Archive for the ‘Expiration Dates’ Category


Happy 2029

May 7, 2008

Dear Bartender: My niece was born 5 months ago, and I got this idea from a book I read. This father had bought a bottle of wine when his daughter was born and they drank it 20 some odd years later. But I read that wine isn’t really meant to be kept for more than a few years. So I was wondering if you could recommend something that I could keep until her 21st birthday. I do not have an acquired taste for scotch so if there is anything else…

Thanks so much.


Dear Boomer: I’m a bartender, not a wine steward, but I’ll try to shed some light anyway.

Wine is packaged lots of ways — with screwcaps, corks, plastic corks, in bags inside boxes like breakfast cereal… That’s not your problem. Your problem, however it’s packaged, is how to store it for the next two decades while you wait for the kid to be of age.

You have two choices: Buy a bottle and drink it tonight or get yourself a good wine cellar. If the latter, you can store the damn stuff till you’re ready to celebrate when the kid turns ninety.


It’s getting hot in here

December 21, 2007

Dear Bartender: Quick bartending question… Do you have to refrigerate the egg liqueur Advocaat? I have some left over from one Christmas party and want to save it for Snowballs at another. The label says “Keep Cool” in tiny print but I’m not sure what that means.



Dear rcrider: As far as sentences go, “Keep cool” is not all that complex. Still, it’s good advice, though every time I get asked this question it gets harder and harder to follow.


…and Counting

December 3, 2007

Dear Bartender: I won a half bottle of southern comfort over twenty five years ago, and i put it away for a special occasion and forgot about it. i found it last week and wondered if its of any value because of its age and is it still drinkable, if so i thought to give it my daughter as i am not allowed to drink alcohol with the medication i take on a regular basis.

–Mrs. Addis

Dear Mrs. Addis: A half-empty bottle of Southern Comfort is the dumbest prize won by anyone, ever. Why you would want to pass this insult on to your daughter I have no idea.



October 10, 2007

Dear Bartender: Perhaps you’ve run out of questions to answer, and that’s why you keep posting the same ones. So here’s a new one!

I recently found out I was pregnant through a home pregnancy test. The morning after drinking a very old bottle (I think I bought it was imported in the 70s) of absinthe, I awoke with morning sickness, and took the exam. I failed! Since then, I have tried to curb my alcoholic intake. It has been rough these past 11 months, but I think that I’m getting the hang of it. Ever since last November when I got that little blue plus symbol, I have been anxiously preparing for the little critter.

For the past two months or so, I’ve been getting a little worried. See, I’ve heard that pregnancies are only supposed to last nine months, and I’m well beyond that. I looked all over your site for an answer, but couldn’t find it. So my questions is this: what is the expiration date on a pregnancy?

Thanks in advance,

Dear Readers: Now that’s more fucking like it.


I Got My Education, Pt 2

October 10, 2007

Dear Bartender: Alright, my neighbor recently passed away and I just was given a box of his whiskey and brandy bottles that he was unable to drink because of a medical condition – these bottles have never been opened, but they date back to 1954 (at least, that’s what the import label reads). I searched your site for “expiration” and didn’t come up with a suitable answer that related to my situation.

Are these safe to drink?

Is there a potential the alcohol has turned to vinegar?

Assuming they are safe: Is there a good test to tell if they have gone bad?


Dear Friendly People: You’re all putting me on, right? If you didn’t believe me the first three times I answered this question, why should I assume you’ll believe me now?

Drink the fucking brandy already.



October 2, 2007

Dear Bartender: I am sorry I am a novice when it comes to liquor. If you can please help me, I have an open bottle of Malibu Rum in the fridge. I am not quite sure how old it is, but I am sure it is at least 6 months old. My question is; has it/will it expire? I searched the bottle but found no date of expiration. I also searched the net, but came up empty handed. So I thought I would ask an expert. Thank you inadvance!



Dear Tracy: I answered this question already.


Closing Time

September 14, 2007

Dear Bartender: The bar down the street is closing down and I recently purchased all of the open bottles behind the bar (150 or so) and all the bottles have plastic pour spouts on them… very few come with caps. They are the cheap plastic spouts, too.

My question: How long will the bottles keep? Should I invest in some screw caps?

–Dan in Phoenix

Dear Dan: Those bottles will last as long as you can refrain from drinking them. Screw caps might help if, when you’re too drunk, you’re gonna knock them over and spill. Otherwise, my only suggestion is to put those bottles on a high, high shelf — one that you can’t get to without dexterity — and hope for the best.