The Black Russian is known as a "duo" cocktail, meaning a simple recipe of a spirit and a liqueur. This easy vodka cocktail originated in Brussels, Belgium in 1949, and has been a perennial favorite ever since (its sister drink, the White Russian, achieved cult status in the late '90s thanks to the movie The Big Lebowski). You can adjust the ratio of vodka to Kahlúa to taste, though we generally recommend not overdoing it on the coffee liqueur, as it's easy to make this too sweet.
What's particularly fun about the Black Russian cocktail is that it's a great vehicle for trying out new coffee liqueurs. It seems like every craft distiller in the world makes one these days (apparently they're relatively simple to make, compared to other liqueurs), and it's boring to just use Kahlúa all the time. Since the Black Russian only uses two ingredients, it allows the flavors to shine through without needing to sip the liqueur straight.
Black Russian Ingredients
|2 oz vodka|
|1 oz Kahlúa (or other coffee liqueur)|
How to make a Black Russian
- Add vodka to an Old-Fashioned glass with ice.
- Add coffee liqueur and serve.