Miniature (alcohol)

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A miniature (50 ml) of Glenfarclas 105 cask-strength whisky (60% ABV). The bottle is 115 mm tall and 33 mm in diameter.
A collector's cabinet full of miniatures

A miniature is a small bottle of a spirit, liqueur or other alcoholic beverage. Their contents, typically 50 ml, are intended to comprise an individual serving.[1]

Miniatures may be used as gifts, samples, or for promotional purposes. In Scotland and the Northeastern United States they are often known as nips, shooters, or singles and referred elsewhere as airplane bottles or mini-bar bottles or travel-sized bottles. They are sometimes available in hotel mini-bars, on trains,[2] and planes,[3] and in other circumstances where serving from a full size bottle is impractical or uneconomical. They are sometimes sold in sets, allowing the comparative tasting of different types of beverage.[4][5] They are also sold in gift sets with a corresponding drinking glass.[6]

Miniatures are collected by some people, with various clubs and societies serving the hobby.[7]

Some jurisdictions that otherwise allow the sale of liquor specifically ban miniatures, to reduce litter, single-use plastic consumption, and public drunkenness by making the cheapest available alcoholic beverages more expensive.[8][9]


  1. ^ 50 ml is double the standard 25 ml single measure used in some countries
  2. ^ "At Seat Catering". Arriva Trains Wales. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
  3. ^ "Crew pilfering whisky and caviar 'driving Air India bankrupt'". The Sydney Morning Herald. 18 May 2012. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
  4. ^ "Highland Park Tasting Collection Malt Whisky Miniature Gift Pack". Amazon UK. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
  5. ^ "Old Speysides Miniature Set". The Whisky Shop Dufftown. Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
  6. ^ "Miniature Sheep Dip Whisky 5cl and Tasting Glass Gift Box Gift Sety". Amazon UK. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
  7. ^ "Midwest Miniature Bottle Collectors". Retrieved 9 March 2017.
  8. ^ 'Nip' ban having an impact in Chelsea
  9. ^ New Bedford votes to ban nips to cut down single-use plastic