Hendrick's Gin's New Collection Isn't What You Would Expect

For a brand whose very existence rests upon the juniper berry, Hendrick's Gin is devotedly obsessed with another kind of produce: the cucumber. The Scottish purveyor of top-shelf botanical spirits counts cucumber and Bulgarian rose as the brightest stars of its original recipe, and the former makes its way into nearly all of the brand's special flavors (per Hendrick's). To prove its undying allegiance to the refreshing green vegetable, Hendrick's has garnered an impressive resume of cucumber-related ventures.

In 2017, the brand commissioned an experiment from Australian scientist Graham Brown to test the theory that cucumbers are sensitive to "outside stimuli," such as music and perfume (per Gintime). Given this information, you might not be surprised to know that Hendrick's also played a part in the inauguration of World Cucumber Day, which invites one and all to raise a glass (of gin, natch) to the proto-sentient gourd on June 14 (per the company). In 2021, the brand created "experiential bus shelters" in select British cities that immersed commuters in the scent of cucumber (via AdAge). This week, Hendrick's announced what might be its most noteworthy cucumber-fangirl move to date.

Hendrick's is slinging some very rare cukes

Perhaps in an effort to broaden the numbers of its cucumber fan club, Hendrick's Gin wants to provide fans with some of the world's rarest cucumbers with which to garnish their gin cocktails. The brand reached out to Lenore Newman, the director of the University of the Fraser Valley's Food and Agriculture Institute, to track down the world's most precious cucumber species (per Food & Wine). Sort of like the scientists who are trying to bring back the woolly mammoth through genome engineering, Newman and Hendrick's were able to cultivate the seeds of six special cucumber varietals and grow them in large numbers in a climate-controlled greenhouse. "I can say with conviction that what Hendrick's has done for these cucumbers is a tremendous scientific accomplishment," said Newman.

The never-before-snacked-upon cucumbers featured in the Curious Cucumber Collection, which is available for purchase through Farmer Jones Farm for $48, includes the Cucamelon, African Horned, Hmong Red, Gagon, Muromsky, and Aonaga Jibai. The package also includes a tasting mat, a "rare cucumber sampler field companion," and Hendrick's recipe cards.