Vodka & Rum - does heat damage them? age?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Maverick2002, Aug 7, 2009.

  1. Maverick2002

    Maverick2002 Diamond Member

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    Just curious if ~10 month old (unopened) Vodka and Rum will taste different. I don't know if there's any sort of "good before" date on these two liquors. Also, will some time in a hot car "damage" them at all?

    TIA!
     
  2. lxskllr

    lxskllr Lifer

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    I imagine the flavor could change slightly from heat, but I doubt it's significant. Age won't affect them at all.
     
  3. Maverick2002

    Maverick2002 Diamond Member

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    How long of a time in the heat would you say? Is a couple days sufficient? A week? A month?
     
  4. spidey07

    spidey07 No Lifer

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    It would have to be pretty high heat or direct sunlight to have an affect as long as they were unopened and sealed.
     
  5. TallBill

    TallBill Lifer

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    OMG I"M SO WASTED ON THE INTERNETS!#@!@#!
     
  6. lxskllr

    lxskllr Lifer

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    I would guess strong heat would affect it in a couple of days. You may only be able to tell via side by side tasting though. I left a half empty bottle of scotch in my Jeep for a year, and it went through everything MD could throw at it. It still tasted fine when I finally drank it. I couldn't tell a difference from new, but it had been awhile since I had it new. I would expect scotch to be more delicate than a white spirit, so that would be a good test.
     
  7. Bill Brasky

    Bill Brasky Diamond Member

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    Are you trying to change the flavor?
     
  8. Maverick2002

    Maverick2002 Diamond Member

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    Cool, thanks for the info. No, I'm not trying to change the flavor, just curious about the effect of heat and time on vodka and rum, opened and unopened.
     
  9. SacrosanctFiend

    SacrosanctFiend Diamond Member

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    How long do you plan to continue doing this?
     
  10. TallBill

    TallBill Lifer

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    Probably for a while.
     
  11. SacrosanctFiend

    SacrosanctFiend Diamond Member

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    Awesome....maybe you could try some different variations to keep things fresh.
     
  12. lxskllr

    lxskllr Lifer

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    One other thing to keep in mind, is airspace can degrade the flavor of spirits. If you have 1/2 bottle or less, you may want to decant it into a smaller container(preferably glass). Alcohol will get into the air space, and evaporate when the bottle's opened. Also, air can cause some oxidation of key components(more of an issue with dark spirits I imagine).
     
  13. sandorski

    sandorski No Lifer

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    Until he's not Wasted on the Internets. Probably when he piles into the back of a Tanker Truck while Texting.
     
  14. JulesMaximus

    JulesMaximus No Lifer

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    Hard alcohol will last nearly forever as long as it is stored in a relatively cool dark place. Subjecting it to temperature extremes between freezing and 90 degrees probably won't change the flavor at all. Exposure to direct sunlight and high temperatures might not be the best idea though.
     
  15. Joemonkey

    Joemonkey Diamond Member

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    Knowing where you used to work (and where I work now) I'm surprised you say this

    we do shelf life tests all the time, as in does a bottle of X that has been on the shelf for 1 month taste the same as a bottle of X that has been on the shelf for 1 year, or even a bottle of X that has been on the shelf for 5 years. Most of the time, to a trained palate, you can actually tell a difference.

    Now, mix that stuff up and you probably won't notice, or if you buy random stuff now and again and don't have a specific brand you won't care. If you are used to consistently drinking brand X neat at room temperature then you may notice a difference based on shelf life, temperature, sun exposure, etc.
     
  16. Midlander

    Midlander Platinum Member

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    A bourbon man, huh?
     
  17. Joemonkey

    Joemonkey Diamond Member

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    I like a good bourbon, but man, finlandia vodka has been my friend lately. The original is nearly tasteless and the flavor infused (grapefruit especially) is just too good for words
     
  18. Colt45

    Colt45 Lifer

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    no and no.
     
  19. Midlander

    Midlander Platinum Member

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    Maybe I'll give that a try.
     
  20. Squisher

    Squisher Lifer

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    Send it to me, I'll keep everyone updated on the results.
     
  21. TallBill

    TallBill Lifer

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    Will do, HOLY SHITT IM SO FUKED UP AND PSTING FUNNY SHITS!!
     
  22. zerocool84

    zerocool84 Lifer

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    I never drink Vodka or Rum by itself so I'll never notice it.
     
  23. Babbles

    Babbles Diamond Member

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    If they are unopened I would not think it likely that vodka or rum would change flavor over ten months. Really vodka is essentially distilled to be just the ethanol and when kept in a sealed bottle I would not think it likely to change flavor over any period of time.

    Rum could be a different story due to the cane sugar mash they use when making it which still remains in the liquid after the fermentation ceased.

    Oxidation is usually the enemy of alcoholic beverages. However again vodka by it's nature is probably (relatively speaking) the most immune to oxidation compared to wine on the opposite end of the spectrum. I would also be surprised if heat would greatly affect vodka. If you have an unopened bottle, leave it outside for a couple of days to heat it up, then bring it back inside and allow it to reach ambient room temperature unassisted, then I don't think there would be any significant taste difference. If you open it up when it is warm, though, there will likely be a higher concentration of vaporized ethanol in the headspace of the bottle which would be released after the seal is broken. This would affect the concentration of ethanol in solution.

     
  24. Iron Woode

    Iron Woode Lifer

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    I already did. Its ok, but nothing to get excited about.

    An orange or lime flavour would be better.
     
  25. HomeBrewerDude

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    true unless there is a significant amount of exposure to oxygen.