Collecting old empty bottles

I admit this post is fully inspired by the Premier Cru thread and the auction of empty bottles of old, rare wine.

Do you keep empty bottles? From better bottles, better memories, awesome old vintages?

I do. Ate one point I had way too many so I tried floating off the labels. Older bottles much easier than ones from the past twenty years (due to adhesion technology) to get off by soaking. 1998 d’Yquem label did not come off at all in water, not even loosened. More likely to come off front the front from getting so wet than come off from the back.

Some of the empties I currently have will never be a threat for counterfeiting (1985 Parducci Zin) but I do have some empty First Growths, some Soldera off of which I have not yet tried to remove the labels.

I keep them because I like seeing them by my other bottles.

If you do keep them, why?

Have you ever sold them?

Only one - an old Vallana, because the label is appealing.

All the others go into the recycling skip, so unlikely anyone could rescue them for counterfeiting. In truth there isn’t anything likely to be worth their while anyway!

I used to keep the ones I thought were memorable, but my wife made me throw them all away thinking an earthquake would hit, they’d all fall, our dog would be underneath it at that exact moment and it would hit him.

It wouldn’t do anything since he’s a 85lb husky with a skull of stone, but worries are worries.

So I gave them all away to my local sushi joint for the to display

The only bottles I have kept for more than two weeks were both Orin Swift, I am ashamed to say. One was the Machete bottle that I just thought was cool and the other was a Mercury Head. After I finally chipped the Mercury Head coin off the bottle, I tossed both.

I have a few at home from our early days of wine, most signed by the wine maker. I have a few at the store for display, including magnums and 3 liter bottles that were blackened and waxed. I have several Ghost Horse etched bottles on display because they are eye catchers. Used to have a well to do customer whose maid would show up every six months with 5 or so magnums, a 3 liter and an occasional 6 liter to have them blacked and waxed. I would have liked to see his full display.

I have a couple of friends who cut bottles down and make candles from them, which is the perfect use for a memorable bottle. Here’s an example, which I kept because it was terrific and bottle no. 00001.

Mike, that’s awesome!!! :astonished:

I once had a good number of label-peeling stickers, and I kept my favorite labels in an album. Now, I just keep the corks.

I do have a couple of inverted bottles in my garden, filled with water for my sad plants.

I’ve kept a few half bottles for storage. Everything else goes into the recycling. I’m not much for keeping mementos - no labels, no bottles, no corks. And unfortunately for my finances, I don’t drink the kind of wines that the Rudys of the world would covet, so I can’t sell off my old bottles.

Fortunately I have a mancave with some unused space - after the music, HiFi and books - which I clutter with empties from memorable evenings if there are an occasion to lay hand on them:

There’s been quite some culling over the years, but a man needs a mancave!

I’ve got a few…1896 Lafite and 1955 DRC Romanee Conti come to mind. Maybe another dozen like this. I started bringing an empty back from Berns after a weekend there.

tried to keep labels for a while but new glue seems too good so gave up some time ago.

I bought my old wine from Rudy and John, and then would send the empty bottles back to them for the five-cent NY state bottle deposit each.
They still owe me $1.20 for a half case of 1947 Lafleur double-magnums!

I pull the labels using the label pullers that area available from places like IWC, Wine Enthusiast, Ebay, etc. They work extremely well, as I’ve had them fail on perhaps 2%-3% of labels. This allows me to keep a cellar register notebook where I can record my thoughts about the wine, etc. Yes, you can do this with CellarTracker, which I also use. But I like having the paper notebooks as well. I’m up to page 620 so far.

Victor, Rudy never asked me to the return the bottles from the 1947 Lafleur double-magnums I got from him.

Unfortunately for you, I have to presume that the ones he sold me were the authentic ones.

620 pages - nice!

I like the paper format too. Think, sometime in the future someone will read your thoughts!

Nice. Love the old Monfortinos!

He is still Odd…

I collect only the empty Magnum Riesling bottles. Because of the design
Currently I have enough to construct a Riesling Tower higher than Trump Tower