What is green beer? It's simply beer that has been colored for St. Patty's Day!

What is green beer? It’s simply beer that has been colored for St. Patty’s Day!

Green beer is synonymous with St. Patrick?s Day and all things green. What is green beer? It?s simply regular beer with green food coloring added. Lighter colored beers will show off the green better than the darker blends. However, stout or other dark beers will display a green head on the top.

Add one drop of green food coloring to 12 ounces of beer and, voila, green beer. You?re ready for your St. Pat?s celebration. If you are serving a pitcher of beer, you will need more than one drop of green food coloring. Experiment and see what you come up with.

Some beer connoisseurs add spirulina to their beer to turn it green. Spirulina is a natural algae that is green. Spirulina contains antioxidant properties and is nutrient dense. Some people like the taste of it while others don?t. Add ª- to ® teaspoon of spirulina to your beer and it turns green.

You can also put a bit of powdered wheat grass juice into your beer to turn it green. If you have a 16 ounce pint of beer, add one teaspoon of wheat grass juice. Stir.

Ironically, the color originally associated with St. Pat?s Day was originally blue. Blue switched to green at some point. Green is one of the colors in Ireland?s flag. Ireland is considered the Emerald Isle because of its verdant green landscape. Green is the color of a shamrock and the hue of spring. So it only makes sense that green is the color of choice. When you hear the expression ?the wearing of the green? this refers to wearing a shamrock on your clothes or jewelry. Celtic people consider the shamrock to be a sacred plant because it symbolizes spring and rebirth. The shamrock has become the emblem of Irish nationalism.


Green used to be considered an unlucky color in Ireland because it was associated with faeries, or the ?good people?, who swiped children and adult who were wearing excessive amounts of color.

Honoring St. Patrick

March 17 is the anniversary of Saint Patrick?s death. This occasion is celebrated both in and beyond Ireland. One of the legends that surround St. Patrick is that he drove the snakes from Ireland into the Irish Sea, where they drowned. Some say that is why the sea is so turbulent in this area.

In Ireland, St. Patrick?s Day is first and foremost a religious festival, unlike in America. However, the Irish government now takes advantage of the occasion to show off the county and culture to the rest of the world. Bars are no longer closed in Ireland on this day, as they were until the 1970s. St. Patrick?s is now a secular holiday in many countries. In Ireland it is a federal holiday. St. Patrick?s Day always occurs during Lent. Sometimes on the Catholic calendar the holiday actually occurs on a date other than March 17.

The Parade

The St. Patrick?s Day parade started in America and not in Ireland. The first parade was in NYC in 1762 and the purpose of which was to help Irish soldiers who served in the English army to reconnect with their fellow Irishmen and their Irish roots.

Green Beer Day

Green Beer Day is a tradition that was begun in 1952 at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. However, it isn?t celebrated on March 17 but on the Thursday before spring break begins.

Cheers to you and yours on St. Patrick’s Day. Here’s hoping that you have the luck of the Irish and some green beer to go along with it.