Coffee is an excellent ingredient in modern cocktails. I think that modern cocktails are no longer tied to sweetness in the way that cocktails in the last few decades may have been.
Cocktails today can be bitter, herbal, tart, smoky, or even savory. Coffee by itself can be quite bitter, so it works nicely into the arsenal of today’s bartender.
I created this drink as a play on the classic cocktail, The Martinez, using coffee.
THE CAFFE MARTINEZ
- 2 oz strong coffee
- 1 1/2 oz London dry gin
- 3/4 oz sweet vermouth
- 1/4 oz maraschino liqueur
- dash of absinthe
- maraschino cherry
Stir the coffee, gin, vermouth, and maraschino liqueur with ice. Coat a chilled cocktail glass with an absinthe rinse and discard extra absinthe. Strain mixture into coated glass and garnish with a cherry, if desired.
When using coffee in a chilled cocktail, there are a few keys to making the cocktail come out best:
1) Make strong coffee. The drink will naturally water down as it’s stirred or shaken, and you don’t want the coffee flavor to be weakened and lost in the other ingredients.
2) Cold-brew the coffee. Cold-brewing prevents the coffee from going sour, as hot coffee can once it cools to room temperature. It also prevents excessive ice melt from using coffee that isn’t fully cooled.
To cold brew, mix the grounds with cool, filtered water in a French press and allow it to sit for 1-4 hours before straining. French presses work best because the coffee’s oils aren’t removed by filtration.
3) Use good quality grounds. There’s a saying that high quality spirits make better cocktails. The same is true for selection of coffee.
Drink Up! Doctor’s orders.
-The Drink Doctor