Last week, in time for World Gin Day, Ginebra San Miguel celebrated its 185th anniversary this year declaring the country as One Ginebra Nation.
When you say gin in the Philippines, only one brand comes to mind: Ginebra San Miguel. Wherever you are, whatever your status, whether celebrating milestones or unwinding at the end of the day, it has become part of the Filipino’s way of life.
Perhaps this is because Ginebra San Miguel represents more than a drink. It is a testament to the passion, perseverance and the unwavering spirit of the people it has served for almost two centuries.
The event held last June 7, 2019, at Seda Vertis North, Quezon City, likewise introduced GSM’s three new celebrity ambassadors, comedian Alex Calleja, actress Sue Ramirez, and 2015 Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach.
While everyone enjoyed the free-flowing gin cocktails and delicious food, the highlight of the night was a musical spectacle chronicling the 185 years of Ginebra San Miguel. Directed by award-winning director Ramil Rodriguez and starring Miss Saigon alumnus, Gerald Santos, the venue was transformed into a theater and the guests were treated to outstanding performances showcasing Ginebra San Miguel in the different periods of Philippine history. Adding excitement to the program, the brand endorsers surprised the crowd with their participation in the show.
The event also launched a must-visit website for gin drinkers–www.oneginebranation.com and here are 4 things we discovered from the website.
I. AMORSOLO IN A BOTTLE: Did you know that whenever you buy a bottle of Ginebra San Miguel you are actually owning a piece of art from the great Fernando Amorsolo? The story goes that in 1917, Enrique Zobel de Ayala, great grandson of Destileria Licorea de Ayala founder Antonio Ayala, came across a painting by a young University of the Philippines Fine Arts graduate Fernando Amorsolo. A patron and lover of the arts, Zobel seized upon Amorsolo’s rendition of “St. Michael the Archangel Vanquishing Lucifer” as the best representation for Ginebra San Miguel liquor.
By 1924, after La Tondeña acquired Destileria Licorea de Ayala, new owner Don Carlos Palanca, Sr. modernized its production system with mechanized bottle washing, capping and crowning, and labeling. With these improvements in technology, the Fernando Amorsolo “Marca Demonyo,” as it is now more popularly known, was eventually used as the label of Ginebra San Miguel.
So there, the next time you buy a GSM you might want to look closer at the label before opening the bottle and see perhaps one of Amorsolo’s most famous works.
2. CREATE A GUYABANO GIN: Who says drinking is always bad for you? At the oneginebranation.com website you can check out several easy to do mixes and make your next gin drink a bit more healthier by adding some real guyabano juice!
Sweet and tangy flavor of the Guyabano mixed with the unique taste of GSM Blue Light Gin that gives a blended satisfying drink. All you need is 1/4 Lemon 60 ML Guyabano Juice or 2 tbsp Fresh Guyabano (optional) 1 tbsp White Sugar Ice 45 ml GSM Blue Light Gin 60 ml soda water 1 pc stemmed cherry.
Now pour all ingredients in the glass; add 60ml guyabano juice; Add 1 tbsp white sugar; Stir; Add ice; Add 45ml GSM blue Light Gin; Add soda water and Garnish with cherry and you are done!
3. GINEBRA IS ONE OF THE BEST AND OLDEST PINOY CREATION:The story of Ginebra San Miguel is the story of a drinking culture that began on March 10, 1834. From its humble beginnings in a small distillery in Quiapo, Manila, Ginebra San Miguel, the first-ever gin in the Philippines, was initially produced to cater to the affluent and colonial elite who stayed on in Manila and later shared with other wealthy Filipinos. Back then, Ginebra San Miguel was bottled in 20-liter glass jars wrapped in rattan weave called the dama juana.
The brand, already an award winner as early as the late 19th century, became the most sought-after liquor drink by Filipinos. As Ginebra San Miguel grew in demand, it also became more affordable to the working class Filipino when it was bottled in 1 liter glass containers called the frasco.
Since its creation, Ginebra San Miguel has been a witness to the changes that shaped and defined the Philippines. It has withstood the test of time, the challenges of war, the transitions of governments, and even technological developments. Ginebra San Miguel evolved from being a drink of the elite to winning the hearts and taste buds of the masses. Today, Ginebra San Miguel is considered as one of the country’s most respected and iconic brands and has become part of Philippine history, culture and tradition.
Learn more about the history and discover more Gin trivia HERE
4. GINEBRA XP LIVE: Lastly, never miss a Ginebra event again! Simply by checking out the website you can find out where the next location of Bar 1834 and how get free drinks as well as the dates of the next Ginuman Fest 2019!
One Ginebra Nation
True to its One Ginebra Nation theme, the event featured food and special gin cocktails prepared with ingredients from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Chef Rolando Laudico created sumptuous dishes to pair perfectly with the gin concoctions of top mixologists.
Ginebra San Miguel Calendar Girl, Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach, GSM Blue endorser, actress/singer Sue Ramirez and GSM Premium Gin ambassador, comedian/writer Alex Calleja prepared elevated Ginebra San Miguel drink mixes with the world-class mixologists.
Kalel Demetrio paid tribute to Luzon with his Beautiful With A Heart gin concoction, made with Kamias juice and Blue Sampaguita spritz. Enzo Lim created the Carabao Cocktail that highlighted the sweet Mangoes of Visayas. Mindanao’s Tablea and Durian was mixed beautifully in Icy Mariñas’ Shalalala.
Throughout this 185-year journey, Ginebra San Miguel has certainly been there in good and bad times, being one with the people.
“Ginebra San Miguel mirrors the resilience and the never-say-die spirit of the Filipinos. As the pioneering gin in the Philippines, we take pride in its legacy because the story of Ginebra San Miguel is the story of the Filipino people,” said Ron C. Molina, Ginebra San Miguel Marketing Manager.
The World Gin Day festivity was just the beginning of the One Ginebra Nation Tour. Gin lovers can look forward to promos and special Ginebra San Miguel packages in selected bars nationwide and by checking out www.oneginebranation.com. Moreover, be on the lookout for the One Ginebra Nation Truck touring the country with special treats.