Ninkasi Date Code

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by fuhkyou, Jun 12, 2015.

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  1. fuhkyou

    fuhkyou Initiate (0) Feb 20, 2013 Idaho

    Grabbed a 6er of Ninkasi Wunderbier Kolsch on the fly today without finding a date code on a bottle or carton (something I never do).
    After getting home it looks like there is some kind of ink stamp on the bottom of each bottle but damn if I can read it while the bottle is full.

    After finding:

    http://www.ninkasibrewing.com/blogs...eep-your-beer-fresh/?ageVerified=defaultValue

    on line I'm a bit pissed off. Looks like Ninkasi shot themselves in the foot with me. Won't catch me buying any of their offerings anymore.
     
  2. Admbmb92

    Admbmb92 Initiate (0) Oct 6, 2013 Oregon

    What exactly is the problem?
     
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  3. Strangestbrewer

    Strangestbrewer Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2014 Oregon

    He bought last years summer seasonal because he couldn't read the date code is my guess.
     
  4. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,178) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    :astonished: Seems to me the blame for the self-inflicted foot wound is misplaced...
     
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  5. fuhkyou

    fuhkyou Initiate (0) Feb 20, 2013 Idaho

    Unless things have changed Ninkasi does not date their 6 packs in a way that can be easily read before purchasing.
     
  6. VictorsValiant

    VictorsValiant Initiate (0) Oct 14, 2014 Oregon


    I believe Ninkasi used a different type of ink on their bottles last year. This year's ink is much more resistant to moisture and friction.

    Personally I think your anger is a bit misplaced. It's not Ninkasi's fault that last year's seasonal was kept on the shelf.

    Besides, are you even sure that is last year's seasonal that you grabbed? I highly doubt that it was.

    Do you have a picture of the bottles and code date?
     
  7. breadwinner

    breadwinner Initiate (0) Mar 6, 2014 California

    I admit the codes can be a touch tough to read sometimes -- the stamping they use just doesn't always seem to apply very well -- but it's there if you look for it. It's usually the month (spelled out), date, year, i.e., May 17, 2015. Also, if you happen to be able to see the case the packs are coming from, it's printed very clearly on the side as well.

    Picked up some Wunderbier 9 days after bottling a couple weeks back. My guess is you got fresh stuff.
     
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  8. fuhkyou

    fuhkyou Initiate (0) Feb 20, 2013 Idaho

    Am I the only one who has ever found a Ninkasi 6 pack with no readable date code?
     
  9. VictorsValiant

    VictorsValiant Initiate (0) Oct 14, 2014 Oregon

    Yes.
     
  10. breadwinner

    breadwinner Initiate (0) Mar 6, 2014 California

    Was it every bottle? I occasionally run across one bottle with an especially poor stamping, but usually there's others in the six pack that have a good enough one to get the info I need.
     
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  11. VictorsValiant

    VictorsValiant Initiate (0) Oct 14, 2014 Oregon

    Agreed.
     
  12. fuhkyou

    fuhkyou Initiate (0) Feb 20, 2013 Idaho

    I have no idea when the beer was made, that's the problem. I haven't opened one yet, hopefully it's OK and most likely is. After Ninkasi's big rant about freshness they should date their 6 packs/bottles in a way that can be easily read.
     
  13. breadwinner

    breadwinner Initiate (0) Mar 6, 2014 California

    So I glean from this comment that, in fact, all of the bottles didn't have legible dates? If so, bummer -- I haven't had that happen yet. Better luck next go round!
     
  14. VictorsValiant

    VictorsValiant Initiate (0) Oct 14, 2014 Oregon

    To be honest they are easily read most of the time. Considering that a large part of my job deals with craft beer freshness and code dating I would have to say that I've poured over more Ninkasi bottles than you will in a lifetime. Their code dating ink is pretty solid compared to other breweries I've seen.
     
  15. fuhkyou

    fuhkyou Initiate (0) Feb 20, 2013 Idaho

    If the date code is printed in dark ink on the dark bottom (not on the side near the bottom) of the bottle it's unreadable. I just checked a couple bottles of their APA (forget the specific name) at a local supermarket different from the store I bought the Wunderbier from and the same situation.
    I'm not knocking Ninkasi's beer. I've had it on tap over the years and liked everything I had. Just don't sing a big song about the freshness of beer affecting quality then hold the ability to determine freshness of your own product close to your chest.
     
  16. fuhkyou

    fuhkyou Initiate (0) Feb 20, 2013 Idaho

    Only after emptying a bottle was I able to see the code which read:

    106 A2 2346

    I would guess the 2346 means 11:46 PM but the other... hell if I know.

    Conclusion:
    Ninkasi does NOT date their 6 packs.

    I like this Wunderbier, nice flavor and plenty of it but I'll be reluctant to buy it again.
     
  17. StoneTSR

    StoneTSR Champion (838) Nov 18, 2009 Colorado


    106 is probably the Julian date code; the 106th day of the year. A lot of breweries use this system. Just divide by 30 and you've got a pretty good idea of when it was packaged. Is it slightly more confusing than a regular date? Yes. Does it mean Ninkasi does not date their bottles? No.
     
  18. fuhkyou

    fuhkyou Initiate (0) Feb 20, 2013 Idaho

    Did you read the part where the code can't be read without emptying the bottle?
     
  19. breadwinner

    breadwinner Initiate (0) Mar 6, 2014 California

    As I said earlier, there's a different code printed on the bottle as well, in the Month/Date/Year format, at least there have been on almost every bottle I've had recently. It's possible it didn't print properly onto yours, but they should be there. Again, I'd be interested to know if every bottle in that six pack is missing the date code I just mentioned. If so, you might consider emailing Ninkasi, just to make sure they get that fixed.
     
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