What Alcoholic Beverage Has the Highest Proof?

Updated July 19, 2017

Every alcoholic beverage comes with two types of classifications that are required; alcohol by volume, and Proof. These tags tell the consumer how much alcohol they will find in each drink. Alcohol by volume (ABV) and Proof have a wide percentage range in each drink, depending on its subcategory of alcoholic beverage. Beer, wine and liquor are the three most common types of alcoholic drinks. Beer will have the lowest ABV, which is usually only 3 to 12 per cent. Wine's alcohol by volume is the next highest, usually ranging between 10 to 20 per cent. Finally, liquor has the highest level of ABV, most commonly falling between 20 to 100 per cent.

What is Proof

Proof is usually expressed as double the ABV, or Alcohol by Volume. No alcoholic beverage is made up of entirely alcohol, so the ABV explains the percentage of alcohol found in the amount of liquid in a specific drink. Since all drinks are different volumes, its proof is the scale on which all alcoholic beverages are measured the same. The drinks with the highest Proof will have the highest concentration of alcohol, regardless of volume.

Beer with the Highest Proof

Since beer is made with many different types of ingredients, and the alcohol is added before the drink ferments, beer generally has the lowest alcoholic content. There are many offshoot brands of beer that are made and only found in specific locations. However, the beer with the highest proof that is available everywhere is Samuel Adams Utopia. This beer contains 25 per cent ABV, or 50 Proof.

Wine with the Higest Proof

In addition to beer, wine also uses many different ingredients to give it a rich favour. While its main ingredient is fermented grapes, wine does contain the second highest level of alcohol content of any beverage. Port wine, which is classified as a fortified wine, meaning it has a type of liquor added to it after distillation, has the highest level of alcohol content for the type of wine. With an alcohol by volume content of 20 per cent, the Proof of a port wine is 40.

Liquor with the Higest Proof

Since its main ingredients are alcohol and water, liquor with generally have the highest concentration of alcohol. The liquor which has the highest Proof is that of Everclear. With a ABV of 95 per cent, and a Proof of 190, Everclear is the strongest liquor that is legally able to be manufactured, and still some states reserve the right not to sell it.

Drinks Made with Everclear

Everclear is a colourless and flavourless type of grain alcohol. However, there are many different types of drinks that use Everclear as an ingredient. Antifreeze, aptly named, is a mixed drink that contains Everclear, Hawaiian Schnapps and orange juice. Because of the addition of another type of alcohol, the ABV for this drink wil go up, and it is not recommended to be consumed. Another type of drink made with Everclear is the "Lethal Injection," again, these drinks are named this way for a reason, and are generally not wise to drink. Lethal Injection includes Everclear, Crown Royal, Southern Comfort, and cranberry juice.


Always remember to drink responsibly, and never get behind the wheel of a car after consuming any type of alcohol.

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About the Author

Anthony King is a freelance writer and amateur filmmaker. His work has appeared in various online publications. He is currently working toward graduating with a B.A. in English-writing.