Exotic Filipino Wine That Caused 1800s Rebellion Enters Present-Day Wine Market

A Philippine wine that caused a rebellion in the country in 1807 recently entered the wine market. Basi, the Ilocano term for sugarcane wine in the northern part of the Philippines, has been produced in the Southeast Asian nation way before the Spanish conquistadors came to the region.

The Basi Revolt in the early 1800’s took a number of lives from the Philippine and Spanish sides after Spanish-occupied Philippines was subjected to the expropriation of Basi production and sales. A wine brand from the area, Basi del Diablo, recently launched its wine products in the country and is poised to enter the international wine market by 2015. The brand hopes to revive the local winemaking industry in the islands.

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One of their perks for their Indiegogo campaign contributors is a gourmet basket. If you’re in the Philippines, that will include three bottles of wine and a few goodies.

“Our brand has an interesting story, “ says founder and CEO Sigrid Salucop. Almost a hundred years after the Basi Revolt of 1807, Salucop’s great grandfather Gabriel made his very first batch of Basi. Gabriel later passed on his recipe to his seven sons. The youngest, Benito, kept on making the wine and sold it in his small shop at 10 centavos a cup.

“He stored the fermented sugarcane in clay jars just outside of his home located in the downtown area of Batac, Ilocos Norte,” says Salucop. She added that her grandfather’s Basi kept going missing.  “My grandfather thought of something to keep thieves at bay,” Salucop says as she recalls her father’s stories about Benito. “Benito told one of his patrons that he saw a demon in his yard and that it lurked where he kept his wine. From then on, no thieves came near his home. This is where the brand got its name.”

Basi del Diablo currently has a campaign on crowd-funding site Indiegogo to get support for its export goals. (http://igg.me/at/basideldiablo/x/5995939) The proud Filipino brand is set to breathe new life to a more sustainable wine-making industry in the Philippines. Salucop adds, “It’s my dream to employ as many people as possible and buy from neighboring sugarcane farms in the north once we see an increase in demand.”

Lets start 2015 by supporting our own wine.  Please like and visit Basi del Diablo‘s Facebook page. Or,  you can reach Sigrid via her email sigrid@basideldiablo.com.

All images are courtesy of Sigrid Salucop.

I love nature quote!

Never loose an opportunity to see nature as nature is God’s land – to be respected and to be loved.

~ Jenny Bichara

Stone House Garden Resort

For those interested to check out the place, please contact:

Stonehouse Adventures, Inc.
Panicuason, Naga City, 4400 PH
Phone: 09283052050 | 6983848


#naga #camsur #bicol #travel #thingstodo #itsmorefuminthephilippines #mtisarog #resorts #rainforest #weddings #events #thingstodoinbicol


Getting ready for my mini project & my bamboo daybed

Today spent some time in the Naga City markets. I got me native handicrafts for my mini project.  As you can see, my love for anything native and indigenous. This project is actually for my other blog. Anyways, am super excited. Stay tuned.  I cannot wait how it will look like. (BTW, I sent WordPress another email stating the mistake…2 days already and no response)

Few months back-  I got my dream bamboo daybed. I always wanted one so I did. As soon as I got home from the hospital from a major operation, I ordered a bamboo daybed which took a week to get it done. I love how the only mode of transportation for my daybed to get to my house is a tricycle. Only in the Philippines – Or, only in Asia as you see this in China, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. LOL….

The bamboo folding daybed only cost me PHP2,400 ($55.00). Not bad……….

The bamboo daybed is an adequate enough for both the bedroom or as an outdoor piece, this bamboo day bed can add charm and a sense of coziness to any room. In my case, my living room. Built with genuine bamboo poles and large enough for a queen sized mattress, this unit is easy to move and works especially well as a guest bed or a sofa bed.

Now, my flat feels more like an apartment.

My dad, his kids and the Vespa (1960s)

Yesterday, while browsing my FaceBook wall, I came across a photograph that my cousin shared from All About 1960 Facebook Page.  A closer look of the post, A red Volks Patrol Car cruising Dewey Blvd. by JC,” I realized that it was my Dad on the Vespa with 4 of my siblings.(Not yet born yet) Unbeknownst to my cousin, he did not realize it was his Uncle on the picture.  Back in the sixties, he had several Lambretta’s and Vespa’s. After work, he would take the kids for a ride.  Back then, Dewey Blvd. now Roxas Blvd., had no traffic and no strict enforcement on tandem rides with children. What a coincidence, ironic shot though as the police didn’t even stop my dad with his kids on the Vespa.  According to JC who posted the picture, it was Captain Hutchkins, an American Veteran, who gave him the well preserved picture to post. My sister-in-law emailed JC asking if Captain Hutchkins is still alive….so we are still waiting for an answer. Cannot wait to track him down and say our thank you’s.  What a beautiful memory of my father!

RIP Papa! Love you always…

My dad, his kids and the Vespa

My dad, his kids and the Vespa (1960s)

Our Lady of Peñafrancia Church

Do not know much about architecture, but I am a big fun of NEO Classical Architecture in Churches. Its purest form in style was derived from Classical Greece and Rome – very Baroquish (Baroque in short). At the back of the church, also lies an old cemetery. Blast from the past!

Lovely day spent with my brother…

History of Peñafrancia Church, please go here.

Camarines Sur Tourism Guide, please go here.

Dear Santa Clause my biggest wish for 2013 is……………PART 1

Source Photo: Chaz11 Blogspot

Dear Santa Clause,

Since the world did not end on the 21st of December and if I could have my hearts wish, I would like to travel a little more for the year 2013.  I see a lot of travel bloggers who get paid for doing the thing they love most write and travel.  It would be nice if someone or a company can sponsor me to grant my wish.  Yes, I might be pushing the limit here but who knows. This wish list to Santa Dearest will be a series of posts as their will be other parts of the Philippines and other places overseas I would like to see as well.   

For this post, first stop is Bicol.

I listed 3 big tourist attractions in this post that I have not seen yet but there are lesser known places in Bicol that I, Jenny, needs to visit.

1)      Check out Caramoan Island and stay in Gotta Beach

Out of the 7000 islands in the Philippines, Caramoan is probably known for its international exposure.  Caramoan has been the favorite site for international franchise – Survivor. The place has hosted the Serbian, Israel, Bulgarian, Swedish, India and lastly, US Survivor versions. Popular tourist destinations are the Caramoan National Park, the Centro, and Gota Beach, and popular activities include diving, swimming, snorkeling and spelunking.

Please check them out for rates and travel info @: Caramoan Island

Caramoan Islands, Camarines Sur, Philippines (Source Photo: Caramoanislands.com)

Caramoan Islands, Camarines Sur (Source Photo: Caramoanislands.com) 

Caramoan Islands, Camarines Sur, Philippines (Source Photo: Caramoanislands.com)

2)      Check out Misibis Bay Resort, Cagraray Island– the luxury island playground!

Misibis Bay is a private tropical hideaway built on a pristine stretch of beach along the southern tip of Cagraray Island in Bacacay, Albay. Misibis Bay Resort is a wonderful place to visit for its relaxing atmosphere, the surroundings looks so fantastic and beautiful, and a haven afar the crowded and polluted cities elsewhere. However, looking at the prices of foods, drinks and room rates are pretty steep compared to other similar places and 5-star hotels in the big cities, nonetheless, it still does not stop me from wishing to visit Misibis Bay Resort one day.

Please check them out for rates and travel info @: Misibis Bay

Misibis Bay Resort, Cagraray Island in Bacacay, Albay, Philippines (Source Photo: Xoprivate.com)

Misibis Bay Resort, Cagraray Island in Bacacay, Albay, Philippines (Source Photo: Xoprivate.com)

Misibis Bay Resort, Cagraray Island in Bacacay, Albay, Philippines (Source Photo: Xoprivate.com)

3)      Donsol, Sorsogon to see Butanding, Whale Shark

I visited Sorsogon once but only came there for a bit for my Pili Oil Blog but did not have the time to check Donsol out. 

When you are coming from Albay, it is one hour drive south of Sorsogon. Donsol is a host to one of the highest concentration of Whale Sharks in the world. These creatures have been frequenting the waters off Donsol, Sorsogon for many generations.

 Although Whale Sharks, or “Butanding” as they are locally known, are enormous in size and power, reaching lengths greater than 15 meters, they are remarkably gentle and docile enough that it is generally safe to swim among them. Swimming among the whale sharks is a captivating experience. Generally, the whale sharks at Donsol swim very close to the surface of the water. I am not a daring person but I don’t mind doing basic snorkeling in order to get closer to the gentle giant. My biggest wish!

The Lonely Planet Guidebook describes the Donsol experience as the “quintessential Philippine adventure.” The Time Magazine called swimming with whale sharks the “Best Animal Encounter in Asia,” in one of their issues in year 2004.

Donsol, Sorsogon, Philippines (Source Photo: Xoprivate.com)

Genie, in the bottle! Please grant all my wishes……….

Source Photo: Treasure Trove Blog




Taste like Baileys – Palmera Coco Crème Liqueur!

Today, I got a call from the Emall Trade Show organizers saying I won a price. It felt like a million dollars but it was just a small token from one of the native handicraft vendors. Thank you Bidibidi for the wonderful token of appreciation!

While I was there claiming my prize, I stumbled upon a new coconut liqueur called Palmera Coco Crème Liqueur. As you know on my several posts, I am a big fan of Don Ramon’s Tropical Wine. According to Yolanda Buena Oliva of YML Health Food Products, it tastes like Baileys so I got it. I am checking it now while writing this post, it really does taste like Baileys.  Pretty strong drink I say.  Feels like Lambanog so go easy on it, it is a kicker.

Palmera Coco Crème Liqueur

She is the only sole distributor of the product so if you are in Bicol and is curious on checking out Palmera’s Coconut Coco Crème Liqueur, give her a call.

YML Health Food Products


Email: yollyoliva@yahoo.com

She also makes tea and herbs from Moringa leaves (Or, Malungay Leaves for short). Moringa, also known as the Miracle Tree, is a multipurpose plant, as the leaves, pods, fruits, flowers, roots and bark of the tree can be utilized. It is also referred to as Drumstick Tree by the Britishers.  In the Philippines, they are referred to as malunggay or malungay.  Others refer to moringa as horseradish tree, benzolive tree, kelor, marango, mlonge, moonga, nébéday, saijhan, sajna or Ben oil tree.  Scientific research confirms that these humble leaves are a powerhouse of nutritional value. Gram for gram, moringa leaves contain: SEVEN times the vitamin C in oranges, FOUR times the Calcium in milk, FOUR times the vitamin A in carrots, TWO times the protein in milk and THREE times the Potassium in bananas. (Source: Ed Lagman)


I am a big fan of anything organic and I try to stay local most of the time if I can help them a bit……

Okay, this is it for now, have a happy and blessed weekend!!!!


8th Bicol Business Week @ Jesse M Robredo Coliseum

Today I did spent some time at the 8th Bicol Business Week Trade Show at the Jesse M Robredo Coliseum.  For me showing my support on going to this trade shows is one way of promoting and supporting our fellow Filipino crafters and artists.  Also, a great way to encourage people to either venture into their own thing or support local crafters like me.

Don Ramon Tamarind Wine

Just updated my header with this lovely photo of me enjoying my Don Ramon Tropical Fruit Wine – The Tamarind Fruit.  Tell you, don’t be fooled. It is a pretty strong wine.  I got tipsy and slept pretty darn good last night.  The kind of wine, you would like to take after a longs days hard work.  Yummy! Go check them out…Tomorrow, will stop by Naga City markets and get me some more..

They have Bignay Wine, Banana, Pineapple, Guyabano and many more.. A type of wine that will take you to heaven’s door. 🙂

Don Ramon Tropical Wine Collection (MYA Food Industry)  Don Ramon Tropical Wine Collection (MYA Food Industry)


Peñafrancia Grey Marble Artisan

The pictures were taken during the last day of Peñafrancia Festival.  During the fiesta, you will see loads of artisans from all over Naga City and from other parts of Bicol selling their crafts. Fiesta’s is their busiest time.

I got myself a mortar & pestle and used it as a paper weight in my office to hold down my receipts. Not really a cook so I used it as an ornament. I think it’s pretty.