An Irish coffee is the perfect adult beverage to celebrate St.Patrick's Day. There are many American versions out there, but this is the true authentic Irish way to make it!
An Irish coffee requires only a few simple ingredients, and I can attest (as not much of a coffee lover) that this drink is such a treat. It's nicely sweet, but not overly so, creamy with just enough whiskey for the perfect aftertaste.
At home in Ireland, we've always just served it alone, but by all means break out the Irish scones or soda bread for a late afternoon (probably not a morning!?) treat. Heck, you could even serve it alongside some Irish Stew or Shepherd's Pie if the traditional pint of Guinness isn't quite your thing!
Like any coffee drink, the quality of the coffee is important. Not instant coffee granules, please! Only freshly brewed coffee. In our home, we like to use our Nespresso, since it brews in such a way that it leaves a thick "creme" at the top of the coffee. That's why my Irish coffee has 3 distinct layers, as opposed to just two. I think it looks a little fancier!
The other important thing to remember is to use Irish whiskey. Jameson is usually the go-to, but Paddy Old Irish Whiskey or Tullamore Dew are two other excellent Irish whiskies (that the Irish actually do drink!).
Finally, in order for the cream to settle on top and not disperse throughout the coffee, you will need to slowly pour it over the back of a warm spoon. It makes all the difference in how it looks! Spot what I'm doing wrong in the photo below - the spoon is not upside down! doh!- and you can see how the cream instantly sinks.
I hope you'll enjoy celebrating St.Patrick's Day just like the Irish do with this delicious Irish Coffee!
Traditional Irish Coffee
- warmed teaspoon
- 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
- 4 oz black coffee freshly brewed
- 1.5 oz Irish whiskey
- 1 oz partly whipped cream
- Add brown sugar to a glass
- Pour in the hot coffee. Mix together until the sugar has dissolved.
- Add the whiskey and stir again.
- Allow the mixture to rest for a few seconds before pouring the cream over the back of a warmed spoon, allowing it to gently settle on top of the coffee.
- Serve immediately.