Episode #094 – Coffee Cocktails

Ahhhh….the sound of drinking in the morning! While we don’t always suggest mixing caffeine and alcohol (Red Bull & Vodka is on the permanent “no way” list), coffee offers an intriguing flavor partner to many drinks. From vermouth to Amari, to all sorts of brown liquors, there’s a lot to offer.

In this week’s episode, we explore:

  • How to bring coffee into the flavor profile of your drinks
  • How (and when) to serve coffee drinks
  • Making coffee drinks with certain kinds of coffee
  • Just how to balance the caffeine with the relaxing elements of an adult cocktail


Espresso Martini

  • 2 oz Vodka
  • 1⁄2 oz Simple syrup
  • 1⁄2 oz Kahlúa
  • 1 oz Freshly brewed espresso or cold brew concentrate

Garnish with 3 coffee beans

The Dude

(from Xavier Herit, bartender at New York City’s Wallflower)

  • 12oz cognac
  • 34oz chilled coffee
  • 12oz Demerara sugar
  • 12oz heavy cream
  • 12oz ruby port
  • 4 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 egg

Combine and dry shake (without ice) well, and then add ice and shake until well blended. Strain

Good Morning Old Fashioned

First, ya gotta make Coffee Bitters

  • 2-3 tbsp ground espresso (illy is a great brand)
  • 2 small cinnamon sticks
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 3 whole clove
  • Peel of 2 lemons
  • 6 oz high proof grain alcohol (white whiskey or unaged brandy preferred)

Combine and let sit in a cool, dark place for 4-5 days. Strain through a cheesecloth.

For the cocktail: Then 1 demerara sugar cube muddled with 4-5 dashes coffee bitters and a little water to soften the cube, then pour 2 oz of VSOP brandy or bourbon (rye is a little distracting).