Hendrick's Gin - An unusual gin that imbues our spirit with its uniquely balanced flavor
Dedicated gin drinkers have a wealth of botanical flavor profiles on the gin market to choose from, but only one bottle inspires bartenders to get creative with cocktails and play on the floral side of the spectrum: Hendrick’s Gin. Considered as “a gin made oddly,” Hendrick’s launched in southwestern Scotland and rapidly became a much-loved drink among all gin aficionados out there. In this post, we'll dive into the world of Hendrick's gin as well as introduce some amazing Hendrick’s gin cocktails for you to build up at home without any hassle.
- 1 Everything you need to know about Hendrick’s gin
- 2 Best 8 Hendrick’s gin recipes to tempt your palate
- 3 Final words
Everything you need to know about Hendrick’s gin
Hendrick's Gin is a marvelously curious beverage with a unique character that stands out from the others, and it's proudly described as "a most unusual gin." Infused with cucumber, rose, and traditional juniper at William Grant & Sons' Scottish distillery, this small-batch gin is prepared in only tiny batches. Noticeably, it is made in 500-liter batches so that the master distiller can have more control over their artistry.
Two different stills to give Hendrick’s gin its unique flavors
A lot of what Hendrick’s does (and does well) have set the stage for some of the contemporary gin fashions we see today. To have its unique flavors, Hendrick’s uses two different stills to make its gins. The first still is the Bennet to macerate and distill botanicals for at least 24 hours. This is a traditional copper pot variety that could be found at many distilleries. The second one is a rare Carter head still from 1948 (only a handful remain today), which has a copper basket to hold botanicals during distillation.
Hendrick’s smoothly combines the two, marrying the best of the lighter flavor from the Carter-head while maintaining deeper flavors from the pot still. After the two distillates, rose and cucumber essences are added before dilution. These two notes are the reason why people who might have written off gin as “just juniper” changed their minds.
Hendrick’s gin delightful tasting notes
The nose of Hendrick’s certainly has juniper, but you’ll notice that the musky hint of rose lightens it and gives it a floral forward impression. There are sweet oranges, subtle lime zest, and a hint of elderflower as well. The pine notes give Hendrick’s gin structure, but it is the floral notes that give it a unique character.
The palate of the drink has the backbone of a classic gin. You’ll get the coriander, angelica, juniper, and orris root accord. On top of that, Hendrick's has a surprising amount of citrus, particularly on the mid-palate, where orange and lime reappear. Furthermore, the spirit also offers a subtle taste of yarrow (that salty licorice flavor) and black pepper on the finish.
In a word, this exceptionally smooth gin features a decent balance of subtle flavors, which include wonderful notes of fruits, flowers, roots, and seeds from across the world. In fact, the Wall Street Journal has hailed Hendrick's as the "Best Gin in the World."
Some fun facts about Hendrick’s gin
Today, Hendrick’s brand needs no introduction. But if you think you know everything about this famous gin, think again. Here are 3 things you might not know about this curious gin brand.
- It took about 11 years to perfect Hendrick’s secret recipe. Gracie, Hendrick’s master distiller, decided to craft the brand’s oh-so-secret recipe in 1988. It wasn’t until 11 years later - in 1999 that the rose and cucumber infusion clicked and Hendrick’s Gin was born. Gracie is one of only four people of the distiller to know the exact formula.
- Hendrick’s unique flavor is the result of 13 ingredients. The wide variety of Hendrick’s gin ingredients include Bulgarian roses, cucumbers, and also 11 botanicals, including juniper, orange, coriander, lemon, angelic, cubeb berries, orris root, caraway seeds, elderflower, chamomile, and yarrow.
- Hendrick’s may be British, but it is not considered as a London Dry. Simply explained, the process of infusing the rose and cucumber oils post-distillation of Hendrick’s defines the product as a distilled gin. However, in order to be labeled as a London Dry, all botanical ingredients of the gin must be distilled together.
Best 8 Hendrick’s gin recipes to tempt your palate
Thanks to the smooth infusions of roses and cucumbers, Hendrick’s is one of those gins with its own booming, distinctive bouquet. Bartenders from all over the world like it because it lends delightful notes of juniper, elderflower, and citrus to a cocktail, not to mention its symbolic old-timey bottle. Here are a few Hendrick’s gin cocktails that you can mix up at home to enjoy at every relaxed moment.
Gordon’s Cup cocktail
Gordon’s Cup is a crisp, refreshing gin cocktail from the brilliant mixologist Sasha Petraske. It’s sure to be the entry point for a whole family of more-savory cocktails, as it mingles Hendrick’s gin with cucumber, bright lime juice, a splash of simple syrup, as well as a crack apiece of salt and pepper.
- 3 slices of cucumber, divided (1 reserve for garnish)
- ½ oz simple syrup
- 2 oz of Hendrick’s gin
- ¼ oz fresh lime juice
- A thin cucumber slice, to garnish
- Freshly ground black pepper and sea salt to taste
- Muddle together the first two cucumber slices and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker tin.
- Slowly add the gin, lime juice, and some ice cubes, and shake well for 15 seconds.
- Fine-strain the cocktail into a glass filled with ice cubes.
- Garnish your gin cocktail with a cucumber slice, add a pinch of salt, and a twist of pepper.
Colorado 75 cocktail
Colorado 75 is surely what you’re looking for if you fancy a modern take on the classic French 75 cocktails. With stunning floral and cucumber notes of Hendrick’s, along with the pear-inflected aroma from the brandy and cider ingredient, this simple, balanced drink is ideal for an autumn party with friends and homies.
- 1 oz Hendrick's gin
- 1/2 oz of pear-flavored Brandy
- ½ oz lemon juice
- ½ oz simple syrup
- 1 1/2 oz Infinite pear cider
- Add the first 4 ingredients to a chilled cocktail shaker
- Shake it roughly with ice for about 15 seconds
- Strain your cocktail over fresh ice in a Collins glass
- Top the drink with pear cider and garnish to the top with a slice of pear and/or a thin lemon wedge.
José’s Gin & Tonic cocktail
If you’re fancy something slightly warmer than the icy drinks you often get on hot summer days, look no further than Jose’s Gin and Tonic cocktail. This juniper-forward gin and tonic variation highlight the distinct notes of juniper in the gin itself, and the citrus elements keep the drink complex and quaffable.
- 1 ½ oz. Hendrick’s gin
- 1 bottle of tonic water
- A thin lime wheel, for garnish
- 3 fresh juniper berries and 2 lime leaves, for garnish
- Edible flower petals, such as roses, marigolds, for garnish (optional)
- Pour Hendrick’s gin into a glass containing one large ice cube.
- Add a full bottle of tonic water, stir gently.
- Garnish your gin cocktail with lime, juniper, lemon, lime leaves, and flower petals, if desired.
Cucumber Collins cocktail
The cucumber collins is one of the most refreshing cocktails you can mix up at home. The drink surely makes an impressive addition to an autumn soirée, especially when a few thin ribbons of cucumber are woven within layers of ice. The beauty of the cucumber collins cocktail is how simple it is to make. As for the ingredients, cucumbers are juicy and can easily be muddled right along with the lime juice to create a fruity base. To amplify the cucumber flavor of the cocktail, a cucumber-forward gin such as Hendrick's is your best choice.
- 2 oz of Hendrick’s gin
- 1 oz of fresh cucumber juice (blend the cucumbers in a blender then strain to get the juice)
- 1/4 oz of lemon juice
- 1/2 oz of simple syrup
- 1 oz sparkling water
- A thin lemon twist and some cucumber slices, for garnish
- Combine the first five ingredients in a chilled large Collins glass with ice.
- Pour the mixture into a cocktail shaking tin.
- Pour it back into your Collins glass. Gently top with sparkling water and garnish with a twist of lemon and cucumber slices.
The Bramble is among some iconic cocktails that feel like a century-old classic. This Hendrick’s recipe pays homage to the well-balanced original. When blackberries are in season, throw some berries on the Bramble’s ice crown for visuals and a healthy snack, and you will discover your new favorite way to drink gin.
- 2 oz Hendrick’s gin
- 1 oz of lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 2 tsp of simple syrup
- 1/2 oz creme de mure
- Garnish: use a lemon half-wheel and some fresh blackberries
- Add the Hendrick’s, lemon juice, and simple syrup into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake until the mixture is well-chilled.
- Fine-strain the drink into an Old Fashioned glass over crushed ice.
- Slowly add the creme de mure to the top of the drink
- Garnish your cocktail using a lemon half-wheel and some fresh blackberries.
Ruby Hendrick’s cocktail
This modern take on a classic Vesper martini, which is the iconic James Bond’s drink, is strong, complex, with a slightly fruity flavor and a savory bite thanks to mole bitters. Hendrick’s is ideal to help soften the drink’s bitter ingredient while emphasizing the floral elements.
- 1 1/2 oz Hendrick’s gin
- 1/2 oz Aperol
- 3/4 oz elderflower liqueur
- 3/4 oz ruby red grapefruit juice
- 3/4 oz of lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp egg white
- Garnish with an expressed grapefruit twist
- Add all liquid ingredients into a cocktail shaker and dry-shake without adding the ice.
- Add some ice cubes and shake it again until well-chilled.
- Strain the cocktail mixture into a chilled coupe glass.
- Gently express a grapefruit twist over the top of the cocktail and discard.
Chelsea Rose cocktail
It's been a long and tiring week, so why not give yourself a treat to a refreshing cocktail full of floral notes. Gin, apple juice, elderflower liqueur, and fresh raspberries for ultimate refreshment, a late-night cocktail doesn’t get much better than this.
- 1 ½ oz of Hendrick's Gin
- ½ oz apple juice
- 4 fresh raspberries
- A dash of fresh lemon juice
- Combine all of these above ingredients into a high ball glass, stir it briskly and leave to brew for a few seconds.
- Garnish with some raspberry and a rose petal, and serve right away.
Gin basil smash cocktail
A perfect accent for chilling outdoor suppers during tomato season. In late autumn, it revives the palate as a mouth-watering aperitif. This recipe demonstrates so ably how fresh ingredients can be perfectly incorporated into everyday drinking cocktails. All you need to do is to head to your kitchen garden or grab a big bunch of basil at the farmers’ market, and you’re mere steps from a delicious gin-based drink that will make your head dizzy. This drink smashes basil leaves, but you can smash nearly anything, tarragon, cilantro, thyme, or kefir lime leaves, for instance. Let this cocktail recipe inspire you.
- 2 oz of Hendrick’s gin
- 1 oz simple syrup
- 1 oz fresh lemon juice
- A small bunch of basil leaves (about 10 leaves)
- A fresh basil sprig for garnish
- Muddle 10 basil leaves with lemon juice and simple syrup.
- Add some ice cubes and gin and shake the drink well.
- Double-strain your cocktail mixture into a chilled cocktail glass with ice.
- Garnish with a fresh basil sprig.
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