on Instagram whiskeyThose who follow ' know my interest in coffee and my coffee rituals. Just like whiskey, coffee is a beverage that I consume with great pleasure and that I position as an object of pleasure.

As with whiskey, I try to explore my palate by tasting different flavors in coffee, and the more I explore, the more I enjoy coffee. Especially in the last months, the number of "coffee rituals" I have done, and with it, the number of coffee equipment in my house has increased.

In this article, I will talk about my Coffee-Infused whiskey experiments with different coffee beans and whiskeys. In the experiments, I used 5 different expressions with 5 coffee beans from different countries, which I thought would be compatible with these beans.

There have been different experiments I have done before with the whiskey & coffee duo. (See: whiskey from coffee beans)

Before I move on to the essays, I will make a short note. As you know, everyone has different tastes in eating and drinking, as in many other subjects. For this reason, instead of focusing on my positive or negative comments in this article, it would be best and enjoyable to make similar experiments yourself and make discoveries according to your own taste.


First of all, details about the coffee beans I prefer. let me share.

1. Nicaragua San Juan del Rio Coco:

  • Growing Height: 1,200 meters
  • Tasting Notes: Hazelnut, chocolate, citrus.
  • Body: Medium
  • Acidity: Light
  • Type: Arabica
  • Drink-Hardness: Medium

2. Cuba Serrano Lavado:

  • Growing Height: 900-1,250 meters
  • Tasting Notes: Slightly fruity, sooty, chocolate, caramel, hazelnut. Soft, aromatic.
  • Body: Rich
  • Acidity: Light
  • Type: Arabica
  • Drink-Hardness: Strong

3. Guatemala Antigua:

  • Growing Height: 1,800 meters
  • Tasting Notes: Dark chocolate, vanilla, almond, citrus, apple, cocoa. Balanced and long finish.
  • Body: Full
  • Acidity: Medium
  • Type: Arabica
  • Drink-Hardness: Balanced

4. Costa Rica Tarrazu:

  • Growing Height: 1,600-1,800 meters
  • Tasting Notes: Vanilla, citrus, floral, chocolate. Acidic, soft and fresh.
  • Body: Good
  • Acidity: Bright, Fruity
  • Type: Arabica
  • Content-Hardness: Light

5. El Salvador Chichontepec

  • Growing Height: 1,300-1,700 meters
  • Tasting Notes: Chocolate, almonds, roasted hazelnuts.
  • Body: Balanced
  • Acidity: Moderate-Balanced
  • Type: Arabica
  • Content-Hardness: Soft

Coffee & Whiskey Pairings

For each core I used, I preferred expressions that I thought would be compatible with that core. In order to see the extreme results of the experiment, I have included one of the lightest whiskeys in my bar and one of the most intense ones here.

I don't think there is much right or wrong about matching. When we look at the literature, it is not possible to find resources on this subject, so the best method will be trial and error.

I made minor changes to the weights and holding times to observe different results with each match.

1. Nicaragua San Juan del Rio Coco & Auchentoshan American Oak

Since this was my first try, I opted for a light (and appropriate) whiskey without taking the risk. Auchentoshan American Oak It's also one of the smoothest whiskeys in my bar. I kept 11g of beans in 110 ml of whiskey at room temperature for 2 days.

Tasting Notes: At the end of 2 days, a very fragrant, dark and aromatic drink emerged (it wouldn't be right to say whiskey anymore). It is quite sweet and sharp with intense cherry and strawberry scents on the nose. The smell of coffee is also overpowering. I had a bitterness on the palate as if you had just popped the coffee bean into your mouth. I can also call it Turkish coffee or roast. This bitterness is accompanied by sweet tobacco and light fruity flavors. The finish is medium-length and parched.

My comment: I was wondering if 2 days would be enough for the infuse process, but after this first try, I realized that even this time is too long. Maybe the weight of coffee can be reduced a little. Although I like the intense fruit and coffee scents on the nose, I found it too bitter on the palate.

2. Cuba Serrano Lavado & Ardbeg An Oa

Pedro Ximénez sherry, sooty and rich character, matured in new oak and Bourbon barrels Ardbeg An Oa (40 ml) and 4g Cuba Serrano Lavado beans for 1 day.

Tasting Notes: Slightly smoked, hazelnut vanilla and woody scents on the nose. Intense yet balanced. Unlike the previous attempt, it is a character that does not tire the nose. Soot on the palate, roasted coffee, sugar apples and hazelnuts. Warm, slightly bitter. It sticks to the mouth, quite filling. The finish is quite long, hot, bitter and very slightly sugary.

My comment: It was a successful attempt. 1 day waiting period was more than enough. I really liked the harmony of whiskey and core, especially on the nose. The character of Ardbeg An Oa made itself felt without lagging behind the coffee. The nut and fruit flavors coming from the Cuban bean are successful, these flavors brought a separate layer on the palate. Still, I wonder if the coffee grammage was a little less, I wonder if the bitter tastes would be reduced.

3. Guatemala Antigua & Dalmore 12

I soaked 4g of Guatemalan Antigua beans for 30 hours in Dalmore 12 (50 ml), aged 12 years in Bourbon and sherry barrels.

Tasting Notes: Fragrances evoking red fruit, sherry, chocolate milk, almond, of course coffee and wet leaves on the nose. Whiskey and coffee are in a nice balance. The coffee character is dominant on the palate. Hot and slightly bitter with plenty of spices, almonds, coffee beans. I also bought bitter-sweet flavors that I can call Turkish coffee with sugar.

My comment: It was a successful trial on the nose and sadly on the palate. While whiskey and coffee characters complement each other on the nose, coffee is dominant on the palate. I think the coffee-whisky weight ratio is appropriate, but I think 30 hours was a bit of a long waiting period.

4. Costa Rica Tarrazu & Glenmorangie Nectar D'or

My favorite Glenmorangie expression Nectar D'or I kept 2.5g Costa Rica Tarrazu seeds in a bottle (30 ml…) for 1 day.

Tasting Notes: With the first sniff in the nose, I realized that this attempt was unsuccessful. Very intense roasted coffee and wood scents… I also picked up very light vanilla and bitter scents, but they are too weak. Coffee character is dominant on the palate, there is almost no trace of Nectar D'or… Bitter coffee, almond, very little caramel. Hot and acidic. Pretty hard to drink.

My comment: It was a matchup that surprised me with its failure. When you look at the tasting notes of whiskey and coffee separately, we see parallel characters. Before trying Nectar D'or, I thought that Costa Rica Tarrazu, which has a similar character with its rich, elegant and fresh structure, would be a good match. But in my experiment, unfortunately, I couldn't see anything about sleep.

5. El Salvador Chichontepec & Aberlor 12

As the last try, I can say a full Speyside malt. Aberlor 12 I soaked 3g of El Salvador Chichontepec seeds in (40 ml) for 30 hours.

Tasting Notes: The coffee character is very dominant in the nose. I bought roasted hazelnuts, bitter coffee and synthetic scents that I can call plastic. In a character that makes you think if I don't drink it... Aberlor on the palate, fortunately, showed itself a little. I've had flavors like vanilla and bitter honey, but bitter coffee and synthetic flavors are still present.

My comment: This was undoubtedly the most unsuccessful attempt. It turned out to be a drink that is difficult to smell and almost impossible to drink. I thought the chocolate, almond and roasted hazelnut flavors of the El Salvador bean would go well with Aberlor 12, but the result was disappointing.


As a result;

The most successful result in Coffee-Infused whiskey trials Cuba Serrano Lavado & Ardbeg An Oa it happened. Actually, when we consider both whiskey and coffee separately, I thought it might be the most difficult experiment to find harmony, because they both have intense characteristic flavors. Despite this, the resulting infused drink was quite successful.

Nicaragua San Juan del Rio Coco & Auchentoshan American Oak and Guatemala Antigua & Dalmore 12 I can say that it was promising for them to try. In both, more balanced results can be obtained with a small change in weight or holding time.

In my opinion, it would be more enjoyable to consume Coffee-infused whiskeys cold rather than dry or prefer them in cocktails. You can come up with different cocktail recipes, especially with cold coffee and syrup.

A recipe I tried: 12 cl Cold Brew – 4 cl Coffee-Infused whiskey (I used Auchentoshan, which came out from the first try), 3 cl simple syrup, shake with plenty of ice.

As I mentioned at the beginning of my article, you can make different discoveries with similar experiments. Experiencing discoveries like this can be both fun and educational, I think.


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