Not for the office: Liqueur coffees


After enjoying your Eden coffee machine during the work day it can be an interesting change to have a liqueur coffee if you've gone out for a meal. Some rave about the combination of coffee and alcohol, so let's find out where the combo came from:

How To Find Your Favourite Liqueur Coffees

The modern liqueur coffee

Liqueur coffees became very popular during the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s when they were served in the Berni Inns and Schooner Inns restaurant groups across the UK. They ceased being seen as a drink for the upper classes and everyone found they could decide on a suitable favourite.

Liqueur comes from a Latin word – liquifacere - which essentially means to dissolve. The majority of liqueurs are quite strong alcoholic drinks which can be spirits flavoured with fruits, spices, herbs, nuts, cream or other specialities and they are almost always sweetened. While liqueurs can be drunk alone, they can also be tipped into your favourite coffee which is why the resulting drinks are known as liqueur coffees.

During the 13th century, liqueurs were produced in Italy. One of the first known brands was Chartreuse which was a speciality produced by the monks from extremely ancient recipe. Until recent times it was the only liqueur in the world that was a naturally green colour.

A liqueur coffee is usually served in a special coffee glass and after mixing the liqueur and the coffee; sugar is added to help the cream float on the top as part of the design and decoration. For those who prefer not to add sugar to their drink, it is more difficult to float the cream, but it can be completed by a skilled hand. Omitting the sugar might save a few calories, but as most of liqueurs are already very sweet, the flavour is barely changed.

Popularity doesn’t matter

Many believe that there are only two or three potential mixtures of liqueur and coffee after a meal, and the most popular, Irish or Scottish whiskey, aren’t even liqueurs.

Some liqueurs that are extremely popular include Baileys, which is an Irish cream, and Thornton’s Toffee liqueur; drinks that can be served at room temperature or with ice alongside your favourite coffee.

Over the years many spirits and liqueurs have become famous names when combined as a liqueur coffee. For example a whiskey and coffee mix is known as a Gaelic coffee.

A French coffee includes Grand Marnier, while an Italian is mixed with Amaretto. A surprising rarity is mixing gin with coffee and calling it an English coffee.

Calypso or Jamaican coffee is a mixture of rum and coffee, whereas Kahlúa coffee is also known as a Mexican coffee. The latter is an odd mixture because Kahlúa is made with 100% Arabica coffee beans and sugarcane, which really means that you are mixing coffee with coffee when you are drinking a Mexican liqueur coffee.

Russian coffee will, of course, include vodka and an American coffee is expected to include Bourbon. The Spanish drink Cointreau gives the name to Seville coffee and the least surprising is that a Monks coffee is made with Benedictine.

Which is your favourite liqueur coffee?

Image credit: Ambernectar13

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