Alcohol by Volume ABV Testing

ABV Testing | Alcoholic Beverages Content| Wine, Beer, Liquor

Alcohol by Volume (ABV) Testing
Alcohol by Volume (ABV) Testing

ABV Testing of Alcoholic Beverages

Watching the Masters Golf Tournament, Superbowl, World Series, or Monster Truck Show with a pint of beer or shot of liquor? If so, you might be wondering about Alcohol Content and how many pints, glasses or shots you can have before driving home.

Therefore, it’s important that breweries, wineries and distillers of these products accurately test their products to determine the alcohol content. In their quality control and labeling testing, companies use Alcohol By Volume (ABV) Testing. ABV Testing is a measure of the alcohol content in a specific volume of a beverage. This test determines how many milliliters of ethanol are present in 100 milliliters of a liquid. ABV Testing is a worldwide standard for measuring alcohol content in an alcoholic beverage. Two popular techniques for measuring alcohol content include distillation and gas chromatography.


During the distillation process, alcohol has to first be separated from the liquid using specialized equipment. A hydrometer determines the specific gravity of the distilled alcohol, which is calibrated directly in % vol at 20 °C. If the temperature varies, corrections are made since the volume of the liquid changes with temperature. Distillation is a complex and time-consuming process and accuracy is difficult as numerous errors can occur.

Gas Chromatography

Another technique is the gas chromatography method, the most accurate method for determining alcohol content. This method works by analyzing a mixture of organic compounds and then running them through a chromatograph device. The temperature of the device is important and must be above boiling in order to convert the liquid into gas. The gas then passes through filters that identify the different compounds, ultimately determining the alcohol content. Gas chromatography has the added benefit of providing additional information about the wine, beer or liquor product.

Alcohol Beverage Testing Projects

Contract Laboratory has received numerous test requests from companies needing ABV Testing for determining the alcohol content of alcoholic beverages. Some of the projects we have received are:

  • Winemaker and Vineyard needs laboratory for wine testing: analysis report of wine level of alcohol, glucose + fructose sugars, total and volatile acidity, SO2
  • Laboratory needed for independent analysis of mead beer, wine and/or liquor including alcohol proof and sulfite analysis.
  • Wine maker needs Vinology Laboratory for wine testing for free sulfur dioxide residual sugar and phenolic compound the general characteristic of wine parameter method to measure this parameter, calculation involves. 
  • Laboratory needed for Spirits testing Determination of addition of alcohols or sugars from cane, corn or sorghum liquor from grape, apple or pear by isotope ratio of Carbon 13 – Test Method. Determination of the origin of CO2 in carbonated soft drinks by carbon 13 isotope ratio (? (13) CVPDB), determination of water addition in wines by isotope ratio of oxygen-18 (?18OVSMOW), mass spectrometry Isotope stable

And many more which can be viewed at Incoming Laboratory Test Requests helps manufacturers and vendors that require laboratory testing connect with testing labs around the world.  

If you are looking for a laboratory to perform alcohol by volume ABV testing, or any other wine, beer, or liquor testing, submit your request for free.