Minority of pubs failing 'smaller measures' test

By Mike Berry contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Glass, Alcoholic beverage

Pubs are now required to offer wine to customers in 125ml measures
Pubs are now required to offer wine to customers in 125ml measures
One in seven pubs would not serve customers a 125ml glass of wine if they asked for it, despite it being a legal requirement under recent amendments to the Licensing Act.

A poll of 100 ‘non-chain’ pubs by insurer Direct Line found that 15% would not serve customers a 125ml glass of wine and of those that said they would, almost one third (29%) admitted this measure was not listed anywhere on their wine menu.

Under amendments to the mandatory licensing conditions, which came into force on 1 October, still wine in a glass must be offered to customers as a 125ml measure and must be displayed in a menu or price list for customers to see.

Price differential

The insurer also investigated price differences between 125ml and 250ml measures amongst the pubs that did offer both and found that in the vast majority of cases (84%) it was cheaper to buy a 250ml glass than two 125ml glasses. In one instance ‘doubling up’ cost just 30 pence.

A separate study by Direct Line highlighted a lack of awareness amongst women drivers about the amount of alcohol that can legally be consumed before taking to the road. More than half admitted they did not know how many glasses of wine they could legally drink before climbing behind the wheel.

Rob Miles, director of motor at Direct Line, said: “We’d urge anyone who does plan to drive not to drink at all. The majority of pubs and restaurants now offer a 250ml glass of wine, which few people realise, is a third of a bottle and often contains three or more units of alcohol. This would push many drivers over the legal limit with potentially lethal consequences.”

DL_Pub measures infographic
Infographic of the Direct Line research

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3 comments

Non-availability of still wine in 125ml measures...

Posted by John P. Graham,

The findings by insurer Direct Line indeed make most disturbing reading.

There's been enough publicity of such requirement for some time now and; dare I say it, any on-trade establishment that continues to flout this most responsible and sensible directive needs to be come down upon most firmly.

Ignorance of the law is of no excuse, nor is any perception that the expense of reprinting menus and price lists would not be financially viable for just one small amendment.

Until the time reprinting of such items comes around again there is a simple and cost-effective answer. Just spend a few minutes on the pub computer and print-out a small notice saying that "We also serve still wines in 125ml measures" and list those applicable alongside the price. Put this notice somewhere it will be seen by your customers so they may be aware of this.

Insofar as the outlet mentioned in Direct Line's survey that apparently didn't have a 125ml measure in which to pour nor a 125ml wine price on the till the answer is also simple. Buy a 125ml measure from a commercial catering supplier and input a 125ml function on the EPOS system.

Naturally there will always be some licensees that avoid toeing the line where the law is concerned. Similar to the cases we read in the PMA and its website where several licensees have been prosecuted for illegally showing Sky sports without a commercial viewing agreement, doubtless there will be those who want to continue maximizing their profit on wine; come what may, so take the easier (and illegal) way forward by only offering and serving this product in the larger measures.

John P. Graham
Hampstead Village NW3

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Misread title.

Posted by David Pott,

While the finding may be true across the board. In London especially and generally around the M25 areas most pubs are very reluctant to sell 125ml measures.
One managed house in Covent Garden two weeks denied they had a measure or the price on the till.

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125ml measure.

Posted by David Pott,

I would concur that there are many places that do not serve 125ml, it is especially absent in managed houses in and around the M25.

The article implies this is a new law, it came into force in October 2010.

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