movie The Big Lebowski, you may have caught this scene:

And Sioux City Sarsaparilla is real (and it really is a good one!) Here's the full story on Sioux City Sarsaparilla:

What is Sioux City Sarsaparilla?

Sioux City Sarsaparilla is the signature drink from White Rock's Sioux City line. In 1973, White Rock president Albert Morgan wanted to start a western inspired line of classic American soft drinks, with a frontier feel. He chose Sioux City as his inspiration! Sioux City Sarsaparilla is known as "the Grandaddy of all root beers" and has a creamy taste somewhere between root beer and cream soda. And it's the most bought sarsaparilla in the US!

a bottle of Sioux City Sarsaparilla with a grassy hill in the background

Is Sioux City Sarsaparilla made in Sioux City?

Nope. Sioux City Sarsaparilla is actually made in New York by White Rock Beverages! The company actually started not too far away from Iowa, in neighboring Wisconsin, but by the time the Sioux City pop line was created, they were firmly established as a New York company, staffed with New Yorkers to whom Sioux City sounded like the wild west!

Other Sioux City soda flavors

There are several other flavors in the Sioux City soda line including:
  • Root Beer: a more conventional (but totally delicious!) root beer flavor
  • Cream Soda: creamy, delightful and crisp
  • Orange Cream Soda: like an orange creamsicle in pop form
  • Prickly Pear Soda: a fruity, slightly sour soda that's the prettiest fuchsia I've ever seen in a food item. The prickly pear soda was my kids' favorite out of the ones we tried! I will definitely buy this again for myself, too. 
  • Birch Beer: I finally tried the Sioux City Birch Beer from White Rock in early 2022, and it's really good! It is more similar to root beer than I expected, but definitely with its own distinctive flavor that is a little lighter and lightly minty. 
  • Ginger Beer: think Canada Dry! Definitely a great choice if you love ginger (and for queasy tummies!)

Where can you buy Sioux City Sarsaparilla?

You can buy Sioux City Sarsaparilla all over the US, at a variety of grocery and specialty stores, and in Siouxland, you can get it at 
  • Fareway
  • Hy-Vee
  • Palmer's
I've also seen it being sold at the Woodbury County Fair in the Concord Mercantile in Old Town, as a fundraiser for local 4-H kids!

Is Sioux City Sarsaparilla any good?

Well, like any food or drink review, that's pretty subjective, but my answer is definitely yes. Sioux City Sarsaparilla is a crisp, flavorful pop that earns its nickname as the Grandaddy of all root beers. If you like root beer, you will like Sioux City Sarsaparilla. And for an authentically Sioux City twist, add some locally made vanilla ice cream from Blue Bunny to make an epic float! 

a root beer float in a short clear glass

Have you tried Sioux City Sarsaparilla or any of White Rock's other Sioux City sodas? Let me know in the comments which one is your fave!


  1. Their Birch Beer is one of the best on the market! Not wintergreen, but think Tberry gum. Birch bark flavor, not sarsaparilla bark.


Post a Comment

Thanks for joining in the conversation! We can't wait to hear what you have to say. Some comments are moderated, so it may take some time for your comment to appear on the site. We encourage lively discussion, but will delete comments that are hostile, hateful, spammy, or rude.

Popular posts from this blog

Sioux City & Siouxland Christmas

Christmas is coming! The Sioux City area has so many fun and festive events to celebrate the Christmas season, and this post will be updated throughout the coming weeks as new events and details announced. I'm thrilled to share all the festive fun with you! You might also enjoy my posts on Christmas Road Trips (Christmas fun in Omaha, Sioux Falls, Okoboji, and more!) Christmas Tree Farms in Siouxland , Family Friendly New Year's Eve , Experience Gifts for Siouxland Families , and Last Minute Christmas Gifts You Can Buy in Siouxland ! This post features the best Christmas events in Siouxland, the best places in Siouxland to see Christmas lights , and some of the best places in Siouxland to see Santa !  Sioux City & Siouxland Christmas Events November 2023 Christmas at the Homestead  at Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve Saturday 11/11/23 November 11th from noon to 4pm at  Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve  in North Sioux City, South Dakota Historical building

Best Places to Play Inside in Sioux Falls

When extreme weather means outdoor play is off the table, there's still tons of fun to be had inside in the Sioux Falls, South Dakota area, where kids can climb, explore, and learn about history, science, art, animals, and much more, all year round. Here are some of the best places to play inside in Sioux Falls:

Siouxland Pumpkin Patches

now updated for 2023! One of the best parts of living right in the middle of some of the world's best farmland is access to amazing pumpkin patches! Here are some of the great pumpkin patches within a 2-hour drive from downtown Sioux City, listed by distance from downtown Sioux City. This roundup is being updated to reflect 2023 pumpkin patch hours, rates, and events, and I will update throughout the season as new details are available. Please e-mail me if you own or operate a pumpkin patch and would like to update your entry or add a patch to our list! Scarecrow Farm Photo used with permission from Scarecrow Farm Location : 1592 Charles Avenue, Lawton, Iowa Distance from downtown Sioux City : 8.7 miles/ 15 minutes (4 miles East of Menards) Dates for 2023 : Sunflower Days are weekends in September, beginning September 9th, 2023. Click here for more information on Sunflower Days at Scarecrow Farm. Then September 30th & October 1st, 2023 enjoy Oktoberfest at Scarec