Unique or not?

Have an old/rare bottle you'd like some more info on?

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Hi, I am a first time guy on your site. Can anybody help me?

Unread postby lovjoy » Mon May 22, 2006 10:44 pm

Hi< I have a full bottle of Large whiskey dated 1921 that I think is worth something but not sure what.
I want to open it and celebrate my fathers 80th birthday with it but being an antique dealer and lover I do not want to ruin something that may be unique.
I also found a full bottle of Golden Rod that was distilled in 1895.
Could anyone let me know if I have something unique or not???
My cell number is 239 572 4177
I have an antique shop in Naples Florida.

Sincerely, Bob



bunghole wrote:This is a really good idea, Mike. :thumbright: There are several folks here with lots of good intel on how old a bottle truely is. I would also like to point out that forum members with questions be sure to post sharp photos. Use the macro mode on your camera and hold the damn thing still. Blurry photos are of no use to anyone. :2cents:

:arrow: ima :camera: :strobe: :smilieflash: :40oz:
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Unread postby bunghole » Tue May 23, 2006 7:21 pm

Good first post, Bob. Read the labels on your bottles closely. I believe that bottle of Large is a straight rye whiskey from PA. The label will have that info printed on it. Some folks do focus on pre-probhition whiskies. If it is your intention to sell the bottles privately just ask for offers.

I for one wouldn't hesitate to share a bottle with your father. Just as long as the bottles still have a good seal and the contents aren't cloudy then they are fine to drink.

Be sure to tell him ol' bunghole said :occasion4:

DRINK IT MAN, DRINK IT!

:cheers:
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Hi Bunghole, thanks for the good wishes.

Unread postby lovjoy » Tue May 23, 2006 8:36 pm

Thanks for the info and they are not cloudy at all. Looks like a nice golden colour.
I am going to try and take a picture and add it to this reply.
I have a hosting service in Naples so it should work.
If not, let me know what I did wrong.

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Unread postby lovjoy » Tue May 23, 2006 8:41 pm

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Unread postby Strayed » Tue May 23, 2006 10:55 pm

Hi Bob,
Bunghole's right. If the seal is still intact and it hasn't lost at least a quarter of its contents to evaporation, that rye probably tastes just the way it did when it was first bottled. It's like drinking history itself. It also doesn't "spoil" after opening, so you can take a small drink now and another next year if you like. It makes a great "special toast" that way.

You can learn a little about the Large distillery on our website. Needless to say, the company and the town (i.e., Large, Pennsylvania) have had a lot of fun with the name, but there really was a family named "Large", and that distillery was an important one in the story of American whiskey.

What's in the bottle on the right in your photo? Although I SWORE to the goddess I wouldn't buy any more whiskey 'til we pay for all the video transfers I committed to for her birthday, I'd surely love to know what that is and how much it would take to part you from it.
=JOHN= (the "Jaye" part of "L & J dot com")
http://www.ellenjaye.com
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Unread postby cowdery » Wed May 24, 2006 12:56 am

Also, Bob, if you do drink these, keep the bottles or see that they get a good home. What you have there is very special.
- Chuck Cowdery

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Unread postby gillmang » Wed May 24, 2006 9:05 pm

Great looking bottles.

My guess for the bottle on the far right is a barrel-strength Old Overholt from the late 30's.

Gary
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Unread postby lovjoy » Wed May 24, 2006 11:53 pm

Hi Chuck John & Gary thanks for all your replies.
The bottle on the right has a label that looks like some of the so called "old US banknotes" paper that I have seen come through my shop.
It looks too good to be true so I am suspicious.
Being an antique dealer I see a lot of fakes so this is the one I feel might be a "ringer".
The label reads as follows:
This F & K Special Old Whiskey" was distilled and bottled in Davies Co, Ky. and is guaranteed to be a fine Old Whiskey Blended and Bottled by Freiburg & Kahn Cincinnatti Ohio.
Below this in raised letters in the glass is:
One Full Quart.
On the back in raised capitol letters in the glass are these words:
F & K Special
Old 92
Whiskey
Freiburg & Kahn
Cincinnatti. Ohio
If you look close at the label there is a red 92 .
The top is sealed with a strang black material that you can see in the picture, it has crackled and you can see the top of the whiskey through it so there has been some loss from evaporation.
Needless to say you guys should know if this one is real or not.
I will definitely save the bottles, I still have some wine bottles in the shop that I opened when my father came here some five years ago. They were some nice ones I had found in estates and saved up for him.
Whats up with the kids nowdays, why do they not recycle???
It is nice to hear that we do not have to finish them when we open them and that thay will keep. Will a glass decanter be OK???
Thanks for letting me post this stuff on your site.
I have only loaded things on Ebay and never been to sites like this.
You have a wonderfull forum for enthusiats to "chat" I collect French coins and I wonder if there is a site for us??

OK, Thanks again,
Regards, Bob
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Unread postby Strayed » Thu May 25, 2006 1:25 am

Thanks for the wealth of information. Wow, that's sure a refreshing change from, "I gotta bottle of 4 roses; is it worth anything?". As you probably already know, a quick search on "Freiburg & Kahn" returned nothing at all. I'll work on it awhile and see what I come up with. Allow me a lot of time; I'm old and feeble and I might forget what I was looking for :D . Note: When dealing with bottles from that era, even the legitimate ones can be "fakes". If you have expertise about bottle construction you can tell if it's really from that time period. If you can verify the age of the bottle itself, the label will probably be accurate, since it isn't an easily-identifiable (and thus counterfeit-prone) brand.
=JOHN= (the "Jaye" part of "L & J dot com")
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Unread postby gillmang » Thu May 25, 2006 7:53 am

I must say for what it is worth that these bottles (and I could be wrong) do not look like fakes.

At http://www.pre-pro.com (a shot glass site) there is an extensive database of old whiskey brand and trade names. Bob, you may want to search it to try to find the names on the bottle on the far right. They sound too "natural" to me to be contrived. Also, who (I wonder) would go to the trouble of faking such things? The market for them is so small and disorganised. But again, one never knows.. Thanks for bringing these to our attention.

Gary
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Unread postby Strayed » Thu May 25, 2006 11:19 am

Great source, Gary! I have a link to the Robert E. Snyder database (http://www.pre-pro.com/midacore/qbrand_search.php - enter Kahn at the search prompt), which I just realized is part of the pre-pro sight. Both the database and the home site should be part of every whiskey enthusiast's URL collection. There are other databases (including the shotglasses that were the original focus of the site) as well, and I've used their information often in trying to track down the history of long-forgotten brands.

S'anyway...

Bob, apparently Freiberg & Kahn (and Harry Kahn, separately) were listed as distillers and wholesalers in the city directories of my own fair Cincinnati from 1901 to 1918. The database shows no less than 15 brands, one of which was "F & K Special Old 92". I imagine the 92 referred to 1892 (as was the custom then) rather than to 92 proof. That would mean it isn't from before 1892 (they were distributors of the whiskey; it could easily have been made before 1901), but the general look of the label tells me it isn't from after 1906 (labels from after the passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act tended to be more precisely engraved and printed; the other two are good examples). That's a really nice item, but unlike the Large (which is not as uncommon), I think the Old 92 would serve better as an unopened display item than to be tasted. It is not likely that it was a particularly "fine" whiskey to begin with, and may well have been one whose demise resulted from the truth-in-packaging laws.
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Unread postby gillmang » Thu May 25, 2006 4:54 pm

Good work John, the bottle gains in authenticity by this verification.

Gary
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Unread postby cowdery » Thu May 25, 2006 9:08 pm

I agree with Gary that it hard to imagine why someone would go to the trouble to make such an excellent forgery.

I can only add that Daviess County, which is in Western Kentucky around Owensboro, was a major distilling center. I checked my Cecil to see if, by chance, there was a RD#92 in Daviess County but no such luck. As John said, it probably refers to the year.

Also, John, thanks for the link to the Snyder database. I had not visited pre-pro.com in some time and that database was in its infancy the last time I did. It is way cool and a great time waster for any whiskey enthusiast.
- Chuck Cowdery

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Unread postby Strayed » Fri May 26, 2006 12:54 am

I have spent many a (totally UN-wasted) hour there :D
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Hi Guys, thanks for all the links and info.

Unread postby lovjoy » Sun May 28, 2006 12:04 am

Wow, you guys get into it.
Sorry not to get back to you before.
I am off to Blighty on Monday but will show my Dad your site and my sister who likes Bourbon I think.
i find it strange that the F&K is the one you think is good.
That was the one I had doubts about.
The labels on the others are so authentic and the Old 92 looks like new.
I suppose its like books, if you have one that was kept right it will look like new.
I will try to add a picture of the bottoms as this will tell those who know what the right kind of bottle should look like.
I know in glass blowing there is what is called a "Pontil" where the blower broke off the glass from the stem and then ground it down.
The bottle on the left is slightly different from the other two as there is no seam going up both sides of the bottle.
The seam, to me, indicates a piece of glass that came from a mold.
I expect a study of the manufacturing of glass bottles in America will show the distinct types and from that will come proof of a bottles age.
The bottles are pictured from left to right with the Golden Rod on the left, then the large and then the Old 92.
Thanks again for all your help.
If there is one I should not open, which would it be???

regards, Bob
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