On a cold, damp day there’s nothing like an Irish coffee to warm you up from the inside out. Legend tells us that’s what Joseph Sheridan thought in 1942 when a group of American travelers ended up at his restaurant in Ireland. Joe wanted to give them something that would warm and awaken his cold and weary guests. Hot coffee with a bit of sugar, a jigger of whiskey and topped with rich cream proved to be the perfect pick-me-up. One of the travelers, curious to know more about the beverage, asked Joe if it was Brazilian coffee. Joe responded, “No, it’s Irish coffee.” And so the tradition began.

According to Sheridan, the original recipe is this:

“Cream as rich as an Irish brogue; coffee as strong as a friendly hand; sugar sweet as the tongue of a rogue; and whiskey smooth as the wit of the land.”

It’s simple, but as Sheridan’s poetic recipe indicates, to get the most out of your Irish coffee use quality ingredients, especially when it comes to the coffee. We suggest using a roast that’s on the medium to dark side, such as our March Roaster’s ChoiceGrower’s First Honduras.

Irish Coffee

2 teaspoons brown sugar
6 oz. freshly brewed hot coffee (darker roast is best)
1½ oz. Irish whiskey

Heavy cream, very lightly whipped (I hand whip it for a few seconds)

Preheat an Irish coffee mug by rinsing it with very hot water. Add brown sugar and coffee and stir. Add the whiskey, top with cream and serve.