Belfast Telegraph

'Irish car bomb' cocktail leaves bad taste

By Allan Preston

A recipe for a controversial cocktail called the Irish car bomb has resurfaced on a drinks website ahead of Easter weekend, causing outrage.

Appearing on the website Madcocktail.com on April 4, the recipe involves a shot of Irish whiskey and Bailey's liquor dropped into a glass of Guinness, causing the mixture to foam.

For decades the beverage has caused outrage for its insensitive name, with even the cocktail's inventor apologising for the title.

Colin Neill from Hospitality Ulster said yesterday it was "appalling" the toxic concoction was still being promoted.

"There's still people alive who have suffered losses through car bombs," he said.

"It's well out of order. These people are just seeking notoriety through controversy rather than actually promoting a cocktail, it's just bad taste.

"You could liken it to somebody inventing a cocktail about one of the atrocities we've seen in France recently.

"I would like to think you wouldn't see it in any bars here, but it still doesn't excuse the fact that it's on a drinks website. They need to realise it's totally inappropriate and, let's face it, the country has moved on."

The drink was first invented in 1979 by Connecticut bar tender Charles Burke Cronin Oat. He later apologised and revealed he had also made a prototype drink named 'The IRA.'

"The drink gets some bad press to this day," he told the Guardian newspaper in 2016. "It wasn't done to celebrate car bombs, it was done to celebrate Irish families here in America."

In 2010, victims campaigner Willie Frazer said the drink should be banned.

"It is disgusting that IRA car bombs which killed and maimed so many in Northern Ireland are being trivialised or celebrated in this way," he said.

"I would have expected Americans, of all people, to behave more sensitively and responsibly.

"How would they like it if we developed the al-Qaeda car bomb, the Twin Towers cocktail, or the 9/11 ice-cream sundae?"

The website owners were contacted for a comment but had yet to respond last night.

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