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Traditional Irish coffee Photo by: Google Images

Tricks of the trade - how can you spot a good Irish coffee?

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Traditional Irish coffee Photo by: Google Images

A good Irish coffee should look like a pint of Guinness? No seriously, there should be a cold, thick, firm, creamy head on top of the dark, clear, scalding hot, coffee and whiskey mixture. It definitely should not have mixed or curdled, if it has, send it back and insist on a proper one. Half the pleasure is sipping the hot coffee through a layer of cold cream.

Invented by chef Joe Sheridan in the bar of the Foynes Flyingboat Terminal in the 1940's to warm up damp cold passengers en route to the USA, it still does the trick on a wet miserable afternoon or as an after-dinner soother. Irish coffee recipe, fill a glass with strong black hot coffee, add sugar and Irish whiskey to taste, stir and let settle, drop in a good dollop of freshly whipped cream, the thicker the better and then it will not sink. Sip slowly in front of a blazing log fire with your feet up....

Baileys coffee is a modern variation, substitute Baileys for Whiskey as per the recipe above or for the quick and extremely popular version, just lash plenty of Baileys into your coffee when ever the opportunity arises....Slainte!

How to tell a good hot whiskey? Smell it, the fumes should knock you out (only joking) but you should get a nice steamy whiff of whiskey and cloves which is why it is so good for colds. Throw a Lemsip into it and you have a guaranteed cure for even the worst type of a flu....

Recipe for Hot whiskey, put a nice measure of Irish Whiskey into a strong glass, add a spoon of sugar and a small drop of boiling water, and a slice of lemon studded with cloves. As before sip slowly in front of a blazing log fire...or tucked up in bed with your head under the duvet like most of us, these days....

To find out more about the best brands of Irish Whiskey visit www.irelands-hidden-gems.com

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