When we first heard about the orange milk from Danzeisen Dairy, we were filled with both horror and amazement. It couldn't possibly be citrus milk — the thought alone conjures terror. "Maybe it tastes like an orange creamsicle?" we wondered. Then we learned Danzeisen also makes a root beer-flavored milk, and we demanded to know: "Where can we find this stuff?!"
It turns out you can find Danzeisen milk a lot of places around town. The local dairy, situated at the base of South Mountain, distributes their products to many grocery stores in the Valley including AJ's, Safeway, Sprouts, Whole Foods, and more.
Danzeisen has been family-owned and operated since its inception in the late 1950s. Their website proclaims, "We take care of the cows, the cows take care of us," and details all the ways they work to ensure the health and well-being of their cows. But still, orange milk? We had to try it.
For our tasting, we bought four different Danzeisen milks to try: classic strawberry and chocolate, along with Arizona Orange, and root beer.
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We started easy with the chocolate and strawberry milks. In our opinion, there is no real way to ruin the delicious combination of dairy and chocolate, and because strawberry milk conjures up hazy memories of kindergarten snack time, we weren't too worried about these flavors. And we were delighted when we finally drank Danziesen's milk. They were the ideal of what chocolate and strawberry milks should be. They were light and flavorful without being overpowering or false, and the milk itself was creamy and smooth.
More enthusiastic, we turned our attention to the root beer milk. This one tasted like a root beer float that had melted into a glass of dessert. There was a hint of vanilla suggestive of ice cream, and the root beer flavor — although more artificial tasting than the chocolate or strawberry varieties — was full of sweet sarsaparilla.
We finally turned an eye to the bright bottle of Arizona Orange milk. Turns out, it was exactly like an orange creamsicle — especially if that creamsicle was made with natural ingredients and exceedingly fresh dairy. Arizona Orange milk is sweet without being cloying, and the orange flavors are zesty, bright, creamy, and clean. We liked it even better than the strawberry milk. We poured a second glass to be sure, and then had to cap the bottle and set it aside so we didn't finish it immediately.
We did not purchase a bottle of regular, unflavored Danziesen Dairy milk, which we now regret. We all know that buying fresh and local makes a lot of sense when it comes to fruits and vegetables, but the same can be said for dairy. It's readily apparent that Danzeisen's well-cared-for cows produce great tasting milk products. Next time, we'll have to go to the dairy itself and get a bag of their lauded cheese curds to go with our refill of Arizona Orange.