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Old 11-20-2006, 04:48 PM   #1
desiderata
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Default original commercial bottle labels

For those who bottle, and reuse commercial beer bottles, who leaves the lables on? I don't bother stripping them, as it is the product inside that is important to me, I don't make my own labels, and I end up pouring them into a pint glass anyways. I read a recent post that included a criticism of another homebrewer for not stripping these labels.

I'm not trying to get you guys to convince me to strip them, I was just wondering what you guys felt?

By the way, I do use the sticker on the cap to identify my beer. Got that idea from this forum.

Oh, one more thing. If I happened to be "given" some BMC bottles to reuse (not likely; they're mostly twist off anyway), then I would certainly have to strip those.

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Old 11-20-2006, 04:52 PM   #2
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I think it's more about perception. Certainly if you're giving the brew away as gifts or even swapping with other brewers, removing the commrecial label and applying your own gives it a more "cared for" look.

I wonder if there is any strange psychology that goes on in the case where your batch tastes nothing like the style for which the commercial label implies. For example, putting an IPA in a pumpkin ale-labelled bottle.

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Old 11-20-2006, 05:57 PM   #3
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for me I like to go all out, I cook for a living, so presentation is a big thing. It certainly won't hurt your beer to leave the lables on, but good presentation always adds to the product. Plus I enjoy doing it.

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Old 11-20-2006, 06:00 PM   #4
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i assume those that make their own labels enjoy that particular creative process.
as far as stripping goes, once youve gotten a good surplus of bottles stripped, you wont have to do it again if you get the bottles back (or drink them all yourself).

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Old 11-20-2006, 06:09 PM   #5
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As a rule I remove all the labels as part of the cleaning process (in the soak) and prior to scrubbing the insides...no ifs, ands, or buts...

I have more or less 30 cases of 0,5 liter bottles and several 12 oz boxed up and not one of them have a label on it.

I also don't make labels for my bottles anymore. I used to. Then I went from a couple of bottles...then decided WHY? So now it's more like a waste of time, effort and $$$ to make them up.

Of course, I know that the process is fun, I'm not denying that. I used to make them up and leave them on the computer, but not print them out...now I don't even do that anymore. And I do enjoy seeing everyone else's labels. They are really looking good overall.

I only put small labels on my caps. For me it's easier and quicker.

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Old 11-20-2006, 07:10 PM   #6
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I prefer to have clean label-free bottles. I have made labels, but I'm only labelling bottles I intend to give away. I just see removing the labels as part of the cleaning process (and a pain it is - I've cleaned six cases of used bottles thus far). Well, that and I'd rather not have someone else's name on my beer. I will make exceptions for bottles that have the name in the glass itself (like Sam Adams), but I'll use those for my own personal drinking. Give-aways will be name-free bottles with my own label.

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Old 11-20-2006, 07:44 PM   #7
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I think I see where you guys are coming from, those of you who clean the labels off. I guess it just boils down to me not wanting to put forth the effort. Brewing is time-consuming as it is.

I certainly understand taking the labels off bottles to give away, or ones on which you are going to place your own label.

However, I clean and sanitize my bottles just fine without removing the labels. I pour my beer into a glass and immediately rinse out the bottle a couple times, and then set it upside down. Then, before bottling, I soak them in sanitizer. The labels have nothing to do with it, neither helping nor hindering. So, I don't really understand when you mention it as part of the cleaning process. That said, most of my bottles were purchased from LHBS or online, so they never had labels.

Maybe if I were more creative in coming up with clever names for my beers, I would make some labels--maybe.

HB Bill, like the "Bitter American AmBASSador", by the way. Which one would that be?

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Old 11-20-2006, 07:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buford
I prefer to have clean label-free bottles. I have made labels, but I'm only labelling bottles I intend to give away.
word up on both points. i havent labelled anything i drink at home. but for gifts and whatnot i like to have the label on there. im also planning to go to a hang-tag type label to put around the neck. that way i can make a few ahead of time and just throw them on if/when i give the bottel as a gift. someone posted a label recently that had their email address on it for comments and criticisms...i think that is a good reason to label.
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Old 11-20-2006, 09:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by desiderata
HB Bill, like the "Bitter American AmBASSador", by the way. Which one would that be?
What I mean by the cleaning process is like if I'm on the road and I buy a case of this or that I rinse the bottles after emptying. But when I get back home I put them in an overnight soak in the sink (I have my own brewing kitchen in the basement). After I come home from work I will peel the labels off that are still on then I scrub all the glue off. None of the bottle should need scrubbing on the inside but I will do it anyway to be sure. I use a bottle brush attached to my hand drill.

As for the name of my latest brew...It's basically a Bass clone (a bitter) with a British lager yeast as required, but after nothing much happening with the starter I added some of my washed Safale-56 (American Ale yeast) into the mix. It took off in like 1 hour...

The AmBASSador is a mixture of an American ale and Bass ale (lager edited out). Since it is also a bitter...hence, Bitter American AmBASSador... (It has nothing to do with John Bolten).
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Old 11-20-2006, 09:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homebrewer_99
The AmBassador is a mixture of an American ale and Bass lager. Since it is also a bitter...hence, Bitter American AmBassador... (It has nothing to do with John Bolten).
Can I do this to my own thread? Oh well.

Clever, Bill. I was wondering if it was an ale or a lager, but you answered that as well.

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