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Macallan CS bottle codes

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@Nock
Nock started a discussion

Ok, lets talk about bottle codes for Macallan Cask Strength (soon to be gone). I am in the US and our friend @paddockjudge is in Canada. He has found the sacred “bottle code” on the bottle in addition to a number inside the box.

“The bottle markings are on the underside of the labels, facing into the liquid....tough to detect on a full bottle. I shine a flashlight through the bottle and the numbers are 'easier' to view...put the end of the flash light against the label and view form opposite side or about 120 degrees to the light.”

My bottle of Mac CS 59% ABV 750mL purchased June 2013 behind the label: L0573M L10 11 08 22:33 Inside my box: TAN 627/261 28JULY11 20:48 032236

@paddockjudge bottle which is 60.1% ABV 700mL reads: L0244P L10 09 07 22:27 His box: TAN 626/755 06JUL10 04:47 000340

The box code seems obvious “06 of July 2010”

My “guess” for the bottle code is that the second “L” tells us the year. For my bottle “L10” = 2010. The number following the space is the month (“11” = November). The third number is the day (“08”= the 8th day of November 2010). The following numbers with the colon is the hour and minute of the day. So, if I am correct my bottle is from November 8th 2010. @paddockjudge has a bottle from September 7th 2010.

However, I wonder. The box code seems to indicate day, month, and then year. Could this be the case with the bottle as well? Is my guess wrong? I feel like we need a number of you to chime in with your bottle codes and when you bought it.

First: if you have a bottle of Macallan CS please pull it out and contribute you bottle code and box code (and rate your bottle if it is open: my bottle is unopened and @paddockjudge loves his bottle).

Second: what is your best guess as to what these numbers mean?

7 years ago

25 replies

Airigh1976 replied

Did you ever get more info on these codes? I just bought a bottle of Macallan 12 year old from a small liquor shop. The bottle looks a lot different than the ones I always see in stores. I shined a flashlight inside the bottle and found the code "L0488Y 27:07 22:15." There was no second "L" with a number after it. Wondering how long this bottle's been hanging around waiting to find a home!

7 years ago 0

@mrgargus
mrgargus replied

My bottle of Mac CS is 60.1% ABV 750 ML purchased...well I don't remember exactly. Sometime in the Spring of this year. The code in the bottle is L0244p L10 10 07 08:56. I can't rate this bottle as it's unopened and will remain so until Macallan CS returns...which I fear could be a long, long time. We'll see how long I can resist opening it up. Last bottle I had before this one was fantastic though, hence why I purchased another.

7 years ago 0

@thePeatofile
thePeatofile replied

My bottle says L0573M L10 15 08 12:30 I probably bought this bottle around 2 years ago. I'm still drinking off of it. It's very good, but can't really compare it. As it is the only bottle of this expresion I have tried.

7 years ago 0

@Nock
Nock replied

@Airigh1976 - no, I had no more info on codes. Thanks for kicking some life back into this tread. After no one replied I figured, "This is the reason the Macallan cask strength is going away . . . no one really cares about it."

What do you mean your 12yo bottle looks different? You mean it looks like the old style bottles prior to the change in the mid 2000's? Because that would be a very nice old dusty find.

While I am grateful for those of you who have responded with bottle codes (my personal delight) I doubt Macallan will keep this bottle around (or bring it back). There just isn't enough interest - especially with the recent price hike! It really seems like Macallan has made some bad decisions of late . . . and are heading in a bad direction.

If you can still find the cask strength bottles where you are . . . buy them! Not just one or two, but a case (if you can afford it). Just my opinion.

7 years ago 0

@cherylnifer
cherylnifer replied

Sorry, late to the party as usual. Both of the unopened bottles of Macallan Cask Strength that I purchased this past March (2013) in Dallas Texas have bottle code: L0244R L10 11 07. Was unable to make out the numbers on the very end of the bottle code. I also could not find a printed code on either of the two boxes. Is the code imprinted into the white card stock? Where on the box is the box code located ?

7 years ago 0

@cherylnifer
cherylnifer replied

Perhaps the last four digits and colon indicate a time of day, based on a 24 hour day?

7 years ago 0

@sengjc
sengjc replied

The 750ml bottle that I have was procured at considerable cost here in Australia with their ridiculously high taxes.

Anyway rant over, back on topic.

It has the listed alcohol by volume as just "59%" on a printed white label with red and gold borders. The bottle code obscured by all that dark sherry goodness that I just make out with a flashlight is: L0573M L10 15 08 15:45

In the box it says: TAN 627/261 28JUL11 19:46 024888

Hope this helps to add to the database.

7 years ago 0

@sengjc
sengjc replied

By the way, given the apparent discontinuation of this line and the depletion of stocks, I have recently placed a couple of orders for some more bottles of Macallan Cask Strength. Fingers crossed, I will be receiving the following variants:

  • 750ml 60.1% and 750ml 58.6% variants from a UK site
  • 750ml 60% variant from a Japanese site

Fingers and toes crossed these would come through without customs interference. :lol:

Anyway, the 750ml 60% variant from the Japanese site, although listed as 60%, could well be of the same production batch as that of the 750ml 60.1% variant from the UK site, if any judicious rounding-off has been applied.

Also, from the listed photos on the UK site, the 750ml 58.6% looks to be richer and deeper in colour as compared to the 750ml 60.1%. It will be interesting to see if this variance in attribute does mean a more sherried "sherry-monster". Then again, it could well just be a lighting effect.

I'll update the thread with more bottle codes when I receive delivery.

Incidentally, to the OP, if you are looking to expand your horizons on batched cask strength sherried malts, I recommend trying the Glendronach Cask Strength (intensity), Amrut Intermediate (refinement) or Kavalan Solist Sherry (balance) in addition to the Aberlour A'Bunadh. I hear Glengoyne has recently jumped onto this bandwagon too.

The Glenfarclas 105, while not a batched release is pretty good too and could be a suitable alternative when sticks of the Macallan Cask Strength line is depleted, or when prices of the remaining stock become overly inflated.

7 years ago 0

@cclward
cclward replied

Hello , My bottle was bought in 2011 in St. John's Newfoundland , for about $80, It is an imported bottle from the USA 750 ml at 58.2% ABV.

The code is L0267E L10 20:04 22:37. So bottled 2010, April 20th. I still have just under a half bottle , I must purchase another bottle if it is being discontinued , It is quite tasty.

I also noticed the Macallan 12 is last chance to buy at my local liquor store to make way for the new line.

7 years ago 0

@Nock
Nock replied

@sengjc It looks like we have the exact same batch "L0573M L10 11 08" mine bottled at 22:33 and yours at 15:45. So yours was bottled 7 hours before mine.

my box: TAN 627/261 28JULY11 20:48 032236

your box: TAN 627/261 28JUL11 19:46 024888

Your box is just an hour before mine.

@cherylnifer - I agree that the first two digits are the hour and after the colon the minute.

7 years ago 0

@sengjc
sengjc replied

@Nock : You are right, how's yours drinking? Any good? I am yet to take a nip from mine.

While I think the deduced meaning of the production dates as indicated by the bottle/box codes is plausible, I find it a little odd that Macallan would bottle in 2010 to box it up in 2011.

Anyway, I received communication today from the Japanese vendor that they are out of stock of the Macallan CS. Quite unfortunate.

7 years ago 0

@sengjc
sengjc replied

These came in today:

58.6% 750ml Bottle code: L1052K L10 03:02 12:13 Box code: TAN 627/035 12NOV10 16:09 009591

58.6% 750ml Bottle code: L1052K L10 03:02 12:13 Box code: TAN 627/035 12NOV10 16:09 009595

60.1% 750ml Bottle code: L0244P L10 10 07 10:40 Box code: TAN 627/261 28JUL11 15:10 009716

6 years ago 1Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

Additional bottles of Macallan Cask Strength NAS Two bottles from Western Canada L0244P L10 10 07 8:46 (both)

Ontario, Barrie 3 bottles L02244P L 10 10 07 9:18

6 years ago 0

Dpaquet replied

I have a bottle i bought in Quebec. Its the 60,1%, 750ml, purchased in january 2014.

The code behind the label is L0244P L 10 10 07 09:40 The code inside the box is: A3 627/449 21:35 002438

6 years ago 0

sjbeckett replied

Hi all. Just found this post when researching an old bottling of Macallan 10 which I picked up this morning (from a very dusty shelf in a local convienience store).

So the bottle is an old style (water colour style picture on box) 10yo sherry cask and has the following bottle code. L10298 L10 02/11 13:01

As per the discussion above the L10 would indicate bottling in 2010, however the packaging style indicates that that can't be the case. Any other thoughts on how the codes work?..

6 years ago 0

@Nock
Nock replied

@sjbeckett have you found a box code inside the box?

6 years ago 0

@sengjc
sengjc replied

@sjbeckett

Maybe 'L10' doesn't mean bottled in 2010. If you look at all the listings above, you will notice that every bottle sports the 'L10' in the serial code which is quite coincidental.

The older style 'water colour' packaging was phased out mid-2004, about the same time they introduced the now discontinued Fine Oak range, so it is unlikely the bottle is from 2010.

Nice find by the way.

6 years ago 0

sjbeckett replied

Thanks. Found the box code (on the bottom) and it is mdg105. Like you say the L10 appears to be a bit of a red herring. @sengjc

6 years ago 0

ripriley replied

@Dpaquet Sorry for the late reply - but I figured I'd chime in with what I think is the correct answer...

The first letter and 4 digit of code is a vat code used by the distillery (irrelevant to most of us). The "P" at the end of that code is the year. "S" is our current year 2014, and each letter represents the year in order (up or down) - so "P" would be 3 years ago. The "L10" simply means Line 10. The 10/07 is day / month of bottling. The 09:40 is the time.

So given the lot code you provided, I'd say your bottle is a 2011, off Line 10, bottled on 10th of July at 9:40 AM. Would that make sense?

5 years ago 1Who liked this?

@cherylnifer
cherylnifer replied

@ripriley > as good a guess as any at deciphering the Macallan bottle code. Where did you get your info pertaining to the alpha reference to year (S=2014)? I suspect there might be a minor flaw in your theory. I bought two bottles of Macallan Cask Strength in Dallas Texas during the first week in March 2013. Both have bottle code: L0244R L10 11 07. Based on your explanation, 0244 is the vat number, R = year = 2013 (if S = 2014), L10 = line number, and 11 07 = July 11th. Unfortuantely, July 11, 2013 is four months after I purchased in Dallas. Based on Nock's June 2013 purchase, with bottle code of L0573M L10 11 08 22:33, and inside box code: TAN 627/261 28JULY11 20:48 032236, I suspect the bottle was filled in August 2011 (11 08) and placed in box produced 28JULY11. Note the alpha code on his bottle = M, which would = 2008 based on your reasoning. Not out of the realm of possibilities, but out of place given the box code it was paired with. Just my two cents.

5 years ago 0

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@ripriley I must agree with your interpretation of the alphanumeric code on the Macallan CS label. It makes perfect sense with the current year being keyed to the letter "s".

5 years ago 0

lksims replied

I have a bottle of Macaulay 12 year that I have had for quite some time. As yet unopened. I was always curious as to when it was actually bottled. I stumbled upon this discussion and thought I would add my label to the mix. LOO15JL8 14:01 09:59. I was curious what you all think the breakdown of the code is. I've had the bottle for years. July 15, 2008?

3 years ago 0

Expand image
lksims replied

Macallan. Sometimes hate auto correct

3 years ago 0

Expand image
@Nozinan
Nozinan replied

@lksims A pity... I was looking forward to hearing about the MacCaulay

3 years ago 1Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge replied

@lksims, Each batch is identified by its own letter. The letters are sequential. There could be more than one batch in a calendar year, therefore a specific letter may not necessarily represent a specific year. I don't recall the letter code for the first batch.

3 years ago 0

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