Nov 26, 2019

Graphic designer-turned-mixologist Ken Alonso’s interest in local spirits began when he was asked to help local winemakers in his province to sell their products. 

“I sold it in a bazaar in Rockwell, and people started enjoying it,” Alonso says, sharing that this was when he realized there was a market for local alcohol. His realization would later lead him to establish Proudly Promdi, a mobile bar that seeks to highlight local alcohol through its selection of cocktails.

The name Proudly Promdi stems from a desire to change people’s negative perceptions about local products. “The main challenge that we see is that certain bias people automatically have with local products,” Alonso says. “If we say local, it’s something that people automatically just ignore. What we’re trying to do is make them notice that this is local, and we should actually be proud of this.”

To achieve this, the mobile bar serves cocktails primarily made with tapuey mountain rice wine and the bielma bugnay fruit wine. The wines that are used in their cocktails are sourced from the women winemaking community in Adams, Ilocos Norte, which also provides them with a source of alternative livelihood while helping preserve a part of their culture.

The tapuey is a tangy drink served during rituals and special occasions, and made from glutinous rice that is cooked, fermented, and stored in earthen jars for two to three months. The wine originates from mountainous provinces like Ilocos and Benguet.

One of Proudly Promdi’s drinks is the Juan Tamad, which is made with coffee-infused tapuey, Langley’s Old Tom Gin, aperol, and orange bitters. This drink is also available as a bottled, ready-to-drink cocktail made with tapuey, Zabana 8 rum, pineapple ginger syrup, and angostura bitters.

Another local drink that they are promoting is the bielma bugnay fruit wine, which is from the mountain communities in the Ilocos region. The sweet and light-bodied wine is made with bugnay, a tropical fruit and berry that contains antioxidants and is good for the heart, and handmade by the winemaking tribes of Adams, Ilocos Norte.

One of its bugnay-based drinks is the Mestiza, a fruity drink made with mango juice, lemon, basil-infused gin, syrup, and rose water.

Aside from the traveling bar, Proudly Promdi has also partnered with restaurants such as Agimat and Alamat in Poblacion, Antonio’s and Balay Dako in Tagaytay, The Farm Organics and Toyo Eatery in Makati, Ninyo in Quezon City, and Sierra Pines in Baguio City. Alonso has also partnered with retailers such as Ritual PH, Roots Katipunan, The Good Store, and more recently with Drinkka, a delivery service that offers alcohol to BGC, Makati, Mandaluyong, and Pasay residents. 


Header image courtesy of Proudly Promdi

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TAGS: Bugnay nolisoli proudly promdi tapuy