Gentlemen. Saint Patrick’s Day is coming up and we’d like you to celebrate in style.
Originally intended to be celebrated by proud Irishmen and women, Saint Patrick’s Day has somehow been adopted by a slew of other cultures here in America. We’re not going to tell you not to celebrate if you aren’t Irish, but it may be helpful if you guys knew a little something about the holiday, what beers to drink and how to enjoy it like a gentleman.
Celebrated on March 17, Saint Patrick’s Day marks the anniversary of Saint Patrick’s death as well as his annual feast day and has been celebrated by the Irish for over 1,000 years, which is a long, long time. Irish families would generally attend church in the morning and then enjoy a festive celebration in the afternoon.
However, according to History.com, the first Saint Patrick’s Day parade occurred not in Ireland, but in the United States. Irish soldiers serving in the English army marched through New York City on March 17, 1762. This encouraged a lot of Irish soldiers to remember their roots and engage with other Irishmen. We’re assuming they had a drink or five. In 1848, the first official New York City Saint Patrick’s Day Parade took place.
Today in America, Boston, Chicago, Savannah and Philadelphia all hold similar parades. Saint Patrick’s Day is also celebrated in Canada, Australia, Japan and Russia.
It wasn’t actually until 1995 that Ireland started to participate in Saint Patrick’s Day with cliché festivals and mass hysteria. In fact, because Saint Patrick’s Day was considered a religious occasion, pubs in Ireland were legally forced to close on March 17 before 1995. Today, a massive multi-day festival commemorates the holiday in Dublin in an effort to attract tourists and celebrate Irish culture.
Much like our style advice from Mardi Gras, this Saint Patrick’s Day you should still consider classing up, standing out from the crowd and looking great. There are probably going to be tons of drunken maniacs dressed like clover-clad leprechauns and classless frat boys… not that there’s anything wrong with being in a fraternity. We’re just tired of drunken fools walking around without any class. We encourage you not be that guy. Never be that guy.
After getting out of the shower, modestly apply your cologne, and put on your nice, well-ironed dress shirt and pants. Nobody likes wrinkles. You’d think that’d be obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people I see with wrinkled shirts and pants. Don’t bother with the suit jacket because you’re just trying to have fun.
We’ll always recommend a matching tie. Tie it any way you’d like, but our favorite knot is the full windsor. It’s big, bold and makes a statement. If you also want to throw on a nice vest, feel free. Shine up your nice pair of shoes and you should be good to go. Women pay attention to shoes, so steer clear of sneakers if you’re trying to get “lucky”.
Lastly, as with any other Saint Patrick’s Day celebration, show off your green. Don’t overdo it, but if you’re going to celebrate, commit. Nobody likes a guy who sucks the fun out of everything by not fully participating.
TOP THREE IRISH STOUTS
Finally… on to the beer. We could encourage you not to all we want, but there’s no doubt in our minds that you’ll probably be chugging Guinness-filled Irish Car Bombs, sipping Irish whiskey or drinking green beer at the bar. We’re also sure you’ll probably end up with a Guinness or two, the unofficial beer of Saint Patrick’s Day. But why not drink something a bit more unique before stepping out? Try some of these other creamy, delicious Irish stouts:
Murphy’s Irish Stout
Brewed in Ireland since 1856, Murphy’s Irish Stout is at the top of our list of stouts to try on Saint Patrick’s Day. It was acquired by Heineken, which has made the beer increasingly easier to find. Like Guinness, this beer is nitro-dispensed, which is what makes it so smooth. We wouldn’t recommend it for car bombs because we wouldn’t recommend car bombs, but if you must, we imagine it’d still be pretty tasty.
This beer is “sweeter and lighter than Guinness” with “notes of chocolate and coffee that are surprising to find in a beer that’s this drinkable.” – AskMen.com
Brewed in Downington, Pennsylvania, this Victory Brewing stout is also, like Guinness, a nitro-dispensed beer. Therefore, it makes for a smooth, creamy stout perfect for Saint Patrick’s Day that isn’t your run-of-the-mill Guinness. Again… we’ll never recommend car bombs, but we imagine this beer makes for a pretty damn good one.
“Pairing the flavor of roasted malts with notes of toast or crackers, this beer satisfies while staying light,” – AskMen.com
O’Hara’s Irish Stout
Brewed by a small, family owned brewery in County Carlow, Ireland – Carlow Brewing Company — O’Hara’s Irish Stout is definitely worth a try. Due to the demand of good Irish beer in North America, this little brewery made its way to the States reclaiming authentic Irish beer. This beer is by far the more genuine of these three beers, but it may a bit a bit hard to get your hands on at your local liquor store.
“Anything by Carlow is a good taste of a smaller Irish brewery, but you’re most likely to find their flagship stout. And with its smooth mouthfeel and dark coffee and charcoal notes, it’s definitely one to try at the first opportunity.” – Askmen.com
HAPPY SAINT PATRICK’S DAY!
Great! You’re ready to head out and enjoy yourself. Keep in mind, you’re still a gentleman. Act like it. It’s alright to have some fun, but be respectable and drink responsibly. Also, make sure you get your hands on some Shepherd’s Pie. Mmm… Shepherd’s Pie. Slainte!