Cocktail Recipe: How to mix a classic Pimm’s Cup

Cocktail Club host Jackson Cannon shares his take on this simple gem of a cocktail.

Mix a Pimm’s Cup with the Cocktail Club on Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post

Do you know what it means to miss New Orleans?

Although the origin and history of Pimm’s as a British summer favourite cup is unquestionable, it may be that this drink reaches its highest purpose in its simplest form in a place of near-perpetual summer: New Orleans. In the “City that Care Forgot,” the laissez-faire ethos lends itself to large open container areas and never a frown toward regular day drinking. In this realm, the Pimm’s Cup is king.

This refreshing toast of bitter lemon is low in alcohol yet filled with flavour.

At the incomparable Tales of the Cocktail, an annual convention dedicated to hospitality, fine bartending, and craft spirits, and held in a sweltering NOLA in July, the daytime meeting spot is the venerable Napoleon House on Chartres Street in the French Quarter. During the week-long festival of good drinking in the restaurant that’s been a public house since 1791, rarely is a single Pimm’s Cup ordered.

Instead, a quick tally of one’s friends from all over the world is made, and an order for three, four, or more is placed. If by chance a fellow traveller is on the way out, not to worry. Their drink is quickly transferred into a custom travel cup, rendering the slow walk in the heat a celebration of life and culture.

Below is my take on this simple gem of a cocktail.

What you’ll need

Pimm’s Cup

  • 2 oz. Pimm’s No.1
  • 1 oz. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 oz. simple syrup
  • 2 slices cucumber

Lightly crush the two slices of cucumber and shake with the rest of the ingredients over ice.
Strain onto fresh ice and top with ginger ale.
Garnish with either a cucumber ribbon or a long slice of cucumber.

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