Bill Waters, a Tulsa man tooling around in a Texas Panhandle antiques store, discovered a very interesting Dr Pepper artifact in a ledger book he found and bought there:
The recipe written in cursive in the ledger book is hard to make out, but ingredients seem to include mandrake root, sweet flag root, and syrup.
It isn't a recipe for a soft drink, says Greg Artkop, a spokesman for the Plano-based Dr Pepper Snapple Group. He said it's likely instead a recipe for a bitter digestive that bears the Dr Pepper name.
He said the recipe certainly bears no resemblance to any Dr Pepper recipes the company knows of. The drink's 23-flavor blend is a closely guarded secret, only known by three Dr Pepper employees, he said.
Of course the folks at Dr Pepper would say that. As they are the keepers of the secret formula, how are we to know what's what?
The Dallas auction house in charge of selling the ledger (at an estimated price of $50,000 to $75,000) thinks it may just be the earliest formulation.
We'd love to see Waters mix up a batch and figure out whether his recipe's a Pepper, too.