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Pictured is an old bottle of cognac I have had in my possession since 1978.
Now, I get to tell a great story: A group of my friends and I had the opportunity to spend the night in an old Spring Lake, NJ mansion that was being renovated. One of the workers had the key and we all snuck in and had a little party. Late in the evening, the worker invited us all into the basement where they had been inspecting the foundation in preparation for the demolition of a wing.
Along one wall was a cabinet they found hiding a vault door measuring 3′ wide by 6′ tall with a combination lock. They’d smashed the lock in, pulled the bolt, and pryed the door open to find a room 6′ wide by 7′ tall by 8′ deep.
On either side wooden shelves had long fallen away and dumped approximately 200 bottles of applejack into a pile on the floor. The contents of every bottle was in some state of evaporation, if not smashed. There were no labels.
Sitting on top of this pile were two cases of cognac. The contractor had taken one case and the worker took the other. He gave me two bottles.
At that age, I knew nothing – period. I opened the bottle with the intact labels and kept the one you see. The one with the intact labels had a lable across the back with printing on it, but the only thing that was clear was, “May, 1900.” An unfortunate circumstance led to that bottle being smashed, but I have kept this bottle since then. It has always been kept on its side at room temperature.
My wife refused to drink it with me at the melinnium; she refused to drink it with me on May 1, 2000. I don’t know what she’s waiting for…
That is my story. I welcome all responses.