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I Tried The Insanely Strong Coffee Everyone In Adelaide Is Talking About

How would you like 52 coffees in one?

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When I heard that South Australian café, Viscous Coffee, had conjured up a coffee that contained the equivalent of 52 espresso shots, I knew I had to try it.

Madeleine Dunne

You could say I’m your stereotypical coffee drinker in that while I love the stuff, I definitely have my limits. My morning double-shot latte? Perfect. Any more than four cups of coffee in the one day? I'm a trembling bundle of nerves.

As humans we're conditioned to challenge ourselves, so I decided to try this coffee that was apparently the strongest in the world.

Affectionately known as the Adelaide Ass Kicker, this is the baby everyone's been talking about. It may appear harmless - cute, even - but I can assure you, it's about as innocent as a bottle of tequila.

Madeleine Dunne

A large cup of the Ass Kicker starts with four espresso shots poured over four custom-brewed coffee ice cubes, each of which equal a double shot, and a dash of frothy farmer's milk. Next, 120mL of the café's own cold-drip coffee - which is meticulously brewed over 10 days and contains the equivalent of 32 espressos - is added to the mix, before another four of those crazy coffee ice cubes.

Thankfully, there's also a small version of the coffee, which contains 25 shots of coffee. In comparison, it seemed pretty tame.

This thing literally comes with a health warning.

Madeleine Dunne

Low-key this is the main reason I decided to make the ~smart~ choice and opt for the small instead of the large.

My first thought? It actually didn't taste that bad.

Madeleine Dunne

Look, it was no fluffy latte, but it wasn't dishwater, either. The $10 hit was hardly any different taste-wise to your classic long black. Plus, after learning about the time and effort that goes into making a coffee this strong, I found an extra sense of appreciation I definitely wasn't expecting.

Owner and barista, Steve Benington, told me that the Ass Kicker is not for enjoyment, but for a purpose: to keep the drinker going, and going, and going.

Madeleine Dunne

I'm instructed to slowly sip my lukewarm beverage over an hour or two, to reap the full benefits of a potential nine-hour caffeine hit. "The cold-drip components won't hit you straight away, they'll only enter your system once that part of the drink has been digested. It's all part of the science," he said. Originally, Steve invented the brew for a nurse needing to get through a 12-hour night shift. The first prototype he brewed kept her awake for three days.

Steve also told me that while feedback on the brew has been resoundingly positive, not everyone's a fan.

Madeleine Dunne

"A guy twice my size thought he'd be a real tough dude and down a large Ass Kicker in less than 30 minutes. Shortly afterwards he was on his knees vomiting his guts out," he said.

An hour after ordering, I was halfway through my coffee, feeling absolutely invincible.

Madeleine Dunne

To say I was "wide awake" would be a wild understatement. Four-day music festival? I was ready. A year without sleep? Bring it on! New York Marathon? Look, I’ve hardly exercised in months but I’m almost certain I could have ran it twice over. The thing worked!

A few hours later, I came to the conclusion that I really, really didn't like this ride.

Madeleine Dunne

Still feeling very awake with my coffee almost finished, my feeling of pure elation had turned into full-blown paranoia. I searched online for anything to help reverse the effects of caffeine, with the supposed cures being water, Vitamin C, and meditation. But honestly, how on earth was I supposed to find my inner peace when I'd just had 25 shots of coffee?!

At the end of the day, all I can say is, if this isn't the world's strongest coffee, I sure as hell don't want to know what is.

Madeleine Dunne

Please, don't go drinking this for a simple afternoon coffee fix. On the other hand, if you want to stay up for 24 hours like I almost did, well, this is the thing for you. Good luck out there.

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