“Grandpa’s green drink” is what we called this creme de menthe and brandy after-dinner drink.
We grandkids knew not to bother the grown ups when grandpa sat down to relax and chat with his kids (our parents) while sipping his family-famous “green drink.”
I now know this mixed drink has a official name, it’s called a Stinger cocktail, a very popular drink dating all the way back to 1890s and leading up to the 1970s.
You can find out more about the origins of the Stringer drink here.
How do you make a Stinger drink?
In most cases a stinger is made with white creme de menthe but for some reason my grandpa opted for the green creme de menthe. I have to admit, it always looked pretty cool and refreshing.
He always prepared his green drink in a diamond-textured glass full of crushed ice. In fact, I remember when my grandparents upgraded to a fridge with a crushed ice maker built in. Grandpa no longer had to get out a separate ice grinder for his green drink. Must have been a satisfying day for him!
A classy drink for a dapper man
My grandpa was a hard-working man. He ran his own accounting business, was a dad to three children, exercised regularly by swimming, jumping rope or using his Nordic Track (remember those?), and maintained his own property grounds. He even built a large storage shed himself (I helped a little!) to store his tools. Funny enough though, that shed was outfitted with a mini fridge, a ceiling fan, a deck, and some LL Bean furniture. It quickly became grandpa’s get-away and a playhouse for us grandkids. So where did his tools go? Well, he built a second shed for those.
Grandpa loved to laugh, praise God, sing “I love mountain music,” and talk about the good old days. Some of his favorite quotes were “It’s a beautiful day on Earth” and “Whatever you do, don’t do it!” He ate peas with a butter knife just to make us grandkids laugh, wiped water away from his “leaking” painting of a lake hung above the fireplace, and loved to playfully pretend to give my grandma a boot to the behind in response to her whipping his butt with a dish towel! What a bunch of goofballs!
As you can see, I have a lot of fond memories of my grandpa and therefore of this iconic green Stinger drink. I’m happy to finally be sharing it, just in time for St. Patrick’s day so that all you hard-working folks can try out this nostalgic cocktail too while you sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor. In the words of my grandpa, “God bless, America!”
What type of glass do you use to serve a Stinger?
Typically you’d serve this green stinger cocktail in a rocks glass. My grandpa used to drink his in a tall patterned glass. Similar to this set of diamond-patterned rocks glasses. You will likely need to double this recipe if you’re serving them in a drinking glass which is taller than a rocks glass.
Would this green stinger cocktail be appropriate to serve at a holiday cocktail party?
Absolutely! Since this version of the Stinger is such a vibrant green, it really does make a great drink to serve at a Christmas party or enjoy it for St. Patrick’s Day. It definitely has a festive vibe to it! Basically any party with a theme that involves something green would be a match.
However, no special occasion was needed for my Gramps. The green Stinger was his signature drink that he enjoyed at all the family happy hours.
**You must be 21 or older to enjoy this beverage. Please drink responsibly**
Grandpa's Green Stinger Drink
- 2 ¼ oz brandy
- ¾ oz creme de menthe green or white your choice
- Crushed ice
- Fill a rocks glass full with crushed ice.
- Add brandy and creme de menthe and stir.
- To make it a double, just double the ingredients.