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suntour
05-25-2013, 15:36
Apologies if this has been covered, I did a search and turned up a few tangentially related threads but thought I'd start a new one to conjure up some opinions and perhaps light-hearted offers to lighten my overburdened liquor cabinet...Also this is not a medical "help?" thread.

So I love bourbon. Love, love, love it. Unfortunately alcohol in general does not like me. I am a chronic migraine sufferer, and through the years I've determined that alcohol is one of the main triggers of said headaches. I love craft beer and cut my drinkin' teeth on it until I realized one day that it was (metaphorically at least) killing me. It got to a point where I would have an instant multiple-day-long headache after a sip of beer. Anyway, I discovered that bourbon treats me much better and doesn't give me headaches at all as long as I moderate. Now, I took such a break from drinking anything at all (this was terrible but the headaches being slightly better helped make up for it) the tiniest bit of alcohol gets me wicked buzzed. Essentially I can have my cake and eat it too - I love to taste different bourbons, and since I drink such a small amount, I can taste a bunch of (thimble-sized) drams in a night, enjoy many tastes and a buzz without spending much money or feeling bad.

But in the meantime have I accumulated some bourbon. I currently have open: ECBP, BT, ER10, MM, EB101, OWA, Blantons, ETL, WT101, Rittenhouse Rye, and Dickle Rye. This is kind of ridiculous. Most bottles have a good amount left, in fact, I'd say the majority of the bottles have more than half left. Now, other than having a party or inviting some SB members over, I have a good problem to deal with: too much whiskey. I suspect it may take 5 years to drink all this down. Is there anything I can do preventatively to keep these whiskies from oxidizing or evaporating? I used to wax beer bottles that I intended on aging, the thought process being it would keep the air out. I know the cork seals on many of these bottles suck, liquid would probably come out if you held them upside down so I suspect air is getting in and out easily.

I'm in the Mid-Valley, Oregon. An open invite stands to any SB member that if you are near, PM and I will share. Seriously, this is getting ridiculous.

I typed this whole thing out and all I can imagine as the proper response is "grow a pair and get to drinkin!" :)

HighInTheMtns
05-25-2013, 15:39
I'm happy to tell you that 11 open bottles isn't even approaching kind of ridiculous. Sip happily and have no worries, it won't go bad. Get some parafilm if you're concerned about evaporation.

suntour
05-25-2013, 15:41
haha 11 bottles is ridiculous for the general populace but is not even a starter collection around here

Love it

Balcones Winston
05-25-2013, 15:54
haha 11 bottles is ridiculous for the general populace but is not even a starter collection around here

Love it
Word. I struggle to keep my opens under 30

squire
05-25-2013, 16:00
I believe you should call me in as a consultant to assess the keeping potential of these bottles. About eight ounces from each should be sufficient for testing purposes.

sailor22
05-25-2013, 16:37
Your talking about ten this week right? That's not too embarrassing a number.. I'm sure you can pick up the pace in the next few months.

Enoch
05-25-2013, 17:03
I currently have 104 open. Oops.....103. I just finished off a 1985 bottle of WT 80 and don't plan on opening another for at least a week.

tigerlam92
05-25-2013, 17:45
5 years to drink all your open bottles is impossible because more will be open and other empty out. :)

But no worries as this is just a starter for most here as well and you do not need medical help. You are with good company.

Cheers,
Hugh

Quantum
05-25-2013, 18:33
37 bourbon and rye, 6 Irish, and 7 Scotch. Not sure about the rest because I don't drink them often, but I count a dozen rum and tequila bottles from where I am sitting.

You are doing just fine.

Meruck
05-25-2013, 19:45
I think what they are trying to say Suntour, is that we all have problems, but the number of open bottles one has is only a problem if that number is zero...........................

Not to sounds to brilliant, but are you sure its alcohol that is causing the problem and not an issue with grains..................??

I can say by experience that I too have an issue with reaction to alcohol. Every time I drink a little too much, my wife becomes cranky. I have tried everything, wheated bourbon, high rye, straight rye, mixed, neat, on the rocks, I just cant seem to figure out what the issue is. I mean its a real mystery.

Anyway, the only thing that should not be taken in moderation is life................................drink it in!!

squire
05-25-2013, 19:51
Meruck the last line of your post could well be my motto.

mbroo5880i
05-25-2013, 20:00
[QUOTE=Meruck;344994]I can say by experience that I too have an issue with reaction to alcohol. Every time I drink a little too much, my wife becomes cranky. I have tried everything, wheated bourbon, high rye, straight rye, mixed, neat, on the rocks, I just cant seem to figure out what the issue is. I mean its a real mystery.
QUOTE]

Are you sure that's alcohol related? For the longest time, I thought it was too. But, then I noticed that the crankiness was associated with a lot of factors over which I have no control...being out with the boys too long, not getting the "do-list" done, not being able to assess issues over which I have no knowledge.

squire
05-25-2013, 20:25
I've grappled with the same issue for years gentlemen, puzzled over it till my puzzler was sore, it's enough to drive a man to drink.

Meruck
05-25-2013, 20:55
You fellas gave given me much to think about................. I am going to ponder this over a glass of bourbon, and see it I can make sense of it. It may take more than one, glass of bourbon that is.

darylld911
05-26-2013, 05:55
I just did an inventory as I migrated to a new cabinet, and I've got just over 50 bottles open at the moment (and a whopping 7 that are unopened - 4 of which are duplicates of something else that is open). I find that until I open the whiskey, my enjoyment factor is seriously diminished (although looking at a bottle that has been hard to find for a while does provide some bit of joy). I've done the math, and believe if I didn't buy another bottle until I ran out - it would be several years before the package store saw my shadow. Unfortunately (ok - really more like "Fortunately!") I've already got more on the way.

I've had some open bottles for several years (2 - 3 years now?) without noticing anything going wrong with them. Although, the oldest of those where I'd be worried about losing anything (for example - I've got a 2010 WLW that I opened in 2010, but still is nearly half-full) I've started to try to avoid evaporation by using some plastic wrap over the top and a rubber band (over the top of the original cork-top). Not sure if that is helping or just giving me peace of mind. Someone wiser than I may chime in and explain that this is causing a chemical reaction which is ruining the whiskey or will slowly poison the drinker (although if that person suggests I bring them those open bottles for 'safe disposal', I'd be skeptical) :skep:

Wryguy
05-26-2013, 07:11
Meruck the last line of your post could well be my motto.


Anyway, the only thing that should not be taken in moderation is life................................drink it in!!

I think it was Tennyson who wrote in his poem Ulysses, "I will drink life to the lees..." Between that and a screening of Dead Poet's Society (Carpe Diem! Seize the Day boys!), 9th grade English had more of an influence on my life and philosophy than I care to admit.

*edit - I also suffer from the occasional migraine, but whiskey has never given me an issue, except for one time when I had the Ardbeg Supernova on an empty stomach. But I still enjoyed the heck out of the Supernova, migraine be damned.

Richnimrod
05-26-2013, 07:46
In My Opinion: oxidation of low-fill bottles isn't usually as big a problem as some would believe. That said; it can diminish the dram in very small increments over a very long period of time (less time if very low-filled; but still many months, if not years). Here's an anecdote: I had a very nice dram I wanted to keep 'forever', so I rarely tapped it over more than 2 years. The dram did finally begin to lose some of it's wonderful nose (not the palate, however), after about two years of being less than half full. Moral: Don't sweat anything under two years old; and if you do begin finding a dram slightly diminished; you'll have the best excuse to finish it off sooner... A Good Thing! :rolleyes:
One more thing: If you really do want to keep Bourbon for a very long time after opening, pouring it into smaller bottles, thus allowing less air in the bottle to oxidize the dram. ...Or, you could consider vatting two together in one of the larger bottles, accomplishing the same end. Vatting can be a fun way to explore the results of your own creativity and imagination. ... And, having FUN with your Bourbon is THE MAIN idea, yes? Feel free to enjoy! :cool:

BigBoldBully
05-26-2013, 10:15
With about 50 open bottles myself, concern about oxidation and other changes has led me to take a few steps. My experience with other spirits over the years has taught me that significant changes do generally occur over the course of a year or two, and though you might not fully realize it without being able to compare, after a couple of years an open bottle (compared to a newly cracked one from the same lot) can be a shadow of its former self. So first, I have developed a collection of smallish bottles that are intended to serve as "time capsules." Not too long after opening, I fill up one of these bottles, seal it, and put a label on it with detailed information about what's in it, when and where I bought it, etc. These bottles are a space-efficient way to remind myself years from now of exactly what I was drinking, and note changes to my own perceptions. Second, I use an argon gas dispenser for the larger bottles I am working on - not all of them, just the ones I care enough about and don't think I'll finish off in the near future. Third, when there's only like 1/4 left in a bottle that I am not too attached to, I dump it into one of several big ol' jugs that I keep nearly full of vatting experiments. Good vattings when I can. Lousy vattings when I must. But always fine for in-laws.

squire
05-26-2013, 10:19
I have fun with my Bourbon like the Walrus and the Carpenter had fun with the oysters.

Meruck
05-26-2013, 14:07
given the choice, I'd wink an eye and simply stay in bed.....................with my favoite bottle that is.

cowdery
05-26-2013, 15:07
Oxidation is the concern. It's usually only a problem if the bottle is more than half empty and left in that state for years, but that seems to be what you anticipate. The easiest solution is decant into smaller bottles. Another is to use marbles or something similar to raise the liquid level to 80% full or so. And make sure you have a good seal. If cork finished, make sure the corks are good and tight. If not, switch them out or use paraffin film. There are more exotic and complicated solutions but those are the easy ones and they're sufficiently effective.

Richnimrod
05-26-2013, 15:30
I have fun with my Bourbon like the Walrus and the Carpenter had fun with the oysters.

HUH???? What do it mean??? :skep:

higgins
05-26-2013, 18:46
I have fun with my Bourbon like the Walrus and the Carpenter had fun with the oysters.

I can imagine the bottles of Old Grand-Dad following Squire home, unaware of the fate that awaits them.

smknjoe
05-26-2013, 19:25
I have fun with my Bourbon like the Walrus and the Carpenter had fun with the oysters.


HUH???? What do it mean??? :skep:

Little gems like that really are enjoyable and appreciated Squire - Through the Looking-Glass.


Oxidation is the concern. It's usually only a problem if the bottle is more than half empty and left in that state for years, but that seems to be what you anticipate. The easiest solution is decant into smaller bottles. Another is to use marbles or something similar to raise the liquid level to 80% full or so. And make sure you have a good seal. If cork finished, make sure the corks are good and tight. If not, switch them out or use paraffin film. There are more exotic and complicated solutions but those are the easy ones and they're sufficiently effective.

I have a couple of bottles such as PHC 10 and WLW 10 that I plan on keeping as long as possible. So, I have followed Chuck's advice and decanted some of the whiskey into a couple of 200ml bottles for future consumption. It seems like a prudent approach to your situation as well suntor.

darylld911
05-26-2013, 20:01
I decanted my 2010 WLW into a 375 and a 200 (filling the 375, and another 75 mL or so in the 200) after following this. Technically not under half, but close - and I don't want to lose any of the lovely goodness it has! :yum:

mosugoji64
05-27-2013, 23:13
So first, I have developed a collection of smallish bottles that are intended to serve as "time capsules." Not too long after opening, I fill up one of these bottles, seal it, and put a label on it with detailed information about what's in it, when and where I bought it, etc. These bottles are a space-efficient way to remind myself years from now of exactly what I was drinking, and note changes to my own perceptions.

Great idea! Never thought of a time capsule approach, but that's brilliant. I'll have to look for a source of small bottles.

ChainWhip
05-27-2013, 23:23
For your entertainment, may I refer you gentlemen to this blog post by Sku:

http://recenteats.blogspot.com/2012/01/whiskey-collectors-field-guide.html

Bottles for us "Librarians" (actually, I've probably displayed all the characteristics documented in the field guide at one point in time or other):

http://www.specialtybottle.com/clearbostonroundglassbottle2ozwcap.aspx
http://www.specialtybottle.com/amberbostonroundglassbottle2ozwstdcap.aspx
http://www.specialtybottle.com/cobaltbluebostonroundglassbottle2ozwcap.aspx

tanstaafl2
05-29-2013, 13:12
For your entertainment, may I refer you gentlemen to this blog post by Sku:

http://recenteats.blogspot.com/2012/01/whiskey-collectors-field-guide.html



Hadn't seen this before. I think I am most closely aligned with the Type 2 crowd! Never met an unusual bottle I didn't like. At least once...

BigBoldBully
05-29-2013, 20:59
Great idea! Never thought of a time capsule approach, but that's brilliant. I'll have to look for a source of small bottles. I'd be interested to know what small bottles you decide to go with. I have been using mostly 8.5 oz maple syrup bottles, as I like the shape of the Springtree brand's bottles and don't mind buying lots of maple syrup. The syrup labels come off with a good soak and some scraping.

HighInTheMtns
05-29-2013, 21:08
I'd be interested to know what small bottles you decide to go with. I have been using mostly 8.5 oz maple syrup bottles, as I like the shape of the Springtree brand's bottles and don't mind buying lots of maple syrup. The syrup labels come off with a good soak and some scraping.
Specialtybottle.com among other sources

ETA: I see that's been suggested :D

BigBoldBully
05-29-2013, 21:12
Bottles for us "Librarians" (actually, I've probably displayed all the characteristics documented in the field guide at one point in time or other):

http://www.specialtybottle.com/clearbostonroundglassbottle2ozwcap.aspx
http://www.specialtybottle.com/amberbostonroundglassbottle2ozwstdcap.aspx
http://www.specialtybottle.com/cobaltbluebostonroundglassbottle2ozwcap.aspx
Oh crap, guess I didn't have to drink so much maple syrup!

mosugoji64
05-29-2013, 22:38
I'd be interested to know what small bottles you decide to go with. I have been using mostly 8.5 oz maple syrup bottles, as I like the shape of the Springtree brand's bottles and don't mind buying lots of maple syrup. The syrup labels come off with a good soak and some scraping.

Think I might go with the Specialty Bottle clear 2oz bottles. Easy and readily available are two descriptors I like. :grin:

squire
05-30-2013, 06:19
Or buy a carton of 50 mils, drink the contents and reuse the containers.

Meruck
05-30-2013, 11:42
Or buy a carton of 50 mils, drink the contents and reuse the containers.

aaahhhh recycling. Thats a very "green" attitude.

squire
05-30-2013, 11:49
Just call me a Bourbon Eco-warrior Matt, I insist every drop be used.