Melbourne-based The Cannabis Company has released a new gin using cannabis terpenes, which it claims is the “world’s first” cannabis gin.
The new spirit is called The Myrcene Hemp Gin, in reference to the most abundant terpene found in cannabis. The brand said that terpenes work with other cannabinoids such as CBD and THC, creating a union of compounds that achieve better results as a group than they would in isolation.
The Cannabis Company was founded in 2017 by Dr David Stapleton, a senior researcher at The University of Melbourne, together with Cormac Sheehan and Richard Jameson.
“It took quite a few goes to get to a good product,” said chief marketing officer Cormac Sheehan in an interview with SBS. “As we started adding in botanicals, we began to uncover a gin which was great, but not quite award-winning. That wasn’t good enough – from day one we didn’t want novelty gin. It had to stand on its own two feet as a gin, regardless of the cannabis element.
“If you never knew it had anything to do with hemp, you still had to be able to enjoy it as a gin. The real breakthrough came when we started adding terpenes to the distillation process.”
The firm has used column stills to craft a “lighter and more refined gin” and added myrcene for its “joyful sense of euphoria”.
Also found in hops, bay leaves and mangoes, myrcene is known to compose up to 50% of the total terpene content found in individual strains of cannabis. It is said to be the most highly-valued terpene due to its ability to ease symptoms of pain and inflammation.
With the new beverage, The Cannabis Company aims to showcase the functional benefits of cannabis.
Sheehan added: “We’ve got nothing against hippies, but the public image of the cannabis plant is still stuck in the ‘60s. It’s unfortunate, as this plant has a million applications as a food, a medicine, a textile, even as a sustainable fire-resistant building material. Yet it still suffers from considerable stigma, the result being that millions of Aussies are missing out on how it can benefit their lives.”
The initial release of The Myrcene Hemp Gin is limited to 300 bottles.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2023