Irish Ale Cocktail

Irish Ale Cocktail Recipe With Irish Whiskey and Ginger Beer

 The Spruce Eats

Prep: 3 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 3 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Yield: 1 cocktail
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
255 Calories
1g Fat
40g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 255
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g 1%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 12mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 40g 15%
Dietary Fiber 8g 27%
Total Sugars 16g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 78mg 390%
Calcium 91mg 7%
Iron 2mg 10%
Potassium 275mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Whiskey and ginger beer are a natural pairing. Irish whiskey, in particular, provides a basic sweetness that cuts through the spiciness of a good ginger beer and the two come together perfectly in this Irish ale recipe (also called an Irish mule). If you're a fan of ginger beer, this is a recipe you will want to try.

The Irish ale cocktail is a variation of two common cocktails: the whiskey and ginger (or Irish buck) and the Moscow mule. It is a simple whiskey highball to mix up and a refreshing drink that is perfect for any occasion.

"This is the ultimate ‘Whiskey Ginger.’ Irish whiskey has an innate sweetness that pairs splendidly with a sharp and spicy ginger beer. The lime makes this cocktail akin to the Moscow Mule with the same amount of complexity, but half the amount of skill needed to make an excellent Mule." —Sean Johnson

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Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Irish Ale Cocktail Recipe
     The Spruce
  2. Pour the whiskey into a highball glass.

    Irish Ale Cocktail Recipe
     The Spruce
  3. Squeeze the juice from all 3 lime wedges on top of the whiskey.

    Irish Ale Cocktail Recipe
     The Spruce
  4. Fill the glass with ice.

    Irish Ale Cocktail Recipe
     The Spruce
  5. Top with ginger beer and stir well.

    Irish Ale Cocktail Recipe
     The Spruce
  6. Serve and enjoy.

    Irish Ale Cocktail Recipe
     The Spruce


  • There are a number of great Irish whiskeys that are perfect for an Irish ale. While you can, there is really no need to mix your best whiskey into this cocktail; if you have a favorite go-to Irish whiskey, it will work out just fine.
  • Adding a few squeezes of lime provides just enough acid to help marry the sweet and spicy notes in this cocktail. Fresh lime juice is, as always, recommended because many of the bottled options are either too sweet or too tart and will throw off the drink's balance of flavors.
  • There are many great ginger beers available as well. The recent renewed interest in the Moscow mule has increased the options and made them easier to find.

Recipe Variations

  • Try mixing ginger beer with other styles of whiskey. Canadian whisky and American blends are known to have a similar smoothness to Irish whiskeys, making them good alternatives. Yet, if you're up for an adventure, give a few bourbons a try for a Kentucky mule, or really ramp up the drink's spiciness with a great rye whiskey.
  • While you have a bottle of Irish whiskey, pair it with tonic water. It's a favorite style for a whiskey tonic and creates a tall drink with a drier profile that is as tantalizing as the ginger beer option.

Is There Alcohol in Ginger Beer?

Today, the majority of ginger beer is nonalcoholic or contains less than 0.5 percent alcohol so it can be classified as such. Its 19th-century English origins point to an alcoholic beverage that was brewed and fermented in a similar way to beer but with ginger rather than grains. These "beers" had an alcohol content around 11 percent ABV and there are a few modern "hard" ginger beers available. Many nonalcoholic commercial ginger beers are made in a similar way to ginger ale today—essentially a carbonated ginger soda that's less sweet and spicier than ginger ale.

How Strong Is the Irish Ale?

As is the case with many highball drinks, the Irish ale is a relatively tame cocktail. Though it uses a 2-ounce shot of whiskey, the ginger beer and a full glass of ice make up most of the volume, bringing it down to a smooth sipping strength. When made with an 80-proof Irish whiskey, the Irish ale weighs in right around 13 percent ABV (26 proof), which is similar to a glass of wine.

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