Homemade Chai Tea Latte with anise and cinnamon stick in glass mugs with pumpkin pie on wooden rustic background

Five Christmas coffee serves

Bring the season’s warming barista twists into your home with Celeste Wong’s fun, festive coffee hacks, from on-the-go Irish coffee to homemade chai

Read our festive coffee guide from coffee expert Celeste Wong below, then check out Celeste’s tried-and-tested list of the best coffee beans and best coffee machines. Looking for the perfect present for the coffee lover in your life? Take a look at our best coffee gifts


On-the-go Irish coffee

Pack a flask of hot, strong, sweet coffee laced with Irish whiskey or bitter Fernet-Branca. Bring a can of whipped aerosol cream or a little container of whipped or double pouring cream, and squirt or pour over the top, plus mini marshmallows for extra sweetness. We’ve also got a recipe for Irish coffee affogato.

A glass full of dark liquid
The Irish Coffee

Master the mocha

To make a mocha in a café we use a powder that has been mixed into a paste or syrup so it’s easily dissolved. At home you can be more decadent. Break off some chocolate pieces into a cup then stir in 30ml of espresso (made using an espresso machine), and top up with hot, frothy milk. Sprinkle with grated chocolate and add a dollop of lightly whipped cream.


Infuse festive flavours

Baristas love using syrups over the festive period for an extra warming hit. Infuse your own sugar syrup with a vanilla bean pod, and add some star anise and cardamom. Otherwise, pop a twist of orange peel into a filter coffee for a zesty twist, or leave a cinnamon stick in cold-brew coffee overnight for a subtly festive flavour. Check out our recipe for coffee syrup here.

A bottle of homemade coffee syrup

Make your own chai

Boil two cinnamon sticks, 10 cardamom pods, five cloves, six black peppercorns, two star anise, a thumb-sized piece of ginger and 3 tbsp sugar with 1½ cups of water until it makes a syrup. Add 4 tsp of black tea or four teabags towards the end so it doesn’t over-brew. Strain through a sieve or coffee filter a couple of times and pour into a sterilised glass bottle. When you’re ready to make your chai latte, pour 25ml of syrup into an 30ml shot of espresso, stir in 100-150ml of milk, and dust with cinnamon or nutmeg. Take a look at our recipe for chai latte here.

A blue table topped with two blue mugs filled with spiced milk

Ace an affogato

When it’s cold outside, there’s nothing better than being indoors with the heating on and eating ice cream… with coffee! Add one scoop of vanilla ice cream to a small bowl or cup, and pour a shot of espresso on top. Sprinkle over a handful of caramel popcorn, grated chocolate and a dollop of thick cream for a real treat. Check out our recipe for affogato chocolate mousse.

Irish coffee affogato

Want to learn more about becoming an expert at-home barista? Read our guides here:

Celeste Wong’s guide to becoming an overnight coffee expert
Celeste Wong’s best moka pots
Celeste Wong’s best coffee grinders
Celeste Wong’s best decaf coffee to try 
Celeste Wong’s best reusable espresso pods
Celeste Wong’s best coffee beans to try
Best coffee subscriptions to try
Best coffee pod machines
Best bean-to-cup coffee machines
Best espresso machines

 

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