14 Irish Cocktails to Serve All Year Round
January 28, 2023 by Anna-Bet Stemmet
The best kind of Irish cocktails are a lot like limericks – quirky, amusing, and lots of fun to share with family and friends. To set the scene for a festive St Patrick’s Day, beautiful Bealtaine (May Day), and all sorts of craic-infused DIY get-togethers, we rounded up a selection of 14 cocktails with plenty of shamrock energy in the mix. Sláinte mhaith!
1. Irish Mule cocktail
If refreshing Irish whiskey cocktails are top of your list, you’ve got to try the Irish Mule. As most mule cocktails do, it contains ginger beer, lime, and ice, but features Irish whiskey as its liquor base for a Gaelic twist. To make it, build 60ml whiskey, 180ml ginger beer, and 30ml fresh lime juice over ice in a copper mug (if you have it). Stir to mix, garnish with lime slices and a mint sprig, and serve.
2. Gaelic Grasshopper cocktail
Irish folklore tells us that green is the favourite colour of the good people (as all proper faeries prefer to be called). As such, leaning into the green theme of the holiday is a very popular St Patrick’s Day Irish cocktail trend. We love making an Irish Grasshopper, which is just as indulgent as the classic Grasshopper, and one of those moreish Irish cream cocktails that always hits the spot.
Add 30ml crème de menthe, 30ml crème de cacao, and 30ml cream liqueur to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake until frosty, and strain into a serving glass with fresh ice. Add a sprig of mint if you’re feeling fancy.
3. Luck of the Irish cocktail
For a nice dose of fruity fun, try the Luck of the Irish cocktail. Combine 90ml whiskey and 60ml peach schnapps in a cocktail shaker with ice. Add 60ml pineapple juice and a drop of green food colouring, and shake again. Strain into a glass with fresh ice, charge with 180ml sparkling lime soda, garnish with a Maraschino cherry (if preferred), and serve.
4. Irish Maid cocktail
If you’ve only ever thought of whiskey cocktails as a winter-time thing, the Irish Maid will open your eyes to a brand-new way of thinking. This decidedly summery drink calls for two slices of cucumber, which are muddled in a shaker. To this, you add 60ml whiskey, 15ml elderflower liqueur, 20ml fresh lemon juice, 20ml simple syrup, and ice. Shake until well-chilled, and fine-strain into a serving glass with fresh ice. Garnish with fresh cucumber, if preferred, and serve.
5. Irish Whiskey Ginger cocktail
Ginger beer cocktails walk the fine line between refreshing and warming, thanks to the zingy note that ginger root brings to the party. If you love a bit of ginger zing, this Irish whiskey cocktail is right up your alley. It’s also very easy to make if you are a cocktail newbie. Simply add 60ml whiskey and 180ml ginger ale to a highball glass with ice. Garnish with an optional lime wedge, and enjoy.
Read next: History of the Highball
6. Irish Old Fashioned cocktail
Making classic cocktails like the Old Fashioned with Irish whiskey always adds a little bit of that Emerald Isle magic to the mix. To make an Irish Old Fashioned, add 60ml Irish whiskey, 15ml simple syrup, 3 dashes of orange bitters, and 2 dashes of conventional bitters to a mixing glass with ice, stir until combined, and strain into a serving glass with fresh ice.
7. Irish Manhattan cocktail
Another Gaelic spin on a time-honoured cocktail, the Irish Manhattan calls for 45ml Irish whiskey, 20ml Cinzano Vermouth Rosso, and 2 dashes of bitters. Add these to a mixing glass with ice, stir well, and strain into a rocks glass. Garnish with a cherry, and serve.
Keen on the classic? Meet the 3 Essential Manhattan Cocktail Ingredients
8. Irish Margarita cocktail
There are so many great Margaritas out there, but if you’re in a St Paddy’s Day state of mind, the Irish Margarita should be at the top of your must-make list. Combine 60ml whiskey, 30ml lime juice, 15ml Grand Marnier, 15ml agave syrup and three drops of green food colouring with ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously to chill, strain into a serving glass and garnish with an optional lime wedge.
9. Irish Sour cocktail
Sour cocktails are having a bit of a moment as cocktail newbies and aficionados alike relive the heyday of the zesty retro drink. Whip up an Irish Sour cocktail by adding 60ml whiskey, 60ml lemon juice, and 20ml simple syrup to a cocktail shaker. Fill it with a handful of ice, shake it until very cold, and strain it into a chilled serving glass. Garnish with an optional lemon wedge or cherry, and serve.
10. Irish Coffee cocktail
Cocktails with Irish cream liqueur are a staple around St Patrick’s Day, and we love the classic Irish Coffee to round off a meal with family and friends. While the original version of the drink does not actually include liqueur, adding a shot of the creamy stuff will take this hot cocktail to a whole new level of decadence.
11. Irish Negroni cocktail
The bright and bold Negroni is very much a cocktail of the moment, and the Irish version is completely delightful as well. Add 30ml whiskey, 30ml Campari, and 30ml Cinzano Vermouth Rosso to a mixing glass with ice. Stir until chilled and strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with an orange twist and serve.
12. Irish Espresso Martini cocktail
The oh-so-classy Espresso Martini was bound to inspire a few tasty spinoffs, and the Irish Espresso Martini is tailor-made for serving on St Paddies. Add 30ml SKYY Vanilla Vodka, 30ml fresh espresso coffee (hot or chilled, your choice), 45ml Irish cream liqueur, and 10ml sugar syrup to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake to combine and fine strain into a serving glass. Garnish with coffee beans (optional), and serve.
13. Pot O’ Gold cocktail
Keen to serve up something tasty enough to be found at the end of the rainbow? A Pot O’ Gold it is! Vintage drinks are making a major comeback, and this riff on the Bee’s Knees cocktail is definitely worth the buzz. Add 60ml whiskey, 10ml ginger liqueur, 15ml fresh lemon juice, 15ml honey syrup, and 15ml egg white to a cocktail shaker. First dry shake without ice, then add ice, wet shake, and fine-strain into a serving glass. Add some edible gold flakes for that extra wow factor, and serve.
14. Irish Martini cocktail
The Gibson Martini may be everyone’s darling at the minute, but have you tried an Irish Martini yet, love? Combine 60ml SKYY vodka and 15ml Cinzano Vermouth Bianco in a cocktail shaker half-filled with ice. Shake well. Pour 15ml whiskey into a chilled cocktail glass, swirl it around to coat the inside, and keep it aside to prep the next drink. Decant the shaken cocktail into the prepared glass, garnish with an optional lemon twist, and serve.