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Redefining the espresso shot: scientists convert coffee grounds into liquor

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Coffee (Flickr)
Coffee (Flickr)

Coffee and alcohol have a long history of being put together, but they haven't truly been one until now. Researchers from the University of Minho in Portugal have determined a way to turn used coffee grounds into a drinkable liquor that retains the delectable aroma of the hot drink itself. According to Science, eight trained taste testers sampled and rated the alcoholic results, and while they found that it could be improved with age, the drink's immediate form made it a "pleasant beverage" containing the strong and bitter flavors you'd expect from coffee.

The production method, which was published in LWT - Food Science and Technology, wasn't drastically different from a typical brewing process. According to Science, the coffee grounds were dried at around 325 degrees Fahrenheit, steeped in water, and then separated from the liquid. The researchers then added sugar and yeast to the liquid, and allowed it to sit and ferment until it was ready. The final product came in at about 80 proof — but don't get too worried: most caffeine is destroyed while brewing, so it isn't about to become the next Four Loko.