Fire Dept. Coffee Black Cherry Bourbon Infused Coffee Review

Right up front, I am a big fan of dark roast and typically don’t drink a medium roast. In addition, I am not a huge fan of flavored coffees. At home I brew my coffee with a Techniworm, Mocca Master Drip coffee Maker and use whole beans ground in a Brim Grinder.

Fire Dept. Coffee Black Cherry Bourbon Infused Coffee Review Header




NOSE: Cherry | Chocolate | Hint of Bourbon

TASTE: Chocolate Covered Cherries | Hint of Bourbon

FINISH: The finish is a little thin with hints of cherries, chocolate and bourbon.

SHARE WITH: Anyone who likes to try different coffees or likes flavored coffees with a cherry twist.

WORTH THE PRICE: $20 for a 12 ounce bag of coffee is a little on the high side but this is like craft bourbon, made in small batches and a limited release.

BAG, BARISTA OR BUST: I would want to try this at a coffee house if at all possible. However, this is one of the better bourbon infused coffees I have tried. If you are a fan of medium roast and flavored coffees you might want to give a bag a try.

OVERALL: Right up front, I am a big fan of dark roast and typically don’t drink a medium roast. In addition, I am not a huge fan of flavored coffees. At home I brew my coffee with a Techniworm, Mocca Master Drip coffee Maker and use whole beans ground in a Brim Grinder. That is how I tried this Fire Dept Coffee (FDC). While the company suggests using a French Press, I have not found them to work any better than my daily setup.

As I said I am not a big fan of flavored coffees, but this coffee was a little different. According to FDC the bourbon is infused into the green coffee beans and then roasted. They also stated that the flavor is also already in the bourbon, so we are talking about a black cherry flavored ‘bourbon” here. The company would not disclose what “bourbon” is used.

FDC stated that they use high-quality coffee beans from around the world. Also, they said that before they begin the roasting process, all beans go through a strict testing and evaluation process. This includes making sure the farms are environmentally and socially responsible. The coffee trader that is utilized to source the beans from is very reputable and ensures that the farmers are paid fairly.

The coffee in the bag and after grinding has a great nose with the bourbon and cherry definitely coming through. Also after brewing, the smell of the bourbon and cherry was in the air. In the cup however the nose was not very strong, and the mouth feel was somewhat thin. The bourbon and cherry notes were there but somewhat muted. However, in the past the flavored coffees I have tasted tend to be overwhelming in the flavoring and not something that I particularly like.

Since I am a dark roast fan, I purchased a bag of the Fire Department Coffee Dark Roast. This one had an incredible nose of cocoa and coffee bean with a rich mouthfeel. Great taste. I can’t say it quite tastes as good as my usual go to dark roasts but it is close. At $14.99 for a 14-ounce bag it is slightly more than the $10.50 I pay for 14 ounces of my usual dark roast but I believe I will keep a bag of this in the house.

Note that FDC sells a number of different coffees including different spirits-infused coffees including Bourbon, Irish, Canadian and Cinnamon Flavored whiskey, Rum and Tequila.
Fire Dept Coffee is a veteran owned business and run by firefighters. FDC created the Fire Department Coffee Foundation and ten percent of net proceeds go to organizations that support firefighters and other first responders who are injured on job.

Please see the video at this link if you are interested in the small batch roasting process.


NOSE: Sweet Cherry | Vanilla | Hint of Bourbon

TASTE: Roasted Coffee | Slight Cherry |  Little Acid Bite

FINISH: Medium with some woody oak flavor, the cherry lingered in th finish

SHARE WITH: Friends who enjoy different coffee expressions.  Don't oversell the bourbon angle.

WORTH THE PRICE: Both expressions are good coffees, but at $20 for a 12 ounce bag of coffee is a little on the high side.  Would have really liked to have a more intense infused flavor.

BAG, BARISTA, OR BUST: I would say if you con try them first with you barista at your favorite coffee bar (if such a thing is possible).  For the adventurous type with a little less concern for the cost, and an interest in supporting veterans and firefighters, go ahead and buy a bag.

OVERALL:  While I am not a coffee expert, I am a coffee enthusiast.  I drink coffee every day and have tried it in countries around the world.  This includes Turkey, Israel, many European countries, Japan, China, and Mexico.   I have had Cuban coffee, but that was in Miami.   My go-to special coffee is Café Brit Dark Roast from Costa Rica.

To me, this is good coffee, although I do prefer dark roast to medium roast, so they were somewhat light to me.  I used several preparation techniques and each provided some unique elements to the coffee.  The "Cupping" technique did provide the most distinct and recognizable flavors.  It is clear to see why this is used by professionals. In addition to Cupping, I also tried French Press, Drip, and Cold Brew.

I liked this one better than the Vanilla Bean, in all aspects it had a more robust coffee flavor.  In the French Press, while the aroma was not strong I felt the flavor came through better.  This expression did not benefit from the Automatic Drip process, generally muting the flavors I found in the French press.  The cold brew as before intensified the coffee flavor but to the detriment of the infused flavors. Again, to me, the French Press wins.



Take a sip on the dark side with this limited edition Spirit Infused Coffee, made with the real black cherry bourbon. It delivers a subtle blend of tart and juicy black cherries with undertones of vanilla and aged bourbon. Pour yourself a cup or fill up your thermos. It’s the perfect coffee for those chilly mornings and brisk nights.


Fire Dept. Coffee is a veteran-owned business and certified by the National Veteran-Owned Business Association (NaVOBA), we're dedicated to providing great-tasting coffee to people everywhere. Every order is freshly roasted in Rockford, Illinois, by a dedicated team of firefighters, first responders, and coffee connoisseurs.

Inspired by the vital role that coffee plays in helping firefighters stay alert and energized through long shifts, Fire Dept. Coffee was founded in 2016. Founder and CEO Luke Schneider is a full-time firefighter/paramedic and a U.S. Navy veteran who teamed up with firefighter/paramedic Jason Patton who is also a full-time firefighter and VP for Fire Department Coffee.

Fire Department Coffee is run by active and retired firefighters, including our operations officer and chief coffee roaster. Along with providing a growing selection of incredible coffee — including its signature spirit-infused roasts — Fire Dept. Coffee also supports heroes in need through the Fire Dept. Coffee Foundation. Ten percent of net proceeds are donated to help provide essential resources and assistance to first responders who have been injured on the job, mentally or physically, or who are facing other serious health challenges.


Disclaimer: Fire Dept. Coffee provided Bourbon & Banter with a sample of their product for this review. We appreciate their willingness to allow us to review their products with no strings attached. Thank you.