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Kahlua Cocktails Interview

Kahlua liqueur; Image used with permission from Shani Malloy of The Thomas Collective

Kahlua liqueur has become very popular recently. If you're not yet familiar with Kahlua, check out what Michelle Sanders had to say. Michelle is the senior brand manager for Kahlua at Pernod Ricard USA.

Kahlua Cocktails Interview with Michelle Sanders

About Kahlua

LoveToKnow (LTK): Michelle, for people who haven't tried Kahlua, would you please explain what it is and what it's made of?

Michelle Sanders (MS): Kahlua is a coffee liqueur made from the highest quality hand-picked 100 percent Arabica coffee beans. [They are] roasted to perfection and then blended with cane spirit and vanilla, creating a unique and delicious taste.

LTK: Just how popular is this liqueur?

MS: Kahlua is actually the number one selling coffee liqueur in the world.

LTK: Would you tell us about the different flavor varieties of Kahlua and offer a few tips on how best to use them?

MS: In addition to classic Kahlua, the portfolio includes French Vanilla, Mocha and Hazelnut. We also have a higher proof, bolder-tasting variant, Kahlua Especial, which is a favorite with mixologists.

For the holiday season, we will be introducing something very special, Limited Edition Kahlua Peppermint Mocha. This is a luxurious balance of 100 percent Arabica coffee beans shade-grown in the Veracruz region of Mexico, combined with cool peppermint and the decadent taste of dark chocolate derived from the finest cocoa beans. It's perfect over ice, in hot coffee or -- my personal favorite way to enjoy it -- in hot cocoa with whipped cream and a peppermint stick.

One really nice thing about Kahlua is that it's so versatile. It's delicious neat, but it can also be used as an ingredient in a wide variety of hot drinks and cold drinks. Adding the liqueur to hot or iced coffee still remains among the most popular ways for people to enjoy Kahlua. At home, cocktail enthusiasts can make an easy, refreshing drink by mixing it with cola or club soda. At the bar, a great way to enjoy Kahlua is in an espresso martini. Here's the recipe:

Kahlua Espresso Martini

  • 1 ounce of Kahlua
  • 1 ounce of Absolut vodka
  • ½ ounce of freshly brewed espresso or strong black coffee

Add the liqueur, vodka and espresso to a shaker filled with ice. Shake everything together until well chilled, and then strain the contents of the shaker into a traditional martini glass. For an added touch, you can garnish your martini with a few coffee beans.

LTK: Can people use other coffee liqueurs in their cocktails if they don't have Kahlua brand?

MS: Kahlua coffee liqueur is truly one of a kind. It is not only steeped in history and tradition, but has been perfected and refined in order to exemplify the highest quality of coffee liqueur. The coffee beans used in Kahlua are shade-grown, allowing the beans to slowly ripen and develop a deeper, more refined flavor. They are hand picked and inspected, and have been since 1936. Additionally Kahlua's blend of cane spirit and vanilla make it unique.

Kahlua Cocktail Recipes

White Russian cocktail made with Kahlua

LTK: What are the best mixers to use with this liqueur?

MS: Kahlua is very versatile and lends itself to experimentation. In addition to coffee, club soda and cola, you might try mixing it with citrus, such as freshly squeezed lime juice, for an unexpectedly delicious treat.

LTK: Can you share a few more recipes for your favorite Kahlua cocktails?

MS: Sure, here a two more drinks to try:

Kahlua on the Rocks

  • 3 ounces of Kahlua

Just pour the liqueur over ice and garnish it with a wedge of lime.

Kahlua Iced Coffee

  • 2 parts Kahlua
  • 2 parts chilled iced coffee
  • 1 part milk or cream

You should serve this beverage over ice in a tall glass with a straw.

LTK: It seems like this liqueur is mainly used in chilled cocktails. Can you share a recipe for using it in a warm drink?

MS: Try this recipe for a delicious hot coffee drink:

Kahlua Hot Coffee

  • 2 parts Kahlua
  • 3 parts hot coffee

Pour these ingredients together in a mug and add milk or cream if you like. You can garnish your coffee with whipped cream and even cinnamon or chocolate shavings to top it off.

More Drinks Made with Kahlua

If you love coffee, give Kahlua drink recipes a try. As Michelle Sanders has shared, Kahlua is a versatile liqueur that can create a number of delicious drinks.

Kahlua Cocktails Interview