Storing and Caring for Your Booze.
One or two folks have asked me: “What’s the best way to store my booze?” I usually quip, “in your belly.” That stated, there are a few serious answers to this question. I’m not even gonna tee this one up. Let’s get to work!
1. The Bottle
Chances are, the booze craftsmen behind your coveted liquor selected a bottle that would ensure their high-proof liquid would stay in the bottle. Therefore, keeping your hooch in the bottle it arrived in is a solid option.
However, not all bottles nor their stoppers are created equal.
Look a bottle of Rock Hill Farms Bourbon, or Plymouth Gin, or Don Julio 70, or Aviation Gin, or Macallan, or 1800. These are all corked bottles that are PERFECT for keeping their treasure secure.
Now, look at a bottle of New Amsterdam Gin, or Jewel of Russia Classic, or St. Germain, or Cointreau. These are screw-top bottles that are designed with storage in mind.
Now, look at Grand Marnier, High West Rendezvous Rye, Don Julio 1942, Cazadores, Baileys, Four Roses “Yellow”… These stoppers were NOT designed with longevity in mind. So, for these boozes, you *will* want to decant them into a different bottle if you plan on keeping them for a few months after opening them. So, what to use? Glad you asked:
For my money, the best decanters you can get are by re-using a bottle from Rock Hill Farms, Aviation Gin, or 1800.
I am not much of a fan of 1800 Tequila, but their bottles make the BEST decanters. Plus, by re-using, you get the bottle free, essentially, after you’ve enjoyed the tasty beverage from within. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle… all that jazz.
What you DO NOT WANT to use is a glass or crystal decanter with an all glass or all crystal stopper. Sure, they’re pretty, but they do not seal properly. You’ll wind up losing liquor to evaporation. Glass decanters should have a cork or plastic gasket on their stopper. Yes, some extremely well crafted and painfully expensive decanters (think Waterford) are 100% crystal and seal up well. But they’re out of 99% of our price ranges.
So yeah… that picture at the top? DO NOT DO THAT.
2. The Temperature
Put simply: think wine fridge. If at all possible, store your booze between 50 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
No, I don’t recommend freezing your alcohol. Yes, you can put booze in the fridge. Most of your liqueurs (Baileys, Kahlua, Creme de Mure) belong in a fridge, but most of the hard stuff doesn’t.
General Rule for 70 Proof and Up: Refrigerate the clear stuff, not the brown stuff.
Don’t let your prize booze get above 85 degrees F and NEVER leave it in direct sunlight!
3. The Cabinet
There’s a reason that folks in the 50’s and 60’s kept their booze in liquor cabinets. Liquor cabinets mean that the hooch is always out of direct sunlight and won’t get knocked over.
Always store your liquor bottles upright. Do not lie them down like wine bottles.
These days, you can get liquor cabinets that are temperature controlled. But that’s not always necessary.
Me? I have an old side console that I use and I keep it in an air conditioned room. My booze never sees 80 degrees. And I NEVER freeze my vodka.
So… Now You Know!