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The Irish Maid is a refreshing, herbaceous cocktail starring Irish whiskey, elderflower liqueur, lemon, and cucumber. Easy to make at home, it’s a perfect drink to impress any time of the year!

Irish Maid Cocktail

Here at A Couple Cooks we’re suckers for anything with St Germain, so it’s no surprise this drink won us over in a heartbeat. Try the Irish Maid cocktail, a refreshing Irish whiskey cocktail starring the fresh flavors of lemon, cucumber, and elderflower liqueur. It’s perfectly balanced between sweet and tart, with floral and botanical notes that shine through and just boozy enough. In fact, it might just be our perfect style of drink. Here’s a bit more about the drink and how to make it!

Ingredients in an Irish Maid cocktail

The Irish Maid cocktail is a drink starring Irish whiskey, St Germain elderflower liqueur, lemon juice, and cucumber. It’s a play on the drink the Kentucky Maid, a bourbon-based drink created in 2005 at New York’s Milk and Honey by bartender Sam Ross. Ross is the face behind other modern classics like the Paper Plane and the Penicillin, and he’s known for his riffs on classic cocktails with unique twists.

So it’s no surprise the Irish Maid cocktail is similar to an old classic, the Whiskey Smash. Instead of muddling mint, though, you’ll muddle a few slices of cucumber to bring herbaceous notes into the drink. Here are the ingredients for an Irish Maid drink:

  • Cucumber
  • Irish whiskey
  • St Germain elderflower liqueur
  • Lemon juice
  • Simple syrup
Jameson Irish whiskey

More about Irish whiskey

Irish whiskey is a type of whiskey made in Ireland. It has a light, mellow flavor compared to other types of whiskey, like bourbonrye, or Scotch. Irish whiskey was once the most popular spirit in the world, but it went into decline starting in the 1900’s. It came back in the 1990’s and has been on the rise ever since. There are four major types of Irish whiskey:

  • Irish single malt
  • Single pot still
  • Single grain Irish
  • Blended Irish

Irish whiskey tastes light and fruity, with a lightly floral scent and hints vanilla. It’s the easiest to drink of all types of whiskey, making a great intro for drinkers new to whiskey. Aging it makes a more sophisticated flavor profile, with signature oak and caramel flavors.

Brands of Irish whiskey

Jameson whiskey is the best selling brand of Irish whiskey in the world, and is what we used in this Irish Maid cocktail. It’s a blended whiskey that was introduced in 1780 in Dublin, and is made from a blend of single grain and single pot still whiskey. There’s no peat incorporated in the manufacturing process, so the whiskey has no smoky or spicy notes like a Scotch whisky.

There are many more brands in each of the four categories above. Some popular Irish whiskey brands are The Dead Rabbit, Teeling, Bushmills, Redbreast, Green Spot, Tullamore, and Powers.

Irish Maid cocktail

More about St Germain!

The other liquor you’ll need for an Irish Maid cocktail is St Germain: a bottle we recommend for every home mixologists collection! St Germain is a liqueur that’s made with elderflowers, the small white flowers of an elderberry plant. The flavor is light, sweetly floral, and fragrant. It’s hard to describe until you taste it! It adds a unique smooth finish to the flavor of cocktails.

The vintage-looking bottle makes it seem like it has hundreds of years of history, but St Germain was invented in 2007! That’s right, a guy named Rob invented it in the 2007. (Here’s the story behind it.)

How to make an Irish Maid cocktail

The Irish Maid cocktail is simple to put together: all you’ll need is a muddler and a cocktail shaker. Use a muddler to muddle the cucumber to release its oils and juices, then shake it up with ice and strain it into a glass. Here is the basic idea (or head to the recipe below):

  1. Muddle the cucumber slices: Place 3 cucumber slices into a cocktail shaker and muddle (gently mash) it a few times.
  2. Shake: Add 2 oz whiskey, ½ oz St Germain, ¾ oz and simple syrup. Add 1 handful ice and shake until cold.
  3. Strain: Strain into a lowball glass filled with clear ice. If desired, garnish with a cucumber slice and lemon wheel or wedge.
Irish Maid cocktail

Step it up with clear ice

One last note on serving an Irish Maid cocktail: step up the presentation by making clear ice! Clear ice is crystal clear ice that is frozen directionally so it forms perfectly clear ice crystals. You can then cut it into large cubes or organic shapes, and it takes your cocktails to the next level! It also melts slower, keeping the drink cold without diluting it as much as normal ice cubes. To make it, go to our tutorial on How to Make Clear Ice.

More Irish whiskey cocktails

And that’s it! Let us know what you think of the Irish Maid in the comments below. If you’re looking for a few more drinks to use up a bottle of Irish whiskey, here are a few favorites:

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Irish Maid Cocktail

Irish Maid Cocktail


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x

Description

The Irish Maid is a refreshing, herbaceous cocktail starring Irish whiskey, elderflower liqueur, lemon, and cucumber. Easy to make at home, it’s a perfect drink to impress any time of the year!


Ingredients

Scale

Instructions

  1. Add the cucumber slices to a cocktail shaker and muddle them (gently mash) to release the juices.
  2. Add the Irish whiskey, St Germain, lemon juice, and simple syrup and fill the shaker with 1 handful ice.
  3. Fill a lowball glass with clear ice. Shake until cold and strain into a glass. If desired, garnish with a cucumber slice and lemon wedge.

Notes

*To convert to tablespoons, 1 ounce = 2 tablespoons

  • Category: Cocktail
  • Method: No Cook
  • Cuisine: Cocktail
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: Irish Maid, Irish Maid cocktail

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes for memorable kitchen moments! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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