For today’s Buzzy’s Twofer Tuesday, I’m gonna do a little Buzzy Boozeology 101 on you and tell you about the difference between Alcohol By Volume (ABV) and Proof. Come on, I know that this is something that you have always wondered and wanted to know about right? So read on and in 2 minutes (another twofer see?) you will know all you need to know about this very vital differentiation.
Most bottles of alcohol sold in the U.S. will have something like this on the label:
Ok, so what’s so interesting and confusing about all this I hear you asking. Well, turns out that this is something that the U.S. booze bubbas slapped on us back in 1848:
As with most of our early regulatory mandates, we tried to copy England’s ABV/Proof method which had a somewhat crazy origin to begin with:
England then moved to a more scientific method that had the alcohol to proof ratio as 4:7 (click here.) When we went to copy England’s procedure, evidently all that math was too confusing so we simply doubled it. Later England just said to hell with it all and left the ABV/Proof ratio at 1:1 which is what they and the rest of Europe uses today.
But of course when it comes to things measurement-wise (think metric) the U.S. always likes to be different. We have stuck with the 1:2 ratio and that is where it stands today.
So the take away is – next time you check out a bottle of booze and look at the label, you will feel a little smarter just knowing that all of that ABV/Proof mumbo jumbo is only one step above useless.
Not known for being a rock and roller, George nonetheless had the respect of Mick and Keith as one the best songwriters ever (click here). Here he is with a rockin, for him, tune that just may be the best drinking song ever – whshhhoooh!