Barrel-Aged (and Whiskey-Infused) Coffee From a Legendary Philly Roaster

Horn & Hardart and Dad's Hat team up for a brand new collaboration roast.

These days, it seems like they put whiskey in just about everything from bath soap to brownies. Not always the actual booze (actually, kinda rarely the actual booze), but the essence. A whiskey flavor, an aroma. Something like that.

And these days, anything that doesn’t come in a whiskey-fied version, likely comes flavored with coffee. So it was really only a matter of time before someone — iconic brand Horn & Hardart in this case, who have just recently gotten back into the coffee business — decided to just whiskey up some of their coffee beans and sell them directly.

Now look, first off? These magic beans won’t make your coffee alcoholic. You’re gonna have to add your own booze if serious day-drinking is what you’re about.

But what Horn & Hardart did was pick up some used oak rye whiskey barrels from Dad’s Hat and used those to barrel-age a blend of 75% H&H Liberty Roast and 25% espresso beans for 21 days. And they babysat these barrels — sealing them air-tight, turning them twice a day, using already roasted beans to make sure that the flavor pickup from the spent barrels was smooth and even.

The result is a whole-bean coffee with just a hint of whiskey infused into it. They’re calling it their “#18 Prohibition Series” after the 18th Amendment, and are doing it as a seriously small-batch, super-premium limited release done only in 100-bag runs. This means, of course, that it’s pricey ($24 for a 10 oz bag), but if you’re looking for a way to justify the expense, think of it this way: This is a handcrafted, experimental coffee coming from two local companies. Dad’s Hat are serious about their rye. H&H is serious about coffee. And this kind of thing, even if it goes well, is going to be gone before you know it because Horn & Hardart are already looking forward to their next spirit-infused collaboration — this time made with Petty Island Rum from Cooper River Distillery, across the river in New Jersey.

The #18 Prohibition Series is available now.