The most common answer is the shot of liquor, also known as ‘hard liquor’ or distilled spirits. The second most common answer is beer usually because so many drinkers use it over the other types. Each of the items in this example contains the same amount of alcohol. Each one is considered a standard serving size of alcohol. They are denoted as standard because they all contain the same amount of pure alcohol.
When adults are pulled over and the officer asks ‘how many drinks have you had,’ the officer is referring how many standard servings of alcohol, but many drivers don’t realize this or don’t understand. For instance, if the driver had one large bucket of beer, he may tell the officer ‘I just had one.’ If one standard drink was what he had, he would likely register well under a 0.08 BAC, but his blood alcohol concentration (BAC) would reflect the amount of actual alcohol he consumed. Obviously, some serving sizes are more than one standard drink even though one may only drink one product. For example, a 40 ounce beer is 3 1/3 servings of alcohol or standard drinks. Mixed drinks are even more confusing, since most contain many ‘shots’ or standard servings of alcohol in one drink.