There are only two surviving letters from St. Patrick himself so information is sparse, but there are a few interesting details considered widely as truth. Born in AD 387 in Britain, which was part of the Roman Empire (that's right, he's not even Irish), St. Patrick was taken from his home when he was a teenager by Irish pagans and was brought to Ireland as a slave. He was stuck there for six years but eventually escaped, returning to his family and becoming a cleric. Apparently he liked the Irish spirit because he returned to Ireland as an ordained bishop, eventually being commissioned by Pope Celestine I to be an apostle and became one of Ireland's most venerated saints. The reason why we party on March 17 is because that is the day of St. Patrick's death in 461. St. Patrick's Day is observed within church for many as a liturgical holiday and others use it as an all-encompassing celebration of Ireland itself, especially in America where countless people pull out their "Kiss Me I'm Irish" shirts and hunt for four-leaf clovers (which were apparently used by St. Patrick as a way to teach pagans about the Trinity and can be seen held by him in many images).
Okay, enough of that; here some great cocktails recipes you should try out. If these don't strike your fancy you can always try the Lad Bomb, recently made famous by Chris Stark in his awkward interview with actress Mila Kunis, inviting her to come on down to the local pub and try one. It's basically a Jaeger bomb except with a double vodka Red Bull. Tasty, right?
You can't have a list of St. Patrick's Day cocktails without including Guinness and this one may be the most popular of the bunch. According to Guinness, the Black Velvet was invented back in 1861 at Brook's Club in London after Prince Albert died. The story goes that because everyone was so upset, the steward at Brook's decided that even the champagne should be in mourning and started mixing it with the dark Guinness. While it started as a drink of sadness, it was so tasty that people adopted it as a drink of choice in the future.
- 1/2 Flute of Champagne
- 1/2 Flute Guinness
If you're going to be mixing up some St. Patrick's Day cocktails for a party, you probably want them to have a cute name and be green — thankfully the Lepre-Tini has both. With Vikingfjord apple vodka and sour apple liquor, this fruity drink is sure to please your sweet tooth.
- 2 oz. Vikingfjord Apple Vodka
- 1.5 oz. Sour Apple Liquor
- 2 Teaspoons Fresh Lemon Juice
Add ingredients in a martini glass and garnish with a green apple slice.
Cucumbers are a pretty popular Irish cocktail go-to and it's not that surprising considering the color and fresh taste. The Refresh-ZING Shamrock wants to be that much-needed reboot drink you'll need at the end of a long night and with the cucumber, lime juice, and ZING Vodka, it may be the winner.
- 1.5 Oz. ZING Vodka
- 5 Cucumber chunks (approximately 1 oz. juice)
- 1 Basil leaf
- Splash of lime juice
Muddle cucumber and basil. Add ingredients and shake served Up in a high ball glass. Garnish with a cucumber slice.
EFFEN Cucumber Irish Blessing
Created by David Nepove, the National President of U.S. Bartender's Guild, this cocktail hopes to make you feel blessed but that may just be the buzz talking. With EFFEN cucumber vodka, lime juice, and mint bitters, this bubbly drink is sure to become a household favorite.
- 1? Parts EFFEN® Cucumber Vodka
- ? Parts Lime Juice
- ? Parts Simple Syrup
- 1 Dash of Fee Brothers® Mint Bitters
- 6 Mint Leaves
- Club Soda
Muddle mint with lime juice and a few ice cubes; add to a cocktail shaker with remaining ingredients, except the club soda, and shake. Fine strain into a cocktail class with ice and add the club soda. Garnish with a mint sprig.
It wouldn't be St. Patty's Day without some Irish whiskey and that's where Kilbeggan comes in. Created by Declan Byrne, the President of the Bartender's Association of Ireland, the Kilbeggan Fáilte (which is Gaelic for "welcome") is meant to show the versatility of the whiskey and challenge any palate.
- 2 Parts Kilbeggan Irish Whiskey
- 1/3 Part Amaretto Liqueur
- 1/4 Part Cherry Syrup
- 1/2 Part Fresh lemon juice
- 5 Dashes chocolate bitters
Add all ingredients with ice to a cocktail shaker. Shake Vigorously and strain into a chilled martini glass.
St. Patty's Day Spruce
This one may not be a pretty green color but it seems fresh and bubbly, which may be a good way to start the celebrations.
- 2 oz. Vikingfjord 80 Proof Vodka
- 2 Dashes of Bitter Truth Celery Bitters
- Cucumber Spruce
- Fever Tree Tonic Water
Pour in two ounces of Vikingfjord vodka and top with tonic water. Add two dashes of celery bitters and fill glass with ice. Squeeze in one lime wedge and discard. Garnish with a cucumber spruce.
If you have a hard time finding a lucky four-leaf clover this St. Patty's Day, just mix this easy drink up and call it a night. The Lucky LeSUTRA is a festive green cocktail that blends two of LeSUTRA's most popular flavors of sparkling liqueur, blueberry and peach, with fresh mint and lime. LeSUTRA is infused with white wine and vodka, making it a fizzy option for when you've had too much whisky.
- 3oz LeSUTRA Blueberry Sparkling Liqueur
- 3oz LeSUTRA Peach Sparkling Liqueur
- Half Fresh Squeezed Lime
- Muddled Mint
Combine ingredients and serve over rock in a highball glass. Garnish with a mint and loose blueberries.
EFFEN Green Mary
If you like your Bloody Mary on the green side, this festive variation of the classic might be perfect for you. Sure, it takes a little more effort to prepare than other drinks and at first glance the ingredients may give you pause but that doesn't mean you shouldn't give it a whirl. With EFFEN cucumber vodka, tomatillo sauce Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco, this drink will definitely give you a kick and would be a great conversation starter.
- 2 parts EFFEN® Cucumber Vodka
- 4 parts Tomatillo Sauce
- ? part Worcestershire Sauce
- 3 dashes Tabasco
- 4 Basil Leaves
- Pinch of Salt
Boil Tomatillo sauce for 15 minutes to reduce, then cool. In a mixing glass, combine all the ingredients and shake with ice. Serve in a highball glass over ice. Garnish with a basil leaf.
Irish Kentucky Java
There's nothing better in the morning than a strong cup of Irish coffee…not that I promote morning drinking, of course. If you want a fancier spin on the standard whisky with coffee, try the Irish Kentucky Java (created by the Cocktail Guru, Jonathan Pogash), which adds John B. Stetson Bourbon, maple syrup, white cr?me de cacao, and ground cinnamon.
Add the coffee, Stetson Bourbon, cr?me de cacao, and maple syrup together into a large, heat-safe carafe. Stir briefly to incorporate. Divide the coffee mixture among four mugs. Top each of the mugs with whipped cream, mint leaves, and ground cinnamon.
With grapefruit juice, lime juice, and ZING Vodka, the Lucky ZING would be a great addition to any St. Patrick's Day celebration.
- 1.5 Oz. ZING Vodka
- .25 Oz. Lime Juice
- .25 Oz. Simple Syrup
- .75 Oz. Grapefruit juice
- 3 Basil Leaves
Muddle lime and basil. Add ingredients and shake served Up. Garnish with a fresh basil leaf.
Pot Of Gold
You don't have to be Irish to celebrate like you are on St. Patrick's Day and this cocktail will certainly help you get into the green spirit of things. With TY KU Coconut Sake, pineapple juice and mint, this drink will surely help you have a good time. For an extra bit of luck, add a rum floater shot!
- 2 Oz. TY KU Coconut Sake
- 2 Oz. Pineapple juice
- Muddled mint and fresh pineapple
Mila Pantovich lives in San Diego, CA with her cat and two rats. She graduated from California State San Marcos with a degree in Literature and Writing and a minor in Film Studies. She has written for several publications, including San Diego City News and North Park News, and in her spare time writes film reviews for various online publications. A self-prescribed film/book obsessive, she's curren...(Read More)