- Dish type
This recipe makes four refreshing Pimm's cocktails. A little planning is required for the best flavour - steeping the Pimm's with the cucumber is highly recommended.
7 people made this
- 1 cucumber
- 8 measures Pimm's No. 1
- ice cubes
- 60g berries
- 4 sprigs mint
- 1 litre fizzy lemonade
MethodPrep:10min ›Extra time:2hr chilling › Ready in:2hr10min
- Cut cucumber in quarters lengthways, and remove seeds. Slice two quarters into spears and two quarters into chunks.
- In a glass, add cucumber chunks to Pimm's. Chill for 2 to 3 hours.
- Divide ice, cucumber spears, fresh berries (blackberries and blueberries in this case), and mint sprigs into 4 glasses. Strain Pimm's into glasses and top off with lemonade.
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The Pimm’s Cup started as a health drink in 1840s London. Take a swig, and you’ll see why—its blend of mid-proof spirit with lemon, ginger and fruit is as revitalizing as cocktails can be. And its charms are especially effective on a hot day.
The slow-sipping summer cocktail is the preferred vehicle for its eponymous liqueur, Pimm’s No. 1, a gin-based digestif created in the 1800s by a London bar owner named James Pimm. The liqueur—and its associated cocktail—spread across the globe, finding a particularly loyal fan base in New Orleans. Combined with ginger ale, lemon juice, cucumber and a medley of fruit garnishes, the drink was a welcome relief from the Southern heat. The Pimm’s Cup is also the favorite cooler at Wimbledon. The first Pimm’s Bar opened in 1971 on the hallowed tennis grounds, and it’s still enjoyed today by the pitcher.
The Pimm’s Cup is built right in the glass, so it’s very simple to make at home. Simply mix Pimm’s No. 1 with fresh lemon juice and ginger ale and apply your garnishes. With its refreshing taste and modest proof, its a great option for day-drinking, whether you’re watching tennis or enjoying a sunny day on your porch.
To alter the core formula, you can replace the ginger ale and lemon juice with sparkling lemonade. This variation is a popular serve and one that creates an equally refreshing drink.
What the ##64! Do I Do with This? Pimm's: What It Is and How to Use It.
You bought a spirit or liqueur because a cocktail recipe called for a small amount. Now you’re stuck with the remaining 9/10ths of the bottle and what to do with it. No worries. Creative bartenders weigh in with tips and recipes for getting every last drop out of an underutilized ingredient so it doesn’t gather dust on your bar shelf.
The Pimm’s Cup is right up there with afternoon tea and the Gin & Tonic in terms of beverages closely associated with the Brits. And while this on-the-rocks drink originally created in the mid-19th century as a health elixir is refreshing in the summertime, you might not always be in the mood for a long cocktail garnished with everything but the kitchen sink. If you have the remnants of a bottle left over from a pool party, you don’t need to wait for bathing suit season to return in order to enjoy it in a year-round cocktail.
“I like to use Pimm’s as a great herbal note in cocktails,” says Matthew Betts, the beverage manager for Fielding’s, Sky Shed and Tune Up, all in Bozeman, Montana. “It’s the perfect companion for additional spirits to help creative unique Tiki-style drinks.” His Pimm’s Fizz shakes it with Beefeater gin, grenadine, ginger syrup, lime and an egg white. Betts says the liqueur’s best attribute is its versatility, though it can be challenging to consider it poured into anything but the traditional fruit cup. And while others maintain Pimm’s No. 1 can be the primary component of a cocktail, Betts believes it’s better when it shares a split base with another spirit.
Dean Hurst, a bartender for Datz Restaurant Group in Tampa Bay, Florida, agrees. He uses Pimm’s in split-base cocktails that traditionally call for gin, especially because the liqueur has the juniper-based booze at its core. “The slight bitterness upfront, stale cola center (that’s a good thing!) and dry finish work so well in both and provide an amazing depth of flavor,” he says. “Pimm’s No.1 adds complexity and roundness to the Martini.” His variant on the classic cocktail stirs equal parts Pimm’s, Hayman’s London dry gin, Dolin dry vermouth and orange bitters, garnished with the expressed oil from a lemon peel. As an alternative, using a richer gin, he says, along with a barspoon of Luxardo maraschino liqueur and sweet vermouth rather than dry, nudges the drink toward Martinez territory.
“When combined with smoky base spirits, the fruit-forward characteristics of Pimm’s provide a very nice contrast,” says Jon Baxter, a bartender and server at The Copper Grouse in Manchester, Vermont. He admits that it can be a tough sell since it’s so entrenched in the culture of the Pimm’s Cup, but shaking it with mezcal, lemon juice and demerara sugar results in a surprising twist on the Sour. He also uses the liqueur in a drink he has dubbed the Really, Really Very British Gin & Tonic, where it’s mixed with Tanqueray gin, lime juice and an Earl Grey-tea-infused syrup. “The best attribute of Pimm’s is its unique flavor,” he says.
“Pimm's takes very well to infusing with a wide variety of ingredients to play off its baking spices and fruits,” says Pablo Madrigal, the head bartender at The Loyalist in Chicago. “It also blends very well with chile peppers, introducing a little heat and an unexpectedly welcomed vegetable character.” His After Hours Tennis Club sees Pimm’s No. 1 with strawberries and arbol chiles, then stirred with cask-strength bourbon and a dash each of orange and Angostura bitters, garnished with an orange twist and an arbol chile.
He believes the elegant and understated quality of Pimm’s No. 1 allows it to integrate with rather than overshadow other spirits, while its moderate alcohol content lets you use liberal amounts in your drinks while keeping them balanced. “[But] that same understated elegance tends to get lost if mixed with particularly loud ingredients like Chartreuse, and its lower ABV can risk your drink coming out flat,” he says.
Since Pimm’s is already macerated with herbs and other ingredients and is medium-sweet, it shares similarities with amari and fortified wine. As Madrigal advises, “I encourage people to take a step back and place it in a different category that they wouldn't otherwise, like vermouth, and go from there.”
Classic Pimm's and Lemonade Recipe
English summers and a glass of Pimm's and lemonade go hand in hand. This light, yet alcoholic drink is synonymous with many midyear events in Britain. Sold at all festivals, concerts, and even sporting events like Wimbledon, this refreshing cocktail is also part of weddings, social gatherings, and family celebrations.
Originally created and sold in an oyster bar in London in the mid-1850s as a digestif made out of gin, herbs, and liqueurs, the beverage is now a British staple found everywhere in the country. Although there are many recipes and variations on the drink, this is, in essence, a refreshing gin-based carbonated fruity drink (or fruit cup as they are known in England) that can take on other flavors from fruits (apples, strawberries, oranges, cucumbers, or lemons) and can be garnished with different herbs like mint or flowers like borage. Summery, citrusy, and sweet, this is the perfect quick cocktail to enjoy on a hot day. A truly traditional English Pimm's does not contain any additional alcohol of any kind—the recipe with added spirits like vodka is an American version.
Our recipe makes four servings, but scale it down if you need just a single refreshing glass of Pimm's and lemonade.
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Pimm’s No. 1 is a gin-based potation made in England from dry gin, liqueur, fruit juices, and spices. Served with lemon soda or ginger ale, it becomes a Pimm’s Cup. Pimm’s No. 1 was created in the mid-18th century by English oyster bar owner James Pimm. The recipe is still a secret supposedly, only six people know exactly how it is made. It has a dark, golden brown color, a medium body, and a taste of quinine, citrus fruits, and spice. Its low alcohol content of only 25 percent has made Pimm’s a drink to have when you are having more than one. As was customary at the time, Pimm served the cocktail in tankards—hence the name Pimm’s Cup. The rage for this relative of the Sling became so great that Pimm mass-produced and bottled it along with Pimm’s 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6: whiskey, brandy, rum, rye, and vodka, respectively. Detractors have likened the earthy mixture to liquid dirt mellowed by iodine, but the Pimm’s Cup is still the traditional drink of Wimbledon, with visitors to the matches consuming some 40,000 pints a year. The addition of a cucumber slice gives the drink some truck as a health food.
As any Pimm's enthusiast will no likely be happy to tell you, there are lots of ways to mix up a batch. In addition to&mdashor instead of&mdashthe above ingredients, you can add:
- Sprite, 7UP, or lemon-lime soda
- Ginger ale or ginger beer
- Lemon juice (with our without sugar)
- Slices of any citrus fruit (lemon, lime, orange, etc.). Apple slices are also nice, though be careful not to turn your Pimms Cup into sangria.
Of course, the Pimm's Cup isn't the only way to enjoy the liqueur&mdashfrom tropical twists to warm winter sips, and of course, sparkling options, there are plenty of other delicious cocktails to be made with Pimm's.
How do you make a Pimms Cake?
This Pimms Cake recipe is based around a simple sponge batter, baked in 3 layers, drizzled with a Pimms syrup and decorated with light fluffy lemon frosting and fresh fruit.
I love a homemade cake more than most people but here’s a secret, in you’re in a push you could construct a cheat’s version of this cake. Buy a ready made Victoria Sponge and a tub of ready made icing, make your syrup and decorate with fruit. Bob’s your uncle, Pimms Cake there you go.
The Pimm's Cup
Place 1/2-inch-thick cucumber slices in cocktail shaker. Using muddler or handle of wooden spoon, mash well. Add Pimm's, lemon juice, and sugar. Fill 2 pilsner glasses with ice set aside. Add ice to Pimm's mixture, cover, and shake vigorously 20 times. Strain into glasses. Push 1 rosemary sprig, 1 thyme sprig, 1 mint sprig, 1 lemon slice, and 2 strawberry halves down into each glass. Fill glasses with ginger beer. Garnish with cucumber spears and rhubarb stalks.
How would you rate The Pimm's Cup?
Very refreshing and delicious. It made 3 servings in my tall cylinder cocktail glass (not complaining)
Delicious drink but I'll skip the sugar next time. I thought the ginger beer brought along enough sweetness for the drink. Very refreshing cocktail.
Recipes for your Wimbledon party
While the FIFA World Cup is creating a buzz like no other around the world, another premiere sports event is also going on right now: Wimbledon! The tennis tournament airs on ESPN.
While Wimbledon watch parties might not reach the same level of fever pitch as soccer watch parties, they're still a great opportunity to get together and eat and drink! To learn how to make true English snacks, we had English Chicagoan Nick Spencer in our ABC 7 Eyewitness News studio. He's the owner of Spencer's Jolly Posh Foods www.jollyposh.com.
Nick Spencer's Recipes:
Strawberries and Cream
Pint of Heavy cream
1. Wash the strawberries carefully, making certain not to bruise them.
2. Hull the strawberries. Slice each berry in half.
3. Place your berries in a bowl. Sprinkle with sugar.
4. Whip a pint of heavy cream, either by hand with a whisk or with an electric beater until it forms stiff peaks.
5. Spoon the whipped cream over the sugared berries and garnish with a sprig of mint.
Toasted sunflower seeds
House-made strawberry vinaigrette
1. Prep your ingredients. Slice your carrots into thin matchsticks. Wash, hull and slice your strawberries. Crumble your stilton.
2. Dress your greens with the strawberry vinaigrette until they are coated but not sopping with dressing.
3. Combine dressed greens with sunflower seeds and carrots. Top with crumbled stilton and sliced strawberries.
Fizzy lemonade (we like R. White's, which is imported from England)
Vodka or gin (optional)
1. Fill a pitcher with plenty of crushed ice.
2. Fill pitcher approximately 1/3 with Pimm's liqueur.
3. Fill pitcher the rest of the way with carbonated lemonade. Aim for a 3:1 ration of lemonade to Pimm's. If you'd like your Pimm's a bit stronger, add a glug or two of vodka or gin! We like London dry gin. The liquor isn't the spotlight of the drink, so just add enough for your personal taste.
4. Chop and slice plenty of apples, oranges, strawberries and English cucumber. Add to pitcher and mix well.
5. Garnish with plenty of fresh mint. Enjoy!
The Only Pimms Recipe You Need To Know
Is it even Summer if you don&rsquot have a glass of Pimm&rsquos permanently in your hand between the months of May to September? Pimm&rsquos isn&rsquot just for Wimbledon, but pretty much any moment the sun peeks from behind the clouds.
What is Pimm&rsquos?
Pimm&rsquos is a gin-based fruit cup. A quintessentially British liqueur, it&rsquos made be by infusing gin with a secret concoction of botanicals.
The beauty of Pimm&rsquos is that you can make it up with whatever chopped fruit and herbs you want but traditionally it&rsquos mixed with lemonade, mint, strawberries, orange and cucumber.
How to make Pimm&rsquos
A Pimm&rsquos Cup is made with 50ml Pimm&rsquos No. 1 and 150ml lemonade, in a highball glass filled with lots of ice and garnished with aforementioned garnishes.
However, for me Pimm&rsquos is a TOTAL sharing drink, so make up a big batch for your summer party so you&rsquore not constantly playing bartender. The recipe below is great for about 8 servings.