But when it comes to alcohol, where expiration dates are rarely available, how can we be sure our spirits are still sippable?While we know certain types of alcohol, like wine, can improve with age, what happens when a bottle has already been opened?
Those “Best by,” “Use by” and “Sell before” dates stamped on the food we buy can be a source of continued confusion for consumers.
Earlier this year, Congressional efforts to clarify reliable expiration dates only highlighted the problem.
(This is particularly interesting to see and shows that shearing or cracking-off wasn't always used or necessary.) The mold boy then removes the bottle from the mold with tongs while the gaffer knocks off the residual glass from the end of the blowpipe and then moves back to the glass pot/tank to make another gather.
The second gaffer is doing all of this on a staggered timing sequence with the first gaffer which allows the team ("shop") to produce a bottle - albeit without post-blowpipe tooling of a finish - about every 20 seconds!
Film clip is compliments of the Owens-Illinois Glass Company.
(Many thanks to Phil Perry, engineer with that company.) Mouth-blown utilitarian bottles have several important diagnostic characteristics which can be helpful for dating.
From Champagne to Bailey’s Irish Cream, here’s a consumer’s guide to how long your favorite bottles of alcohol will last once you pop the cork or break the seal.
Mouth-blown (aka "hand-made") bottles were produced by skilled craftsmen who gathered the hot glass onto a blowpipe manually then formed the bottle with air pressure applied by mouth to the blowpipe, with (usually) or without the aid of a mold.
There are several different type pontil marks, all of which are a mark or scar on the bottle base left by a type of pontil rod.
There is a lot variety possible within each category of pontil marks.
The mold boy would open and close the mold (at the base of the pipe behind the wash tub) as directed by the gaffer.