In the mid-90s, I had the pleasure of showing the Chairman of the Coca-Cola Company, Roberto Guizeta around his first visit to the campus of McDonald’s global home office in Oak Brook, and we had an interesting exchange about root beer as we drove between buildings in his limousine.

Coke had just bought the company that made my favorite root beer, Barq’s “It’s Good,” and I took the occasion to ask him about it. Coke already had its own root beer brand, so I wondered out loud, “Roberto, what made you decide to buy Barq’s?” In his strong Cuban accent, he answered, between long pulls on a Camel cigarette, “Charles, my grandfather in Cuba, he like root beeer very much, and he made his own. I buy Barqs for him…plus, it was a very good deal!”