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Coffee Culture: Irish & Russian Coffee

Written by: Meraleigh Queener

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

The Culture of Coffee:

Remember our talk last week about coffee beans and the cultures of coffee exploring ways to try Vietnamese, Japanese, Italian and Turkish brews? And about our Lola Beans? If this is all a blur to you, be sure to check out our blog exploring the basics of coffee beans and Part 1 and 2 of the Coffee Culture blog series to continue this piece on Part 3!

We discussed the beauty, history, and nature of various types of coffee beans, where they come from, and how they taste. The four primary types of coffee beans are Arabica, Robusta, Excelsa, and Liberica each individualized with their own story, upbringing, and taste! Well, guess what? We're taking that convo to the next level deep-diving into the culture of coffee. We can take the knowledge we've gain regarding the various types of coffee beans and apply them to the global world of coffee acknowledging the ways coffee is made in different countries.

There are so many ways coffee is made and it's exciting to see how other people and places cultivate the traditions and practice of coffee creation! Maybe you can pick up a new technique or style of coffee to try this week!

Our lovely world of coffee ranges from Irish Coffee, Vietnamese Coffee, Japanese Coffee, Turkish, Italian, with Irish and Russian brews being today's topic of exploration.

Irish Coffee:

History & Culture:

Coffee is a culture and has been growing in recent years among the Irish. 75% of the population shared that coffee is a part of their daily lives. However, tea is still preferred over coffee in its nature as many tend to be health-conscious. The first coffee house opened in Dublin during the reign of Charles II (1660-1685) as the coffee-consuming pub shop trend thrived popularly with wealthy, fashionable men at the time. According to Atlas Coffee Club,

"More men started meeting at coffee houses (starting what they called, “Gentleman’s Clubs”), rather than taverns, to partake in cigars and political debate over coffees late into the night. Soon enough, coffee houses gained a reputation for an affable atmosphere that garnered widespread appeal" - Atlas Coffee Club

But the Irish like it strong. Food52 says,

"In 1943, Irish flying-boat-base chef Joe Sheridan greeted stranded passengers with warm mugs of a drink of his own invention—Irish coffee. When asked for the recipe, he provided it in—yes—limerick form: Cream rich as an Irish brogue / Coffee strong as a friendly hand / Sugar sweet as the tongue of a rogue / Whiskey smooth as the wit of the land" - Food52

Irish Coffee is one of our favorite ways to enjoy a nightcap- especially during the winter months! Here’s an easy recipe (with some fun variations) to make one at home.

What you’ll need:

  • 3 oz (6 Tbl.) freshly brewed coffee (best with a strong dark roast)

  • 1 tsp sugar

  • 1 tsp. packed brown sugar

  • 1 1/2 oz. Irish whiskey (like Jameson)

  • Whipped cream

  • Microwaveable/ heat-resistant mug


  1. Heat up mug either by filling with boiling water (dumping out after a minute or two) or by microwaving for ~30 seconds.

  2. Fill mug 3/4 of the way with hot coffee.

  3. Add both granulated and brown sugars. Mix until completely dissolved.

  4. Add whiskey, stirring to incorporate.

  5. Add a dollop of whipped cream.

  6. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Other variations of Irish Coffee:

  • “Buena Vista” Irish Coffee– Use two sugar cubes (in place of granulated and brown sugars), and lightly whipped cream (so that it’s still liquid-y) and pour over the back of a spoon.

  • Irish Cream Coffee– use half Irish whiskey and half Bailey’s Irish Creme Liqueur, top with a maraschino cherry.

  • Irish Coffee, made with Bailey’s– Replace Irish whiskey with Bailey’s.

  • Irish Coffee, made with Kahlua– replace Irish whiskey and either add 3/4 oz. Kahlua to the original recipe (keeping the Bailey’s) or replace the Bailey’s entirely with Kahlua.

  • Almond Irish Coffee– add a few drops of almond to whipped cream (or straight into the coffee) to give your drink a unique depth of flavor. Bonus tip: A touch of Amaretto also compliments this combination well.

Russian Coffee

According to Paulig Institute, "the tradition of coffee was carefully developed by Peter the Great I, but only the rich could afford it. In the 19th-century coffee culture in Russia fell into decay due to social and political crises. During the Soviet Union period, coffee was in shortage and it was really hard to get your hands on it. It was common that people turned into substitutes such as chicory roots and barley. Coffee was usually brewed in cezve or how we call it in Russia “turka”. " - Paulig Institue Oksana Shaposhnikova

The Turka brewing method traditions involve the simplicity of a cezve providing the additional experiences of spices and aromas. In Russia, cinnamon-tasting anaerobic fermentation has been popular by soaking green coffee beans in cinnamon solution.

The buzz about a White Russian? Well, it's real, and here's a recipe!



  1. Combine the hot water, instant coffee, and honey in a bowl. Using an electric mixer, whip until fluffy and light, 2-3 minutes. Alternately, you can do this with a hand frother too.

  2. Fill a glass with ice. Add the vodka, Kahlua, and a splash of vanilla. Stir. Pour the milk over and stir to combine. Spoon the whipped coffee overtop. Gently stir and enjoy!

Notes Sweeteners: I love the flavor of honey and it works well, but sugar does whip up prettier and smoother. If you love a lot of Whipped Coffee on Top: use 2 tablespoons instant coffee, 2 tablespoons hot water, and 1-2 tablespoons sugar.

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