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From morning brew to evening drinks: the rise of coffee cocktails

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Imagine your day infused with more than just a morning caffeine kick. Picture your coffee experience transitioning seamlessly from an energising morning ritual to a glamorous evening extravaganza. Welcome to the era of the coffee cocktail: a fusion of two worlds where coffee doesn’t just wake you up, it makes you the life of the party. From classic recipes to modern mixtures, find your next favourite coffee delight.

1. Irish Coffee
2. Coffee Tonic
3. Espresso Martini
4. Cold White Russian

A sip of history

While the term “coffee cocktail” might evoke images of caffeine-infused preparations, the earliest known drink by this name actually contained no coffee at all. In fact, the original Coffee Cocktail, detailed in Jerry Thomas’s 1862 bartending guide, “How to Mix Drinks, or The Bon-Vivant’s Companion,” was a mix of brandy, port, a whole egg and sugar, celebrated for its rich, creamy texture and deep colour, which had a remarkable resemblance to coffee, rather than for its caffeine content.
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The earliest marriages between coffee and alcohol can be traced back to 1943 with the creation of the Irish Coffee by Joe Sheridan, a chef at the Foynes Airbase Flying boat terminal in Ireland. Created to warm passengers during chilly transatlantic flights, this comforting recipe combines hot coffee, Irish whiskey, sugar and whipped cream, served in a preheated glass to maintain its soothing warmth.

Today’s fascination with coffee as a key ingredient in cocktails kicked off around 2014 with the creation of the Coffee Tonic. Conceived by Tim Wendelboe, a renowned barista and coffee roaster from the United States, this refreshing drink combines crisp tonic water with rich, bold Espresso, offering a unique and simple taste that quickly captivated coffee enthusiasts all over the world.
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Stirring up the classics

So which classics are stirring up the cocktail scene? The vibrant Espresso Martini known for its refreshing properties and smooth, rich flavour, remains an evergreen favourite. This cocktail blends vodka, coffee liqueur, a shot of espresso and syrup, shaken vigorously with ice and strained into a chilled martini glass, offering a frothy top layer with a deep coffee essence.

Current trends are also leaning towards lighter, more refreshing coffee drinks that embrace innovative elements such as soda bases, tea infusions and plant-based drinks, reflecting a shift towards more nuanced and health-conscious options. Aligning with this movement, De’Longhi has introduced a fresh twist on the classic White Russian: the Cold White Russian, a lighter version that adds a chilled dimension, appealing to modern palates seeking a less heavy alternative without sacrificing the iconic flavour profile.
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Gianni Cocco, a renowned Italian coffee mixologist, highlights the significance of cold brew coffee in the contemporary mixology scene: “Cold brew extraction is defining the modern era of mixed drinks. Whether prepared traditionally by infusion or on-demand using De’Longhi’s innovative Cold Extraction Technology, it allows coffee beans to fully express their floral and citrus notes, providing an ideal base that enriches any cocktail.”

The Cold Brew Mojito is a striking example of how this base can revolutionise a classic cocktail, blending the intensity of fresh mint with the delicate coffee aromas preserved through this extraction method.

Coffee cocktails: Elevating the art with De’Longhi

Today, as we navigate the 4th wave of coffee culture, cocktails with coffee have swiftly moved from niche to need. These drinks are no longer exclusive to high-end bars and specialty coffee shops, but have found their way into the homes of coffee lovers eager to experiment with a bit of creativity and, most importantly, the right technology.

De’Longhi’s coffee makers have brought professional coffee mixology into the home, enabling every enthusiast to explore this art with professional mastery. With Cold Extraction Technology, you can prepare a perfect cup of Cold Brew in under 5 minutes, providing a quick and flavourful base that enhances any mixed drink. Meanwhile, LatteCrema Cool Technology effortlessly delivers a fine, rich milk foam at the perfect cold temperature, with both dairy milk and plant-based alternatives: ideal for adding a luxurious, creamy finish to any coffee cocktail, enhancing both flavour and presentation.

As coffee culture continues to evolve, so too does the way we think about and consume our beloved brew. Coffee cocktails, with the help of De’Longhi’s cutting-edge technology, offer a new frontier in drinks innovation, one where every coffee lover can become a master of mixology in their own right. Whether hosting a dinner party or enjoying a quiet night in, cocktails with coffee are transforming ordinary moments into extraordinary experiences, proving that coffee can indeed follow you from morning to night, delighting and surprising you throughout the day.
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Discover the secrets of Cold Extraction Technology

Discover the secrets of Cold Extraction Technology

Bring the Cold Brew experience home with our groundbreaking Cold Extraction Technology and enjoy a perfect cup of Cold Brew in under 5 minutes.
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