The classic Pimm’s Cup cocktail is an enticing blend of Pimm’s No. 1 and the effervescent bubbles of Sprite or Ginger Ale, garnished with fresh fruits and mint. The combo serves as the perfect summertime refreshment.
A gorgeous summer afternoon, when the sun has got that warm golden glow and the leaves are radiating with green loveliness, is the cue for a Pimm’s Cup. It’s almost Pavlovian. When the sun hits my skin, Pimm’s has to hit my lips. Even if you haven’t had a drink of Pimm’s, you’ve no doubt seen it on the shelves at the liquor store. Its bold red and yellow label is as much an English icon as Big Ben and Stonehenge. Try it once and it will quickly become your go-to thirst buster for summer cookouts, picnics under the open sky, and for those evenings when it’s just you chilling on the porch
You start with Pimm’s No. 1, which is a gin-based potion that’s both spritzy and fruity, and then you jazz it up with Sprite or Ginger Ale. Add a punch of fresh cucumber slices, sweet-as-kisses strawberries, and juicy oranges. What you get is a cocktail that doesn’t just taste great, but looks fabulous too! The minty freshness reminds you of a Mojito, but by way of Londontown.
How Long Has Pimm’s Been Around? //
Pimm’s has been around since the early 1800s. The man responsible is James Pimm, a fishmonger and the proprietor at an oyster house in South London. Looking to concoct a gin-based cocktail that would complement his wares (i.e., the oysters), Pimm mixed herbs and spices, and fruit. Most important, however, was the quinine, which aids the digestion of oysters. The mix took off and became commercially available in 1859. And yes, before you even have to ask, there are other numbered Pimm’s: No. 3 (brandy-based) and No. 6 (vodka-based) are the most popular.
- 2 ounces Pimm’s No. 1
- 3 ounces Lemon-lime soda (like Spite) or Ginger Ale
- Fresh mint leaves
- Slices of cucumber, strawberries and an orange
- Fill your glass with ice and add the Pimm’s No. 1
- Add slices of cucumber, strawberries, and orange to your glass.
- Pour in the soda (or Ginger Ale) until the glass is full.
- Stir it all together gently with a long spoon, garnish with a sprig of mint, and serve.
Tips and Tricks to Make a Perfect Pimm’s Cup
- Use high-quality spirits. Premium is the way to go for the best-tasting Pimm’s Cup.
- In a similar vein, use fresh fruit for your Pimm’s Cup, which will not only taste good, but look good too.
- Always use plenty of ice. The Pimm’s Cup is a summer drink and should be served (ice) cold. It will also dilute the drink just so.
- Because there are bubbles in this drink, it’s important you stir and not shake your Pimm’s.
- It’s not enough to settle that sprig of mint on your Pimm’s; first, you must give it a gentle smack, thereby releasing its aroma. Trust me, you’ll notice the difference after one sip.
Pimm’s Cup Variations
Healthier Low-Carb Pimm’s Cup: Use soda water instead of ginger ale or Sprite and immediately do away with a bunch of sugar and calories. You can also add more fruit to make up for the loss in taste.
Pimm’s Royale: Or you can go the other way and fancify your Pimm’s Cup by replacing your pop with Champagne or prosecco.
Winter Pimm’s Cup: If your Pimm’s Cup doesn’t taste the same after September 1, add warm apple juice and a sprinkle of cinnamon for a winter beverage.
Pimm’s Cup Mocktail: Replace Pimm’s No. 1 with a fruity, non-alcoholic ginger beer.