Philosophical Cocktails

A historian who attends our monthly meetings tells me that the original Greek philosophical symposia were literally events where people would sit around, drink and talk philosophy. We have continued this tradition in our meetings.

Irrespective of the historical accuracy of Monty Python’s Philosophers Song, alcohol is not without its philosophical significance. That shameful episode in US history, Prohibition, sprang directly from bad philosophy (the desire to enforce morality on others who are not initiating force against anybody) and its results were not merely expected but also predictable. Any similarity to the “war on drugs” in its motivation, effects and destructiveness (mainly through its inflation of prices, that causes both the vast wealth accumulated by brutal criminals and the amount of crime caused by addicts unable to pay those prices) is neither coincidental nor unexpected – except to those who believe they have the right and the wisdom to run other people’s lives.

And I must add that some of my best philosophical ideas have sprouted in the fertile soil of conversations with friends over food and wine.

In this page are the recipes for a few unusual cocktails I have invented – with a philosophical tang. I hope you enjoy them. Of course, I expect any readers of these pages to be responsible adults. All drinking should be done safely and in moderation. Most of them pack quite a punch so be warned ?

The following recipes are all the amounts for two people – cocktails are always best in company. Measurements are nips unless otherwise stated.

Red Sonja

Created in honour of my wife, using some of her favourite ingredients, and named in honour of her and in reference to Red Sonja, the fiery barbarian female who you’d better not mess with:

1 x Glayva (can substitute Tequila)
1 x Peppermint liqueur
1 x Cointreau
1 x Baileys Irish Cream
4 x medium sized strawberries
1/3 of a bird’s eye chili, crushed (preferably fresh, but dried will do)
1½ cups ice cubes or shaved ice

Blend well and pour.

Bombyx Mori

Smooth as silk:

1 x Cointreau (Noir preferred)
1 x Kahlua
1 x Drambui
½ x Galliano Vanilla
4 x fresh cream
2 scoops of ice cream

Shake well and pour.

Capital Shrugger

Inspired by Mike Summers’ “Hamilton Hugger” and my lack of ingredients (necessity is indeed the mother of invention), with a nod to the free  country Capital introduced in my novel The Geneh War, enjoy this sweet concoction with a finger raised in the general direction of Statists everywhere. Combine and stir, per serve:

30 ml Cognac
10 ml Cointreau
20 ml Sabra
30 ml Coconut cream
30 ml White Creme De Cacao
60 ml Apple Mango juice

Pamela Peru

The Peruvians earned a warm spot in my heart for their stubborn refusal to kowtow to the nose-in-other-peoples-business bullies at the United Nations when the latter called for Peru to ban the chewing of coca leaves and drinking coca tea. Yes, this is the same United Nations that supports the sovereign right of governments to do practically anything to their citizens and visitors, such as executing people for opposing a dictator or importing cannabis. Obviously drinking coca tea is a far worse crime against humanity than being an official in a run-of-the-mill dictatorship welcomed respectfully into the United Nations.

(I had not even heard of coca tea until my wife, in Peru for an international conference, called me to ask how cocoa leaves could ease altitude sickness; and further noted how all the women at the conference, despite the altitude, were all up dancing at dinner. “Um,” I said, “I think you’ll find that’s coca leaves, not cocoa.” But that’s another story…)

Enjoy this refreshing drink on a hot summer’s day:

250 g fresh or frozen sweet watermelon (no seeds)
1 x Cointreau
1 x Strawberry liqueur (if too sweet for your taste, use ½ nip only, with an extra ½ nip Pisco)
1 x Pisco
(If you’re lucky enough to be in Peru, try adding 1 x cold coca tea, leaves removed; if you use fresh watermelon, best chilled with ice as well).

Blend until smooth and serve cold.


Opposition to genetically engineered crops is based on superstition and nature-worship, not reason or science. So in honour of Vitamin A-boosting genetically engineered bananas entering human trials, welcome The Bender, a smooth easy-to-drink delight:

1 ripe banana (genetically modified or normal according to taste and availability)
1 x Baileys or Cassidy’s Irish Cream
1 x Disaronno liqueur
1 x Cointreau
1 x Bacardi (white rum)
1 cup ice

Creamier Bender alternative recipe:

1 ripe banana (genetically modified or normal according to taste and availability)
2 x Baileys or Cassidy’s Irish Cream
1 x Banana liqueur
1 x Cointreau
1 cup ice

Blend well and serve.

Easter Egg

No doubt people who take their religion (the Christian flavour, anyway) seriously object to the “corruption” of Easter by Easter bunnies and chocolate eggs, but those of us who believe that living on this Earth is all the life there is and needs to be, are inclined to think the corruption goes the other way. So in honour of Easter, enjoy the “Easter Egg” cocktail. But be warned – too many of these and you might not rise again until the third day either!

2 x Milk
1 x Creme de Cacao (dark)
1 x Baileys Irish Cream
1 x White Rum
A drizzle of chocolate syrup
1 cup ice.

Blend until smooth and serve cold.

The Pummeler

For a refreshing buzz, be prepared to be pummelled:

4 Pomelo segments
3 x Bacardi (or other white rum)
1 x Peach liqueur (e.g. Castle Glen Peach Blush Liqueur)
1 x Cointreau

Blend until smooth.

The Rock

Another refresher:

Half cup rockmelon (cantaloupe)
1 cup apple juice
2 x Bacardi (or other white rum)
1 x Creme de Cacao
1 x Cointreau
1 cup ice

Blend until smooth.

Chocolate Dream

Smooth but deadly:

1 x Kahlua
1 x Creme de Cacao
1 x Cointreau
1 x Baileys Irish Cream
1 x Crema de Gianduia
2 x milk
A cup of ice cream

Blend well and pour.

Mon Cherie

This one was invented by my daughter Kira for my birthday when she was 8, perhaps pointing the way to a fascinating PhD topic on the genetics of cocktail invention.

1 x Grand Marnier
Preserved black cherries + a little of their liquor, enough to fill to above liquid level
3 small ice cubes
Gently layer fresh cream to 5 mm thick layer

Fruit Phaser

A tangy, fruity smooth killer, set to stun.

1 x Apple Mango Juice
1 x Pineapple Juice
1 x Grand Marnier
1 x Apple Schnapps
1 x Glayva
1x Gianduia (or other chocolate liqueur)
1 x Milk
1/3 of a birdseye chili
half cup ice

Blend well and serve cold.


For all their flaws, Israel remains an outpost of relative freedom in a region of the world sadly riven by mindless sectarian prejudice and violence. We can only hope that the people of Iraq will join that club now that they’ve been given half a chance by the wildly reviled US invasion, that for all its flaws in philosophy and execution, achieved the one overriding virtue of replacing the usual barbarian government by something at least approaching a secular state with balances of power and the potential for liberty that enables. Well, here’s some “tea” with an Israeli flavour that it is your duty to enjoy:

1 x Sabra
1 x Kahlua
1 x Grand Marnier
2 x apple juice
1 cup ice

Blend well and pour.


This variant of the Bushwacker #4 is therefore named after Steve Hart, fourth member of the infamous Ned Kelly gang of bushrangers:

2 x fresh cream
½ x Amaretto
1½ x Kahlua
1 x Baileys Irish Cream (or similar cream liqueur)
2 x pineapple juice
Ice cubes

Shake well and pour.

Mango Smooothie

I live in sunny Queensland and one of the delights of summer are mango smoothies. If you’ve never tried a Bowen (Kensington) mango in season and you’re in Australia in summertime, don’t miss them. Here is a mango smooothie not quite the same as the ones you can buy at the Big Orange on the highway to Toowoomba:

3 x apple mango juice
1 x Pimms
2 x Baileys Irish Cream (or similar cream liqueur)
1½ cups ice

Blend well and pour.

Mango Punch

Darwin would have approved. Natural selection acting upon the variability of the Mango Smoothie led to the evolution of the more intense and deadlier Mango Punch. But be warned: too many of these will really punctuate your equilibrium:

3 x mango nectar
1 x Glayva
1 x Bacardi
2 x Baileys Irish Cream (or similar cream liqueur)
1½ cups ice

Blend well and pour.

© 2008-2014 Robin Craig3