Irish Coffee and Saint Patrick’s Day

Irish Coffee: A perennial favourite of the Irish and visitors to Ireland alike, Irish coffee was first created by Joe Sheridan, a chef in the Port of Foyne {airport} in County Limerick, back in the mid-1940s. Legend has it a plane was turned back to Ireland while on its way to America due to bad weather conditions and the weary passengers took refuge in the airport terminal until they could once again depart. Sensing their exhaustion, Mr. Sheridan served hot coffee but made it a wee bit stronger than usual by adding whiskey. When a customer asked if it was a “Brazilian Coffee”, Joe replied “It’s an Irish Coffee”. And the rest, as they say, is history.

The Irish Coffee is a classic drink recipe featuring coffee and Irish whiskey. There are two variations on this cocktail, one with just Irish whiskey and coffee. If you prefer it sweeter, go with the optional Irish cream or sugar. 

Irish Coffee

For One Cup


1/2 cup/4 fl. oz. strong, hot coffee

1-2 tablespoons brown sugar (Demerara, Muscovado or Turbinado) or to taste

1/4 cup/2 fl. oz. Irish whisky or to taste

4 tablespoons lightly whipped fresh cream


1. Beat the whipping cream until stiff but not too firm.

2. Pre-heat a glass with freshly boiled water. Leave a metal spoon in the glass so the sudden change in temperature does not cause it to break.

3. After a minute or so, remove spoon, pour out hot water, and fill glass with hot coffee.

4. Add Tubinado sugar to the coffee and stir until completely dissolved.

5. Add Irish whiskey to the sweetened coffee and stir.

6. When the coffee has settled, top with a collar of whipped cream by carefully pouring the cream over the backside of a spoon. The trick is to not have the cream seep down into the coffee. Drink immediately.

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