Cocktail & Other Recipes By Spirit Rum Cocktails

Ube Colada

Ube Colada cocktail

Ben Rojo

For New York City bartender Ben Rojo, the use of Filipino ingredients in his cocktails pulls heavily from nostalgia. “I love drawing inspiration for cocktails from Filipino culinary traditions,” he says. He cites ube halaya, a jam of sorts made with ube, or purple yam, as his favorite dessert for “as long as I can remember.”

In tribute to that treat, he created a frothy purple Colada rendition employing both ube halaya and Don Papa rum (also Filipino in origin), blended together with pineapple juice and both coconut water and coconut milk. Once the mix is spun with ice until smooth, it all gets topped with whipped coconut cream and a shower of dehydrated and crumbled blueberries.

The resulting drink, says Rojo, has been his favorite he’s run the past several summers. “There’s nothing I’d rather drink while the sun’s up,” he says.

Rojo recommends serving the drink ice-cold. “It’s the ultimate summer sipper,” he says.


  • 2 ounces Don Papa rum

  • 1 ounce ube halaya (purple yam jam)

  • 1 ounce coconut water

  • 3/4 ounce pineapple juice

  • 1/2 ounce coconut milk

  • Garnish: Whipped coconut cream

  • Garnish: crumbled dehydrated blueberries


  1. Add all ingredients into a blender with a small scoop of ice.

  2. Blend until smooth.

  3. Pour into a large goblet or hurricane glass.

  4. Top with whipped coconut cream and crumbled dehydrated blueberries.