Ales and lagers: ABV comparisons

At home, I am pretty used to drinking canned lager of 5% strength (Stella, Becks, Grolsch etc.). Last night I tried some cans of Shepherd Neame Spitfire, rated at 4.5% After a couple, I felt much more light headed than normal.
Questions: Are ABV ratings for lager and ales comparable? And when drinking ales compared to lager, does the alcohol enter the blood stream quicker.
Or maybe I'm not used to "proper" beer!
Reply to
bruce phipps
In article , bruce says...
Sorry, not sure what you mean. ABV is just a percentage measure of alcohol compared to the volume of beer. So a 4.5% ABV lager would contain the same amount of alcohol as a 4.5% ABV bitter (assuming the volumes were the same, obviously).
Can't see why this would occur. I guess canned lagers tend to contain more CO2 than canned bitters, and people always reckon that champagne gets them drunk quicker "because of the bubbles", but I've always thought that it was an old wives' tale.
Reply to
Martin a écrit :
That's most probably the answer...
Oooh no it's not ! Indeed, teh more dissolved gas, the quicker alcohol gets in one's blood.
The perfect example of this are very gassy beerssuch as Duvel In Belgium or most German Hefeweizens, which are very gassy, and tend to be felt at forehead level a lot more quickly and strongly than british ales of similar ABV.
By the way, Duvel and german Hefeweizens are ales, that is top-fermented beers => there's no link between the type of fermentation and the effect of the alcohol on one's brain.
Cheers !
Reply to
The Submarine Captain
But this is the opposite effect that the OP had. When drinking Spitfire he felt more light-headed than the 5% lager.
Maybe it is due to the colder temperature that lager is served at.
Reply to
Andy Leighton
In article , bruce
I find that, too. I reckon it is cos I tend to stay on my bum when drinking the lagery stuff at home, and don't get up much! In the pub when I am drinking beers of around that abv, I must move around more!!
Reply to
Chris de Cordova
or it could be due to the fact that bottled beers (such as sheaperd neame) come in 500ml bottles whereas you lager comes in 300ml bottles hence you think that you have had the same due to counting the bottles and not the amount consumed
Reply to
Various factors ; lager is often very gassy and this can affect absorption of the alcohol . Lagers are relatively tasteless and bland so to compensate are often of higher ABV - so Stella is 5.2% but has less flavour than a typical ale of 3.8% .But the figures of course mean the same for both styles.
Reply to
Vale of Belvoir drinker
Not all bottom-fermented beers are equal.
It's one of my gripes about Camra that it's not the Campaign for Real /Beer/, ie including all the perfectly excellent lagers that are out there. I know we're traditionally a nation of ale drinkers, but to exclude such superb beers as those from the Meantime Brewery on a pedantically applied technical point is perverse.
Reply to

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