St. Patrick’s Day is one of my all-time favorite holidays. Having some Irish blood running through my veins, I happily welcome the green tide. Jaunty (and slightly intoxicated) crowds of various shades of green do their best jig in the streets while taking back Guinness and green beer. It is really a spectacular sight. I’ve celebrated in both America and Australia and let me say the love of the Irish is a worldwide affair.
I often wonder if people know exactly what they are celebrating. Sure, it is a fun excuse to get together with friends and have a good time. I mean, who isn’t happy adorning themselves with gold and rainbows? Nevertheless, you should know what you are toasting to.
Elizabeth Nix broke it down best in an article with History. Here is the short version. St. Patrick’s Day wasn’t even celebrated in Ireland until the mid-1900’s, when prior to that all of the pubs were closed to commemorate the late Patrick, patron saint of Ireland. First captive as prisoner on the Green Isle, then escaped and journeyed back to convert the country to Christianity. Once a solemn day of remembrance, has since been turned into one of the most celebrated holidays since the first St. Patrick’s Day parade in New York City in the 1760’s.
So, let’s begin the shenanigans by digging into our own pot of gold – the cocktails. Green cocktails to be specific.
Drinking green is a St. Paddy’s Day staple, but let me tell you from personal experience, they aren’t always good. In fact, most of them are as gnarly as the color they take on, filled with sugar and sickly sweet. But why spend a holiday slurping down cocktails that we really don’t even enjoy?
There’s more out there than sugary concoctions of florescent syrup. We have four shamrockin’ cocktails that are not sugar heavy and are actually refreshing. Save your sweet tooth for gold covered chocolate coins. Deep dive into some corned beef and cabbage and pair your favorite cocktail that will prevent pinches.
- 1 ½ ounces Chopin Vodka
- 1 ounce chilled green tea
- 1/3 ounce simple syrup
- ¾ ounce fresh lime juice
- 4 slices cucumber
- 2 sprigs mint
Muddle 3 slices of cucumber lightly until scent and water is released. Add mint and muddle gently again. Add vodka, green tea, lime juice and simple syrup. Shake with ice and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a slice of cucumber and mint leaf.
Road to Versailles
- 2 ounces Jameson Black Barrel
- 1 ounce fresh lime juice
- 1 ounce simple syrup
- 8 mint leaves
- Mint sprig
In a glass, add all liquid ingredients. Stir and press mint leaves to the bottom of the glass then add fresh ice overtop. Garnish with a mint sprig.
Pocket Full of Green
- 1 ½ ounces Hendrick’s Gin
- 8-12 torn mint leaves
- 1 ounce cucumber juice
- ½ ounce fresh lemon juice
- 1 ounce aloe vera juice
- 1 ounce soda water
Add gin, cucumber and lemon juice along with mint into a glass and gently muddle. Add crushed ice and stir. Top with aloe vera juice and soda. Stir then add more crushed ice on top. Garnish with sliced cucumber and mint.
- 2 ounces Midori Melon Liqueur
- ½ ounce DeKuyper Triple Sec
- ½ ounce Pinnacle Vodka
- 1 ounce lemon juice
- 1 ounce pineapple juice
- Pineapple wedge for garnish
Fill the glass with ice. In a cocktail shaker, pour Midori®, triple sec, vodka, lemon juice, and pineapple juice. Add ice and shake well. Pour shaken contents into the glass and garnish with a pineapple wedge/slice.