Wednesday, March 7, 2018

The Paddy Cocktail

The Paddy Cocktail

This Prohibition-era classic is an Irish whiskey Manhattan

OK, we’re not wild about the name of this drink. Back in the day, “paddy” was pretty much an ethnic slur against Irish immigrants. Fortunately, these days the insult has lost most of its sting.

That is the name of the cocktail, though, and has been since the drink was invented (probably in the 1920s). And since the drink tastes really good, we’ll just have to live with it.

Because once you taste this, you won’t want to live without it.



The Paddy Cocktail

Recipe: The Paddy Cocktail

The Paddy Cocktail is basically an Irish whiskey variant of the Manhattan. As far as we know, a recipe for The Paddy was first recorded in Harry Craddock’s The Savoy Cocktail Book.

The original formula called for equal parts Irish whiskey and sweet vermouth. Too sweet, we say. So we opted for the formulation that Gary Regan devised in The Joy of Mixology: 2 parts whiskey to 1 part sweet vermouth. But tinker with the ratios to suit your taste.

This drink takes about 5 minutes to prepare and serves one.

Ingredients
  • 2 ounces Irish whiskey (see Notes)
  • 1 ounce sweet vermouth
  • 1 to 2 dashes Angostura bitters (to taste; we prefer two)
  • lemon twist for garnish (optional)
Procedure
  1. Place all ingredients (except garnish) in a mixing glass half-filled with ice. Stir until the contents are well chilled (about 30 seconds).
  2. Strain into a cocktail glass, preferably one that’s been chilled. Add a lemon twist for garnish, if desired, and serve.
The Paddy Cocktail

Notes
  • We tend to serve this drink up (in a cocktail glass), as the recipe indicates. But you can serve it on the rocks if you prefer.
  • Most mixologists like to stir drinks that contain only clear ingredients, like this one. By contrast, drinks with opaque ingredients (like citrus juice) generally are shaken. That’s because shaking introduces oxygen bubbles into the drink, which will cloud it briefly.
  • But shake away if you like. We often do.
  • The traditional garnish for a Manhattan Cocktail is a cherry. That doesn’t work in this drink, though. A lemon twist (which Gary Regan suggests) is perfect. Or just skip the garnish entirely.
  • Irish whiskey is, as the name suggests, distilled in Ireland. Most of the Irish whiskeys you’ll find are blended, but you can also buy single malt and/or single pot still whiskey (the latter being made in a pot still rather than a column still, which is a continuous process).
  • Irish whiskey tends to be fairly mild, and generally has less assertive flavor than either rye or bourbon. At least that’s true of the ones we’ve sampled. Admittedly, though, we’ve had only blended Irish whiskey, not single malt or single pot still varieties.
  • The two brands of Irish whiskey most commonly found in the US are Jameson and Bushmills. You’ll probably see their basic blended bottlings, but each also offers several premium varieties. Use whichever you prefer (or can find easily).
  • Many other brands of Irish whiskey are also available, though they may be a bit harder to track down. So feel free to experiment. We often suggest asking your friendly local liquor store personnel for recommendations. We followed our own advice when we made this drink, and we’re glad we did. We wanted to try a new Irish whiskey, just because. Our liquor store expert suggested Clontarf 1014. Good choice! 
  • Clontarf 1014 takes its name from the battle of Clontarf, which took place (surprise) in 1014. During that dustup, the Irish defeated an army of invading Vikings. So trying Clontarf 1014 allowed us to drink some history, while also experimenting with a brand that was new to us.
  • Our usual disclaimer: We’re noncommercial and no one compensates us for mentioning any brand. We buy our booze with our own money. When we discuss brands, it’s because we like and use them.
The Paddy Cocktail

What’s in a Name?

“Great drink,” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “That name, though! It brings up a bit of history that most of us wouldn’t mind forgetting.”

“People in the US were so hostile to Irish immigrants in the 19th and early 20th centuries,” I said. “Many also didn’t like Germans, Italians, Scandinavians, Poles. And the list goes on.”

“Times change,” said Mrs K R. “Fortunately!”

“At least we can have some fun with the name,” I said. “Remember that song by Shirley Ellis? The Name Game?”

“Ah, back in the 1960s,” said Mrs K R. “We were mere tadpoles at the time. Let’s see, she’d change some of the letters and add some nonsense sounds. So Paddy would become:
Paddy, paddy, bo-baddy
Banana-fana fo-faddy
Fee-fi-mo-maddy
Paddy!”
 “Yup,” I said, “Riffs would become:
Riffs, riffs, bo-biffs
Banana-fana fo-fiffs
Fee-fi-mo-miffs
Riffs!”
“Fun,” said Mrs K R. “But time to put an end to this nonsense:
End, end, bo-bend
Banana-fana fo-fend
Fee-fi-mo-mend
End!”
Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone!

You may also enjoy reading about:
Manhattan Cocktail
Blackthorn Cocktail
The Hearn's Cocktail
Brainstorm Cocktail
Irish Coffee
Income Tax Cocktail
Or check out the index for more

66 comments:

  1. So many drinks! Combinatorics probably comes up with millions of possible combinations (like in a pizza commercial). Though I have almost none on hand in my house.

    best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi Mae, loads of different combinations for drinks! But a lot of them are really just variations of a "mother" drink -- like this one. Fun to try them all, though. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  2. What a gorgeous cocktail, of course anything served in a classy martini glass would rock in my books. Your glass has the perfect proportions, would you mind sharing the specific brand it is?

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    1. Hi Eva, it's a great drink. And that's my favorite cocktail glass for photos. It's also the perfect size for cocktails. It's a Riedel glass, and holds about 4 ounces, probably a bit more (forget exactly how much). Thanks for the comment.

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  3. Love the sound of this, really lovely colour.

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    1. Hi Caroline, really lovely flavor, too. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  4. What a beauty. It sounds delicious too.

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    1. Hi Pam, it is delish! Good drink. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  5. Such a gorgeous color - like a sunset in a glass!

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    1. Hi Shashi, it really is pretty! So many drinks are -- once of the nice things about them. Thanks for the comment.

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  6. I have never heard of that ethnic slur before (maybe I am too young - not that young lol) but the cocktail sounds amazing. I am not a fan of Irish Whiskey straight up, Scotch yes go figure, bt mixed like this I would enjoy a few and be tipsy, tipsy, bo-tipsy
    Banana-fana fo-tipsy
    Fee-fi-mo-mipsy
    tipsy!”

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    1. Hi Evelyne, LOL @ tipsy. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  7. I'm so getting in the spirit of St. Patrick's Day and this sounds like my kind of drink.

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    1. Hi Laura, this is a good one -- bet you'll like it. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  8. This cocktail is so clear and crisp. Stirred and not shaken.... Wishing you and Ms. Riff a safe and happy St. Patty's day!

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    1. Hi Bobbi, we DID stir this one, for the pictures. Often -- when it's just the two of us -- we'll shake. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  9. So many cocktails, so little time! This one's a beauty, it looks wintery and warming all at the same time. Forwarding to our son, he would enjoy this one.

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    1. Hi Deb, so little time is the story of our lives, isn't it? Hope your son enjoys this! Thanks for the comment.

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  10. I am a huge fan of Irish whisky - probably my favorite drink of all. This is a must try for me and so pretty!

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    1. Hi Tricia, you'll really like this! Wonderful flavor. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  11. What a perfect cocktail for Saint Patricks Day!!

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    1. Hi Dahn, this has wonderful flavor! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  12. My parents loved their Manhattans! Wish they were around and I'd serve them one of your cocktails!

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    1. Hi Liz, the Manhattan is a wonderful drink. One of our favorites. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  13. I could use one or two of these cocktails right now. I had a little incident with my car, let’s say I no longer have a mirror. Prost!

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    1. Hi Gerlinde, too bad about your "incident!" Hope everything is OK. A couple of these should restore your good humor. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  14. A beautiful cocktail and actually looks quite fall-like. I'm surprised it's not green. I've never tried any of the ingredients in this drink but if you were to hand it to me I'd definitely indulge.

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    1. Hi Vicki,this does make a good fall drink. Appropriate, since it's fall down under. :-) And you'd enjoy indulging in this! Thanks for the comment.

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  15. I used to love that rhyme. Still do. That's how my Zoe got her nickname Boey. Anyway love this drink too. Always good to get your Irish on!

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    1. Hi Abbe, yup, getting one's Irish on is a good thing. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  16. Such a beautiful drink! Love the back lighting, John.

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    1. Hi Angie, back lighting is the best way to show the color! And also to rim the glass. Thanks for the comment.

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  17. I'm pretty sure we have all the ingredients to make THE PADDY... So I can easily go get my husband drunk and then blame you? LOL!

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    1. Hi GiGi, and your husband will thank me! :D Thanks for the comment.

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  18. Your cocktails are always too strong for me, but i can’t help but stare at your photos!!! Beautiful.

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    1. Hi Mimi, cocktails are pretty, aren't they? Thanks for the comment.

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  19. Oh, the name game!!! We used to have so much fun with that! Fun to see you and the Mrs. bringing it back. :) Fun drink for a fun day!

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    1. Hi MJ, it's a fun tune, isn't it? :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  20. I love Irish whiskey so I'm going to try this for sure. It sounds great!

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    1. Hi Kelsie, Irish whiskey is good stuff, isn't it? As is this drink. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  21. I don't enjoy cocktails but I do enjoy reading your blog and especially love your beautiful photography. I may also point out that people in the U.S. are still hostile to immigrants. Cheers, Rocquie

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    1. Hi Rocquie, the names change, the sentiment remains the same, eh? :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  22. Love this drink - perfect for St. Patrick's Day!

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    1. Hi Amy, it is! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  23. ... or you could call it The Patty Cocktail because you'll pat-pat-pat your tummy when your done drinking it! GREG

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    1. Hi Greg, great idea! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  24. Never heard of this slur before ... anyways what is in the past stays in the past:). The drink color is amazing, I bet it tastes great as well

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    1. HI Amira, good philosophy! I'll drink to that. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  25. Happy St. Patrick's Day! Cheers with this fun drink.

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    1. Hi Denise, Happy St. Pat's! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  26. Wow, this does sound good. Whiskey, bitters and sweet Vermouth. Can't argue with that!

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    1. Hi Frank, it IS really good. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  27. They were not friendly to Greek immigrants too but I guess people are always prejudiced against anything new or out of the ordinary! This cocktail is amazing!

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    1. Hi Katerina,I think almost all immigrants faced prejudice at one time or another, alas. And this IS an amazing drink! Thanks for the comment.

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  28. Sure does sound like a Manhattan, which is my favorite drink. I've been watching The Alienist, which takes place in 19th-century New York. I think this is the perfect thing to drink while watching.

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    1. Hi Jeff, this would be perfect for that! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  29. Now this sounds like a strong libation. So glad I can mix it up at home and enjoy it without having to drive afterward. ;)

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    1. Hi Carolyn, Uber and Lyft exist so we can drink these out. :-) Actually, we're lucky -- we live within a 30 minute walk of a lot of really good restaurants, and we like to walk, so we usually do (weather permitting). Thanks for the comment.

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  30. I can't believe I hadn't heard of this cocktail! And, I'm 75% Irish. I'm going to have try one for St. Patrick's Day this year!

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    1. Hi Lisa, sounds like this drink has your name on it! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  31. I'm not really a whisky fan, which is sacrilegious considering I live in Scotland! But if I do have to drink it I do prefer Irish as it is milder in flavour and mixes with coffee really well. I would defiantly be willing to give this a sip or two, just to make sure ;)

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    1. Hi Emma, Irish whiskey and coffee pair so well, don't they? And after a sip or two of this drink, bet you'd finish the whole thing. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  32. This is a cocktail that my husband would love. Perfect way to celebrate St. Patrick's Day this weekend.

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    1. Hi Karen, it IS the perfect way to celebrate. :-) Thanks for the comment.

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  33. Sounds like a great drink. Love your pictures.

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    1. Hi Dawn, it is! :-) Thanks for the comment.

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