How To Drink Wine Like The Irish

The Irish drink, well, a lot. And while we don’t condone overconsumption, we do admire the gusto and commitment the Irish carry into every drinking experience. 

When you think of St. Patrick’s Day, you probably think beer, whiskey, Irish coffee, and car bombs (we still think this name is questionable..). However, wine is still a popular alcoholic beverage in Ireland, with the majority of the wine coming from South America – specifically Chile – Australia, France, or Spain. 

If you’re looking to avoid the beer belly, unpleasant car bomb experiences (I mean, seriously, we couldn’t have come up with a better name?), and the hangover this St. Patrick’s Day, we’re sharing some tips and tricks on how to drink wine like the Irish. 

Like Irish Wine? Try this Guinness Wine Cocktail 

Debatably the world’s most iconic beer, Guinness has been brewed at St. James’ Gate brewery in Dublin, Ireland, since 1759. This world famous Irish stout is a must-drink on St. Patrick’s Day, and frankly, every day if you’re Irish. 

If you’re dead set on drinking your annual St. Patty’s Day Guinness, try this wine variation for a lighter twist on the classic. 

While unexpected, this drink has history on its side. It’s said that the Black Velvet Cocktail was made to mourn Queen Victoria’s husband when he passed in the mid-1800s.

Image courtesy of The Spruce Eats.

Black Velvet Guinness & Champagne Cocktail 


Our recommended sparkling is our  Private Reserve Aromica – the aromas of toasted almonds and fresh-baked bread will perfectly complement the roasted malt flavors of the Guinness.

Fill your wine flute halfway with sparkling wine. Slowly fill to the top with Guinness. Cheers! 

Pair Wine with Irish Cuisine 

There are a handful of Irish meals that are simply begging to be paired with a glass of wine. The following Ireland wine pairings aren’t just luck – they’re matches made in green heaven.

Disclaimer: we won’t be pairing any of these traditional Irish dishes with Wild Irish Rose – the delightfully cheap and super sweet stuff of legend you can find in any grocery store wine aisle.  

When pairing wine with corned beef, go for a less tannic red like a Zinfandel or Merlot

Cabernet Franc is also a great option, as it complements pickling spices. People often assume a bold, high-tannin wine like Cabernet Sauvignon would pair well with corned beef, but the cut of meat used for corning is actually not as fatty as you’d expect, so low tannin reds are a great choice. 

We recommend our MeetCute Merlot – this smooth tannin red is brimming with dark fruit aromas of juicy plum, raspberry, and black cherry with dark chocolate in the finish. 

Bright Cellars’ Meet Cute Merlot

Shepherd’s Pie is a hearty dish that pairs well with Sangiovese. Spiced lamb meat complements the wine’s lively acidity, medium tannins, and savory notes. A Northern Rhone Syrah is a great backup – the savory, juicy flavors will jive with the gaminess of the lamb. 

Give our Silverscape Syrah a try with your Shepherd’s pie. This nicely aged red shows complex elements of spice, earth, and leather along with notes of raspberry, blackberry, and fig.

If you’re in the mood for something warming, try the combination of creamy potato leek soup and Grüner Veltliner. We always look to the acidity of a wine like Grüner Veltliner (or Sauvignon Blanc) to cut creaminess when it comes to heavier soups. Not to mention, the notes of green pepper will complement the herby leek flavor. Oh, and don’t forget to check out our other winter soup and wine pairings

Have you tried our Herz & Heim Grüner Veltliner? It has a clean finish with citrus and stone fruit aromas, a punch of green apple, fresh herbs, and spicy white pepper on the palate. 

Bright Cellars’ Herz & Heim Grüner Veltliner

Whatever you do, avoid the ‘Irish Goodbye’

When it starts to get late, please, for the good of the green, don’t pull an Irish exit and sneak away from the St. Patty’s Day activities without bidding adieu! Finish your wine, say your proper goodbyes, and sleep peacefully knowing your social life is thriving and you’ll never be labeled “that guy.” 

In Vino Finito

Do you have plans for St. Patty’s Day? What’s your favorite St. Patrick’s Day tradition? Let us know in the comments! 
And don’t forget to subscribe to Glass Half Full for more wine wisdom, interesting tidbits, pairings, and recipes.



Bright Cellars

Our staff is full of passionate wine lovers. With our amazing sommeliers at the helm, we’ve been schooled on all things wine. We came together to write this article, in hopes of spreading a little wine-ducation with you.

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