On a seventeen-day vacation road-tripping counter-clockwise around Ireland’s emerald isle, by day eight I was completely burned out on nitro stout and needed a change. Love the Irish as I do, but finding a proper cocktail in a pub consists of boiled water, a packet of instant coffee, airplane bottles of Jameson and Baileys, and dab of fluffy Irish cream on top. Although a proper Irish Coffee can warm the soul, I was craving something stirred with one of the many whiskeys on offer.
In a modernized Dublin castle hotel, I broke down to the bartender, “I need a cocktail. …can you make me an Old Fashioned?” “Can I, absolutely I can. …how about a Wilde Oscar?” After seeing historic Newgrange, stepping in sheep dip at the Cliffs of Moher, dancing with strangers to some late night traditional Irish music session, and kissing the Blarney Stone, I was ready to cap off some great travels with a drink named after Ireland’s greatest poet.
“Nothing can be more frequent than the occasional drink” – Oscar Wilde
So, what makes it a Wilde Oscar? Let me guess, Irish Whiskey, a shot of Guinness Stout, simple syrup, and some bitters, right? “How did you guess?” The drink is easy enough to reproduce at home and is perfect for Saint Patrick’s day next to a comforting plate of corned beef and cabbage. The addition of Guinness, which actually predates the Old Fashioned cocktail, adds some fizzy liveliness to the drink as well as a bit of the stout’s telltale roasty-dark fruit notes.
The Wilde Oscar Old Fashioned:
- 1 1/2 ounces Bourbon (Irish Whiskey is fine)
- 1 ounces Guinness Extra Stout (Draught is fine)
- 1 sugar cube or .5 ounces simple syrup
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- Orange peel – cocktail cherry
In a mixing glass, add the sugar cube, bourbon, bitters and beer. Stir until sugar cube is dissolved. Add 4-5 ice cubes and stir for 15-20 seconds, then strain into a glass on the rocks. Garnish with orange peel and dark cocktail cherry, dance a jig. Sláinte!