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Wax seals

Palmetto Coast

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For those using wax to seal bottles...

Are you using any type of paper or tab to make opening the bottles easier? I am trying to decide between capsules and wax, but I don't want to make it difficult for the consumer to get the drink out of the bottle.

Any thoughts?



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Just my 2 cents as a consummer. As you recognize, wax poses an opening question for the consummer. Last week, My wife used a knife to cut a 1/2 inch wide channel around the neck of a Makers Mark bottle. I'm sure this is not how the distiller wanted that bottle to be opened, but there are no instructions and the wax chips are not a good marketing leave behind to encourage repurchases. Can you imagine that bottle on a bar shelf?

A few years ago, I bought a bottle of Wasmunds Single Malt ( Copper Fox Distillery) and did the same thing. Once again the big question. "How do I open this?" I had an unattractive bottle sitting on my livingroom bar. When I visited his distillery, and he poured a taste from a new bottle, he twisted the cap and the wax broke cleanly in a thin line, as part of the cap. I learned something but not everyone is going to visit Rick and have that experience. My recommendation from a consummer point of view, is to use a thread or hang an opening instruction tag on the neck (you can also include some drink recipes on the tag) If you're using the wax for aesthetics purposes, my thoughts are that you'll get more attention to the bottle with a great label. Just my 2 cents - hope it helps


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Been doing all wax seals for a year now, almost every color of the rainbow. We just started using some stripping material from Payne-Richmond (as opposed to reinforced packaging tape) that seems to hold up very well. The good news is the cost is a fraction of the pack. tape, the bad news (depending on your production amount) is the tape comes on a 32,000 ft roll that's about the size of a spare tire. I'm guessing that'll take care of a few thousand cases for us. Obviously you need to wrap the tape on the bottle and leave a stub out for pulling (refer to earlier posts on wax seals), it'll tear off a clean strip that will still leave most of the wax intact. Here's the contact info for them, very nice guy to deal with, just tell him you're sealing bottles and he'll know what to send:

Tom Cerny, Sales Manager, Payne - Richmond Inc., e-mail is TomCerny@Payne-Worldwide.com

Product ID: R1E060WHT0100

Film Thickness: 150 micron

Tape Width: 6 mm wide

Length: 32,000 ln ft (Roughly 64,000 bottles worth)

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I've been doing wax seals for more than 20 years on my Mead. Basically there are two types of wax for sealing. The original stuff I used in the early 90's was almost a sealing wax used for doing wax stamp stuff on letters; this is what was sold to me from the only place I could find for winery supply and it was in France. So I would have an simple instruction pamphlet hanging on the bottle explaining that the consumer should pull the cork up half way brush off the wax and then pull it the rest of the way out. The stuff I get now is more pliable and pretty much stays together, very plasticy/rubbery, been using that for about 8 years. At the same time I switched to the more pliable stuff I started using a 1/4" wide nice looking decorative ribbon to help facilitate removing the wax. I cut all the ribbons to length and then lay them on the bottle and hold them down with a rubber band and then dip. It's time consuming but looks nice and needs no explanation.

My suggestion is if you have to include printed literature to explain how to open your bottle then don't bother waxing them, it's a waste of money to print something up. Plus if you have to explain to the public on how to open your bottle then something's not right. Also 90% of the public is not going to read it before opening the product.

Other thoughts, if the wax is the pliable stuff then it might be worth it to do, if it's brittle and makes a mess then don't do it. Your analogy of your wife opening the bottle with a knife makes me worry that someone might cut their hand opening your product.

It's a toss up on what to do, but if it's absolutely necessary to promote your product then figure some way out to do it cleanly. Just remember not to have it drip down the bottle like on maker's mark as they will sue, and have done before for trademark infringement, search post hear for it.

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Absinthe Pete,

Can you give us the contact information and item / part number of the wax and ribbon you are using now. What temperature does it melt at?

The stuff I use is brittle and pieces fly everywhere when opening. Not fun. It melts at about 280 d F.

I tried some other stuff but it was basically candle wax and it would melt if left in a car.



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I bought quantities of these supplies ages ago and unfortunately don't have notes on where I bought the stuff. I've attached some pics of the ribbon and the final product. The ribbon I know I got at either Michaels or Joanne's Fabrics. It's regular stuff. The wax I can't remember where I got. I do have a bookmark for this company http://www.calwax.com/. After looking at More Wine's website I think that's where I got it as they have the gold wax I use on one of my products http://morewinemaking.com/search?search=wax. I'm sure any of these guys will send you samples.

Apparently I can't attach any files because my global allotment is used, I only had 500K to begin with. SO click on the links below to view them.




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Absinthe Pete, I assume your tape is not self adhesive?

It appears from photo wax3 that your tape splits the wax in half vertically. Is that correct? I had assumed the tape would have been wrapped horizontally along the join between the glass and the cork as Grehorst does.

I have just started sealing with wax without any tape. I think I might redo the ones still at distillery. Tape over the top of cork with temporary rubber band sounds easiest.


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