Thirsty Thursday: A Spring Pimms Cup

PimmsCupAnyone curious about the history of a Pimm’s Cup? According to the Guardian a Mr James Pimm, a 19th century London oyster bar owner who decided to offer his clients a “fruit cup” – a mix of spirits, wine, spices and fruit that developed from the popular punch.  And boy are they funny about how to make a good Pimm’s Cup

Like a good G&T, a well-made Pimm’s is a thing of beauty, but unfortunately it’s often a sad, watery concoction with mushy fruit salad floating like a layer of scum on the top. The trick to making a good one is to use plenty of the base spirit, at least one part Pimm’s to three parts lemonade or citrus-y soda.

So, fun fact there are various “cups” such as Pimm’s No 2 (whisky) and Pimm’s No 3 (brandy)  but now we just have Pimm’s 1 which is functionally a gin liqueur. Which is required to make the drink. A basic recipe looks like



  • 1/2 a small cucumber, sliced thin
  • Some thinly sliced strawberries
  • 1/2 an orange, sliced thin
  • 1/2 a lemon, sliced thin
  • 1 quart ice
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) Pimm’s No. 1 Cup
  • 3 cups (24 ounces) citrus, lemonade or basic bubbly soda
  • Mint sprigs to garnish

The trick really is putting together cucumber peel, orange and mint in reasonable quantities to avoid that “fruit cup” mush and just have a nice “spring is coming” vibe of a drink with the cucumber and a bit of citrus. Think spas and not the produce section exploded.

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