Review: Hendrick’s Gin
It Is Not For Everyone.
Preferred By 1 Out Of 100 Gin Drinkers.
Loved By a Tiny Handful of People all Over The World.
Are the makers of Hendrick’s Gin attempting to market themselves the Anglophile-snob market, or simply to find some way to emphasize how their gin (and their campaign) is different from the usual crowd? Frankly, it’s anyone’s guess. But let the record show that the Bartender is a sucker for the elitist appeal, and would therefore likely have been interested in the stuff even if her favorite barkeep hadn’t recommended it to her.
And in all fairness, the product is something new and different. Still gin, yes, but significantly less juniper-y than usual, with some surprising notes in the nose. The makers claim to infuse it with cucumber and rose petal essences, and while the Bartender’s faith in her own nose isn’t quite strong enough to override her knowledge of the powers of suggestion, she won’t argue with the assertion. There’s also very little harshness, other than what you might expect from the alcohol vapors.
It’s on the tongue where the stuff really differentiates itself, though. The initial impression is very strongly sweet and floral, but a secondary fruitiness – yes, possibly English cucumber – slowly spreads over the tongue. The traditional “gin” flavor comes out more towards the end, with juniper and perhaps a touch of coriander on the finish.
Much as with Cîroc, if you’re a gin purist, this likely won’t be your cup of tea. But if you’re tired of Tanqueray and its ilk, or even if you just want something that “tastes a lot less like licking a pine tree” (to use the Rebel Spouse’s words), this is well worth trying out. A++ with cherries on top
Note: Their website, while it strongly plays up the “whimsy” aspect to their marketing, is also worth exploring – in addition to the amusing design, you get some tasty recipes, clever ad copy, and surprisingly good ideas for cucumber garnish. Might the Bartender recommend, from personal experience, a bone-dry martini garnished with cucumber balls on a pick and a rose petal or two floated on the surface?