Bartender Re-education: The Irish Coffee

Bartender Re-education: The Irish Coffee

Every coffee+booze cocktail is a piece of shit except this one. Spanish coffee? Fuck that drink. Bailey’s and coffee? Look granny, you could have had that at home.  Every coffee cocktail up until the Irish Coffee was just a way to get a girl just drunk enough on sweet stuff so that you can get to bone town.

The ceiling at The Gold Dust Lounge is clearly drunk

But the Irish Coffee is too classy for such skulduggery.

This month’s Bartender Re-education is the Irish Coffee and it has 3 ingredients.  If you are served an Irish Coffee with a 4th ingredient you are beginning to slide down a slope in to the valley of Ben & Jerry’s flavored coffee. Specifically, don’t you dare drizzle creme de menthe over canned whipped cream.  And while we are at it, don’t ever use canned whipped cream.

The Irish Coffee is as simple as 1,2,3,4

  • 1 pre-heat the mug, don’t ever put a hot drink into a cold mug
  • 2 sweet Irish whisky, the only other sugar will come from the whipped cream
  • 3 fresh whipped cream, add sugar to taste, use a whisk or a hand blender
  • 4 very strong coffee, it need to stand up to the whiskey

Follow the steps in that order, you don’t have to stir or shake anything.

This is what an Irish Coffee should look like. This one is from The Gold Dust Lounge in SF

And then you are done. Don’t add anything else.  You’ll find this very simple combination to have the perfect balance.  So perfect, that when coffee is brewed poorly (too acidic) the sugar balances it even better.  Dare I say the best Irish coffee you could have would be made with some truck-stop-been-on-the-burner-all-day-sludgy-cup-o-joe.

Another great thing about the Irish Coffee is that the best way to get it is on the go.  And how does one do that? Repeat after me:

“Hello barista, I’ll have a double 8oz americano with whip please.”

Then you dump an airline bottle of Jameson right in the cup and you are ready to face the day.

Post Script:

But if you want to bypass this coffee jazz and skip to straight Irish Whiskey, read this post I wrote about how to drink during St Patrick’s week.

This entry was posted in Bartender Re-Education Plan, Cocktails, irish coffee, irish whiskey, whipped cream, whiskey and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Bartender Re-education: The Irish Coffee

  1. Chas. Munat says:

    Are they always accompanied by a twenty?

  2. Neil says:


  3. Lauren says:

    Genuine question: You say in that order? Can you explain how you put the coffee in after the cream or am I being stupid and/or pedantic?

  4. Heather says:

    Andrew, I love your writing. It is all true and hilarious. But I beg you, please don’t come to my bar and then write about me. I will die.

  5. Jens says:

    “If you are served an Irish Coffee with a 4th ingredient you are beginning to slide down a slope in to the valley of Ben & Jerry’s flavored coffee.”
    Whiskey, coffee, cream and sugar…
    Just teasing, but someone had to do it, right?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s