PDA

View Full Version : How much is a customary pour?



New2Whiskey
01-26-2008, 15:12
I believe I have that question right. In other words, wine I believe is 5 ounces. How much for bourbon?

I purchased a Riedel Bourbon glass. Of course drinking spirits with more alchohol is not chugged down but rather sipped as I have learned. I am new to drinking whiskey in general so would like to know what the custom is. If I go into a bar(which I probably won't...but rather a restaurant WITH a bar) and would order bourbon neat, how much can I expect in a glass?

cowdery
01-26-2008, 15:34
A standard bar pour of straight spirits is 1 1/4 oz.

ILLfarmboy
01-26-2008, 15:49
A standard bar pour of straight spirits is 1 1/4 oz.

1 1/4 oz. not 1 1/2 oz. ?

I have a couple shot glasses that came from somewhere.... a bar.... I was young, I hope God forgives me. I'm pretty sure the little white line is
1 1/2 oz. and to the brim is another 1/2 oz. I have had them for more than fifteen years. Did something change? Are their regional differences?

cowdery
01-26-2008, 16:31
My information is maybe 20 years old, from when I was working in the business, and the standard bar pour at the big, corporate accounts that standardized such things was 1.25 oz., not 1.5 oz.

Remember that most of the spirits served in bars are white goods going into mixed drinks, often times premixed drinks. That machine-made gin and tonic is supposed to contain exactly 1.25 oz. of gin.

ILLfarmboy
01-26-2008, 17:17
The one and only time I saw a machine made drink was the one and only time I was on one of the river boats, permanently docked (floating casinos) in the Quad Cities. I had a "weak" Jack and Coke. 1 1/4 oz. would explain that.

Slightly off topic but, Some 12 or 13 years ago a lot of bars around hear started using pour spouts that had a glass or plastic ball that would fill up and then empty. Standard practice seem to be to tip the bottle right side up and then back over allowing the reservoir to fill back up and then top off the drink. How much more you would get, depended of course, on how well you tipped. I don't see those as much anymore. They are still around but they're not as ubiquitous as they once were. Bartenders didn't like them because they slowed everything up. Perhaps these devices have improved and are less obtrusive. They use to be a "big red ball" that sat atop the spout. In any case they seem less in use today.

Most places I go just eyeball it. For more complicated cocktails, more complicated than a neat pour or a whiskey Coke, I see bartenders use those cone shaped stainless two sided measurers or sometimes a shot glass. I'm curious, what are the standard practices at everyone's local?

ratcheer
01-26-2008, 18:23
In the old days (60's and 70's, for me) almost every cocktail recipe or straight pour called for 1.5 oz, which is slightly less than 50 ml, which is (or was) the size of a standard mini bottle. Yes, I have noticed that the standard pour is now considered to be 1.25 oz. I just consider this to be another part of the wussification of America.

Tim

barturtle
01-26-2008, 19:24
When I first started bartending in 1996, the standard pours were:

1.25 oz in a mixed drink, 1.5 oz neat

when I last worked in a bar 3 years ago it had become:

1.5 oz mixed, 2 oz neat.

gothbat
01-26-2008, 20:38
If you order the drink in a snifter then you should be able to turn the glass on it's side and roll it on the table without spilling anything. I don't know how close the spirit should come to the lip of he glass but imo a good pour would come as close as possible to the lip. Then again, I've seen some pretty big snifters...

elkypro
01-26-2008, 21:58
I just consider this to be another part of the wussification of America.

Tim

great line my friend!

spun_cookie
01-26-2008, 23:36
Depends by state and by local bar.... Most of the time it is 1.25 (by law in Utah, by cheap bastards in a lot of pubs), but not always. If you know the bar keep well and you tip well, your "customary" pour may be much nicer than the guy next to you:cool:

At McMann's in Tucsn I got a glass of Hirsch for $14, but it had to be three ounces... not a bad deal...

wadewood
01-27-2008, 06:24
Standard bottle size is 750 ml, which is 25.36 ounces. If I find a that any place charges more than 4x the bottle price for their standard pour, I'm going to go elsewhere or maybe have a beer.

Example - Knob Creek is common pour at most bars around town. I know I can buy a bottle of Knob Creek for $25. If a pour is 2oz, then that bar will pour 12 drinks per bottle. Using 4x rule, Knob Creek is a $100 bottle/12 = $8.33. If pour is only 1.25oz, then $100/20 = $5.

I know restaurants and bars need a mark up to stay in business. 4X cost is a very high gross margin. What I find is that chain type places are the worst for pour to price. Example, my local Chili's uses an exact pour of 1.25oz and they never vary this. They charge $7 for Knob creek, so I'm not buying.

I recently went to a cigar bar that had a very good selection of whiskey. I had a Thomas Handy Rye and it looked expensive on menu; $14. But, the pour was a good 3ozs. Using the same 4x rule, Handy goes for $55, so $220/8 pours/per bottle at 3+oz = $27.50. So, that was a very fair price.

wadewood
01-27-2008, 06:27
I just read my post below and I have to say it shows why I have the title "Mr Anal Retentive Bourbon Drinker" :lol:

luv2hunt
01-27-2008, 09:35
Ya think?!?! :slappin: :slappin:

craigthom
02-04-2008, 03:41
I don't know how it works in other states, but when I was in college in Georgia I worked at a large liquor and wine store, and we regularly sold stuff retail at prices below (sometimes much below) the price restaurants and bars could buy it wholesale. We bought whole cases, while they usually bought a bottle or two, and sometimes we'd buy big lots of things for an extra discount.

Taggerung
02-04-2008, 19:56
Wadewood,

Do you ask the bartender/server the size of their pour before ordering, or are you only applying this principle with sort of 20/20 hindsight and instances where you already know the pour size?

I guess I'm wondering if it is a common thing or a good idea to inquire about such things before committing.

Thanks,

Tim

NickAtMartinis
02-04-2008, 20:12
How much is a customary pour?


A customary pour is no less than 16 ounces. If you believe this, I'll come on by for a drink.:lol:

ACDetroit
02-04-2008, 20:22
A customary pour is no less than 16 ounces. If you believe this, I'll come on by for a drink.:lol:

Bartender: "What can I get for you?"
HS Student at Party: "I'll take a Scotch!"
Bartndr: "Straight Up or on the Rocks"
HSSAP: "How bout you just give me the whole bottle?"
Bartndr: "How's bout you bend over and I shove the whole bottle up your A$$!!"

HSSAP: "ON THE ROCKS IS FINE"

Customary all depends on what my objective is for the evening! If I'm sampling it's 2 - 3 oz but if I'm drinking it could be much more!!

Cheers!
Tony (You forgot to hook up the Doll!!) Curtis

NickAtMartinis
02-04-2008, 20:47
Bartender: "What can I get for you?"
HS Student at Party: "I'll take a Scotch!"
Bartndr: "Straight Up or on the Rocks"
HSSAP: "How bout you just give me the whole bottle?"
Bartndr: "How's bout you bend over and I shove the whole bottle up your A$$!!"

HSSAP: "ON THE ROCKS IS FINE"

:slappin::slappin::slappin::slappin:

birdman1099
02-04-2008, 21:11
Bartender: "What can I get for you?"
HS Student at Party: "I'll take a Scotch!"
Bartndr: "Straight Up or on the Rocks"
HSSAP: "How bout you just give me the whole bottle?"
Bartndr: "How's bout you bend over and I shove the whole bottle up your A$$!!"

HSSAP: "ON THE ROCKS IS FINE"

Customary all depends on what my objective is for the evening! If I'm sampling it's 2 - 3 oz but if I'm drinking it could be much more!!

Cheers!
Tony (You forgot to hook up the Doll!!) Curtis


Fantastic "Weird Science" reference. :slappin:

wadewood
02-05-2008, 14:49
Wadewood,

Do you ask the bartender/server the size of their pour before ordering, or are you only applying this principle with sort of 20/20 hindsight and instances where you already know the pour size?

I guess I'm wondering if it is a common thing or a good idea to inquire about such things before committing.

Thanks,

Tim

If you are at the bar, just watch the bartender to see if they are using a measuring device or free pouring. Sometimes, they might use measuring jigger but pour extra into glass as well. So, you should be able to roughly judge the pour size prior to ordering. If you are at a table and ordering from a server, it is more hindsight. I have not asked a server what is their pour size.

cowdery
02-05-2008, 17:34
If you're in any kind of chain, you can bet it's pretty standardized and in the neighborhood of 1.25 oz. for spirits. Independent places are where it varies. Even in some upscale chain places that employ real bartenders you will see free pours and generous servings of straight spirits.

But one thing I hardly ever see anymore that used to be routine in real drinking bars is the practice of comping every third or fourth round. I miss that.

Virus_Of_Life
02-05-2008, 18:10
But one thing I hardly ever see anymore that used to be routine in real drinking bars is the practice of comping every third or fourth round. I miss that.
OMG!! Are you serious? They used to do that?!? Holy Crap, imagine the possiblities, I'd have at least another $10k in my 401k if they still did that!

ILLfarmboy
02-05-2008, 18:33
OMG!! Are you serious? They used to do that?!? Holy Crap, imagine the possiblities, I'd have at least another $10k in my 401k if they still did that!

Yep, that started to die out around here not long after I was able to legally drink in bars. Still happens once in a while when you tip heavily. Also remember to tip when that free drink comes around if you want another one to come around. I guess there are some benefits to living in a rural area that lags behind everywhere else when it comes to trends.

jbaker
02-09-2008, 23:26
I'm curious, what are the standard practices at everyone's local?

The place I go, a local Irish bar (Ire Pub), free-hands the pour, and usually it's generous. I'd call it at least 2 oz. The selection sucks, but the bartenders are funny (and old), and the drinks are cheap (Turkey 80 on the rocks = $4). Plus, they'll upgrade you (better whisk(e)y or longer pour) for the same $ if they're in a good mood.

spun_cookie
02-10-2008, 11:03
Yep, that started to die out around here not long after I was able to legally drink in bars. Still happens once in a while when you tip heavily. Also remember to tip when that free drink comes around if you want another one to come around. I guess there are some benefits to living in a rural area that lags behind everywhere else when it comes to trends.


This really has to do with how well you know the bar keep and how good are you at quick repor. When I use to spend to much time at a few pubs, it got where I only paid for every other drink if that... but I tipped very, very well.

About 4 months ago I was a very nice high end Steak House in Sac (will not give up the name here), but they had a great collection of Bourbon and Scotch. After an hour with one of the guys that I work with chatting about bourbon and Scotch he was giving us "free sample" of their best stuff to see if we were "possible" interested in purchasing this one or that one...

It was a hard night for deciding... we had to sample at least 20 to decide :grin:

Again... the good tip from the previous time and at the good tip at end of this time made the difference...

jburlowski
02-10-2008, 15:40
I've been reading this thread with more than a little shock... Maybe I drink at all the "right" places (or maybe I tip in a righteous manner..... but I can't remember or imagine a place that would pour only 1.25 oz. as a neat or on the rocks drink. More like 2.5 - 3 oz. except for a mixed drink like a manufactured margarita.

fogfrog
02-10-2008, 16:32
how much is a customary pour? I guess it depends on the establishment. I will give you a customary pour for free at my place...

fogfrog
02-17-2008, 12:27
Reminds me of this guy at work who says..... : a couple of fingers! as he holds out his index finger and pinkie.

ILLfarmboy
02-17-2008, 12:58
I seem to remember Booker Noe saying something to the effect that the "perfect amount of bourbon to pour is two fingers......lucky for me I've got big fingers".

TNbourbon
02-23-2008, 15:01
Just to avoid aggravation, while ordering a drink today along with my late lunch at the bar top at O'Charley's -- a chain restaurant with a local store -- I specified: "I'll have about 3 ounces of Maker's Mark -- charge me whatever you have to -- straight, with no ice or water, in one of those small snifters" (pointing).
Later, when the bartender wasn't busy, I explained to him our discussion here, and asked how he'd order what he'd just poured me. He said, "Just about the way you did. We call it a 'double shot'. Othewise, we serve just about everything with ice, at least."
Good to know (and that 3-oz. drink just cost me $6.79 besides). So, basically, if you're out and about and another SB.com'er isn't pouring, be as specific as possible.

NickAtMartinis
02-23-2008, 20:29
Just to avoid aggravation, while ordering a drink today along with my late lunch at the bar top at O'Charley's -- a chain restaurant with a local store -- I specified: "I'll have about 3 ounces of Maker's Mark -- charge me whatever you have to -- straight, with no ice or water, in one of those small snifters" (pointing).
Later, when the bartender wasn't busy, I explained to him our discussion here, and asked how he'd order what he'd just poured me. He said, "Just about the way you did. We call it a 'double shot'. Othewise, we serve just about everything with ice, at least."
Good to know (and that 3-oz. drink just cost me $6.79 besides). So, basically, if you're out and about and another SB.com'er isn't pouring, be as specific as possible.


I remember being out with my wife at Applebee's (we've been once and never again - who serves a rib-eye looking and tasting like a Salusbury Steak?!) and asked for Walker Black neat. The waitress came back with a huge snifter of Walker Black atop ten pounds of ice!

As I like to say, That'll learn ya!

ratcheer
02-24-2008, 05:12
Ten pounds? !!

Damn, that must have been a big snifter. :slappin:

Tim

ILLfarmboy
02-24-2008, 07:08
I can't wrap my head around the fact that someone put Ice in a snifter. That's just bizarre.

ratcheer
02-24-2008, 07:53
I can't wrap my head around the fact that someone put Ice in a snifter. That's just bizarre.

Well, he did say Applebee's. That place is just bizarre.

Tim

jbaker
02-24-2008, 09:20
Well, he did say Applebee's. That place is just bizarre.

Tim

I've been twice, once by choice and once by force, and I'll never go to that awful place again. Why are they still in business?! And it's not even the good kind of bizarre, where there are monkeys playing piano and bearded women mixing cocktails while a giant mushroom sings the blues...no, it's not like that at all.

It's just sad, really.

ratcheer
02-24-2008, 14:15
Why are they still in business?! ....

It's just sad, really.

Lowest common denominator. Its not for people like us.

Tim

NickAtMartinis
02-24-2008, 16:51
Lowest common denominator. Its not for people like us.

Tim


Funny thing, my cousin's husband manages an Applebee's. He loves the place. I never knew much about the franchise, myself. Either did my wife until the first and last time we went. The food was terrible and I'll never head back to place again.

Funny thing #2: I love the steak and eggs at IHOP. Not that the steak is great, it's not, but I like steak and eggs in general and they do it just fine.

Mark

ratcheer
02-24-2008, 17:20
Funny thing #3: Applebee's is merging with some other chain. Isn't it IHOP?

Tim

PS - After writing the above, I Googled it. Yes, IHOP bought Applebee's and is chopping hell out of their management.

jburlowski
02-25-2008, 14:42
Tis true... IHOP has been a real turn-around success story and now they're attempting to do the same with Applebee's.

NickAtMartinis
02-25-2008, 15:03
Funny thing #3: Applebee's is merging with some other chain. Isn't it IHOP?


Funny thing #4: I just vomited up my IHOP'd Steak 'n Eggs. :grin:

NickAtMartinis
02-25-2008, 15:06
PS - After writing the above, I Googled it. Yes, IHOP bought Applebee's and is chopping hell out of their management.


Funny thing #5: Sounds like good news. I jumped to the conclusion that it was Applebee's that was buying out IHOP.

In celebration, I just ate up my regurgitated Steak 'n Eggs.:grin: