When was the Black Russian Invented
The exact origin of the Black Russian cocktail is uncertain, but it is believed to have been invented in the late 1940s or early 1950s.
One story attributes the creation of the Black Russian to a Belgian barman named Gustave Tops, who is said to have invented the cocktail at the Hotel Metropole in Brussels in 1949. According to the story, Tops created the Black Russian for the American ambassador to Luxembourg, who wanted a cocktail that was strong and contained no mixer. The ambassador reportedly named the cocktail after the name of the vodka and his heritage as an American.
Another story attributes the creation of the Black Russian to a bartender named Kolin Peterson, who was working at the Hotel Metropole in Moscow in the early 1950s. Regardless of its exact origins, the Black Russian became a popular cocktail in the 1950s and remains a classic today.
What You Need
- coffee liqueur, such as Kahlúa
- Optional: orange twist for garnish
How to Make a Black Russian
- Fill a rocks glass or old-fashioned glass with ice.
- In a cocktail shaker, combine the vodka and coffee liqueur.
- Add ice to the shaker and shake vigorously for about 10-15 seconds, or until the shaker is frosty.
- Strain the mixture over the ice in the rocks glass or old-fashioned glass using a cocktail strainer to catch the ice and any small particles.
- Optionally, garnish the drink with an orange twist by cutting a strip of orange peel and twisting it over the drink to release the oils.
- For a sweeter drink, increase the amount of coffee liqueur, or try using a flavored coffee liqueur, such as hazelnut or vanilla.
- For a White Russian, add a splash of cream or half-and-half to the mixture.
- For a Colorado Bulldog, add a splash of cola to the mixtu
Tip For Making a Black Russian
- Use good-quality ingredients: Since the Black Russian has only a few ingredients, it’s important to use high-quality vodka and coffee liqueur. Choose a vodka that you enjoy and a good-quality coffee liqueur that is fresh and not past its prime.
- Shake vigorously: Unlike other cocktails that are stirred, the Black Russian is shaken to mix the ingredients thoroughly and create a frothy texture. Shake the cocktail vigorously for about 10-15 seconds until the shaker is frosty.
- Use the right glassware: The Black Russian is typically served in a rocks glass or old-fashioned glass filled with ice. The glass should be sturdy enough to hold the ice and the cocktail, and it should have a wide enough opening to allow you to smell the aromas of the drink.
- Garnish thoughtfully: While the Black Russian doesn’t require a garnish, an orange twist can add a pop of color and flavor to the drink. Be sure to twist the orange peel over the drink to release the oils and aromatics.
- Experiment with different coffee liqueurs: While Kahlúa is the most common coffee liqueur used in Black Russians, there are many other coffee liqueurs available on the market that can add unique flavors and aromas to the cocktail. Try experimenting with different brands and types of coffee liqueurs to find your favorite.
Frequently asked questions
What is the proper ratio of vodka to coffee liqueur in a Black Russian?
The traditional ratio of vodka to coffee liqueur in a Black Russian is 2:1, or two parts vodka to one part coffee liqueur. However, this ratio can be adjusted to suit your personal taste.
What are some variations of the Black Russian cocktail?
There are many variations of the Black Russian cocktail, including the White Russian (made with vodka, coffee liqueur, and cream), the Dirty Russian (made with vodka, coffee liqueur, and cola), and the Colorado Bulldog (made with vodka, coffee liqueur, cream, and cola). You can also experiment with different types of vodka and coffee liqueurs to create your own unique variation of the classic Black Russian.
What is the best type of coffee liqueur to use in a Black Russian?
Kahlúa is the most common type of coffee liqueur used in Black Russians, but there are many other coffee liqueurs available on the market that can be used. Some other popular coffee liqueurs include Tia Maria, Patrón XO Cafe, and Baileys Irish Cream. You can experiment with different types of coffee liqueurs to find the one you like best.