Give Me 3 CCs–Stat!

3-C Martini

Unlike a goodly portion of human adults, I don’t rely on a cup of coffee or three to start my day (part of it is that whole no-caffeine thing, of course). Sure, I indulge in the occasional Venti Decaf Soy Caramel Macchiatto when I manage to leave the house a little early but, for the most part, my coffee-flavored indulgences happen later in the day.

Much later.

A good after-dinner coffee drink–with plenty of cream, of course–can only be improved by one thing, in my mind: chocolate. So I offer up this take on the chocolate coffee martini.

3-C Martini

1 oz Vodka
1 oz Coffee
3/4 oz Irish Cream Liqueur
3/4 oz Chocolate Liqueur (Godiva, preferred)
Garnish: whipped cream, chocolate shavings

Combine liquid ingredients over ice and shake enough to knock the last vestiges of sleep from your thoughts. (Not that I’d advocate this as a morning beverage, unless we’re talking Sunday brunch and you’re not going anywhere for a while!) Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with whipped cream and freshly-shaved chocolate.

I made two versions of this drink–one with coffee and the other with coffee liqueur. While the Kahlua version was divine, the coffee flavor is much more muted than if you use fresh coffee, straight from the pot. In the latter, thanks to the other ingredients, the coffee is strong but not bitter. Feel free to substitute based on your personal preferences.

The one thing you’re not going to want to substitute is anything other than a premium vodka. I’ve often been told that the better the vodka, the cleaner the flavor. Or, in some cases, the lack of flavor–at least readily discernible flavor. Not being a vodka-neat type, I didn’t really think much about it until I received a bottle of a premium vodka to try–Cinco Vodka from San Antonio, TX–and now I am a true believer! When placed next to a common call brand vodka the finish and feeling that the Cinco gave was far beyond the burn that the call brand gave. So consider this your tip of the week–buy a better vodka and reap the rewards!

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