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Feb 9, 2007 09:35 AM

Tanqueray vs. Hendrick's Gin?

I know the obvious answer here is Hendricks. That said, I only use gin for mixing old school cocktails and gin and tonics. Hendricks too much gin for those purposes or would those things be that much better with the Hendricks?


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  1. Hendricks makes a fine martini - not sure about its value to a G & T.

    1. While I'm definitely a Hendricks man for martinis, I honestly prefer Tanqueray 10 for a G&T. Its botanicals stand out above the tonic more distinctly.

      I think the overlooked (and important) factor to a G&T is the tonic. Spend the extra $0.20 and get the better tonic (i.e. not Polar). For my drinks, I think that extra couple cents on tonic water makes as much of a difference as an extra $10 on gin.

      13 Replies
      1. re: ballifimac

        What are good brands of tonic? I never thought about there being a big difference between brands.

        1. re: Atomica

          Of the regular brands Schwepps is the best. Canada Dry is pretty good. But expect to see premium crafted, small batch tonic water available in limited quantities right now.

          Q premium tonic water, sweetened with agave nectar. I haven't tried it yet but have heard that it is sharper and less sweet with much more flavor than the old tonic waters. there are a few other brands as well just coming in to production.

          Fever-Tree Premium Indian Tonic Water (from the UK) and Stirrings triple filtered tonic water (Massachustets) are both sweetened with pure cane sugar. They are both supposed to be very tasty. Fever Tree is only available in the Uk at this time.

          Jim Meehan a mixologist at Gramercy Tavern and the Pegu Club is working on a lime and lemongrass tonic water.

          1. re: JMF

            I'd like to try Q, but their site gives no indication of where it might be available.

            1. re: Atomica

              I called them and I will post that info when they return my call.

              1. re: JMF

                In reading posts from the creator of Q Tonic on eGullet, I have my doubts that it's available.

                1. re: Atomica

                  Just got a call and it will be available soon. Maybe before spring.

            2. re: JMF

              fever tree is available in the u.s. now. (i don't know how it's distributed, but there is at least one store in st louis that carries it--the wine merchant, ltd.) fentimen's is also excellent and distributed more widely.

              1. re: mdavis7

                Yes, Fever Tree has been available for almost four years now. I was the first person to receive any in the States. They shipped me all of their products a few weeks before they hit store shelves so I could review them. Fentimen's is also good, I know the brand owner for the US, and they are some great products.

              2. re: JMF

                I've never been very iinterestd in alcohol at all until J discovered gin! Nothing else has really ever agreed with me so I'm surprised to hear how similar it is to vodka, which has always made me feel sort of off afyer drinking it...I'm not by any means an expert, but the gin I do enjoy is Bombay Sapphire, which hasn't been discussed much here so far. Right now I'm lounging in an armchair after work, with a G&T with half a freshly squezzed orange on ice, and I am quite happy :-) Nice twist after lemon... I was introduced to Gin by British fellow, and fell in love with G&T's. Curious to try Hendicks and the others recommended here, but can't say I enjoy Tanq much after trying Sapphire. Beef Eater isn't as much to my liking either, but I am very interested in trying these specialized tonics! Sounds so good :-)

                1. re: sylent

                  I have always preferred Bombay Original over Sapphire [and the big savings]. If you like Sapphire, you might really enjoy the new Sapphire East. Although I have grown to appreciate Hendricks, the floral/cucumber nature of it is really distinct and I do not find it works well in a G'nT. However, you may enjoy it as it is nothing like Tanqueray or Beefeater.

                  1. re: hawkeyeui93

                    I'm a gin lover, but I must say that I don't like Hendrick's much. I have only had it in a martini. It was the floral nature of it that turned me off. I much prefer a more juniper forward Gin, like Tanq, Beefeater, or even Gordon's when going on the cheap.
                    Maybe i'd like it better in a Gin and Tonic.

          2. The better the spirit, the better the cocktail or drink. Also the better the mixer, the better the drink. But you also have to look at the flavor profile of the spirit. There are so many different types of gin on the market today, it seems a new premium one pops up every few months. They taste different and so you need to look at what type of drink you are mixing.

            Hendricks has a unique flavor profile (the floral and vegetal style), as does Tanqeuray (a classic London Dry Gin) and Tanqueray No. 10 (a citrus forward, heavy bodied gin). I really like regular Tanqueray, and Hendricks, but don't care much for T-10. It is too citrusy with a glycerin like body and I find it fights with the vermouth in a martini. But in a gin and tonic the T-10 goes ok because the citrus matches with the quinine. Hendricks gets overwhelmed in a gin and tonic, and regular Tanqueray to me tastes best of the three in a GnT.

            I really like the musky, orange taste of Bluecoat gin. It's very smooth and unique.
            South is very different with its Maori medicinal herbs.
            G'Vine is amazingly floral, it's made from grape spirits and has green grape flowers as a major component.

            I have 2 dozen different gins right next to me an each one has different flavors and goes better or worse with different types of cocktails. I was at a gin for charity event recently where the same cocktail (The Aviation) was made with different gins and you tasted mini glasses full to compare. This really pointed out to me just how different each gin is when used in a cocktail, not just on the rocks.

            4 Replies
            1. re: JMF

              Two dozen gins! JMF, just off the top of your head, which gin would you you go for when making a martini?

                1. re: Jimmy Buffet

                  Lately I like the new Brooklyn Gin, the one with the normal spelling, not the one with the weird spelling.

              1. My husband drinks gin and tonics and always prefers 10 to either of yours.

                1. To me the sign of a good gin is when it is good on its own... I love a Tanqueray on the rocks with olives...

                  mmm i think I will have one now...