Kahlúa punks Guinness with its own fun St. Patrick’s Day campaign

Bored of drinking stout on the Irish holiday? W+K London ads suggest an espresso martini instead

Published On
Mar 13, 2024
A small glass of Kahlúa next to a pint of what looks like Guinness

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Guinness has had a stranglehold on St. Patrick’s Day since time immemorial. But a new global campaign for Kahlúa in the U.K., Ireland and the U.S. suggests kicking the stout to the curb in favor of a different black and creamy beverage—the espresso martini.

The ambush campaign from Wieden+Kennedy London includes out-of-home vans and posters placed outside Irish bars across cities in the U.K. and Ireland. There is also the amusing spot below, directed by Michael Lennox, which features the Irish TikTok father-son duo Tadhg and Derry Fleming, as well as Ian Ryan, founder of Beautiful Pints.


The Evening Standard will also have a themed cover wrap today (March 13). The theme of the campaign is “Feliz St. Patrick’s Day,” a nod to Kahlúa’s Mexican heritage.

Kahlúa newspaper wrap on The Evening Standard

While acknowledging that more than 13 million pints of stout are consumed every March 17 worldwide, Kahlúa comes armed with further data suggesting 60% of Brits would rather drink an espresso martini over a stout to celebrate St. Paddy’s (based on a survey of 2,000 adults earlier this month).

“The people have spoken, and we’ve listened,” said Craig van Niekerk, global VP of marketing for Kahlúa. “It’s time to stir up St. Patrick’s Day and have everyone enjoy their drinks—and what better way than with a Kahlúa espresso martini? Kahlúa makes moments less mundane by adding a boost of playfulness, bringing something extra to the everyday.”

Kahlúa ad on the side of a van

“It’s not every day you get to make an Irish stout ad for a Mexican coffee liqueur brand. Feliz St. Patrick’s Day!” added Charlie Hood and Liam Abraham, creatives at W+K London.

The St. Patrick’s Day stunt follows a W+K London campaign for Kahlúa last fall that starred Salma Hayek Pinault and featured over-the-top telenovela-style spots. That work asked viewers if they were bored of wine.

“One minute we’re kicking down doors with a movie star; the next we’re coming for stout’s spotlight on St. Patrick’s Day,” said Philippa Beaumont and Freddy Taylor, creative directors at W+K London. “Who knows where Kahlúa will take us next, but we’re excited to stir more things up.”

“Feliz St. Patrick’s Day” will include more videos in social media featuring the Flemings, Ryan and former Irish Rugby player Rory Best.

“Ultimately, we want everyone to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in their own way with whatever drink they desire,” Van Niekerk said. “Whether that’s a pint of stout, a dazzling espresso martini, or just a tall glass of water, it’s each to their own, right? We say salud and sláinte to everyone, no matter what drink you fancy.”

Kahlúa print ad for St. Patrick's Day


Mar 13, 2024
Client :
Client :
Pernod Ricard
Agency :
Wieden & Kennedy-London
Creative Director :
Freddy Taylor
Creative Director :
Philippa Beaumont
Creative :
Charlie Hood
Creative :
Liam Abraham
Group Account Director :
Ollie Pym
Account Director :
Emily Gower
Planner :
Melanie Eckersley
Strategy Director :
Brian Ritter
AV & Print Producer :
Aurelie Livera
Assistant Producer :
Lea Georgiev
Head of Production :
Rich Adkins
Head of Business Affairs :
Helena Tomas
Senior Business Affairs Manager :
Alex Coomer
Design Director :
Phil Rosier
Head of Studio :
David Brodie
Studio :
Sophia Anastasiou
Head of Irishness :
Paddy Treacy
Head of Account Management :
Matt Owen
President :
Ryan Fisher
Chief Creative Officer :
Ana Balarin
Chief Creative Officer :
Hermeti Balarin
Chief Strategy Officer :
Dan Hill
Production Company :
Director :
Michael Lennox
Executive Producer :
Jennifer Lawlor
Production Company Producer :
Clara Bennett
Production Manager :
Sam Linzell
Director of Photography :
Ray Coates
1st AD :
Barry Coldham
Production Designer :
Georgia Shelton
Drinks Stylist :
Jakob Sundin
Costume Designer :
Lucy Hagan
Vice President :
Craig van Niekerk
Global Brand Creative Director :
Filip Kisk
Global Brand Creative Lead :
Giancarlo Martins
Creative Content Director :
Greg West
Creative Content Manager :
Ned Patterson
Offline Editor :
Alan Scott-McCarthy
VFX Company :
We Are Covert
Colorist :
Florian Metzner
Sound Designer :
Tom Guest
Music Company :
Twenty Below
Artist/Writer :
Guy Farley

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