Is 8% a lot for beer?

In this article, we will answer the question “Is 8% a lot for beer?”, and what is binge drinking.

Read on if you want to know more about the alcohol content of different drinks, alcohol types for shots, and the relation between a shot and beer volume. 

Is 8% a lot for beer?

How strong alcohol feels not only depends upon its pure alcohol content but also on factors like style, brewing process, age, etc. But an ABV level of 7-8% alcohol is considered strong. So, a beer with 8% alcohol is quite strong. 

Since the standard drink contains 0.6 oz. of ethanol, and 8% beer equals 1.5 oz of 80 proof liquor in a mixed drink, 5 oz of wine containing 12% alcohol, or 12 oz of beer containing 5% alcohol.

If we assume that a standard drink contains 0.6 oz of alcohol, then 12 ounces of an 8 percent beer comes out to be more than one drink.

How to compare Shot and Beer volume? 

Beer is available in a variety of packaging sizes such as can, bottle, or order a pint. The volume of the can or bottle is 12 ounces (354 ml) while a pint contains 16 ounces (473 ml). A standard alcohol shot in the US equals 1.48 ounces (44 ml) of volume. The bottom line is that the shot volume varies greatly from country to country. 

Variations in shot volume 
Country Volume 
Germany 0.67 ounces (20 ml)
UK 0.84 ounces (25 ml)
Australia 1.01 ounces (30 ml)
Poland 1.35 ounces (40 ml)
The US1.48 ounces (44 ml)
Russia 1.69 ounces (50 ml)
Japan 2.02 ounces (60 ml)

A regular beer contains 149 calories, and a light one 110. On average, an alcohol shot provides about 65 calories, depending on the alcohol type.

Alcohol content 

The Ethanol content of all alcoholic drinks varies. The variation is quite significant in beer and hard beverages like vodka, tequila, and rum. According to American Dietary Guidelines for 2015 to 2020, a single alcoholic drink contains 0.6 ounces (17.7 ml) of pure alcohol.

The ABV content of domestic beer ranges between 5 and 8% ABV (alcohol by volume). On the other hand, vodka containing 80 proof has 40% ABV. From this information, we can derive that 12 ounces (354 ml) of 5% beer has 0.6 ounces (17.7 ml) pure ethanol alcohol and a 1.48 ounces (44 ml) shot of vodka contain 0.59 ounces (17.4 ml) alcohol.

But one regular beer does not always equal one shot when the alcohol content is considered. This is because the ABV content of an alcoholic drink varies with the type of drink and the brand. This is why you will come across craft beers with over 15% ABV and light lagers with 2 to 3%.

Various drinks ABV 
Drink ABV value 
Absolut Vodka 40
Bacardi Vodka 60
Bug Light 4
Old Knucklehead 8.9
Amstel Light 3.5

What are the common Alcohol types for shots? 

Some of the best and most well-known shot cocktails are B-52. The Sangrita Shot, Gladiator, Glasshopper, Jelly Bean, and Kamikaze. Tequila has a specific drinking ritual that involves sprinkling some salt and squeezing some lemon juice over your tongue before taking the shot.

Beers with a high alcohol content such as porters and stouts are often paired with a bourbon or whiskey shot. The term ‘pickleback’ means taking a shot of pickle juice or a whiskey shot just before drinking a small glass of pickle brine.

What is meant by Binge drinking? 

What differs drinking beer from shots is the time length during which it is consumed. A beer drink may take a while for you to finish while a shot can be finished in a matter of seconds. So you are more likely to get a drink from beer shots because you are not likely to take only one shot.

A person breaks down 0.01 BAC (blood alcohol content) per hour. So, if you are only taking one beer shot within an hour, you are way within the allowed BAC limits. According to the American Addiction Center, drinking 5 or more drinks on the same occasion is referred to as binge drinking.

How to convert standard drinks? 

A drink that has 14 grams of pure alcohol (about 0.6 fluid ounces) is considered a Standard Drink.

Beverage type Ounces (1)% Alcohol Content By Volume (2)% Alcohol Content By Volume (1 x 2)Total ounces of alcohol 
Beer 12 oz.5%60%0.6 oz.
Wine 5 oz.12%60%0.6 oz.
Hard Liquor /Spirits (gin, whiskey) 1 ½ oz.40%60%0.6 oz.

Other FAQs about Beer that you may be interested in.

How many gallons of beer in a barrel?

Where to buy beer in maryland?

Why was Coors beer illegal?


In this article, we answered the question “Is 8% a lot for beer?”, and what is binge drinking.



Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.