Hendrick’s Gin has a fresh scent of cucumber, rose petals and citrus. It is a complex gin with a taste of juniper and citrus that gives the typical gin taste, but under the top layers hides lots of other flavors. Cucumber is noticeable, as are chamomile and fragrant flowers. Hendrick’s gin story here!
Both in terms of taste and production, Hendrick’s Gin is unique. The floral fruity taste of roses and cucumbers makes Hendrick’s unmistakable among the world’s gin varieties.
Hendricks Gin Story – Beginning
It was William Grant’s chairman, Charles Gordon, who came to Leslie Gracie with the challenge of developing a new kind of gin with power and character. Charles Gordon had bought two old gin pans at auction, a Bennet still, made in London in 1860 and a Carter-Head still from 1948.
Leslie Gracie began experimenting with different recipes. She tested batches where she worked with herbs, flowers, spices. The assignment suited her perfectly. Leslie joined William Grant’s in 1988 from the pharmaceutical industry. There she had devoted herself to giving bitter medicines a more pleasant taste. Since childhood, she was a passionate garden enthusiast and had her own flamboyant flower beds where most things could be picked up. It took her almost ten years before she finished the gin recipe. The composition she came up with was inspired by English gardens; a cup of tea and a cucumber sandwich in an early summer arbor among roses and floral fragrance. Could it be more British?
The Bennet and Carter-Head boilers turned out to be a pair of radars. The ingredients are macerated in wheat distillate for 24 hours before being run through the Bennet pan – which is a very early traditional pot still. In the Carter-Head boiler, the alcohol vapors are then led through a spice basket on the boiler neck. The Carter-Head boiler is largely the only one in the world still in production. Together, the pans individually contribute to creating a gin with a style and taste that can only be Hendrick’s.
Other Ingredients Of Hendrick’s Gin
In addition to cucumbers and roses, the recipe developed by Leslie Gracie contains juniper berries, coriander, orange, lemon, angelica, iris root, cube pepper, cumin seeds, chamomile, elderberry and yarrow.
The name Hendrick’s is a story in itself. It was William Grant’s last grandson in Mrs. Janet Sheed Roberts who came up with the proposal. She remembered a gardener the family had and suggested that the new gin be named after him. When Mrs. Janet passed away in 2012, she was Scotland’s oldest woman, 110 years old.
In 2019, Hendrick’s “Gin Palace” inaugurated in Girvan. The antique Bennet and Carterhead boilers still have their obvious role in production. In Gin Palace, they have been joined by four newly made exact copies. Here, Leslie Gracie not only houses a state-of-the-art production facility. To help her develop Hendrick’s, she also has a full-scale sensory laboratory, a taste library, a lecture hall and a large garden with, among other things, a tropical greenhouse with the same climate as in Venezuela and a greenhouse with a Mediterranean climate. Everything close at hand to make Hendrick’s Gin what it is – unique.