Regardless of what city in the world you visit, you will generally come across at least one Irish pub or restaurant serving traditional Irish food and drink. This indicates how popular the native food and drink is, but of course if you want the best there is, you should sample it in its homeland. In Ireland there is no particular drink which is exclusively associated with Christmas. However, there are numerous hearty beverages which Irish people consume in winter in order to combat the frosty chill in the air. So if you’re still sipping on Pina Coladas or Vodka and Coke then you need to get into the festive spirit with some traditional Irish winter warmers!
Ireland is well known for Guinness, but there are many other great traditional drinks. Irish whiskey is popular throughout Ireland all year round, and comes in many forms – including single malt, single grain and blended whiskey. It is not only consumed on the rocks, but is also the staple ingredient of numerous hot Irish winter drinks. Personally, my favourite drink of the winter season is Irish coffee. This beverage was invented on a cold winters evening in 1942 by an enterprising Irish barman in Shannon Airport in the West of Ireland. It consists of a large shot of Irish whiskey, a spoon of sugar, hot and strong black coffee, topped with thick cream poured over the back of a spoon. If made correctly, the lightly whipped cream floats on the coffee as you sip. It’s the perfect way to warm your insides on a cold evening.
Hot Whiskey (similar to toddy) is another popular winter drink. It is made as follows: stud a lemon slice with cloves; stir a teaspoon of sugar into a shot of whiskey in a glass, add the clove/lemon and fill the glass with hot water; stir and enjoy! Hot whiskey is often viewed as medicinal and can be a great cure for the start of a head cold.
Hot port is another common drink for cold, winter evenings. It is made in the same way as whiskey, except the whiskey is substituted with port. With a chill in the air and holiday’s beckoning nearer, Irish people enjoy this comforting drink.
Baileys Irish cream is an Irish whiskey and cream based liqueur. It is popular all year round but makes a nice winter drink because of its heavy consistency. Baileys coffee is a great winter drink. It is the same as an Irish coffee, except Baileys is used in place of Irish whiskey. Normally you don’t need to add sugar as baileys is a lot sweeter than whiskey, but that depends on personal taste.
Looking for a way to cheer up from the winter doom and gloom? Make yourself one of these drinks! They’re very easy and well worth it. I guarantee you a warm, fuzzy feeling from the inside out.