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Guinness Foreign Extra (Singapore Limited Edition)

Celebrating all things that make Singapore, Singapore.

In 2016, Guinness celebrated close to 150 years of presence in Singapore.

A familiar sight at coffee shops and hawker centers, the dark brew has made itself at home and is now deeply woven into our local culture.

Guinness Foreign Extra Singapore Limited Edition poster

It even has its own local nickname, the Red Tongued Dog (Ang Ji Gao), that is a Singaporean icon in its own right. This affectionate name is part of a family of shared cultural quirks, symbols and expressions that define what it means to be Singaporean.

“Through the Red-Tongued Dog, a symbol of Guinness in Singapore, we want to celebrate all things that make Singapore, Singapore.”

With our limited edition design, we recast our iconic mascot to pay tribute to other local institutions that contributed to the unique personality of Singapore.

Through the Red-Tongued Dog, a symbol of Guinness in Singapore, we want to celebrate all things that make Singapore, Singapore.

MORE ABOUT THE HISTORY OF RED TONGUED-DOG IN SINGAPORE:

Founded in 1759, Guinness has been exported to the South East Asia region since the 1860s.

It was the merchant bottlers who developed a worldwide trade in Guinness. The bottlers registered distinctive and long-lived brands, opened and developed the markets, appointed local wholesaling agents, set up stores, widened the distribution, took the risks and controlled the trade. It was through their efforts that exports of Guinness grew so quickly and this helped the brewers to become dominant in the home market.

Many of these companies, established in the mid-1800s in the port cities of Liverpool, London and Southampton, and to a lesser extent Bristol, were specialist bottlers and merchants in their own right and did not brew.

They were contracted to Guinness as agents. They received bulk beer in hogsheads to bottle for exportation and sale around the world. A few of these wholesale bottlers became very dominant and had a worldwide presence. 

15-20 different bottlers were exporting from Ireland to South East Asia. In the late 1860s to 1880s, Blood Wolfe appeared to have established its Guinness export trade and was dominant in many markets in British controlled areas of South East Asia including Singapore. Eventually it became one of the few to dominate in Asia with exclusive distribution rights and the others disappeared.

Guinness Singapore Blood Wolf label

The first recorded advertisement for Guinness in Singapore was in 1869.

Blood Wolfe employed its own coloured pictorial Trade Marks and devices by which their often illiterate foreign drinkers came to recognise them. ‘Wolf’s Head’ brand stout was to become the name by which many drinkers ordered their beer.

Guinness Singapore Red Dog label

In 1900, JC Haines, the Guinness World Traveler visited the Straits Settlements, which then consisted of Singapore, Malacca and Penang, and reported sales of 3,277 cases in the previous year.

Blood Wolfe continued bottling and shipping Guinness until the 1950’s, when first Guinness took back the bottling of Foreign Extra Stout for export and started to brew under licence in Singapore with Asia Pacific Breweries.

However, because the old bottler trademark was so well recognised, Guinness maintained Blood Wolfe’s trademark ‘Wolf’s Head’ on the bottles in Singapore to this day, and Guinness became known as Red Tongued Dog.

Guinness Singapore Red Dog labels

Blood Wolfe continued bottling and shipping Guinness until the 1950’s, when first Guinness took back the bottling of Foreign Extra Stout for export and started to brew under licence in Singapore with Asia Pacific Breweries. 

However, because the old bottler trademark was so well recognised, Guinness maintained Blood Wolfe’s trademark ‘Wolf’s Head’ on the bottles in Singapore to this day, and Guinness became known as Red Tongued Dog. 

As many of its early consumers were Chinese immigrants who could not read English, the Red Tongued Dog was the only thing they could recognise on the label. Thus Red Tongued Dog or Ang Ji Gao (in Hokkien dialect) became the unofficial name by which people referred to the brand in Singapore. 

The symbol of the Red Tongued Dog has been placed on the neck label of the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout bottle and throughout the years this symbol has become synonymous for Guinness and the unique bold experience it offers their drinkers.