Legend says a Christian congregation in 19th-century Germany was sipping coffee on a cold winter evening to stay warm as they listened to the pastor during a baptism.
They added a splash of rum to make their drink even more heartwarming and boozy, and to mask the rum’s luscious scent; they topped their mugs with whipped cream. The pastor had a mug, too, but his didn’t have alcohol. When the clerk discovered his congregation’s mischief, he called them all Pharisees! The German-style pharisaeer kaffee was born.
To make this potent drink, you first need good coffee. Although any coffee will work, including regular percolator coffee, for the richest mouthfeel, we recommend you make yourself a nice espresso; make it a double!
You also need sugar or any sweetener; even low-carb alternatives work nicely. You’ll need white rum, of course. And you can choose your favorite, Jamaican, Dominican; it doesn’t matter. Of course, the nicest the rum, the tastier the coffee.
Finally, there’s the whipped cream, which makes the coffee specialty instantly recognizable. And although you could use the stuff from a can, the real pharisaeer kaffee is topped with home-made whipped cream, the good stuff.
As a garnish, you can go for a traditional dusted cocoa or cinnamon powder, but you can leave the coffee as-is as well.
Making the German coffee specialty is quite easy, but you must know how to drink it to really appreciate it.
Make sure you have a thick whipped cream layer but add it after you’ve sweetened the coffee. Once the whipped cream is in there, you don’t want to stir the coffee anymore. In fact, you want to take every sip through the whipped cream layer.
There are many ways of changing the phariseer’s personality. You can’t get rid of the creamy top layer, but you can experiment with some of these ideas:
Substitute white rum with aged rum for a richer, more caramelly expression, and you can use whiskey too for a version inspired by the popular Irish coffee. Brandy is also deliciously compatible with coffee, so you want to try that one. And Cognac, the king of brandies, is an excellent alternative to elevate the pharisaeer to new heights. That’s one good coffee!
Brew the espresso and pour it into a cup.
Add the rum and sugar, stir until dissolved.
Top with whipped cream and enjoy!