Philip­pines Suc­cess STORY

Epicure (Indonesia) - - BEST OF INDONESIA -

Don Papa is clearly the most slick spirit in this ar­ti­cle, hav­ing started in 2011 and al­ready in pro­duc­tion of one mil­lion bot­tles an­nu­ally, dis­trib­uted in over 20 coun­tries. Yet its su­perb pack­ag­ing, small batch dis­til­la­tion and rep­u­ta­tion as a de­li­ciously trop­i­cal sip­ping rum make it feel like a spe­cial dis­cov­ery each time you en­counter it. The founder of Bleed­ing Heart Rum Co. is Stephen Car­roll, a for­mer ex­ec­u­tive of Remy Coin­treau who took a fate­ful va­ca­tion to Ne­gros and Ba­colod, and went on to cre­ate a rum named af­ter a revo­lu­tion­ary Ne­gros hero, Papa Isio. The Philip­pines was al­ready one of the largest rum mar­kets in the world, but Car­roll spot­ted the gap. “Look­ing at global trends we saw that there was still room to de­velop a pre­mium Philip­pines rum. His­tor­i­cally, Philip­pines has a for­mi­da­ble sugar in­dus­try and it was only nat­u­ral to fo­cus our ef­forts here es­pe­cially in the is­land of Ne­gros – the sugar bowl,” he says.

There are two ver­sions of the sin­gle-is­land rum: a sev­enyear-old and 10-year-old, both made in the Span­ish way from mo­lasses rather than sug­ar­cane juice. De­scribes Car­roll, “We spent a long time with our master blender to cre­ate the fi­nal prod­uct. It was about com­ing up with a prod­uct that can be en­joyed neat or on the rocks but at the same time will prove to be an ex­cel­lent com­po­nent to a fine cock­tail.”

While Car­roll lauds the prod­uct it­self, he re­turns to the topic of pack­ag­ing fre­quently. “The de­sign was what would get you no­ticed on the shelf,” he shares. The in­tri­cate pack­ag­ing was done by Stranger & Stranger in New York, tak­ing in­spi­ra­tion from 50 lo­cal flora and fauna, and paid off when it won Dou­ble Gold Medal for Pack­ag­ing De­sign at the 2013 San Fran­cisco World Spir­its Show.

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