This gem of a drink delivers full Irish flavor for St. Patrick’s Day
Ah, St. Patrick’s Day. Always a day of rollicking good fun.
This year we’ll be enjoying the Emerald Cocktail – to celebrate the Emerald Isle.
So drink one of these, and your Irish eyes will be smiling.
Recipe: The Emerald Cocktail
The Emerald Cocktail is an Irish whiskey version of the Manhattan Cocktail. It's extremely similar to another Irish whiskey version of the Manhattan, the Paddy Cocktail.
The Emerald Cocktail contains orange bitters, while The Paddy uses Angostura bitters. Other than that, the drinks are identical. But if you ever wondered what bitters contribute to a drink, taste these two side by side. The difference in flavor is subtle, but distinct.
This recipe takes about 5 minutes to prepare and serves 1.
- 2 ounces Irish whiskey
- 1 ounce sweet vermouth (red Italian vermouth)
- 1 to 2 dashes orange bitters
- garnish of orange or lemon peel (optional)
- Combine all ingredients (except garnish) in a mixing glass half filled with ice. Stir briskly until the contents are well chilled.
- Strain into a cocktail glass (preferably one that has been chilled). Add garnish, if desired, and serve.
- Why stir rather than shake? Because all the ingredients in this drink are clear. Shaking introduces tiny oxygen bubbles, which can cloud the drink. But we often shake anyway. And the bubbles dissipate quickly in any case.
- It’s traditional to serve this drink “up” in a cocktail glass. But we also like to drink it over ice in a rocks (Old-Fashioned) glass.
- A lemon garnish is traditional for this drink, but we prefer orange peel (which subtly echoes the flavor of the orange bitters). We do not recommend using a maraschino cherry, which is the traditional garnish for a Manhattan (its flavor just doesn’t work well with this cocktail).
- There are several brands of orange bitters on the market, and every decent liquor store will carry one or two. Our favorite is Regans’ No. 6, but there are plenty of other fine choices.
- Irish whiskey often has a milder, less aggressive flavor than rye or bourbon. The two brands of Irish whiskey that you’ll see everywhere are Jameson and Bushmills. Either one works well in this drink. But explore the Irish whiskey section at a good liquor store – you may be surprised at how many good choices there are.
“Scintillating flavor!” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “And so appropriate for St. Patrick’s Day.”
“Definitely a jewel of a drink,” I said.
“It sparkles like a gem,” said Mrs K R. “Despite not being green.”
“After a few of these, you might not notice the difference,” I said.
“Yup, everything would be rose colored,” said Mrs K R.
And we’d be green around the gills.
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