The Irish Coffee Recipe

Posted in Bourbon on March 2, 2014

irish coffee

The original Irish Coffee traditionally contains black coffee, sugar, whiskey and cream. However, nowadays numerous variations from this recipe exist and are served under the same name. Irish coffee was invented in the 40s by someone who wasn’t even a bartender. The name of the inventor is Joe Sheridan and he was the chief of an airport in west Ireland. One winter night he tried to provide some comfort for the passengers of a flight that couldn’t make it to its destination and had to return at his airport. In order to make them feel better, he added some whiskey to their coffee. They were amazed by it and asked if it’s Brazilian. Joe replied that it’s Irish and this is how Irish Coffee was born. For a while it was only served in the restaurant of the airport, but it soon made its way in the United States.


The original recipe contained a thick layer of cream. It was supposed to be consumed through the cream and it was explicitly mentioned that the cream should not be whipped. However, nowadays lots of people and bartenders use whipped cream or cream from a can and still call the drink Irish Coffee. In fact, the name became so popular that it is often mistakenly used for all cocktails which contain coffee and an alcoholic drink. Spanish people are making a variation of Irish Coffee in which the whiskey is placed on the bottom of the glass and it is not stirred in the hot drink. In Asia the term also defines a drink made with ice coffee instead of hot coffee.


Even those who want to try the original Irish Coffee recipe might obtain different results and different times. If you order the drink in different bars, you might notice slight differences in taste. This is because the final result when making Irish Coffee strongly depends on the type of coffee you are using and on the brewing method.


The Original Irish Coffee Recipe


You need:


  • 1 ½ oz. of whiskey.
  • 6 oz. of hot coffee.
  • 1 tsp. of sugar.
  • Cream.


The drink is usually prepared in a mug and you can preheat it by pouring hot water in it and then emptying it. Once you have done so, pour in the hot coffee and the whiskey and add the sugar. Some experts agree that brown sugar works better. Stir the coffee until the sugar is completely dissolved. Even if you don’t like sweetened coffee, the recipe still calls for sugar because otherwise the cream won’t float. Once you are done stirring, use the back of a spoon to pour the cream in order to make it float. Don’t stir the drink anymore. Enjoy!


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