So darty season is over but you’re not ready to hole up and eat chicken noodle soup and hide under covers all day. To you, winter means you’re making your own drinks and watching lit AF Christmas movies and chilling indoors. Thus, you’ll probably wanna familiarize yourself with this magic drink—Kahlúa. But, just what is Kahlúa and why is it so popular during the colder months? I'm here to give you all the alcoholic deets.

What the F%*k is Kahlúa?

Blessing your home bar since 1936, Kahlúa was first made in rural Veracruz, Mexico, where its chief ingredients—sugar, rum, vanilla bean, and arabica coffee—grow as neighbors. Its name comes from the Arabic language and supposedly slang for coffee. Kahlúa  tastes rich and robust. 

Because of the coffee used to craft Kahlúa, it takes up to seven years to produce a bottle—six years for the coffee to reach its peak, and then about another year to distill the spirits into the coffee and roast them to infuse the flavor. I mean, what is Kahlúa is not a prime example of the "good things come to those who wait" saying? 

How did Kahlúa get so popular? Well, when the first official recipe for the White Russian was published by a newspaper in Oakland, California (why does everything come from California? Like, Trader Joe's, popsicles, and, of course, Mai Tais and Martinis), they had Kahlúa at their core, and the drinks just kept coming. Sometime during the '80s, Kahlúa became the number one coffee liquor company in the world. Talk about some stats to boast about.

So... It's just Alcohol?

First of all, no alcohol is "just alcohol" in a pair of talented hands. But, moving on from that disgrace of a comment, Kahlúa is far more than a mere coffee-infused alcoholic beverage. Not only is it the base for a ton of drinks, but it comes in a wide variety of flavors. You can get chocolate, pumpkin spice, and even peppermint mocha for your festive gatherings.

What Can I Do With Kahlúa?

I'm glad you asked, because I'm about to make you the life of the holiday season with a few recipes. Of course, if you just, ya know, drop a little into your morning coffee, your 9 am professor probs won't know (or care. It's 9 am, no one should care about anything yet). 

B-52 Shot

A child of the 70s, a B-52 shot combines Kahlúa, irish cream, and triple sec (orange liqueur, for all of you still staring at those two words trying to give meaning to them). It separates into a vaguely candy corn-esque strata, except that it actually tastes decent and you won't wonder why you just consumed it. 

Tiramisu Martini

With a mixture of rich flavors from Kahlúa, Rum Chata, and Godiva Liquor, this Tiramisu Martini is more like dessert than alcohol—then again, combining the two is always ideal, amirite? It's festive, fun, and super simple to make, so be sure to give it a whirl this winter. 

Kahlúa Coffee Chocolate Layer Cake

Speaking of combining dessert and alcohol, why not take the next step and literally combine the two? This coffee chocolate layer cake utilizes Kahlúa to give it an extra kick and to boost the coffee flavor. Plus, look at how pretty that cake is? It's truly a dessert to impress a crowd.

Eggnog Creme Brûlée

This simple, elegant dessert looks beautiful with the colorful pop of fruit decorating the top. Plus, spiking traditional creme brûlée with eggnog and Kahlúa is a good way to give your holiday season a little edge. Why don't we spike more desserts? The world will never know. 

White Russian

Of course, we gotta wrap up with the drink that started it all—the White Russian, made from Kahlúa, vodka, and cream. That iconic, classic fade is too Instagram-worthy for you to not give it a shot. If you want to make it a little healthier, try switching the cream with skim or almond milk. Definitely means you can have another glass—just trust me on this one.

Just because it's cold outside doesn't mean you have to give up your festivities. What is Kahlúa? It's your coffee-infused savior, here to make sure you have a fab time. Sip wisely, loves.