Ahhh Gordon’s. The venerable old name bearer of classic London Dry Gin has taken aim at the burgeoning world of contemporary gin with their new Gordon’s Crisp Cucumber.
Gordon’s predictably is a little conservative in their approach. Rather than tacking a radical approach at infusing some wildly novel botanical, they take on an oldie, but a classic. Cucumber is in some of the most popular [Miller’s, Hendrick’s] newer gins and therefore to only the stodgiest gin drinker whose tuned out the last decade or so will cucumber sound “new” or “exotic.”
But that doesn’t mean it can’t be good. Just because it’s been done, doesn’t mean it can’t be done better. So can Gordon’s, a torchbearer for gin’s classic style for the better part of 3 centuries take a step outside their box and make a good gin with cucumber?
Cucumber and citrus on the nose. A tad lemon, but there’s a nice bit of juniper in here. But Gordon’s Crisp Cucumber is clearly not regular Gordon’s. That faint vegetable note, although sweet, might be enough to push folks out of the comfort zone.
Taste is weak and slightly sweet at first, culminating rapidly with a flash of heat and juniper. The middle is where a lot of the traditional gin notes lie. A little bit of coriander, and some earthiness, a bit citrus. It’s nice. The finish is cooling, rather quiet but leaves a long lingering note of cucumber and juniper. Finishes quite smooth, but at 37.5% alcohol, you might expect this a little. A little bit of bitterness on the long finish.
The promo material for Gordon’s crisp cucumber proudly states that it’s meant to be mixed with tonic. So of course that’s where I’m going to give it a try first. The cucumber comes out really nicely in a Gin and Tonic actually. Just adding a hint of sweetness, and a bright note of juniper. It really maintains a lot of that London Dry formula but with the added sweetness of cucumber. Quite nice, and understated. The cucumber is in nice balance.
Folks who like the idea of a martini but don’t like a lot of power might like this. Basically it would make a really easy sipping martini almost on its own. It doesn’t pack a lot of punch, so it can be overpowered in drinks, though I find that the flavor of the cucumber comes through somewhat even still.
My only objection on the cucumber note might be that it’s a tad too sweet. But that being said, it’s a very appealing and inviting flavor. I actually think it goes with Gordon’s quite nicely.
Overall, Gordon’s Crisp Cucumber
I was pleasantly surprised by Gordon’s cucumber. The flavors were nice, although a bit more on the sweet side. I could see this being a great gateway gin or a gin which could show how a contemporary can be added without compromising a traditional base. It’s so easy to drink that I could see myself drinking this in almost any situation.