Dr. Enuf: “The original energy booster”

Tri-Cities Original
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Dr. Enuf is a true Tri-Cities success story. 

The beverage, sold in iconic green glass bottles, has been around for about 70 years. 

“It’s more popular today than it’s ever been,” said Charles Gordon Jr., President of Tri-City Beverage Corp. 

Dr. Enuf has only been bottled in one place: Johnson City. But it wasn’t born here. 

“It was born in Chicago sometime in the 40’s,” Gordon said. 

The company says it all started in 1949, when Chicago chemist Bill Swartz came up with the idea for a tonic for worn out working folk in need of a healthy boost. 

Swartz developed a formula for his new beverage, but needed someone to bottle and distribute it. So, he ran an ad in the Bottler’s Gazette. 

Gordon’s dad, Charles Gordon Sr., noticed Swartz’s ad. 

“My Dad found out about it, and he liked the idea,” Gordon said. “He started bottling it in 1949 here in Johnson City.”

Newspaper advertisements promised more than just a tasty beverage. Dr. Enuf not only tasted good, it would cure what ailed you. 

“It’s fortified with vitamins and minerals, the very ones that help replenish what you burn off in a day of hard work,” Gordon said. “We call it the original energy booster.”

The recipe hasn’t changed much over the years, but the drink’s popularity certainly has. 

“It’s stronger today than it ever has been,” Gordon said. “I think it’s just finally taken off.”

Another thing that hasn’t changed: the glass bottle. You won’t find Dr. Enuf in a can. 

Tri-City Beverage Corporation can fill as many as 5,000 cases of the beverage a day. 

You can find it in small shops and big stores around the region. People just can’t get enough of this Tri-Cities original. 

“Most of our production and what we love is Dr. Enuf… along with a lot of other people in this region.  That’s why we sell so much.  Thank you folks,” Gordon said with a laugh. 

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Born and raised in the Tri-Cities, Josh Smith has been a member of the WJHL team since 1999. His family roots go deep in the region, and he’s traveled through almost every part of it covering news on local TV since 1995. When he’s not on the job, he’s with his wife, two sons, and daughter.   “They’re the best part of me,” he said.   You may run into them biking on the Tweetsie Trail, hiking around Bays Mountain Lake, or browsing the shelves at the local public libraries.

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