The Irish Coffee: A Blend of History and Flavour

Irish Coffee Glass

There’s a comforting warmth that emanates from the depths of a well-crafted Irish Coffee. It’s a beverage that seamlessly combines the richness of coffee with the spirited kick of Irish whiskey.

Glass of Irish Coffee with coffee beans around

Here we’ll look into the history of this beloved drink and explore the delightful recipe that warms both the body and soul.

A Sip Through Time: The History of Irish Coffee

Origins in Foynes

The origin of Irish Coffee can be traced back to the early 20th century in the cozy town of Foynes, County Limerick, Ireland. In the 1940s, as transatlantic flights soared in popularity, Foynes became a busy airport hub.

Passengers, often cold and tired from their long journeys, sought solace in the airport’s restaurant. It was here that Chef Joe Sheridan decided to concoct a special drink to provide comfort and warmth to the weary travelers.

A glass of Irish Coffee with a few sips taken from it

Chef Joe’s Winter Warmth

As the story goes, one particularly cold winter evening, a flight returning to New York was forced to turn back due to inclement weather.

To ease the disappointment of the passengers, Chef Sheridan spiked their coffee with a generous pour of Irish whiskey and topped it with a dollop of whipped cream.

The result was an instant hit, with the passengers warmed not only by the beverage but also by the Irish hospitality.

The Spread of Delight

News of this delightful creation spread, and Irish Coffee quickly gained popularity in Ireland and beyond.

Today, it stands as a classic cocktail cherished for its simplicity and the comforting kick it provides, making it the perfect libation for a chilly evening.

Brewing Tradition: Crafting the Perfect Irish Coffee at Home

Creating a perfect Irish Coffee at home is an art that combines quality ingredients with a dash of patience and precision. Here’s a simple recipe to bring the warmth of an Irish Coffee to your own kitchen:


  • 1 cup of freshly brewed hot coffee
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of brown sugar (adjust to taste)
  • 1 shot of Irish whiskey
  • Fresh whipped cream

How to make Irish Coffee:

  1. Brew a cup of your favorite coffee. Ensure it’s hot and freshly made.
  2. In a heat-resistant glass or mug, add the brown sugar. Pour the hot coffee over the sugar and stir until completely dissolved.
  3. Add the shot of Irish whiskey to the coffee and stir gently. The warmth of the coffee will release the aromatic notes of the whiskey.
  4. Carefully float a layer of freshly whipped cream on top of the coffee. To achieve this, gently pour the cream over the back of a spoon so that it floats on the surface.
  5. Do not stir after adding the cream. Let the layers stand, creating a visually appealing presentation.
  6. Sip and savor the layers of flavour – the robust coffee, the sweetened whiskey warmth, and the velvety cream on top.

Pro Tips:

  • Choose a good quality Irish whiskey to enhance the overall flavor profile.
  • Adjust the sugar to your liking. Some prefer a sweeter Irish Coffee, while others enjoy a more robust taste.
  • Experiment with the thickness of the whipped cream. A lightly whipped cream will float better on top of the coffee.


In the cozy comfort of your home, an Irish Coffee becomes not just a drink but a moment of indulgence and relaxation. Sláinte to the blend of history and flavour that fills each delicious mug! Enjoy it with a slice of cake or your favourite dessert.