Friday, July 20, 2007

Size Matters

So I was having a nice little beer tasting event the other day with Learn About Wine and I had, as my piece de resistance, a 3 Liter bottle of Craftsman Triple White Sage from Mark (I know, I know, I've mentioned this beer a lot. It's because TWS and I are in love OKAY? Leave me alone.) Anyway, the big bottle was really c-o-o-l and got me thinking. We (meaning American readers) are so used to the standard 12 oz. bottle that just seeing beer in a different size can be confusing and daunting. What do we call it? How much are we getting? you go!

The Stubbie - This unfortunate name is the general term for short glass bottles used for beer. They are shorter and fatter than your average bottle. The capacity is between 330ml (11.2 fl oz.) and 375 ml or (12.7 fl oz.) The advantages of this sized bottle is that the beer chills faster, they are easier to handle, there is less breakage, and - very important with me - tip less easily. These bottles are used more often in Europe, but you've seen them around - think Red Stripe bottles.

The Longneck - Uh...this is a type of beer bottle with a long neck. This is the industry standard bottle or ISB. ISB longnecks have a uniform capacity, height, weight and diameter and can be reused on average 16 times. The long neck offers a long cushion of air to absorb the pressure of carbonation to reduce the risk of exploding. The American longneck holds 12 fl oz. or 355 ml. FYI - The Canadian longneck holds 12 Imperial fl. oz. or 341 ml.

The Bomber - This is my favorite size bottle. A bomber is a 22 oz or 650ml glass bottle that craft, artisanal and specialty beers commonly come in. Bombers typically contain two to three servings of beer, which may be shared amongst friends...or not. They are also a popular bottle type with homebrewers. A 22 is commonly known as a "deuce-deuce" or "double-deuce," but please do me a favor and never call it that.

The Australian Longneck - In Australia, the most common volume of a longneck bottle is 750 ml or approximately 25 fl oz. Recently some brewers in Australia have even increased their longneck size to 800 ml or 27 fl oz. Dammit I love Australians! In Queensland a longneck is known as a "tallie." And in Western Australia its called a "king brown," which makes me laugh.

The Forty - Forties are more than three times as large as the standard American longneck. It is 40 fl oz. or 1.18 liters. Typically forties are associated with the beverage known as malt liquor baby yeah! (the name "Malt Liquor," by the way, is strictly a governmental regulation and refers to a type of beer that has a high abv and was considered too alcoholic to be marketed as "beer.") Don't drink it.

The Growler - A growler is a half gallon or 64 fl. oz. glass jug used to transport draught beer. They are commonly sold at breweries and brewpubs as a means to sell take-out beer. Some breweries also offer a one-liter version. Growlers generally are made of glass and have a tin or plastic screw-on cap or a hinged porcelain gasket cap which can provide freshness for a few days before losing carbonation. They usually have a handle ( I love bottles with handles) and can be used indefinitely.

FYI - Here are bottle sizes as they relate to wine:

= 187 ml or one quarter size a standard bottle
= 375 ml or half a standard bottle.
Standard Bottle
= 750 ml
= 1.5 liters or twice the standard bottle
also called Double Magnum = 3 liters or 4 standard bottles
= 4.5 liters or 6 standard standard bottles
Methusalem also called Imperial = 6 liters or 8 standard bottles
= 9 liters or 12 standard bottles. This is an entire case in one bottle.
= 12 liters or 16 standard bottles.
= 12 to 16 liters (depending on the country of origin) or 16 to 20 btls.
= 50 liters or 67 standard bottles.

Thank you to for a lot of this information.

1 comment:

  1. Hey, thanks for the info, yours seems more complete than of wikipedia.
    I was wondering the name of a bottle that I'm keeping for homebrewing so I needed info on this bottle
    Thanks a lot :)