Irish Coffee

Irish Coffee Recipe

A better way to start your day. Though I don’t advocate starting the workweek with a “special” brew (wink wink), a generous splash of Irish whiskey is perfectly apropos at the end of dinner or for a weekend brunch.–Maria del Mar Sacasa

LC A Better Way To End Your Day Note

A better way to start your day, indeed. Uh, we mean, end your day. That’s what we meant. Yes, end it. Ahem.

Special Equipment: A stiff disposition

Irish Coffee Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 5 M
  • 10 M
  • Serves 4


  • 1 cup heavy cream, chilled
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 ounces Irish whiskey
  • 4 cups hot, freshly brewed, strong black coffee
  • Granulated sugar, to taste


  • 1. In a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the cream, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla until soft peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes. Or, if you prefer big biceps, you can whisk the cream by hand, but it’ll take you quite a lot longer than 2 to 3 minutes.
  • 2. Warm 4 coffee cups or mugs by rinsing them with hot water and drying them. Pour 1 1/2 ounces whiskey into each cup or mug. Add 1 cup coffee and sugar to taste to each cup or mug and stir. Top with a dollop whipped cream and serve immediately. (You may wish to serve the cups of whiskey-laced coffee and pass the sugar and whipped cream on the side so guests can be as abstemious or as indulgent as they like.)

In-Advance Advice

  • Look, this is perhaps the easiest after-dinner drink ever. Still, chances are that you’ll be making it when you have a dining room filled with friends, so you may as well make things as easy as possible on yourself. So before your guests arrive, measure the grounds and program your coffeemaker, set out the Irish whiskey and the mugs, and, if you feel like pushing your luck, whip the cream and tuck it in the fridge just before you sit down to dinner. All that’s left for later is warming the mugs and the final assembly—we’re talking three minutes at most.
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