Put on your tennis whites and grab a racket, it’s Wimbledon week! Naturally, I choose to celebrate most traditional athletic events with their signature cocktail. Don’t you? A boozy Mint Julep for the derby, the floral Azalea cocktail for The Masters, tart Pit Lane Lemonade for the Indy 500 banquet, and finally— the most esteemed cocktail of upper class sports spectators: The Pimm’s Cup.
I have never been to Wimbledon, but let me tell you how much I love the early Saturday morning “Breakfast at Wimbledon” television coverage. Granted, I’m usually sipping coffee and admiring the calves on Djokovic during the early AM hours, but once afternoon hits I’m down for a cocktail.
History Lesson: Pimm’s Cup goes wayyyyyy back to Victorian England when instead of throwing back shots of Fireball and calling it fun– the Brits created tonics made with spirits, herbs and spices that they claimed would help ease digestion (see also: my excuse every time I want another glass of wine after dinner) and this drink was conjured up as a way to help ease the stomach after downing a dozen oysters on the half shell. As most delicious things do, it caught on and eventually (along with champs, natch) became the official drink of Wimbledon.
For this recipe I didn’t want to do a TWIST! on a Pimm’s Cup because I think some things need to stay as they are. There’s a reason the drink has been kicking it since the 1800s. I don’t have access to the clear, carbonated lemonade they sell in the UK, so I’ve swapped out some San Pellegrino Limonata, and added a splash of ginger beer for some heat.
Some people really go overboard on the fruit in this drink, and while I like a salad in my cocktail as much as the next gal, I wanted to keep the garnish just that– a garnish. Save the chunks of apples and grapes for sangria.
This weekend, dust off your tennis racket and that bottle of Pimm’s you have in the back of your liquor cabinet. Impress your friends with your backhand, and your bartending skills! Cheers friends!
Makes 1 cocktail | Inspired by 160+ years of drinking
2 oz Pimm’s No 1
3 oz San Pellegrino Limonata
1 oz Ginger Beer
orange or clementine slices
In a separate glass than you are serving in (i used a pint glass), tear up 10ish mint leaves and crush them with your hands to get all the oils out. Take a minute to smell your minty hands and let out a nice long exhale.
Pour in the Pimm’s, San Pellegrino, and Ginger beer and take a long spoon or cocktail stirrer and mix it around kind of occasionally stomping on the mint. Pour through strainer into ice filled glass. Garnish with cucumber, clementine slices and a mint sprig. Cheers!