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    Jan from Parts Unknown asks: “I want to become a bartender but I get confused about how to pour the correct amount of liquor. How do I measure what I pour from the bottle? How many counts?
    1 shot = ? 1 1/2oz liquor = ? 1/4 oz = ? 1oz =?
    Please make the answer as simple as you can and thanks in advance for your response.”


    A. Good question Jan. The speed at which liquor comes out of the bottle depends on the pour spout you’re using. Most standard pour spouts pour at one-half ounce per second (one second = one “count.”) It’s hard to find any that pour slower than that, however there are quite a few types that pour much faster. Some spouts deliver liquid as fast as one full ounce per second. If you’re not sure how fast your pour spouts are, just pour into a shot glass of which you know the volume and count how long it takes to fill it. For example, if you have a one ounce shot glass and it takes two “counts” to fill it, then the spout pours at one-half ounce per second.

    The size of a “shot” varies from bar to bar, depending on their own house pouring rules. In most places a “bar shot” is between one ounce and one and a half ounces. You’ll find that most cocktail recipes don’t deal in “shots” but rather in ounces per ingredient.

    Good luck with your training. If you’re going to buy a book to help with the learning process, I’d recommend Bartending for Dummies, which you can find in pretty much any bookstore or on places like Amazon. I know, the title is pretty lame but it’s a good resource for someone wanting to learn bartending and well written in a way that’s understandable by just about anybody. I’ve recommended that book to all of the bartenders I’ve personally trained and they all found it helpful.