History Of the Shamrock Shake


Kyra Drescher

It comes once a year starting at the end of February and all throughout March there is a sacred drink loved and hated by people everywhere. It lies just beyond the golden arches and is as smooth as silk. You guessed it right if you were thinking about McDonalds’ Shamrock Shake! This shake is something everyone can look forward to in March, definitely not associated with some holiday that’s also in March. 

These milkshakes were originally introduced in 1970 with the same mint green color but a different flavor. Starting at day one these shakes were initially introduced with a lemon-lime sorbet flavor. Back in the 1980’s things changed for the absolute better. An advertisement aired starring a McDonalds’ character named O’ Grimacy, who was a relative of the big purple guy in the original cast Grimace. This character was made to introduce the new and improved Shamrock Shake now with its minty flavor.

Since then, the good ol’ golden arch chain has tried to advertise multiple different products with the same type of flavor. The same year the flavor changed was the same year that they introduced the shamrock sundae which consisted of vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and topped with the vibrant green shamrock syrup (yes, that is actually what the syrup is called, and no, I do not know what is actually in it). However, that product was discontinued the same year because of how low the sales were. 

In 2017, the spike came back and the chain introduced four more shamrock shake alternatives, those being the chocolate shamrock shake, shamrock chocolate chip frappé, shamrock mocha, and the shamrock hot chocolate. Those suffered the same fate as the shamrock sundae and were discontinued. In 2023, we now have the Oreo Shamrock Mcflurry, which is exactly what it sounds like, an Oreo Mcflurry with the shamrock syrup blended into it. 

Now, I think you should know my opinion of these shakes based on how I was talking about them, but if you didn’t, I think they are great. I do not believe they are fully great because of the taste but simply because of the mixed reaction you receive when you bring this up to people in your general area. The look of horror and disgust on people’s faces or the look of relief when you find someone who also enjoys them. So next March go and get in the shamrock spirit with one of them or don’t, it’s up to you.