Which Alcohol Packs the Most. and Least.Calories (Excerpt)
December 11, 2017
If you’re going to order a drink with dinner, which does less damage: wine, beer, or a cocktail?
Most restaurant chains’ mojitos, Moscow mules, and margaritas deliver 200 to 300 calories. Chili’s Strawberry or Mango Patrón Margarita hits 360. But a classic margarita-tequila, lime, triple sec-in a small glass cuts most of the sugar and hovers around 200 calories.
Frozen blended drinks like piña coladas typically range from 500 to 900 calories. That’s what alcohol, sugar, and ice cream or coconut cream will do. A Cheesecake Factory Strawberry Creamsicle spiked milkshake (930 calories) packs more than a day’s saturated fat and an estimated 13 teaspoons of added sugar.
A few cocktails-a classic martini or Manhattan, for example-aren’t likely to do more damage than a 6 oz. glass of wine.
Wine or Beer
Expect around 150 calories in a 6 oz. glass of red or white wine. But a 9 oz. pour has 220. And sangria can hit 200 to 300 calories, thanks to the fruit, juice, liquor, or sugar.
Beer also starts at 150 calories for a 12 oz. can or bottle (100 calories for a light beer). But the calories climb to 200 to 250 in a 16-to-20 oz. draft pour.
Keep in mind: higher-alcohol beers, like Lagunitas IPA or Samuel Adams Rebel IPA, start at around 200 calories for just 12 oz. Ditto for many hard ciders, like Angry Orchard Crisp Apple.