Serving Different Kinds of Coffee


Serving-Coffee_cMethods of cooking and serving different kinds of refined coffee: Moka, Cafe Liegeois, Cafe Brulot and so on. Also read about partners (Digestifs, Cognac, Armagnac, Eaux-de-vie, Liqueurs), presentation of coffee (what cup to take, how much coffee to pour, when and how to serve), problems with cooking it.

Moka (After Dinner Coffee)

All coffee, to be good, must be made from freshly roasted, freshly ground coffee beans and little economies in the quantities employed only lead to poor coffee. When buying coffee for this purpose, insist upon dark roast. All you ever need to make the finest coffee in the world is an ordinary inexpensive, wide-based enamel jug. Place 2 - 2 1/2 heaped tablespoons of freshly ground coffee in the bottom of the jug. Pour on 1 pint freshly boiled water, stir, cover, leave for 3 1/2 - 4 minutes, strain and serve. If liked, place a vanilla pod in the jug first and remove before pouring into heated serving jug.

Cafe Liegeois (Frozen Coffee with Whipped Cream)

Ingredients: 2 3/4 oz freshly ground dark roast coffee; 5 1/2 oz loaf or preserving sugar; 7 fluid oz water; 9 fluid oz milk; 1 vanilla pod; 6 fluid oz whipping or single cream.

Method: Place the coffee in a jug and pour on the boiling water. Add the vanilla pod and the sugar. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved and allow coffee to become thoroughly infused (approximately 5 minutes). Strain and stir in milk. Finally, stir in the cream. Freeze in ice cube trays in freezing compartment of refrigerator or ideally in freezer. Top each portion with additional whipped cream at moment of service.

Cafe Brulot (Flaming Coffee)

Ingredients: 24 fluid oz freshly made, black after dinner coffee; 6 teaspoons castor sugar; 1 vanilla pod; the thinly peeled rind of one thin-skinned orange; 6 fluid oz least expensive cooking-type brandy.

Method: Place sugar and peel in punch bowl or other suitable heat-resistant container. Place made coffee and vanilla pod in a thick saucepan over a low heat but on no account allow to reach boiling point. In a second saucepan place measured brandy. At moment of service, bruise peel in punch bowl with a ladle or back of wooden spoon. Pour on brandy when this reaches bloodheat. Ignite with a match and immediately begin pulling up the liquor with the ladle to cause a draught and make the spirit flame and burn. Continue doing this until the infusion is adequate, i.e. about 30 seconds. Pour on scalding hot coffee. Allow flames to die out, ladle into heated cups and serve immediately.

Presentation and garnish

Moka. Lay coffee tray with cups, saucers, teaspoons, coffee crystals in a sugar bowl, optional vanilla pod, additional pint of boiling water in extra jug, basin or bowl and a small cream jug filled with thick, unbeaten cream. Remember to rinse coffee jug with boiling water and swill round well before discarding and filling jug with freshly made coffee. Fill each coffee cup with boiling water, empty into bowl and four-fifths fill with black coffee. If anyone desires cream and sugar, sweeten first, stir in sugar yourself, invert teaspoon over coffee cups with tip resting inside just below the rim and pour cream very slowly over spoon until it forms a white covering to the coffee in the cup. Retain the teaspoon and hand the coffee so that guest drinks scalding hot, sweetened or unsweetened coffee. For those who do not want cream, either offer sugar and put a teaspoon in the saucer, or invite them to stir the sweetened or unsweetened black coffee with vanilla pod ... a little bit of affectation that we have found to be highly successful!

Cafe Liegeois. Three-quarters fill custard glasses or smallest tulip wine glasses with frozen coffee, scooped from container with ice cream cutter or dessertspoon dipped into hot water. Top each glass with a spiral of whipped cream. Serve at once.

Cafe Brulot. Dramatic presentation requires two people. Bowl containing sugar and peel is placed on convenient table in sitting room. Brandy is warmed in kitchen till it is hot enough to nip the tip of a very clean finger dipped in for testing. One person carries the brandy through to the sitting room, turns out the lights and pours the brandy over the sugar mixture, leaving partner to stir and ladle while returning to kitchen for the hot coffee which is poured over-still in the dark- to extinguish the flames. The Cafe Brulot is then served as described with the lights on again.


When a lone hostess has to contend with coffee service, there is no necessity for her to make the coffee freshly, although this sounds like a contradiction of all previous directions. In Brittany coffee is made in an enamel coffee pot which is the ideal replacement for the simple enamel jug. In either of these containers, coffee can be pre-made and kept hot for several hours before service without deterioration provided that it is never allowed to boil. The only certain way of doing this is au bain marie. Unfortunately, a copper bain-marie runs into three figures so it becomes necessary to improvise a satisfactory substitute: a large meat baking tin half-filled with hot water. You merely place this on top of the stove and regulate the heat so that the water merely shivers and is not allowed to come to boiling point. Stand the covered jug of coffee therein and pour the coffee into its serving container when required.

Cafe Liegeois, as with many other very liquid mixtures, sometimes crys-stallises when frozen. If this happens to yours, scrape into a bowl, cut up roughly with a knife, whip thoroughly, return to freezer and all will be well.


Digestifs: This is a term applied in France to brandies, eaux-de-vie, and liqueurs.

Cognac: Any wine-growing country can distil its wine and thereby turn it into brandy, but Cognac is a definitive term which can only be applied to brandy made in the Cognac region of France. The application of this name to any other 'brandy' is illegal, besides being incorrect. The youngest and, therefore, least expensive liqueur Cognac carries on the label the letters V.S.O.P. meaning Very Special Old Pale.

Armagnac: The main definitive difference between Cognac and Armagnac is that the former is matured in light oak barrels and the latter in black oak barrels. Both Cognac and Armagnac are served in brandy ballons. These need not be giant ones; use from 5 fluid oz size. Indeed small tulips may be used for brandy provided you fill them with only 1 to maximum 1 1/4 fluid oz of brandy or Armagnac and the same applies to the subsequent eaux-de-vie and liqueurs.

Eaux-de-vie: This omnibus term is given to fruit brandies, i.e. marc, cherry, apricot, peach, etcetera.

Liqueurs: These are flavoured and sweetened spirits, among the most famous of which are Chartreuses, Curacoa, Drambuie, Grand Marnier, Benedictine etcetera.

As Cafe Brulot contains brandy there is no necessity to serve any alcohol with it.


+1 #1 Zara 2011-05-19 11:21 Brilliant. Best page I've read on preparing and serving coffee in a long time. Quote

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