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How Many Shots Are There In a Bottle of Whiskey?

How many shots are there in a bottle of whiskey? Well, that all depends on what you define as a ‘shot’, and the volume of the bottle.

Those small, heavy-bottomed glasses designed to deliver bottom-shelf booze straight to the bloodstream with maximum efficiency (not our recommended method of enjoying whiskey, but we know there’s a time and place) are usually between one and 1.5 ounces. Measure yours to know for sure, or ask the bartender at your favorite spot.

The standard bottle size for whiskey in the US is 750ml. So, how many shots are there in 750ml?

If you define a ‘shot’ as 1.5 ounces, there are 16.9 shots in a standard 750ml bottle of whiskey.

On the other hand, if you are working with 1-ounce glasses, there are 25 shots in a bottle of whiskey, plus 1/3 of a shot left over.

However, most cocktails contain more than 1.5 ounces of spirit—typically two or even 2.5 ounces of whiskey find their way into Manhattans, Old Fashioneds, and the like.  As such, if you’re mixing up a batch of fancy whiskey cocktails for your most high-falutin’ friends, you’ll need a full bottle of whiskey for every 12 cocktails.

How Many Shots of Whiskey In Different-Sized Bottles?

So, we have covered the standard US measurements – one 750ml bottle of whiskey contains 16.9 1.5-ounce shots. But, what about other bottle sizes?

Well, in several other countries around the globe, including the UK, the standard bottle size is 700ml (or 70cl). As such, there are about 15.7 shots in a 700ml bottle of whiskey.

In a 500ml bottle, you can expect around 11.2 shots, and a 1-liter bottle contains around 22.5 shots.

Is A Whiskey Shot A Different Size In The UK?

Yes, a shot of whiskey is measured differently in the UK. By law, gin, vodka, rum, and whiskey must be sold in 25ml or multiples thereof. They can also be sold in 35ml. However, most places in the UK stick to the 25ml measure.

So, in the UK a 700ml bottle of whiskey contains exactly 28 shots.

Do Shot Glasses Come In Different Sizes?

Shot glasses do come in different sizes, meaning that the above math is by no means foolproof. If you use a tall shot glass or one with a wide rim, it may well have a different volume to those I have just described.

The moral of the story? If you are hosting a cocktail party for friends, make sure your liquor bar is well-stocked, and perhaps stick to one measuring tool to create your whiskey cocktails.

If you are following a recipe, be sure to check which measurements are being used. After all, two US shots is a very different quantity to two UK shots.

Margarett Waterbury

Margarett Waterbury is the author of Scotch: A Complete Introduction to Scotland's Whiskies and a full-time freelance writer and editor. Her work has appeared in Whisky Advocate, Food and Wine, Spirited Magazine, Artisan Spirit, Edible Seattle, Sip Northwest, Civil Eats, Travel Oregon, Artisan Spirit, and many other publications. She is the former managing editor of Edible Portland, as well as a cofounder and former managing editor of The Whiskey Wash. In 2017, Margarett won the Alan Lodge Young Drinks Writer of the Year award. She received a fellowship for the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers in 2017 and 2019.

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