Prairie Buzz Is The Rich Coffee Cocktail That Fuses Whiskey With Cold Brew

The coffee cocktail is having a moment. It might have started with espresso martinis, but it looks like those were only the beginning of a boozy-caffeine bar scene takeover, and we're here for what's next. On that note, allow us to introduce the whiskey-based cold brew cocktail that you've likely never heard of, but should definitely meet: the Prairie Buzz.

Ingredients-wise, the Prairie Buzz is similar to the Irish coffee affogato but less dessert-like. This cocktail is a spirit-forward combination of Scotch whisky, amaretto liqueur, cold brew coffee, simple syrup, whole milk, and a dash of ground cinnamon or a shot of cinnamon syrup. Store-bought cold brew will work just fine, or feel free to brew your own. The amaretto adds a complex, almond-like sweetness, but the star of the show here is the whiskey — namely Rieger's Kansas City Whiskey. It's infused with 15-year-aged Oloroso sherry, which offers a nutty flavor to complement the amaretto and rich coffee notes. At 46% ABV, it provides the base for a punchy cocktail that'll hold up against the boldness of the cold brew.

Get Prairie Buzzed with this spiced chiller

To make a Prairie Buzz, combine all the ingredients in a shaker without ice and hit it with a vigorous dry shake. Then, add ice and shake again before straining over a single large ice cube in a rocks glass to serve. Some recipes call for a splash of Chinato as well. If you've never worked with it before, Barolo Chinato is an aromatic wine infused with bark and herbs for an earthy flavor. It'll add a spiced dimensionality to your cocktail, which would be very welcome during the chillier months but can also be passed on without throwing off the balance of the cocktail.

The Prairie Buzz is a full-bodied, spiced, bittersweet cocktail perfect for transitioning into fall and winter, especially with the additions of the amaretto and warming spices. It's also a killer way to cool off on a hot summer day, classic cold brew style. For the seasoned caffeine veteran, it's a sophisticated nightcap year-round. Of course, decaf cold brew is always an option, too.

Garnish with a sprinkle of nutmeg and/or a cinnamon stick. You could even top your Prairie Buzz with a trio of lightly-toasted espresso beans like you would an espresso martini. If you like your drinks on the sweeter side, add a shot of flavored creamer instead of whole milk, like hazelnut or French vanilla. It would also be easy to transition this cocktail into a dairy-free version with a splash of oat milk creamer.