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Coffee and Alcohol

Concocting the title for this post reminded me of the Dr Feelgood song “Milk and Alcohol“. The irresistible urge to search for it online reminded me (a) that I love the boogie rock groove of the piece and (b) I still have no more idea what “milk and alcohol” means than when I came across the song as a teenager. More searching would probably yield an answer, or numerous, conflicting answers. However, the concoction I had in mind was the coffee infusion I recently made.

I had seen something about steeping coffee beans in vodka. Once I’d finally picked up some vodka, I couldn’t track down the article although there were numerous methods. I ended up lightly crushing about 10g of coffee beans and letting them steep in 80g of vodka in a sealed jar for a few days, shaken not stirred from time to time to agitate the mixture. The result was the expected deep brown colour but tasted disappointingly more like petrol than coffee (or, for the pedants, more like I imagine petrol might taste from the smell) and the best drink I’d had from it so far was from brewing up the left-over beans I strained out when separating the liquid.

That was probably as much down to using an inexpensive vodka as anything. I’m not a connoisseur of vodka so probably could have chosen better. That said, it did work okay in a vodka martini (mixed about half and half with vermouth and finished off with a couple of olives). Last night, I tried mixing the coffee vodka with vermouth (a dash in with a finger’s worth) and that actually worked quite well. I expect the sweetness of vermouth I was using balanced things out and the result was extra depth and colour without being overpowering.

Oh, and I did search for coffee and alcohol too. Not a great mix, according to a CDC fact sheet, as caffeine can mask the effect of the alcohol until you’ve drunk more than is good for you. I’ll stick with just one small glass at a time and that not too often, I think!

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