We haven’t heard this much oohing and aaahhing over a bottle of local gin since Arc came into the market in 2018.
“I have had the honor and privilege of having a bottle of this most exquisite, most elegant and most refined gin before its official launch,” wrote restaurateur of note Elbert Cuenca on a Facebook post a few weeks back.
“Not only does it smell great,” said food influencer JJ Yulo on Instagram, recognizing the fragrance of ylang ylang from the liquid. “It’s also smooth and easy to drink.”
The drink these two men are almost gushing about is Santa Ana Gin. The product already shows up in Boozy.ph (retail price P1,699.00) where it is described as “vacuum-distilled in the Charente region of France.” The taste is a combination of delicate floral top notes and fresh tropical citrus hints. The formula is comprised mainly of four Philippine botanicals: ylang ylang, Alpinia, dalandan and calamansi. The bottle itself is a thing of beauty: a sort of translucent gold that becomes teal blue in its Art Deco style bottom.
The brand is inspired by the music and lifestyle of the Sta. Ana Cabaret, a popular social club in Manila in the early 1900s, which eventually became the largest dance hall in the world. Located in the barrio of Tejeros in the border of Makati, the dance hall was populated by the most powerful and scintillating personalities of the 1930s—including President Manuel Quezon. It was considered the Studio 54 of the era.
Santa Ana Gin is a product of Bleeding Heart Rum Co., makers of the award-winning Philippine-made Don Papa Rum which has grown by leaps and bounds in the past few years not only here but in different parts of the globe, transcending its pasalubong-from-the-
Will Santa Ana Gin have the same trajectory? Judging from the early praise, looks like it. “This is my new and current favorite gin,” said Cuenca.