How to Make Tapey (Igorot Rice Wine)

Monday, November 16, 2009

tapey igorot rice wineTAPEY, or Igorot rice wine is traditionally served when a host invites someone to partake of his rice wine at his house. It is also drank in volumes during public festivities and celebrations. Tapey is nowadays available in stores around the Cordilleras.


- half a pound of bubod
- a kilo of diket preferrably of the red variety
- a labba (or any wide space) to spread the rice to dry
- a gosi or any closed container

(Note: One of the most high-grade kind of bubod is available from the vendors of Abatan, Benguet. Don't try plastics as containers, they add a plasticky flavor.)


Cook the kilo of diket with a little less water than you would cook an ordinay rice. Just after the boiling water has been absorbed (na-ilowagan), set aside the diket.

(Before continuing, tell everyone not to disturb you until everything as not to destroy the spirit of the tapey. The oldies even ask, 'Maid um-umtot' or 'No farting".)

Spread the diket on a labba covered with banana leaves (or just spread the diket around any open space) and wait until its a little bit dry. Crush the bobod into very fine powder. Then, spread the bobod evenly. (This is a crucial part - you have to do it very evenly. My mother told me that one of the secrets to a good tapey lies in the quality of the distribution of bobod in the diket).

Put this in your container and seal tightly. If you are in a cold place, put it in a warm location. (usually near the dalikan or in the corner of the house) Wait for at least 4-5 days, after which the tapey is now ready. Remember, the sweetness of the tapey decreases with time.


Ruth November 25, 2009 at 1:39 AM  

good day to you! I am an undergrad student doing a study on the Tapuey. Sadly, there have been little secondary resources that could be found here in the lowlands. I would just like to ask you if there's a FOLK STORY behind the ritual of Tapuey making? (perhaps a legend, an epic, or a folktale?)

Sagada Igorot November 25, 2009 at 8:46 PM  

hi ruth. glad to hear of a lowland student being interested in the igorot rice wine. right now, i can't think of a folk story behind tapey, but i'm sure there is one. will be asking around and hope to post something about it soon.


Anonymous June 1, 2010 at 10:36 PM  

hi! im aj from angeles city. i would like to ask where i can buy bubod for shipping?

Unknown August 31, 2010 at 7:44 PM  

Thanks for the info., this is a great help for my demonstration speech., hmmm., maybe you could also include how Patupat is made by the Igorots.... thnx and more power,,, God bless

Mirasol June 26, 2015 at 7:37 PM  

This is a great help. We do the same in Sabangan and I am using this for our presentation for our business plan we will try to bring out cordilleras best. Hope we will win.

Lesley Umayat July 3, 2015 at 12:43 AM  

Do not seal tightly your fermenting container after putting the mixture of Bubod and cooked rice. Tapey fermentation in the first 5 days should be aerobic fermentation. Which means air is needed in the fermentation process but do not make a wide opening so that insects will not enter. Half sealing the container is okay. In addition, carbon dioxide is produced during the fermentation process that is why if you seal the container, the pressure of CO2 will cause the cover of the container to pop-up or burst.

Anonymous September 21, 2015 at 12:19 AM  

Lesley, I am about to embark on rice wine making myself. Thank you for that last bit.

Anonymous October 6, 2015 at 8:53 PM  

hi im a 4th year student taking up my undergraduate thesis about consumer preference on rice. can someone give me the different rice varieties for making rice wine? thank you

Unknown February 5, 2018 at 9:08 PM  

I realize that nothing is fair but I'm still trying. I just want to do my best and what is possible