Trying to help Frances in her search for alcoholic rhymes, I bumped into a section in the Chambers book of Crossword Lists called ‘special drinks’. Oh ho, I thought, that sounds interesting.
There are five entries: ava, kava, soma, haoma and ayahuasco. I’m afraid I need to transcribe the definitions of all of these.
Ava and Kava are the same thing: an aromatic plant of the pepper family (piper methysticum); a narcotic drink prepared from its roots and stem.
Soma (leaving aside mad Aldous Huxley’s appropriation) is a plant (perh. an asclepiad), or its intoxicating juice, used in ancient Indian religious ceremonies, and personified as a god. Remarkably, there is apparently a proprietary prescription drug which is marketed as Soma®. Wouldn’t mind scoring some of that.
Haoma: a drink prepared from the haoma vine, used in Zoroastrian ritual. (see also soma)
Do you start to see a pattern here?
And finally, the magnificent Ayahuasco: a S American vine of the family Malpighiaceae; a drink made from the roots of the vine, having hallucinatory properties.Special? Pwaff. Chambers compilers? Amateurs. I’m off to watch Magical Mystery Tour.