There is one thing my family takes VERY seriously during the holidays and that is Irish Coffee.
Every Christmas morning we don our Christmas Crowns and start brewing up Irish Coffee’s before the sun has even risen and continue to pour until the sun sets and beyond. I am convinced that over the years we have perfected the recipe.
There are plenty of variations for the Irish Coffee recipe, but the four key ingredients are hot black coffee, Irish whiskey, sugar and cream/whip-cream.
The flavor of Irish coffee depends on the strength of the coffee, the type of whiskey, type of sugar and the amount of cream added.
It’s not difficult to make, but it must be made by adding the ingredients in precise order and drunk while it is hot.
The most important ingredient is the glass.
The glass MUST have a stem and a tulip shape which prevents an over-sized pour of coffee, keeps the balance of ingredients intact and showcases the iconic white top. Equally important is what happens before any coffee even hits the cup. Always pre-heat your glass by filling it with hot water and letting it sit until warm. This keeps the tasty cocktail steaming hot from the get-go.
We use vintage Irish Coffee glasses which are chic, fun and dummy proof lol.
They have lines on the goblet that show you where to pour each ingredient which means no measuring so you can crank these babies out faster than Santa can climb down a chimney.
After you have warmed your glass with hot water pour your whiskey to the first line (1 oz).
The whiskey MUST be an Irish Whiskey (duh IRISH coffee). I like the sweetness of Original Jameson but you could also use Powers Signature Release which is a bit more spicy or Tullamore D.E.W. Irish Whiskey which has a smooth gentle flavor.
Next comes the sugar- some people use Brown Cane Sugar which you add to the whiskey then stir until it dissolves but we use Kahlua which adds great flavor and just the right amount of sweetness without having to sit there and stir until the sugar to dissolves- plus it’s more alcohol. Add 1 tsp- or pour to just a tiny bit above the first line- of whichever sweetener you choose.
Now it’s time for the coffee. I recommend a medium roast non-flavored coffee. Stay away from exotic blends or strong roasts. The coffee should complement the drink but not stand out. You want the flavors to balance.
Fill coffee to the second line on the cup (1/2 cup).
The crisp white collar of whipped cream that floats above each glass of Irish Coffee is crucial to the flavor- never skip this step. We usually make our own whip cream with heavy whipping cream, confectioners sugar and brandy (lots of brandy) but since I went dairy free this year I have been topping my glass with So Delicious Coconut Whip Cream.
Take the whip cream all the way past the top of the glass and then garnish with some crushed candy-canes!
Slainte and Happy Holidays!
Click to SHOP some of my top picks in Irish Coffee Glasses to create the perfect Irish Coffee: