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Of all global spirits, gin is unquestionably the most versatile and innovative, since it allows distillers the widest scope for creativity. Gin can be made from any alcohol base, from apple to grape. What’s more, gin does not have to be made in its original juniper terroir or the country which invented the name: England. Some of today’s finest hail from such untraditional places as Germany, Japan, France and Australia. In short, gin is a cosmopolitan spirit that can be made from anything, anywhere. Gin has to contain juniper, the identifying element underlying its wide range of base alcohol and infusion options but there are no rules on the type, amount, or origin of the other herbals added, nor on how we add them. So it is their creators’ fantasies, philosophy, knowledge and inspirations that add the content and craft to creative spirited gins. Gins can be sweet or dry, barrel-aged or unwooded. They can taste strongly of juniper, but some have only a near-homeopathic hint of it. But all count as "gin.” And then there is Porfidio Gin, technically a 'fractionally-distilled gin', where each component is produced separately for aroma enhancement, which are than suffused together in the cask and barrel-aged – and best drunk with a pitcher of philosophy.
With gin, the British demonstrated how Adam Smith's innovative concept of the “Invisible Hand,” the benefits of a free market, made their country culturally and economically superior. Smith would have been proud of how his compatriots disdained to trademark the name ”gin”, in contrast to how Mexico's CRT appropriated “Tequila” by trademarking the category's name. Free competition does reduce profitability for the maker, but we can live with it, since it legitimately allows more inventive creators to enter the fray. Today, gin is conquering the world thanks to its legal foundations in British liberalism of old. After three decades of my running battles with the Mexican tequila cartel, I find gin’s free-market ambience more enticing than the medicinal whiff of juniper, so I eventually just had to make my own to sip while giving my personal prejudices a run round the bar.
Among well-known gin brands, Whitley Neal claims inspiration from Africa, and Bombay Sapphire from India, so, growing from Porfidio's Mexican roots, the desert inspired my gin, based on cacti and succulents. As anything in the genus Porfidio, my gin had to use the highest quality materials, unique, innovative and willfully provocative.
Many gins are made by macerating dried juniper with other botanicals in over-proof alcohol, and the redistilling of the diluted mix. Most vapor-infuse dried juniper in alcohol during re-distillation within the still itself to extract the essential flavors. These methods are boring and commonplace, so I decided to ferment and distill fresh Italian juniper berries, creating a pure distilled spirit from 100% juniper. Porfidio’s pure aromatic juniper spirit is then infused with macerated wonders of the desert. Personally, if it weren’t for silly narcotics laws, I would add peyote, but instead I infuse the pure juniper spirit with the sweet juice extract from the Mexican agave’s flowering stems (quiote), along with the blossoms of the Tunesian prickly pear (tuna) cactus, the Vietnamese dragon-fruit (pitaya) cactus and the Mexican agave flowers. Each infusion is fractionally distilled separately, then the compound ages gracefully for five years, tempering the astringency of the juniper in wood barrels while eliciting its complexity and texture. As a would-be carpenter yet assiduous student of cooperage, instead of the usual oak barrels I used German chestnut wood casks to temper the medicinal notes of the juniper while still conserving its integrity, the core element of any gin. The experiments led to a “Eureka!” moment: The harmonious interplay between the astringency of the juniper, when tempered with chestnut ageing, and the sweetness of the flowering agave stems creates a memorable gin, that enhances its quintessential elements. Conceptually, think sweet & sour pork, or chicken-chocolate mole, for similarly harmoniously integrated culinary dialectics.
'London-style dry gin' is best with Indian tonic to ward off malaria, its historic purpose. Porfidio Gin makes a truly horrible mix with tonic and so is of little use for fighting fever. However, it is my own prescription for outstanding Old-Fashioneds, the paradoxically new fashion in gin mixology; or I drink it on the rocks like any great cask-aged spirit!
This premium spirit comes in the world's most exquisite and expensive porcelain, royal Kutani from Japan, a fitting setting for this jewel of gins. While the Mikado had little to do with Porfidio Gin or with my karmic link to the Mexican sierra, it still made perfect sense to decant the precious liquid into this delicate "five-color porcelain", which alone can organically recreate the bright hues of cactus flowers in the monochromatic sands of the desert.
Porfidio Gin is a playful spirit, infused with my soul, my creative ambitions. It is a philosophical play on the absurdities of trademarking liquor categories and probably the one I’ve most enjoyed creating. I invite you to share the philosophy, and the gin!

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