Ms Lesley Gracie, Master Distiller of Hendrick's Gin, has been inducted into the Gin Magazine Hall of Fame in recognition for her 22 years of service to the world of gin
Hendrick's Gin has long been known to do things a little differently. So it should come as no surprise that their Master Distiller Ms Lesley Gracie has been celebrated for her impressive contribution to the world of gin because of her innovative spirit, her impressive contributions to the gin world, and her continuous pushing of boundaries that began with the creation of Hendrick's Gin, a rose and cucumber-infused drink that sparked a 'ginaissance'.
In what was considered a radical move at the time, Lesley was not constrained by convention, and chose to eschew the London Dry method of gin production, in order to allow the fresh green notes of cucumber to shine through in the spirit. Her experimental entrepreneurship didn't stop there: over the past two decades, she has been responsible for countless weird and wonderful Hendrick's releases that have garnered immeasurable acclaim and recognition amongst both the best bartenders in the world and legions of spirits fans.
Hendrick's Gin produces over 1.4 million nine-litre cases each year, with new generations finding fascination in this exciting spirit every year. Lesley says it's hard to believe 22 years have passed since Charlie Gordon first asked her to produce a new gin for him. "I started playing around with the recipe that would become Hendrick's Gin," she says. "It was an amazing brief, there was total freedom to do absolutely everything differently. We had these two unusual stills and an idea to combine quintessentially British ingredients of rose and cucumber. It was fun piecing the puzzle together and playing with all sorts of flavours and techniques."
Ms Gracie says that at that time, it was impossible to conceive that gin could be as popular and as loved as it is today. "No-one was really taking gin seriously at the time, so it's absolutely unbelievable the difference there is in these days with the abundance of new gins, distilleries and fans of gin we see today."
If you haven't tried a nip or two of Hendrick's Gin, give it a whirl; be quick if you like the sound of the reimagined Hendrick's Orbium First Release, or Hendrick's Midsummer Solstice, which is a limited edition - once it's gone, it's gone.