40 Irish Drinks You Shouldn’t Miss: Spirits | Cocktails | Wine | Beer | Alcohol-free

Welcome to the ultimate guide to Ireland’s drinks, where we’ve got every sip you can imagine from this green land! From the world-famous stouts and whiskies to unique liqueurs and craft beers, Ireland’s drinks scene is as rich as its history. But hey, it’s not all about alcohol – we’ve also got a variety of non-alcoholic options like refreshing sodas and cozy teas. So, whether you’re a fan of a hearty pint or a soothing cuppa, our comprehensive list has got you covered. Let’s dive into the delightful world of Irish beverages!

1. Irish Spirits

1.1. Irish Liquor

1. Irish Whiskey

  • Aged grain spirit from Ireland.

Irish Whiskey stands out for its smooth, light, and slightly sweet profile, often triple-distilled for purity. It’s known for its approachable flavor, making it a favorite for both newcomers and connoisseurs. Brands like Jameson, Bushmills, and Redbreast offer a range of tastes from rich and fruity to spicy and complex, catering to diverse palates.

  • Popular Brands: Jameson, Bushmills, Redbreast, Teeling, Tullamore Dew.
  • Fun Fact: Irish whiskey is always spelled with an “e“.

2. Poitín / Poteen

  • Traditional Irish distilled drink.

Poitín, or Poteen, is a potent Irish spirit with a rustic character, traditionally distilled in small pot stills. This clear, unaged drink varies from smooth to fiery, reflecting its homemade origins. Once illegal, modern versions like Bunratty and Glendalough are gaining popularity, offering a unique glimpse into Irish distilling history.

  • Popular Brands: Bunratty, Glendalough, Mad March Hare, Teeling.

3. Irish Vodka

  • Distilled spirit from Ireland.

Irish Vodka, though less known than its Russian counterpart, offers a distinctively smooth and clean taste. Distilleries like Boru and Kalak focus on crafting vodka with a creamy texture and subtle flavors, using Ireland’s pure water and quality ingredients, making it ideal for both sipping and cocktails.

  • Popular Brands: Boru, Kalak, Dingle Vodka.

4. Irish Gin

  • Botanical spirit from Ireland.

Irish Gin, such as the renowned Gunpowder Irish Gin, is gaining a reputation for its unique botanical blends. Distillers often incorporate local ingredients like wildflowers and herbs, resulting in a refreshing and complex spirit. This gin is perfect for those seeking a distinctive twist in their gin and tonics or martinis.

  • Popular Brands: Gunpowder Irish Gin, Dingle Gin, Shortcross Gin.

1.2. Irish Liqueurs

5. Irish Cream

  • Cream-based liqueur.

Irish Cream is a luxurious blend of cream, Irish whiskey, and other flavors like chocolate or coffee. It’s renowned for its rich, smooth texture and versatility in drinks or desserts. Baileys, the most iconic brand, has set the standard for quality, making it a staple in coffee drinks and a beloved addition to various cocktails.

  • Popular Brands: Baileys, Carolans, Coole Swan.

6. Irish Mist

  • Irish honey whiskey liqueur.

Irish Mist is a delightful mix of Irish whiskey, honey, and aromatic herbs. This golden liqueur offers a sweet, smooth taste with a warm, spicy finish. It’s perfect for sipping neat, over ice, or as a key ingredient in cocktails, providing a hint of sweetness and depth.

7. Sheridan’s

  • Irish layered coffee liqueur.

Sheridan’s is a unique, visually captivating liqueur, famous for its dual-layer of creamy vanilla and rich coffee chocolate. Served in a distinctive split bottle, it’s a favorite for creating visually striking and delicious layered drinks, combining the robust flavors of coffee and the smoothness of cream liqueur.

8. Druid’s Celtic Liqueur

  • Hirish herbal liqueur.

Druid’s Celtic Liqueur is a lesser-known but intriguing spirit, embodying a blend of herbs and botanicals. This liqueur offers a mysterious, earthy flavor profile, often enjoyed as a digestif. Its unique taste makes it a fascinating addition to creative cocktail recipes, appealing to those who enjoy exploring rare and traditional spirits.

2. Irish Cocktails & Mixed Drinks

2.1. Irish Cold Alcoholic Beverages

9. Irish Coffee Martini

  • Coffee-flavored martini.

The Irish Coffee Martini is a sophisticated twist on the classic Irish coffee, blending espresso, Irish whiskey, and sometimes Irish cream. It’s a popular choice for coffee lovers, offering a rich, robust flavor with a kick of whiskey, ideal for an evening cocktail or a special brunch treat.

10. Black Velvet

  • Stout mixed with sparkling wine.

Black Velvet is a luxurious cocktail that combines the rich, creamy texture of stout, usually Guinness, with the crispness of sparkling wine, preferably champagne. This drink offers a unique balance of flavors, making it a classy choice for celebrations or as an elegant alternative to traditional champagne toasts.

11. Whiskey Sour

  • Classic whiskey cocktail.

The Irish version of the Whiskey Sour puts a Gaelic spin on this classic cocktail, using Irish whiskey as its base. Its smooth, slightly sweet profile, paired with the tartness of lemon juice and the sweetness of sugar or syrup, creates a perfectly balanced and refreshing drink.

12. Celtic Twilight

  • Whiskey and cream cocktail.

Celtic Twilight is a delightful blend of Irish whiskey, Irish cream, and hazelnut liqueur, creating a rich and indulgent cocktail. This drink is perfect for those who enjoy a creamier, sweeter cocktail with the depth and warmth of whiskey.

13. Dublin Mule

  • Irish twist on Moscow Mule.

The Dublin Mule is Ireland’s answer to the Moscow Mule, substituting vodka with Irish whiskey. Mixed with ginger beer and a splash of lime juice, this cocktail offers a refreshing and zesty flavor profile, ideal for those looking for a lively and invigorating drink.

14. Emerald Isle

  • Gin and mint cocktail.

The Emerald Isle is a refreshing cocktail that blends gin, typically an Irish brand, with green crème de menthe and a touch of lemon or lime. This drink is known for its vibrant green color and minty, refreshing taste, making it a festive choice for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations or as a cool summertime beverage.

15. Irish Flag

  • Layered shooter.

The Irish Flag is a visually striking layered shooter that represents the colors of the Irish flag. It typically combines crème de menthe, Irish cream, and Grand Marnier or a similar orange liqueur. The layers create a beautiful visual effect, with each sip offering a burst of contrasting yet complementary flavors.

2.2. Irish Hot Alcoholic Beverages

16. Irish Coffee

  • Whiskey-infused coffee.

Irish Coffee is a classic, comforting drink combining hot coffee, Irish whiskey, sugar, and a layer of cream. The warmth of the coffee and whiskey, sweetened to taste and smoothed by cream, makes it a perfect pick-me-up on cold days or a delightful finish to a meal.

17. Baileys Irish Hot Chocolate

  • Creamy and boozy hot chocolate drink.

Baileys Irish Hot Chocolate is a decadent treat, merging the rich, creamy texture of hot chocolate with the smooth, whiskey-infused flavor of Baileys Irish Cream. It’s a luxurious twist on traditional hot chocolate, perfect for savoring on chilly evenings or as a special dessert.

18. Irish Whiskey Punch

  • Sweet and spiced hot Irish whiskey drink.

Irish Whiskey Punch is a communal beverage, often served at gatherings. It combines Irish whiskey with hot water, lemon, cloves, and sugar, creating a warm, spicy, and slightly sweet concoction. It’s a delightful way to share the warmth of Irish hospitality.

19. Mulled Irish Cider

  • Spiced hot cider.

Mulled Irish Cider is a festive, spiced beverage, perfect for holidays or cold nights. This aromatic drink is made by warming cider with a blend of spices like cinnamon and cloves, often with a splash of Irish whiskey. It offers a comforting, sweet, and spicy experience, embodying the essence of Irish conviviality.

20. Hot Toddy

  • Hot drink with whiskey, honey and lemon.

The Hot Toddy, a traditional remedy for a cold night or a common cold, blends hot water with Irish whiskey, honey, and lemon. This soothing beverage is not just a comfort drink; its warmth and the medicinal properties of its ingredients make it a favorite during the winter months.

3. Irish Brewed & Fermented Alcoholic Beverages

3.1. Irish Wines

21. Mead

  • Honey-based wine.

Mead, an ancient beverage, is made by fermenting honey with water and sometimes fruits, spices, grains, or hops. In Ireland, it’s a link to the past, offering a sweet, often floral taste. Mead varies from still to sparkling and dry to sweet, appealing to a wide range of palates.

  • Popular Brands: Kinsale Mead Co., Bunratty Mead, Atlantic Irish Mead.

3.2. Irish Beer

The Irish beer market is renowned for its diversity, dominated by stouts like the iconic Guinness, but also featuring a variety of ales, lagers, and craft beers. Stouts, with their rich, creamy heads and robust flavors, are a staple, while red ales offer a sweeter, maltier alternative. Lagers like Harp provide a lighter, crisper option. The craft beer movement, including brands like O’Hara’s and Galway Hooker, injects modern creativity, introducing IPAs and experimental brews to the traditional Irish palate.

22. Guinness

  • Iconic Irish stout.

Guinness, a globally recognized Irish stout, is renowned for its creamy texture and rich, balanced flavor. Characterized by a distinct burnt taste from roasted barley, it’s a symbol of Irish brewing excellence, often enjoyed in pubs worldwide. Guinness represents not just a beer, but an Irish cultural icon.

23. Murphy’s

  • Irish stout.

Murphy’s is a stout originating from Cork, offering a slightly sweeter and lighter alternative to Guinness. Known for its smooth, creamy texture and subtle coffee undertones, Murphy’s has carved out its niche in the Irish stout category, appealing to those seeking a less intense stout experience.

24. Beamish Stout

  • Traditional Irish stout.

Beamish Stout is another classic from Cork, known for its rich, full-bodied flavor with hints of coffee and licorice. It’s a stout with a loyal following, appreciated for its creamy texture and robust taste, contributing to the rich tapestry of Irish stouts.

25. O’Hara’s Celtic Stout

  • Irish craft stout.

O’Hara’s Celtic Stout represents the Irish craft beer movement. This stout is notable for its complex flavor profile, balancing traditional stout richness with a modern twist of additional hops and flavor notes. It’s a prime example of how Irish brewers are innovating within established beer styles.

26. Harp Lager

  • Irish pale lager.

Harp Lager is a popular Irish beer known for its crisp, refreshing taste. It stands out in the stout-dominated Irish beer scene, offering a lighter, golden beer alternative. Its smooth, balanced flavor makes it a favorite among those who prefer a more approachable, easy-drinking lager.

27. Smithwick’s

  • Irish red ale.

Smithwick’s, an Irish red ale, is celebrated for its rich, malty flavor with a hint of caramel sweetness. This ruby-red beer offers a smooth, balanced taste, making it a staple in Ireland’s ale tradition. Its popularity underscores the diversity of Irish beers beyond stouts.

28. Red Ale

  • Amber Irish ale.

Red Ale in Ireland is a testament to the versatility of Irish brewing. These ales are known for their distinctive red hue and a balance of sweet maltiness with a subtle hop bitterness. They offer a different palate experience from stouts and lagers, showcasing the diversity of Irish beers.

29. Galway Hooker

  • Irish Pale Ale.

Galway Hooker, named after the traditional Irish boat, is a pioneer in the Irish Pale Ale category. Known for its hoppy, aromatic profile, it offers a crisp and refreshing alternative to the more traditional stouts and ales, symbolizing the dynamic nature of the Irish beer landscape.

30. Porterhouse Brewing Co. Beers

  • Variety of craft beers.

Porterhouse Brewing Co. is at the forefront of Ireland’s craft beer scene, offering a wide range of beers from stouts to IPAs. Their innovative approach to brewing brings new flavors and styles to the Irish beer market, reflecting the evolving tastes of modern beer enthusiasts.

This diverse array of Irish beers, from the iconic Guinness to the innovative Galway Hooker, showcases the rich history and evolving nature of Ireland’s beer scene. Each brew offers a unique taste experience, reflecting Ireland’s deep-rooted brewing heritage and its contemporary innovations.

3.3. Other Irish Brewed and Fermented Alcoholic Drinks

31. Cider

  • Apple-based alcoholic drink.

Irish Cider is a popular alcoholic beverage made by fermenting apple juice. Characterized by its crisp, fruity flavor, it ranges from sweet to dry, offering a refreshing alternative to beer and spirits. Enjoyed across Ireland, ciders reflect the country’s rich apple-growing heritage.

  • Popular Brands: Magners, Bulmers

32. Perry

Pear-based alcoholic drink.

Perry, similar to cider but made from pears, is a lesser-known yet delightful Irish drink. It offers a sweeter, more subtle flavor compared to apple cider. Perry showcases the diversity of Irish fermented drinks, providing a unique and often artisanal beverage experience.

  • Popular Brand: Dan Kelly’s Cider

4. Irish Non-Alcoholic Drinks

4.1. Irish Cold Non-Alcoholic Beverages

33. Cidona

  • Apple-flavored soft drink.

Cidona is a popular non-alcoholic beverage in Ireland, known for its crisp apple flavor. It’s a carbonated soft drink that offers the taste of apples without the alcohol content of cider, making it a favorite among all ages for its refreshing and fruity taste.

34. Tanora

  • Tangerine-flavored soda.

Tanora is a fizzy, tangerine-flavored soft drink beloved in Ireland. Known for its vibrant color and tangy taste, it offers a refreshing citrus kick, distinguishing itself from typical lemon-lime sodas and adding variety to Ireland’s non-alcoholic drink offerings.

35. Red Lemonade

  • Unique Irish lemonade.

Red Lemonade is an intriguing Irish drink, unique for its bright red color. It combines the familiar sweet-tart flavor of traditional lemonade with a distinctive red hue, making it a nostalgic and popular beverage choice in Ireland, especially at children’s parties.

36. Football Special

  • Unique Irish soda.

Football Special is a unique soft drink from Ireland, originally created to celebrate local football victories. It has a distinctive flavor that’s hard to pin down, often described as a mix of cola, bubblegum, and fruit flavors, making it a quirky and beloved choice in the Irish soft drink market.

37. Club Orange

  • Orange-flavored soda.

Club Orange is a classic Irish soft drink, celebrated for its unique blend of real orange bits and refreshing citrus flavor. As one of Ireland’s favorite sodas, it stands out for its distinctly zesty and slightly tangy taste, perfect for a refreshing break.

4.2. Irish Hot Non-Alcoholic Beverages

38. Irish Tea

Tea culture in Ireland is deeply ingrained, with the country being one of the world’s largest per capita tea consumers. Irish teas are typically strong and rich, often enjoyed with milk. Gathering for a cup of tea is a cherished social ritual, reflecting warmth, hospitality, and a moment of respite in daily life.

Popular Brands:

  • Barry’s Tea: Barry’s Tea, a staple in Irish homes, is known for its rich and robust blend. It’s a key part of the Irish tea tradition, offering a warm, comforting cup that’s often enjoyed with milk and sugar, reflecting Ireland’s love for strong, well-brewed tea.
  • Lyons Tea: Lyons Tea is another beloved brand in Ireland, famous for its quality and flavor. It provides a bright and brisk brew, perfect for starting the day or as an afternoon pick-me-up, embodying the Irish penchant for a good, strong cup of tea.
  • Irish Breakfast Tea: Irish Breakfast Tea is a robust, full-bodied black tea blend, typically including Assam or Ceylon teas. It’s designed to pair well with a hearty Irish breakfast, offering a strong caffeine kick and a rich flavor, often enjoyed with milk.

39. Hot Port

  • Non-alcoholic warm drink.

Hot Port, a non-alcoholic version of the traditional hot toddy, combines blackcurrant cordial, lemon, cloves, and hot water. It’s a comforting, warming drink, perfect for cold evenings or as a soothing remedy for colds, showcasing the Irish love for warm, hearty beverages.

40. Irish Moss

  • Seaweed-based health drink.

Irish Moss is a traditional Irish drink made from Carrageen moss, a type of seaweed. Boiled with milk and sweetened, it forms a jelly-like consistency. This unique beverage is not only a traditional health tonic but also a part of Irish culinary heritage, reflecting the use of local, natural ingredients.

Each of these beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, represents a facet of Ireland’s diverse drink landscape.

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