Made in Wisconsin: Dang! That's Good soda - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Made in Wisconsin: Dang! That's Good soda


MILWAUKEE (WAOW) -- A special Made in Wisconsin has people saying 'Dang! That's Good!'

We're heading to Milwaukee for a family owned business with a soda that's fun to drink and even more fun to say.

"Dang! That's Good!"

It's hard not to enjoy the name.

Butterscotch root beer, regular root beer and red cream soda. It doesn't stop there.

"Next month we have our Dang! That's Good Italian cherry coming out," said Andrew Povolo, Imperial Flavors sales manager.

Everything is made with 100-percent cane sugar and is gluten-free.

Povolo is a third generation employee at Imperial Flavors in Milwaukee. The company started in 1964, 50 years ago, with his grandfather.

"He actually created his first cola in the kitchen of his apartment on the east side of Milwaukee, Wisconsin," Povolo told Newsline 9.

Povolo's grandfather began creating recipes from scratch and bagging them to sell to local restaurants and bars. That worked very well for quite a while.

But then, "their customers were asking, 'well, where can we get this product, it's really good!' And after consideration of what we could maybe put into a bottle, we decided to use my grandfather's 42-year-old root beer recipe. This is one of our premium products at the time," said Povolo.

So, they began bottling it. But it still needed a name.

"We actually had given my grandmother a sample for her to try. At this time, there was no label on it, she popped the top, she drank the root beer, she was a root beer lover, and she said 'dang! that's good!” Povolo said. "From that point, we knew we had to keep that brand name under the 'Dang! That's Good' label."

Three generations have had a hand in the business, but owners here says everyone feels like family.

The company tried to bottle the 'Dang! That's Good' soda themselves, but the demand quickly became too much for this machine to handle. So, they turned to another Wisconsin company.

“As far as the 'Dang! That's Good', we will make the recipe here and we'll ship that syrup to a local beverage manufacturer here in Milwaukee," Povolo told Newsline 9.

But how does the business survive in a field with big brand names? Povolo says it's simple. People in Wisconsin are always looking for products made in Wisconsin.

“I think there is a lot of support of local family businesses that take a lot of time in the craftsmanship of a product that they do make from scratch."

You may have already tried Dang! soda and didn't even know it. A popular ice cream shop in central Wisconsin uses Dang's signature drink.

“We were looking for a new root beer that would compliment our ice cream well,” said Kevin Briquelet-Miller, owner of Briq's Ice Cream.

Family also runs in the business at Briq's.

"It compliments our ice cream very well, it has a great taste, so it won us over and we switched our root beer over to Dang! That's Good root beer,” said Briquelet-Miller.

As for Dang!, company leaders say they're looking up from here.

"My uncle is also working on some other creative flavors that we can't talk about yet, but the goal is to grow and grow within each of our product lines,” said Povolo.

To have more and more people saying, 'Dang! That's Good!'

Made in Wisconsin.

To find out where to buy Dang!, click here.

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