As I read it, it is actually .15% ABV. See section 5.37(b)(3):
http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx....1.1.3.5.25.10
The Department's "Beverage Alcohol Manual" states the same thing.
That would be .3% proof. It's not a huge amount clearly, but increasingly I'm inclining to John B's view of it.
Gary
Thanks Gary, good reference though I lasted but two paragraphs then bookmarked it, I can only take so much law in the morning.
We're Bourbon Geeks, it's who we are, it's what we do.
Thanks for pointing us back to the actual regulations. However, I find it is actually a bit more technical that what we have discussed.
TTB is concerned with taxes and they collect those taxes based on proof-gallons leaving a bonded warehouse. As mentioned before, a proof gallon is the equivalent amount of spirit converted to 100 proof. So, a gallon of 80 proof whiskey would be considered .8 proof gallons. Likewise, two gallons of spirit at 150 proof would be considered 3 proof gallons.
Technical, there is no allowable variance in proof. What TTB does allow for is potential loss of alcohol during bottling. You are allowed to lose .15% alcohol by volume. The reason it is not plus-or-minus 0.15% (only minus) is because the variance allowed is only for loss. You are not allowed to gain any alcohol in bottling -- again, they tax alcohol leaving, and they don't believe there is any circumstance where more taxable product should leave your warehouse than what you report.
There are two ways you can have a loss of ABV: loss of quantity or loss of proof -- both of which can happen through evaporation during bottling. So ultimately, this regulation is related to volume and proof. In regards to volume, you are allowed to lose 1.125ml of a 750ml bottle in the bottling process assuming your proof is dead on (750ml x 0.15%). That is true regardless of bottling proof.
In regards to allowed variances in final proof, it actually comes down to the declared proof of the spirit you are bottling. Let's try to keep the math easy. If you have 1L of 100 proof spirit, the label is promising 500ml of alcohol. You are allowed to lose 0.15% of that (0.75ml) which would leave you with 499.25 ml of alcohol. If you fill level was dead on, then your proof is considered acceptable at 99.85 proof (499.25/1000*200). So in this case, you are only allowed a variance of 0.15 proof points. If you do the math with different proofs, you get slightly different allowed variances. For instance if you are bottling 1L of 150 proof spirits, you are allowed to "lose" 1.125ml of straight alcohol (750ml of straight alcohol * 0.15%). That translates into an allowed proof lose of 0.225 proof points. At 80 proof, you can "lose" 0.12 proof points.
It is a complicated set of formulas, but you have to remember how TTB is set up and what they are ultimately concerned about (Proof gallons!).
Of course, I guess I could have just said that "TTB does not allow for variances in proof, expect for in very negligible circumstances."
Ahh the joys of government bureaucracy in the booze industry.
Last edited by kickert; 10-08-2013 at 06:48. Reason: Typo
Hope is subversive, for it limits the grandiose pretensions of the present by calling into existence the possibility of something better.
OWA was originally sold as a barrel proof if I remember correctly. And weren't some of the VSOFs from 50's and 60's barrel proofers (I know some of them were north of 120 proof)?
Insert TheNovaMan's signature here (___________)
There are barrel proofs (under that name) going back to the Thirties.
Gary
Yes, 107 was the barrel proof for Weller back then, wish it still was.
We're Bourbon Geeks, it's who we are, it's what we do.
Another barrel proof was Old Overholt, one was issued in the late 30's and a similar one (in a pine presentation box) in the 60's. They had a "hand-scripted" label. These are very rare and I've never seen one, even at Gazebos, but I've seen pics online.
Gary