Mixology 101: Baileys Irish Cream

Updated: 1 Mar 2013

40,000 Irish cows make for a very milky way, says Jay Chooi

First of its kind

The first Irish cream to hit the market, Baileys was a novel concept at its launch. One of the concerns of such a product is its shelf life. Contrary to popular belief, Baileys has a considerably long shelf life for a milk based product, opened or unopened, refrigerated or not. Under normal conditions, the flavour will remain as it is for at least 24 months from the day it is made. The cream used in manufacturing the liqueur is fresh and chemical free; the alcohol (17 percent by volume) acts as a natural preservative.

Erin go Bragh!

Launched in the ’70s, Bailey’s has since established itself as one of the best selling liquor brands with just one selling point – that it is truly Irish. But with production costs being cheaper in other countries, is it really? We are glad to report that yes, everything from the production site to the farms supplying the milk (all 40,000 of the cows) are completely Irish. They still stay true to their exceedingly clichéd Irish identity after all these years; it’s definitely a good thing in terms of branding.

Minty, caramel-y, coffee, nutty
The mildly chocolate-y Baileys have additionally launched other flavoured Irish creams – Baileys Mint Chocolate, Baileys Caramel, Baileys Coffee and Baileys Hazelnut. With the addition of mint, the flavour is expectedly sharp, and good with chocolate based cocktails. The caramel, on the other hand, merely has a more marked caramel tone that is already present in the original Baileys and is slightly sweeter. The coffee and hazelnut flavoured ones are pretty much self-explanatory.

Lactose intolerant?

Baileys will probably not float your boat (or cocktail) if you suffer from lactose intolerance, depending on how sensitive your body is. It contains 50 percent cream and milk protein straight from dairy milk with less than one percent pure lactose. Because of this amount, they claim it’s possible for those with the intolerance to enjoy it. To avoid unattractive symptoms, talk it through with a health professional before you swig it. Baileys is completely nut- and egg-free.

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