Too much Christmas cake could put you over the drink-drive limit and land you a £25,000 fine

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Often at Christmas, we fill our bellies with food and drink a little more than usual, which is just one of the many reasons this time of year is extra exciting.

From mince pies to Bailey’s, there are a fair few classics associated with this festive time of year.

Another one? Christmas cake! A delicious offering around about this time which is made with various fruits, from raisins to currants and sultanas, but it also boasts a splash of brandy or sherry.

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And while delicious, it turns out this boozy dessert could land you with a fine or push you over the limit where driving a car is concerned.

For a Christmas cake soaked in brandy, just one and a half 'standard servings' would be equal to one unit of alcohol.

Yes All Car Leasing has revealed the foods and portions which will push you over the limit at Christmas, potentially landing you with a whopping £25,000 fine or 3 months in prison.

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The drink driving limit is 35 micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath, but there are numerous factors which can increase how much alcohol is absorbed, such as weight, age, sex and metabolism, what you’ve recently eaten, and even stress levels.

In Scotland the limit is reduced to 22 micrograms so just a drink could push you over the limit.

So, to make sure you’re up to scratch on what you can and can’t eat on the festive food front before jumping in the car, here’s a peek…

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The following puts you over the drink drive limit

Boozy Christmas Set Menu

The following boozy menu has a total alcohol consumption of 5.49 units meaning men would exceed the legal drive limit by 1.49 units and women by 2.49 units.


Bloody mary prawn cocktail – 0.34 units


Beer & rosemary roast turkey, glazed carrots, roast potatoes, pigs in blankets, brussel sprouts with red wine gravy – 1.9 units


Christmas cake served with brandy butter – 1.15 units


Glass of wine – 2.1 units

All Car Leasing explained on their website: “It's the Christmas pudding enthusiasts that will be flying too close to the sun really.

“If you've already had a glass of wine or a pint with your dinner, chasing up with a portion or two of Christmas pudding will place you dangerously close to the legal limit, if not over. That's because it's a tradition to pour brandy all over the cake and set it on fire.”

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However, fear not, it turns out the following Christmas portions are ‘safe’:

  • Two portions of Christmas cake
  • Two portions of tiramisu
  • Three portions of sherry trifle
  • Five portions of Christmas pudding
  • Six glasses of eggnog
  • Seven slabs of brandy butter
  • 20 boozy mince pies
  • 30 boozy chocolates

Anything more than this and you’ll be over the drink drive limit, warns All Car Leasing.

The important thing to note is that if you’re consuming food which contains alcohol and you’re planning to drive after, then don’t have alcoholic drinks alongside it.

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