Paper Lantern Distilling is a premium Asian spirits brand that creates exciting, interesting and unique drinks through a journey of ingredient discovery. Paper Lantern Gin is the company’s flagship spirit, meticulously crafted in Southeast Asia using the freshest herbs and spices of the region.
Paper Lantern Gin is built from rice and distilled with a unique blend of eight botanicals that elevate cocktails, evenings and attitudes. Bottled at 40% ABV, this gin is crafted with the softness of rice, warmth of Sichuan pepper, the brightness of lemongrass, finished with a sweet kiss of honey.
It’s more of a regional gin which brings a delicate combination of Asian botanicals while maintaining the juniper notes at the end.
Paper Lantern Distilling was founded by Simin Kayhan Ames and husband Rick Ames, who were inspired by the variety of fruits and spices available in Southeast Asia. Moving to Singapore in 2012, the couple discovered that the abundant and versatile Asian flavors so celebrated in the region’s food were under-represented in global premium spirits. They set out to create a unique spirit that would represent the flavors of Southeast Asia. Being homebrewers back in Boston, creating their own spirit one day was always in the cards. In 2013, Paper Lantern was incorporated and Simin left her job in corporate finance to devote her time to the brand as the CEO of Paper Lantern.
Paper Lantern Gin was launched in May 2016 via a highly successful crowdfunding campaign, which aimed to gather $15,000. They reached that goal in 30 hours and doubled the money by the end of the month.
Paper Lantern Distilling is not restricted by geographical boundaries or traditional methods of distilling. They go to where the purest ingredients are found and discover where the best capabilities lie. While the company is headquartered in Singapore, the first two batches of Paper Lantern Gin were distilled in Thailand but they since moved its distillation to Vietnam. Having the same bespoke recipe as the first batches, the succeeding ones are more refined, bolder and brighter.
As one of the only rice-based gins in the world, Paper Lantern Distilling takes pride in every stage of production from grain-to-glass. Different from most distilleries who buy their base spirit, Paper Lantern creates its own base spirit made from rice at the distillery. This rare production methodology enables them to oversee production from start to finish.
All the botanicals are sourced from Asia, besides the juniper berries which need cooler temperatures to grow. Sichuan peppercorns contribute aromatic hints of pine and clove along with more herbal overtones of plum and lavender. Makhwaen and lemongrass add a distinctive citrus high note to balance out the spicy base coming from the ginger and galangal.
We would recommend Paper Lantern Gin to any cocktail lover!
All the Asian botanicals, herbs and spices are hand-cut and macerated in the rice base spirit before being distilled in a Holstein copper pot still with a top-mounted column for superior flavor extraction and spirit rectification. The distillates are then slowly blended and finished with a light kiss of longan berry honey, directly sourced from nearby villages in Northern Vietnam.
The recipe was perfected over nine months after foraging the wet markets and fields of Southeast Asia. The end product is a modern gin with a perfect balance of silkiness from its own base spirit and the bold flavors from its unique blend of Southeast Asian botanical ingredients.
Paper Lantern Review
Paper Lantern Gin has a distinct aroma and flavor, mostly due to the rice base spirit and the unique blend of botanicals led by the boldly fragrant, earthy, and warm notes of Sichuan pepper. As with any other spirit, the taste reflects the production process, which the team oversees from start to finish.
Paper Lantern Gin has won multiple awards that reflect its premium quality:
- Best Contemporary Style Gin in Vietnam at the World Gin Awards 2019
- Double Silver Medals in the Super Premium and Contemporary categories at the Hong Kong World Gin Masters 2018
The EC Proof can offer you a vast selection on some of the best gins in the world. However, if you want to try a truly unique gin, the first of its kind in Southeast Asia, then we would gladly recommend Paper Lantern Gin. This gin will be a great addition to your home bar cart!