You know that big block of text on the back of your whiskey that tells you not to operate machinery or be pregnant while drinking?
If it’s not there then your bottle is likely from before 1989 when the Surgeon General’s warning became mandatory.
If the UPC code is missing you can move the estimated date of the bottle back to at least pre-1985.
How the liquid in the bottle is measured can also be a clue.
From 1981 forward all bottles in the USA started carrying metric (ml, liter, etc.) statements.
That doesn’t mean it’s always easy, and figuring out the exact age can be a real hassle, but there are 11 basic clues and resources I use when trying to determine how old a dusty bottle of whiskey is.
Below is a run through of each along with some additional resources at the end.
Does your dusty bottle of whskey have a UPC on the back?
They fully came into fashion around 1985, but began popping up in the late 70s and early 80s.
Look for any clues on the bottle itself that’ll pin point it. Some bottle codes are easy to decipher while others are not, but if they exist they’re a great place to start.In the image above we see that it’s commemorating the 200th anniversary of Evan Williams and on the bottle they say the distillery was founded in 1783. If you can’t decipher them, and can’t find anyone else online who has a clue, reach out to the maker (if possible) and see if they can steer you in the right direction.