When we come into possession of a handle of liquor, our first thought is usually, “Damn, that’s a lot of liquor!” and our second thought is usually “I wonder how many shots are in there?” So… how many shots are in a handle of liquor?
First things first: A “handle” of liquor isn’t exactly a unit of measurement, but all handles contain the same amount: 1.75 liters, or 59.2 fluid ounces. It’s a little less than half a gallon.
Here’s where things get a little dicey, because a “shot” also isn’t a unit of measurement. Some shot glasses contain 1.5 ounces, some contain two ounces, and some contain 50 milliliters. But for today’s purposes, let’s define a shot as 1.5 ounces; this is the size most customers are given when they order a shot of liquor at a bar.
If you do the math, one handle of liquor will yield you almost exactly 40 1.5-ounce shots. Just for the record, it’ll also yield you about 30 two-ounce shots, and about 35 50-milliliter shots.