Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Pimm's Cup Anyone?

With the Olympics and London on the brain, how about a Pimm's Cup anyone?

The Pimm's Cup is a traditional refreshing summery English cocktail, with a citrus or ginger soda base and Pimm's liquor, garnished with any combo of lemons, oranges, cucumber, and mint.  Several years ago after returning from a trip to England, I recall it was not easy to find in your typical neighborhood liquor store.  However, apparently, its popularity in the U.S. has increased in recent years, with its availability more widespread.

Provided below are some links to recipes and funny/interesting articles about this delicious drink.

Basic history and recipe...

Variations on the traditional recipe...

A discussion of its rising popularity in the U.S...

A funny take on the preparation/history/culture of this drink...

Although a bit more time intensive, I like the recipes in the following two links, for their inclusion of all the fruits and veggies...Similar to the Bloody Mary, at least we get the bonus of some nutrients, right!?

For simplicity purposes, I really like the sound of another recipe in the following link, and apparently it is tried and true from New Orlean's Napoleon House in the French Quarter...

Pimm’s Cup Recipe (Napoleon House)

Fill a tall, 12 oz glass with ice and add 1 ¼ cup of Pimm’s #1

Add 3oz Lemonade

Top off with Sprite or 7-Up

Garnish with  cucumber

For all of you Cliff Clavens/factoid geeks out there, according to Wikipedia, the history of this iconic drink is as follows:
"Pimm, a farmer's son from Kent, became the owner of an oyster bar in the City of London, near the Bank of England. He offered the tonic (a gin-based drink containing quinine and a secret mixture of herbs) as an aid to digestion, serving it in a small tankard known as a "No. 1 Cup", hence its subsequent name. Pimm's began large-scale production in 1851 to keep up with sales to other bars. The distillery began selling it commercially in 1859 using hawkers on bicycles. In 1865, Pimm sold the business and the right to use his name to Frederick Sawyer. In 1880, the business was acquired by future Lord Mayor of London Horatio Davies, and a chain of Pimm's Oyster Houses was franchised in 1887.
Over the years, Pimm's extended their range, utilizing a number of other spirits as bases for new "cups". In 1851, Pimm's No. 2 Cup and Pimm's No. 3 Cup were introduced. After World War II, Pimm's No. 4 Cup was invented, followed by Pimm's No. 5 Cup and Pimm's No.6 Cup in the 1960s. In 1946, the corks were replaced by twist-off bottle caps.
The brand fell on hard times in the 1970s and 1980s. The Oyster House chain was sold and Pimm's Cup products Nos. 2 to 5 were phased out due to reduced demand in 1970 after new owners The Distillers Company[2] had taken control. The Distillers Company was subsequently purchased by Guinness plc in 1986 and Pimm's became part of Diageo when Guinness and Grand Metropolitan merged in 1997. In 2005, Pimm's introduced Pimm's Winter Cup, which consists of Pimm's No. 3 Cup (the brandy-based variant) infused with spices and orange peel."

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