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How to Calculate Alcohol By Volume?

While alcohol has always been a part and parcel in our celebrations, it is always wise to be under check and avoid the unnecessary influence of alcohol by over-consumption. One of the realist ways to be in check is calculating the alcohol by volume so that you can curb the consumption and usage. 

The Process:

The term alcohol by volume is a globally accepted terminology for the measurement of ethanol in a given alcoholic beverage, this is generally expressed as volume percentage. The standard way of assessing it is by calculating the amount in milliliters of the pure ethanol in a solution of 100 ml at 20°C (68°F). The amount of ethanol in its pure form is divided by the density of it ( at 20’ C) which accounts for 0.789 g/mL.

1. Calculating ABV from specific gravity-

The standard method of calculating ABV is to use the ‘specific gravity’. Specific gravity is the relative density of a liquid compared with the density of water. When fermentation takes place, the specific gravity of the liquid is subject to change. One can monitor this change to find the alcohol content.

The most recent formula was presented by Cutaia, Reid, and Speers in 2009. The first formula from their research relates to the measurements of the alcohol content by weight with the original and apparent extract:

ABW =(0.372 + 0.00357 * OE) * (OE – AE)

where:

  • ABW is the alcohol by weight, measured in percents
  • OE is the original extract (before fermentation), measured in Plato degrees.
  • AE is the apparent extract (after fermentation)

From the above formula, an equation for alcohol by volume was derived:

ABV = ABW * (1.308 * 10-5 + 3.868 * 10-3 * AE + 1.275 * 10-5 * AE2 + 6.3 * 10-8 * AE3 + 1) / 0.7907

One can determine the volume of alcohol in a 500 ml bottle of 4.5% beer. If you are interested in finding this value, use this equation:

Alcohol Volume = Total volume * ABV

Note: All formulas for finding the ABV are approximate, as they are found empirically rather than derived. 

If the above formula to calculate ABV seems overwhelming, you can use an Alcohol by Volume calculator online to get the results.

2. Practical Estimation:

In case if you are not up for the intricate calculation, you can simply go ahead with the practical estimation. In the process of production of wine and beer, yeast is added to a solution of sugar. As the function of the yeat is concerned it acts on the sugar and produces alcohol. Talking in the general science terms the density of sugar in water is more than that of alcohol in water. Using a hydrometer, one can easily measure the changes in the specific gravity of the prospect solution before and after the addition of yeast to it. The calculations will let you know of the content of alcohol in the solution. Specific gravity can be a useful tool here as the formulas will be easy to use once if we are clear about the numerical value of specific gravity. 

For Wine:

ABV ~ 136* (Initial SG – Final SG)

For Beer:

ABV ~ 131* (Initial SG – Final SG) 

OR

ABV = (1.05/0.79)* {(Initial SG – Final SG) / Final SG} * 100

Apart from the few prescribed methodologies and the ABV calculator, there are some traditional methods that are also well known, one such method is alcohol proof. In this methodology, the alcohol content on the bottle is written by multiplying the ABV with 2. However, this can raise a conflict of understanding as every country might not have the same methodology and the alcohol proof written on the bottle can be mistaken with that the original content in the bottle. Other one on the same trail is alcohol by weight (ABW). This is widely popular in the USA and India as the respective government calculates tax on the basis of alcohol by weight (ABW) expressed as the percentage of the overall mass. However, in some scenarios the ABV is printed in spite of ABW. Why all this information? Because you can easily convert ABW into ABV. As ABW is known to calculate the solution’s mass which is, in turn, the mass of the alcohol and ABV is all about the volume of alcohol is respect to the solution so it can be easily converted into each other.

What if I Mix Two Types of Alcohol then?

Volume change:

Mixing two solutions of alcohol of different strengths often cause a change in volume. Mixing pure water with a solution less than 24% by mass results in a slight increase in total volume, whereas the mixing of two solutions above 24% results in a decrease in volume.

The phenomenon of volume changes due to mixing dissimilar solutions is termed as ” partial molar volume”.

Both water and ethanol are polar solvents. When water is added to ethanol, the smaller water molecules are interested in the ethanol’s hydroxyl, and every molecule alters the polarity field. The attraction allows the closer spacing between molecules than the usually found in non-polar mixtures.

Hence ABV is not the same as volume fraction expressed as a percentage. Volume fraction, which is widely utilized in chemistry (often denoted as v/v), is defined because the volume of a specific component divided by the sum of all components in the mixture when they are measured separately.

For example:  In order to make 100mL of 50% ABV ethanol solution, water would be added to 50mL of ethanol to make up exactly 100mL, whereas to make a 50% v/v ethanol solution 50 mL of ethanol and 50 mL of water might be mixed but the resulting volume of solution will measure but 100 mL thanks to the change of volume on mixing, and can contain a better concentration of ethanol.

The difference isn’t large, with the utmost difference being but 2.5%, and fewer than 0.5% difference for concentrations under 20%.

So, this was it, now you can check the alcohol content anytime all by yourself.

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Different Types of Beer

Friday. Weekend. Outing. Movies. Are we missing out on something? Ummmm… I guess we all know the answer, the missing slide to this fun aspect is beer. A cold beer is an avenue for everything – the companion for your fries, your drink of celebration, and your solace for heartbreaks too. But, few of us are the real beer fanatics, we take our love for beer a notch above and explore all the variants available. If you are one of those then let dive deep and have a tête-à-tête with the only one love.

How do you differentiate?

Categorized in two parts, all beers are either ales or lagers, and that is solely decided by the type of yeast used during the process. Ales are the type of beer category where the yeasts ferment at the top whereas in the case of lagers the yeasts ferment at the bottom. Apart from them, there are other ways of fermentation too, which generally makes the beer sour in taste. Moving on from fermentation the beer can also be categorized on the basis of :

  • Aroma
  • Color
  • Flavor

An expert in the industry can further segregate it into more intricate categories. All of the differences in total definitely make one beer distinct from others but the core essence remains the same. Now, let’s dive down and learn about the types of fermentation and the famous beer types reigning in the market.

Top Fermentation:

The yeast used here ferments the beer and then settles on the top of the solution. It acts actively even at a higher temperature and has an elevated tolerance to alcohol. Ex: Belgian Style Beer, Wheat Beer, Indian Pale Ale, Pale Ale, Brown Ale Stout, and Porter.

Bottom fermentation:

In comparison to the yeast used for top fermentation this yeast used has a relatively lower tolerance for alcohol and it settles down at the bottom of the liquid post-fermentation. The process of fermentation is slightly slow and it works optimally at a lower temperature. Ex: German-Style Bocks, Dark Lagers, Pale Lagers, and Pilsners.

Spontaneous Fermentation:

The avenue of preparing sour beer with the help of wid yeast and bacteria is called spontaneous fermentation. Originated in Belgium, this methodology has now its own fan all over the world. Beer connoisseurs are trying out their own unique ways around the process ad creating their range of funky beer. Ex: Red Ale, Belgian Gueuze, American Sour, and Belgian Fruit Lambic.

Famous Sips From the Corners of the World:

Lager

Starting out with the most common and well-known lager which is a bottom-fermented drink. It tastes a little malty and has a soothing taste which makes it an obvious choice for the new beer lovers. The consistency is pacified and perfectly blended with the additional flavors which make it an easy-to-go drink for everyone.

Ex: Yuengling, Budweiser, Coors, and Miller High Life

Indian Pale Ale (IPA)

Citrus in flavor the type encompasses multiple styles of beer. The citrus flavor is because of the grain constituent. While some of them are purely citrus in nature, others can also be strongly bitter. Some of the prominent type that can be used here are  British IPA,  West Coast IPA, and New England Style IPA. These mentioned IPA’s carry a fruity flavor with low bitterness while few of them can be bitter and maltier. If you are looking for something in between then look out for West Cost ones which are a perfect balance of fruitiness and bitterness. In the world of craft beer, they tangy taste remains on the taste buds forever and one should definitely try out multiple options before settling.

Porter

Adding to the kingdom of Beer comes Porter, with a chocolaty twist it is a subtle combination of dry-roasted malt and generic grains. The color of the drink is somewhat like that of the stouts and the taste also varies from coffee like to that of chocolaty feel.

Belgian Beer

Tracing back its root to Atlantic, the taste has made a powerful impact in U.S. giving the residents a flavorful introduction Belgian-Style Beers. Under the wide canopy of Belgian Ale, comes fruity beers and sour ales. If you have a taste for sweet flavors then this is the drink for you. With high alcohol content and low bitterness, these drinks are spicy, fruity, and full of flavors. Out of all the popular types, the Trappist Ales have gained wide recognition which is only produced at Trappist Monasteries. It also includes other beer varieties like Belgian Dubbel which is strong in flavors and the Belgian Tripel which is spicy but dry. Apart from them, there are pale ales like Delirium Tremens which have a distinct hard taste.

Wheat Beer

As the name suggests, the wheat beers rely on the crop for the malt constituent. The wheat gives it a light color and the alcohol level is just apt for mixing it with some king kind of fresh fruit juice making it the drink of summer. The one which comes under the Belgian-style brew has a tangy flavor while the ones who have roots back to U.S. have a flat taste.

Pale Ale

Known for its low alcohol content in the range of IPAs, the ale includes Blonde Ale, American Amber Ale, American Pale Ale, and English Ale. They are light but malty in taste.

Pilsner

Under the category of Lager, the drink is originally from the Czech Republic. With crisp flavor and pale gold color, they come with high alcohol content. The taste is more the bitter side and the color is strong too.

Stout Beer

Popularly known for its dark taste, the flavors of the beer largely depend on the origin it comes from. The sweet ones are known for their low bitterness and are sourced from Ireland or England. The drink has a sweet and roasted look which gives it an appearance of creamy coffee. Moreover, in spite of having a dark color, the drink is sweet and credit goes to the saturated sugar in it.

That’s it, folks, the real fun of exploring beer is in tasting them all and then figuring out your favorite one.

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New Website Launched

Good News Guys! Our newly-designed website is now LIVE and ready to share some interesting information about Beers, Breweries, Craft-Beer, Cocktails and more.

This new design enables us to add new features which will make your time here even more interesting.

What’s ahead?

Our team is coming up with a very cool tool to calculate the alcohol content of your drink. We know for a fact that this ABV (Alcohol By Volume) calculator tool will be useful for all you passionate brewers.

Show some love for our new website and don’t forget to share your feedback and suggestions.

Keep Calm and Drink Beer! Cheers!