Shamrock Sour Cocktail Recipe

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Shamrock Sour Nutrition Facts


Fat:0 g

Protein:4 g

Carbohydrates:18 g


Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Shamrock Sour is a delightful Irish-inspired cocktail, perfect for St. Patrick's Day celebrations or any time you're in the mood for a refreshing, green drink. The cocktail gets its name from the shamrock, a symbol of Ireland, and its sour flavor profile. It's a favorite among whiskey lovers and those who enjoy a good sour cocktail.

  • Origin: The exact origin of the Shamrock Sour is unclear, but it's likely a modern creation inspired by classic whiskey sours and the Irish theme.
  • Popularity: This cocktail has gained popularity in recent years, especially around St. Patrick's Day, when people are looking for festive, green drinks to celebrate.

How Shamrock Sour Tastes?

The Shamrock Sour is a well-balanced cocktail with a slightly sweet, sour, and refreshing taste. The whiskey provides a warm, smooth base, while the lemon juice and lime juice add a tangy, citrusy kick. The green crème de menthe gives the drink a subtle minty flavor and a vibrant green color.

Interesting facts about Shamrock Sour

  • The Shamrock Sour is often served in a rocks glass, but it can also be presented in a coupe or martini glass for a more elegant presentation.
  • The green color of the cocktail comes from the crème de menthe, which is a sweet, mint-flavored liqueur.
  • The shamrock garnish not only adds a festive touch but also symbolizes good luck and fortune in Irish folklore.


Irish Whiskey

Irish whiskey is the heart of this cocktail. Its smoothness and slight vanilla notes harmonize beautifully with the sour components. At 2 oz, it provides the right kick without overpowering. More? Expect a heavier drink. Less? It might as well be a lemon-limeade.

Mary Mitkina

Lemon Juice

Fresh lemon juice adds a necessary zesty tang. 1 oz keeps things bright without making you pucker like you’ve just kissed a lemon. If you skip it, you'll lose the 'sour' in Shamrock Sour.

Alex Green

Lime Juice

Lime juice brings an additional layer of citrus complexity. The same volume as lemon juice ensures a well-rounded tartness. Without it, the cocktail would taste one-dimensional.

Emma Rose

Simple Syrup

The 0.5 oz of simple syrup cuts through the acidity, balancing the cocktail. It's a sweet touch without turning into a sugary clover field. Less sugar could make your guests grimace; more could mean a cloying concoction.

Mary Mitkina

Green Crème de Menthe

This minty liqueur gives the drink its signature green hue and a subtle mint flavor. Half an ounce is just right; more could mean mint overload, and less, you'll miss the festive color and fresh hint.

Alex Green

Egg White

Egg white creates that silky frothiness that elevates any sour. Leaving it out is like forgetting the green on St. Patrick's Day—it just won't feel complete.

Emma Rose

Angostura Bitters

Just a couple of dashes bring in aromatic complexity and a hint of spice. They’re like the final garnish on a masterpiece. Without them, the drink lacks a certain je ne sais quoi.

Mary Mitkina


It chills, dilutes, and merges the flavors harmoniously. Without proper chilling, the cocktail would have a sharp, unrefined edge.

Alex Green

Fresh Mint Leaves

Three leaves muddled or slapped gently and dropped in add an extra pop of minty aroma and a visual appeal that screams 'Irish!'

Emma Rose

Lime Wheel

The garnish that also doubles as a flavor enhancer—aesthetic meets function.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Shamrock Sour Drink

  1. In a cocktail shaker, combine the Irish whiskey, lemon juice, lime juice, simple syrup, green crème de menthe, and egg white.
  2. Perform a dry shake (without ice) for about 10 seconds to emulsify the egg white and create a frothy texture.
  3. Add ice to the shaker and shake again for about 15 seconds to chill and dilute the cocktail.
  4. Strain the mixture into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice.
  5. Top with a couple of dashes of Angostura bitters.
  6. Garnish with a lime wheel and fresh mint leaves.

Pro Tips

  • To create a more visually appealing garnish, you can skewer the lime wheel and mint leaves together with a cocktail pick.
  • For a smoother texture, double strain the cocktail through a fine mesh strainer to remove any ice shards or pulp.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Cheeseboards: The robust flavors of aged cheddar or creamy blue cheese can complement the whiskey's warmth.
  • Smoked Salmon: The fresh acidity from the lemon and lime balances the richness of the salmon.
  • Roasted Nuts: Especially almonds or pistachios, to match the nutty undertones that some Irish whiskeys possess.

Drink Pairings

  • Stout Beer: A nice, dark stout can supplement the deep flavors of the cocktail.
  • Irish Coffee: For those who wish to continue with the Irish theme in their beverages.
  • Sparkling Water: A palate cleanser that can help refresh the taste buds between sips of the cocktail.

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What you could change in Shamrock Sour

  • Green crème de menthe can be replaced with a non-alcoholic green food coloring and a few drops of mint extract for a similar color and flavor.
  • If you prefer a vegan option, you can substitute the egg white with aquafaba (chickpea liquid) to create a similar frothy texture.

Explore all drinks starting with S here

And of course - twists🍹

Whiskey Honey Shamrock

Switch the simple syrup with honey syrup for a twist with a richer, more floral sweetness. This twist will have a slightly heavier body and pair well with the whiskey notes.

Sparkling Shamrock

Top the cocktail with a splash of soda water to add effervescence. This variation will lighten the drink's texture and enhance its refreshing quality.

Shamrock Royale

Float a splash of Champagne or sparkling wine on top for a luxurious twist. The effervescence and dryness will contrast the sour flavors and give the cocktail an elevated feel.

In case you forgot basics how to make Shamrock Sour

The basic composition of simple syrup is relatively straightforward – a 1:1 ratio of sugar and water. This mixture is heated until the sugar dissolves, resulting in a clear, sweet syrup.

Learn everything about simple syrup

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Shamrock Sour

What is the best time to serve Shamrock Sour?

Shamrock Sour is perfect for happy hours, after-work get-togethers, or during St. Patrick's Day celebrations. However, it's a versatile cocktail that can be enjoyed anytime!

What other types of whiskey can be used for a Shamrock Sour?

While Irish whiskey is traditional, you could use bourbon or Scotch whisky as well. Just keep in mind the flavor profile might change a bit.

Can I make a non-alcoholic version of Shamrock Sour?

Yes, you can omit the Irish whiskey and green crème de menthe. Try using sparkling water and a drop of mint extract instead for a non-alcoholic version.

What other garnishes could I use for Shamrock Sour?

Aside from the mint leaves and lime wheel, you could also use a slice of cucumber or a sprig of rosemary for a different twist.

What does 'dry shake' mean and why is it necessary for Cocktails?

A 'dry shake' refers to shaking the ingredients without ice first. This is particularly beneficial when dealing with egg whites - it helps emulsify the ingredients and creates a thicker, more frothy texture.

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