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I have seen wine poured to various amounts in a wine glass; what amount is generally considered standard...4 oz, 6 oz, 8 oz?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 20 down vote accepted

It comes from two different measurements, typical wine bottle size, and government alcohol regulations

Typical wine bottles are 750 ml, and this divides exactly into five or six servings of 150 or 125 ml (thanks peter). So many traditional wine glass serves are "exactly" 150 or 125 ml (~5 or 4 oz) depending in which country you live in

For typical government regulation, a standard drink is; a 100 ml glass of table wine, or a 330 ml can of beer, or a 30 ml glass of straight spirits. Each of these contains on average 10 g of alcohol. So many liquor licensing guidelines recommend the serving of wine by 100 ml (3.5 oz) standard drink sizes

Governments will use this to produce such amazing guidelines such as:

For women: Two standard drinks a day, and no more than ten standard drinks a week
For men: Three standard drinks a day, and no more than fifteen standard drinks a week
And for both at least two alcohol-free days every week

In most western countries the standard drink range is from 8 to 12 g of alcohol, except in the USA where it is super-sized to 14 g


Update; references from ICAP

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Thank you TFD. A family friend who does not drink alcohol at all and additionally is apprehensive about consuming any substance in even the smallest amount, was advised by his physician to "drink a glass of wine each day". He really has no idea how much is appropriate. So the 750 ml bottle/ 5 -5 oz servings that you mentioned makes good sense to share with him so that he is comfortable with the doctor's orders. Thanks for the detailed reply and helpful information :) –  Melanie May 13 '12 at 1:05
    
It's worth noting that not only is the size of the standard drink different depending on the country, the recommended intake is often different as well. For example, in Finland the standard drink is 12g or 15.2mL of alcohol, whereas in the US it's 14g or 17.7mL (for men). But the maximum recommended weekly intake in the US is 14 drinks or 247.8mL, whereas in Finland the maximum weekly recommended intake is 24 drinks or 364.8mL (for men). So this is often a confusing issue. –  user5561 May 13 '12 at 4:48
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Wait, he was told by his physician to drink a glass of wine a day? Clearly I have the wrong doctor! –  FuzzyChef May 13 '12 at 6:49
    
For restaurant pours, it's also worth noting that this varies pretty significantly by region and current trend. For example, San Francisco is currently in a $12, 9-oz-glass-of-wine mood. –  FuzzyChef May 13 '12 at 6:53
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@TFD: alcohol can be a strong poison, sure. Warfarin, on the other hand, is the traditional pesticide against mice and rats... Remember, everything is poison, it just depends on the dose. Plus, medical advice on the Internet: plain wrong... –  nico May 15 '12 at 18:00
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Wine glass question is a good one - in UK its either 175ml or 125 ml and confusion reigns, as bars will happily serve you a 250 mil and charge the large glass price! I would tend to believe 175ml in reaturants and 125ml for medical advice.

Doctors advice to drink one glass of wine a day is not really that clever - have you ever found a wine that is good on its fifth day of being open? (Apart from fortified ones - maybe there's the answer)

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