Sure, a shot of espresso before your 7 a.m. meeting is great, and many of us cannot get through an 8-hour shift without multiple cups of coffee to keep us energized and focused throughout the day.
Now just for a second, imagine how nice it would be if you could enjoy your coffee after you are done with your work. How rewarding it would feel if you could relax and take your sweet time to slowly sip on a delicious coffee-based drink at a bar or the comfort of your home knowing that you are done for the day, quietly on your own, or surrounded by the merry company of your friends. It sounds like a sweet dream you would want to come true, right?
We felt the same way too, and that is why we have gathered 10 of the most delicious and exciting coffee cocktail recipes that will surely make your happy hour extra special and more rewarding than ever. Whether you are a bartender (or a barista!) or not, these unique coffee cocktail recipes will surely take your cocktail-making craft to the next level and impress your guests, friends, and families. And above all, nothing is more satisfying than making yourself a special drink for some quality me-time.
Cold Coffee Cocktails
1. Coffee Shochu Mojito
This is a unique mojito recipe using coffee-infused Shochu. Shochu is a Japanese distilled spirit made from organic starch sources such as rice, barley, potatoes, etc. Even if you are unfamiliar with Shochu, don't worry; you can instantly read up on it right here, with a bonus guide to how you can make your own coffee shochu at home.
Zesty and refreshing, this is the ultimate mojito recipe to keep you cool and fresh on a hot summer afternoon.
- Coffee Shochu
- Fresh mint leaves
- Club soda
- Sugar syrup (skip if you want to make it sugar-free)
- Lime (Wedges or slices)
- Crushed ice
- Add 60 ml of Coffee Shochu into a nicely chilled tall transparent glass.
- Add lime wedges, and fresh mint leaves into the glass.
- Muddle the mint and lime using a muddler to release the flavors fully.
- Next, add sugar syrup, then crushed ice, followed by cold club soda.
- Give it one or two gentle swirls using a stirrer, and it's done!
2. Turkish Coffee Sour
If you are feeling festive, you can try this aromatic rum-based cocktail full of warm, cozy flavors. It does take a little bit of work, but trust us, the end result is worth every bit of the work. One sip on this cocktail will make you nostalgic for the best holiday season spent with the family.
- Ground Coffee (Turkish/Espresso grind – Extremely fine grind)
- Cardamom pods
- Cinnamon stick
- Egg whites
- Lemon peel
- Lemon juice
- Spiced rum
- Add 2 Tbsp ground coffee, three cardamom pods (bruised to release maximum flavor), one lemon peel, two cloves, and one cinnamon stick to a small pan with 250 ml of water. Bring this mixture to a boil. Make sure you enjoy the heavenly aroma of spices, citrus, and coffee that will waft through your kitchen during this part.
- Place two pieces of kitchen paper on a sieve and strain the mixture through it. Let it cool down completely.
- Fill a shaker with a handful of ice and add 50 ml of the spice and coffee mixture, 75ml spiced rum, 20g egg whites, and 25ml lemon juice. Shake, shake, shake for 1-2 min, and then fine-strain the cocktail into two martini glasses. Garnish with cardamom pods (1-2 for each glass), and it's complete!
3. Café Con Cerveza
Cerveza means 'beer' in Spanish. It is a very simple drink that can be easily made at home with two readily available ingredients – coffee and beer.
- Cold brew coffee (or drip coffee that has been chilled)
- Good quality beer (chilled)
- Pour chilled beer and coffee into a tall glass in a 1:1 ratio.
- You can try changing the type and strength of the coffee and play around with the type of beer (e.g., using dark lager), and you will definitely achieve some outstanding results.
4. Café Vino
Vino is the Italian word for wine. In this classy cocktail, port wine (sweet, red, fortified Portuguese wine usually enjoyed as a dessert wine) is combined with coffee. The subtle sweetness and the pleasant acidity of port wine subdue the bitterness of coffee, creating a fruity taste and a smooth mouthfeel. The addition of spice and citrus peels makes it a festive drink reminiscent of mulled wine.
- Port wine
- Brewed black coffee that has been chilled (pour-over or cold brew)
- Sugar syrup (can be skipped if you want it less sweet)
- Cinnamon powder
- Orange peel
- Pour 70ml of chilled black coffee and 60ml of port wine in a shaker and mix well.
- Pour the mixture into a tall glass that has been chilled beforehand.
- Decorate the top with a small amount of cinnamon powder and an orange peel.
5. Espresso Martini
Any coffee cocktail list would be incomplete without the mention of Espresso Martini. It has a fancy, sophisticated appearance and is one of the best cocktails to enjoy the true taste and flavor of the coffee.
- Freshly brewed espresso (or cold brew concentrate)
- Coffee liqueur (e.g., Kahlua)
- Sugar syrup
- Coffee beans(for garnish)
- Add 100ml vodka, 50ml coffee, 50ml Kahlua, 1Tbsp of sugar syrup, and a handful of ice into a cocktail shaker and shake well.
- When the outer surface of the shaker feels ice-cold, that is when you know it’s done.
- Strain it into two chilled martini glasses and garnish with 2-3 whole coffee beans.
6. Café Alexander Frappe
The classic Alexander is a cocktail made with cocoa liqueur, cognac, and cream. Café Alexander Frappe is a special version of the Alexander cocktail made in a creamy Frappuccino style with coffee.
- Freshly brewed coffee that has been chilled (pour-over or cold brew)
- Fresh cream
- Cocoa liqueur
- Nutmeg (shavings or powder)
- Sugar syrup (can be skipped if you want it to be less sweet)
- Add 100ml chilled black coffee(brewed fresh and then chilled), 15ml fresh cream, 10ml sugar syrup, 15ml Cocoa liqueur, 15ml brandy, and a handful of ice into a cocktail shaker and mix until the surface of the shaker becomes ice-cold to touch.
- You can make it more Frappuccino-like by shaking the shaker more to break the ice pieces smaller.
- Pour it into a glass and add nutmeg powder on top as a finishing touch.
Hot Coffee Cocktails
1. Classic Irish Coffee
Hailing from Ireland, with a long history that goes back to 1940, this classic hot coffee cocktail is a warm hug for the body and soul in cold weather. Sweet and creamy, it is delicious any time of the day but is best to indulge in as a post-dinner dessert drink.
- Irish whiskey (e.g., Jameson Irish Whiskey, Tullamore D.E.W)
- Double cream
- Freshly brewed strong black coffee (can be pour-over or espresso mixed with hot water)
- Brown sugar
- Nutmeg (grated)
- Whip 2 tablespoon double cream to a thick consistency and set aside.
- Pour 150ml freshly brewed piping hot coffee and 50ml Irish whiskey into an Irish coffee mug.
- Add 1 teaspoon brown sugar to the mug and stir until the sugar has completely dissolved.
- Place the whipped double cream on top and sprinkle some freshly grated nutmeg.
- By changing the type of whiskey used in the recipe, you can make two other drinks - using Scotch makes Gaelic Coffee, whereas using Bourbon makes it a Kentucky Coffee!
2. Café Caribbean
When you think Caribbean cocktail, you instantly think of rum. And this is where the name of this cocktail comes from. The sweet taste of rum and amaretto is perfectly balanced by coffee, and this bittersweet deliciousness is taken to another level by the nutty flavor of amaretto. This yummy cocktail will warm up your core on a cold rainy day or a chilly winter night.
- Amaretto liqueur (a sweet Italian liqueur with a nutty almond-like flavor)
- Rum (preferably Caribbean)
- Hot black coffee (Preferably brewed by the pour-over method using Caribbean coffee such as Jamaica Blue Mountain)
- Whipped cream
- Almonds (shaved or sliced)
- Pour 1 ounce of rum and half-ounce amaretto into a glass mug (preferably an Irish coffee mug that has been pre-warmed), followed by 6-8 ounces of freshly brewed hot black coffee.
- Add whipped cream as the topping. Then sprinkle it with shaved or sliced almonds.
- If you want to spice it up a little, you can vary the garnish by using ingredients such as cinnamon powder, chocolate (powder or shavings), caramel sauce, pumpkin spice, etc.
3. Flaming Spanish Coffee (The American version of Carajillo)
You might be wondering, “If it is American, then why is it called Spanish Coffee?” Well, o answer that question, Carajillo is a Spanish hot cocktail drink made by adding hard liquor to coffee. It is a very popular drink not only in Spain but also in Latin American countries. The drink varies in each country in terms of the type of hard liquor that is mixed with the coffee, for example, Colombia (with brandy), Cuba (with rum), Mexico (Kahlua or Tia Maria).
The word ‘Carajillo' is related to the Spanish word for courage, and the legend has it that fighters in old times used to mix rum with coffee so that the drink will give them courage!
Now, Flaming Spanish Coffee is an American take on Carajillo. James Louie created it in 1970 at Huber's bar in Portland, Oregon. The drink has a theatrical twist as it involves creating flames on the rim of the glass, which never fails to awe the guests. It also has multiple ingredients with exciting flavors and tastes, creating a drink that is not only fascinating to watch but addictively delicious.
- Freshly brewed hot coffee
- Coffee liqueur (e.g., Kahlua, Tia Maria)
- Orange Liqueur (e.g. Triple Sec, Cointreau, Grand Marnier)
- Aged rum
- Sugar granules (for the rim)
- Lemon wedge
- Whipped cream
- Nutmeg (grated or ground)
- A kitchen torch
- Wet ½ inch of the top part of a heat-resistant glass mug using the lemon wedge and dip the wet part in sugar granules to create a ½ inch sugar band around the rim.
- Caramelize the sugar band using a kitchen torch. Do this in front of the guests so that it creates a dramatic effect.
- Once the sugar has browned, add 3 ounces of freshly brewed hot coffee, 2 ounces of Kahlua, ½ ounce orange liqueur, and ½ ounce aged rum to the glass mug.
- Give it a single stir, and then float a large spoonful of whipped cream on the top.
- Garnish the whipped cream with the ground or shaved nutmeg.
4. Café Royale
With a mysterious flame dancing mesmerizingly inside a spoon on top of a cup of coffee, this hot coffee cocktail is surely a show-stopper. This cocktail incorporating a gorgeous Flambé by using sugar and brandy is known to have been popular among French aristocrats, including the French revolutionary Napoleon himself.
As the cocktail is made with simple ingredients, it can easily be made at home (take care when lighting the fire) and is a great cocktail to enjoy the taste of coffee.
- Freshly brewed hot black coffee (pour-over, espresso mixed with hot water, etc.)
- Sugar cubes
- Pour 150ml freshly brewed hot black coffee into a coffee cup.
- Place a café royale spoon (a specialized spoon for making this drink equipped with two hangers that stabilizes the spoon on the cup) on top of the cup. If you do not have a café royale spoon, any regular spoon that can rest stably on the cup is good enough.
- Place 20ml brandy and a sugar cube inside the spoon. Light the brandy using a matchstick or a lighter. Take a moment to enjoy the dancing of the flames until the flames burn out.
- Pout the contents of the spoon (molten sugar) into the cup and stir gently.
- The Café Royale is ready to drink.
Those were some of the best coffee cocktail recipes that you can start making right away with some simple tools and widely available ingredients. We hope that you would enjoy the cocktails and impress your friends and family by making these unique cocktails.
One last thing before we go, if you would also like to know about amazing cocktails that you could make using Matcha (Japanese green tea powder), you can find them here!
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