I support the marriage of coffee and liquor. They’re independent, both capable and delicious on their own. They’re supportive, especially when Amaro encounters a cup poured from a French press after a long meal. And they’re even more beautiful when together, i.e. the espresso martini. Let’s drink to this wonderful couple—here are five of our favorite coffee cocktails to celebrate their union.
1. Cold Brew Negroni
This balanced, bitter, and herbal concoction proves that sometimes the best way to make a new drink is to simply combine two that are already perfect. Better yet, this drink is big on convenience: Cold brew might already be in your fridge, and if you’ve got the goods for a negroni on hand (sweet vermouth, Campari, and gin), you’re all set.
2. White Russian
Recipe developer and New York Times columnist Robert Simonson says it best: “This rather unsubtle, postwar favorite was restored to relevancy by the Coen Brothers film ‘The Big Lebowski,’ in which Jeff Bridge’s sublimely unfazed Dude drinks them religiously. It’s a good drink if you’re not inclined toward a lot of thinking at the moment (which was just about any moment for the Dude). The vodka ensures it doesn’t approach the flavor complexity of a Brandy Alexander. But if both vodka and cream and coffee are among your favorite things, this may be your jam.”
3. The Dead Rabbit’s Irish Coffee
In 2016, The Dead Rabbit, an Irish pub in lower Manhattan, was named the best bar in the world—and we got their Irish Coffee recipe. Simple and traditional, but rich with specific details (like that your coffee should be 75°C, or 167°F), this foundational recipe makes a classic and delicious Irish Coffee that is—quite possibly—the best in the world.
4. Espresso Martini
You don’t need to buy an espresso machine to enjoy the most popular drink of 2022 at home. Buy cold brew concentrate, follow this recipe, invite friends over, and fire off that obligatory Instagram story featuring the iconic three-bean garnish from your favorite part of the couch. And if you’re not drinking but still want in on the #content, this non-alcoholic version from Harper Fendler is just as good.
5. Dirty Chai Toddy
After testing this recipe, our editors had the following to say: “This starts out as a fragrant and mildly indulgent chai—it’s made with half-and-half—and then right before serving you sling in some espresso and bourbon, and suddenly it’s a drink with purpose and conviction.”
What is your favorite coffee cocktail? Let us know in the comments below!