Police alerted to a man's wayward driving on the highways between Auckland and Napier found him with a half-full can of beer in the car's cup-holder beside the gear change and several empty cans in the footwell.

The result was a charge of drink-driving for which 26-year-old Napier man Henry Amuera was last week sentenced to 100 hours' community work and nine months' probationary supervision and disqualified from driving for one year and one day.

In Napier District Court, Judge Tony Adeane told him: "It's about time you got this bad habit sorted out."

Police said Amuera blew a breath-alcohol level of 844mic after he was stopped by police on State Highway 5 near Te Pohue on April 2, when he told them he'd been driving from Auckland to Napier, and stocked-up on the beer during a stop in Tokoroa.