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Cocktail Ideas for St. Patrick's Day

Updated on March 2, 2019
LindaSarhan profile image

L. Sarhan has a B.A. in English and creative writing. She is currently working on an M.A. in English and creative writing.

When it comes to drinking and celebration, everyone seems to be Irish on St. Patrick's Day. The most popular drink of choice for St. Patrick's Day is an iconic green beer. It is easy to make; just simply add a few drops of green food coloring to the light-colored beer of your choice. The reason why it should be light-colored beer is that the darker-colored beers will drown out the green coloring to the point that it is hardly noticeable.

Now if you really want to celebrate the Irish culture, you should skip the green beer and go straight for a Guinness. However, if beer just isn't your "thing", there are a variety of festive cocktail options to choose from that may just give you a shot of luck.

Irish Car Bomb

Okay, so speaking of Guinness, there is one drink that is second on the list of the most popular alcoholic drinks for St. Patrick's Day. That is the Irish Car Bomb. Although full size, it is consume more like a shot. The Irish Car Bomb was created in 1979 by Charles Oat at Wilson's Saloon in Norwich, Connecticut. It was originally named the "Grandfather" and had 1/4 part Kahlua and 1/4 part Irish whiskey along with the 1/2 part Irish creme in the shot.

Also, keep in mind that the Irish Car Bomb is an American mixed drink, due to the Irish alcohol used and having to quickly consume it, thus getting you "bombed", which is a slang term used for getting drunk. However, bear in mind that you probably wouldn't want to order one of these at a pub in Ireland. The term Irish Car Bomb is offensive to most bartenders in Ireland due to the history of the car bombings during a difficult time in Ireland's history.


  • 3/4 pint of Guinness stout
  • 1/2 shot of Bailey's Irish creme
  • 1/2 shot of your favorite Irish whiskey


  • beer mug or pub glass
  • shot glass


The first thing you should do is pour a perfect 3/4 of a pint of Guinness stout. Then prepare the shot. The shot consists of equal parts of Irish creme and Irish whiskey. You can pour these at the same time into the shot glass if you like.

Serve the glass and the shot glass separately. The reason why is that the shot glass is dropped in right at the time the person drinking it is ready to guzzle it all down as fast as they can. So why is it important to guzzle it down quickly as soon as the shot glass is dropped inside the Guinness stout? If you don't the shot will begin to curdle in the Guinness stout.

Irish Eyes has a simple, yet romantic cocktail recipe that is sure going to warm your sweetheart's heart just like the Irish sun.


  • 1 oz. of Irish whiskey
  • 2 oz. of cream
  • 1/4 oz. of creme de menthe
  • ice
  • sprig of mint (optional)
  • cherries (optional)

Materials Needed:

  • goblets or high ball glasses
  • cocktail shaker
  • cocktail strainer


The first step is to add ice to a cocktail shaker. Next, add your favorite Irish whiskey follow with creme and creme de menthe. Shake until the ingredients are mixed well and chilled. Then, using the cocktail strainer, gently pour into a goblet or high ball glass. Garnish the top with a sprig of mint and perhaps a couple of cherries.

If you are really wanting to make it romantic, as you serve this delightful cocktail break out into song as you hand your lover his or her drink. The most popular song of choice is the popular Irish Song When Irish Eyes Are Smiling. Don't worry if you can't carry a tune, the sentiment is sure to bring a smile to any lass or lad's face.

Leprechaun Leap

The Leprechaun Leap cocktail is the brainchild of Star Hodgson, who is a master mixologist and goes around helping restaurants and bars develop their own line of signature cocktails.


  • 1 oz. vodka
  • 1 oz. Domaine de Canton (a ginger liqueur)
  • 1 small egg white
  • 1 kiwi, peeled
  • 5 oz. lemon juice
  • 1/4 to 1/2 oz. of simple syrup (2 parts sugar to 1 part water)


  • martini cocktail glass
  • cocktail shaker
  • cocktail strainer


Mashed the kiwi until pulpy and add to the cocktail shaker. Next add the vodka, Domaine de Canton, egg white, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Shake vigorously. Add ice to the cocktail shaker and shake again for about 30 seconds. Then use a cocktail strainer to pour the contents into a V-glass. Lastly, garnish with a slice of kiwi.

Pot o' Gold cocktail
Pot o' Gold cocktail

Pot o' Gold

There are a variety of cocktail and shot recipes out there. This recipe is one of the best by far. It is also one of the easiest cocktails to make.


  • 1 oz. Irish whiskey
  • 4 oz. ginger ale
  • spiral orange peel twist
  • edible gold glitter
  • thin slice of orange


  • chilled brandy glass
  • plate or cocktail glass rimmer


First off, you will need to chill the brandy glass ahead of time before making this cocktail drink. Once chilled, sprinkle some of the edible gold glitter onto a plate. If you would prefer, you could use a cocktail glass rimmer, in which you can purchase through for about $9.00.

Take the orange slice and cut a slit in the orange. Slide the slitted orange along to the rim of the glass to moisten. Then turn the glass upside down onto the edible gold glitter and twist slightly to ensure that the rim of the glass gets an even coating.

Now for preparing the cocktail. Simply add the Irish whiskey and top with the ginger ale. You can then garnish with an orange twist.

The Shamrocker
The Shamrocker

The Shamrocker

This is another cocktail drink which the recipe varies depending on who is making it. However, this recipe can be served as a shot or a full size cocktail drink, but either way it is guaranteed to knock your Irish socks off.


  • 1 part tequila
  • 1 part melon liqueur (DeKuyper is best)
  • 1/2 part triple sec
  • splash of orange juice
  • triangle orange slices


  • shot glass or cocktail glass of your choosing
  • cocktail shaker
  • cocktail strainer


Add ice to the cocktail shaker. Combine all the ingredients and mix by shaking well. Then you can choose to strain into a shot glass or pour over ice in a cocktail glass of your choice. Garnish with one or two small triangle slices of orange.

Emerald Rain
Emerald Rain

Emerald Rain

If you are looking for the perfect martini-style Irish drink then look no further than Emerald Rain. Emerald Rain can also be modified by leaving out the vodka for the light weight drinkers.


  • 2 oz. Hpnotiq
  • 1 oz. vodka
  • 1/2 oz orange juice
  • 1/4 lime, freshly squeezed
  • whole lime slice
  • ice


  • martini glass
  • cocktail shaker
  • cocktail strainer


Add all of the ingredient in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake together the ingredients vigorously. Then strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a whole slice of lime.

The Dirty Leprechaun
The Dirty Leprechaun

The Dirty Leprechaun

If you are looking for an amazing layered cocktail or shot then the Dirty Leprechaun is the perfect cocktail for the occasion. If you find layering to be too challenging, you can also just mix all of the ingredients together in a cocktail shaker.


  • 1 part Jagermeister
  • 1 part Irish cream
  • 1 part melon liqueur


  • flute glasses
  • spoon


First pour in the Jagermeister. Next, turn the spoon upside down against the inside edge of the glass. Then slowly pour the Irish creme. Again with the spoon upside down, pour melon liqueur slowly over the Irish creme.

Regardless of what you drink to celebrate St. Patrick's Day, remember to drink responsibly. Have a designated driver or a plan in place for your transportation home that does not involve you getting behind the wheel, regardless of how "fine" you think you are. Have fun but be smart and be safe!

© 2015 L. Sarhan


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