Dating tin cans
I used to keep track of their best-by dates and replace them regularly.
And then a few years ago I heard about vintage canned sardines, and I tasted prized, pricey Galician Now I think of best-by dates as maybe-getting-interesting-by dates.
It was a French chef and confectioner who started preserving foods with heat and airtight containers, so of course he cared as much about the quality of the result as he did about its longevity.
Some of these notes can gradually fade during storage as the volatiles slowly react with other components of the food.
The overall flavor is nothing like freshly cooked foods.
My first bite reminded me of the aroma of canned chicken spread. Standard canned goods aren’t generally deemed age-worthy.
Food technologists define shelf life not by how long it takes for food to become inedible, but how long it takes for a trained sensory panel to detect a “just noticeable difference” between newly manufactured and stored cans.