Pip-pip for Pimm’s

The traditional British cocktail to serve at your next garden party or royal wedding do

Istock photo.

The first time I had Pimm’s Cup, I was in the Costwolds, visiting friends of friends, and I was baffled. Why, I wondered, were these nice strangers handing me what appeared to be a glass filled with fruit salad and cola?

Little did I know that Pimm’s is a grand British tradition like double decker buses, cream teas and cricket whites. And as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle head to the altar on May 19 for the first of this year’s two royal weddings (the other is Princess Eugenie’s nuptials on Oct. 12), it seemed like a good time to revisit this classic English cocktail.

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Pimm’s Cup

Justin Taylor’s version of the classic Pimm’s Cup. Jennifer Gauthier photo.

At The Cascade Room, manager and bartender Justin Taylor makes this vibrant version of Pimm’s Cup with added zing from ginger beer rather than traditional sparkling lemonade. You could also use Sprite or ginger ale if you prefer.

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Rule Britannia!

These British cocktails are worthy of a royal celebration

Istock photo

Wedding bells will be ringing this spring at Windsor Castle and you are going to need some cocktails to celebrate, too. With this as inspiration, let’s take a glance at some iconic British tipples and learn how to make them.

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Gins & Roses

Justin Taylor’s Gins & Roses. Jennifer Gauthier photo

This British-inspired cocktail was created in 2017 by Justin Taylor, in Vancouver.

• 1 oz Odd Society Wallflower Gin
• 1 oz sloe gin
• 0.75 oz fresh lemon juice
• 0.25 oz honey syrup (see note)
• 0.75 oz pasteurized egg whites
• 3 dashes Bittered Sling Kensington Bitters
• 3 drops rose water

Chill a coupe glass with ice. Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake vigorously for 20 seconds. Fine strain cocktail into the chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with dehydrated rose petals. Serves 1.

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Bramble

Bramble. Jennifer Gauthier photo

This classic cocktail was created in 1984 by Dick Bradsell, in London. 

• 1.5 oz London Dry gin
• 0.75 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice
• 0.5 oz simple syrup (see note)
• 0.5 oz Okanagan Spirits Blackberry Liqueur

Combine gin, lemon and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. Strain over fresh ice in a double old-fashioned glass. Cap cocktail with crushed ice. Drizzle blackberry liqueur over the top of the cocktail. Garnish with fresh organic blackberries. Serves 1.

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Corpse Reviver #2

Corpse Reviver #2. Jennifer Gauthier photo

This classic cocktail was created by Harry Craddock, 1930, in London.

• 1 oz gin
• 1 oz Cointreau
• 1 oz Cocchi Americano
• 1 oz fresh-squeezed lemon juice
• 1 dash Taboo Absinthe

Chill a Nick & Nora glass with ice. Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake vigorously for 20 seconds. Fine strain cocktail into the chilled cocktail glass. Serves 1.

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Hanky Panky

The Hanky Panky. Jennifer Gauthier photo

This classic cocktail was created by Ada Coleman, circa 1903, London. 

• 1 oz Beefeater London Dry Gin
• 1 oz Cocchi Vermouth di Torino (or other sweet vermouth)
• 2 dashes Fernet Branca

Chill a coupe glass with water and ice. In a mixing glass, add ingredients with ice and stir gently for about 20 seconds. Strain into the coupe and garnish with a slice of orange peel. Serves 1.

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BC Distilled 2018

De Vine Spirits. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.

Central City Brewers & Distillers. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Goodridge & Williams Craft Distillers. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Victoria Caledonian Distillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Okanagan Spirits Craft Distillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Tailored Spirits. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Old Order Distilling Co. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
The 101 Brewhouse + Distillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
After Dark Disillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Shelter Point Distillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Gillespie's Fine Spirits. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Resurrection Spirits. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Pacific Rim Distilling. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Phillips Soda Works. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Phillips Fermentorium Distilling Co. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Salt Spring Shine Craft Distillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Victoria Distillers. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Lucid Spirits. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Stillhead Distillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Rootside Provisions. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Tumbleweed Spirits. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
The Woods Spirit Company. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
The Alchemist publisher Gail Nugent with B.C. Distilled founder Alex Hamer. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Mixers and Elixers. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Legend Distilling. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Long Table Distillery. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.
Yaletown Distilling Co. Byron Smith/Tank Five photo.

Spirits were high at the fifth annual BC Distilled festival at the Croatian Cultural Centre in Vancouver on April 14, which brought together 40 artisan distilleries from around the province, including a dozen new distilleries that have opened in the last year.

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Order up

How to get the right drink in a bar

At Coquille Fine Seafood, Shaun Layton has created a light, bright, classic-based bar list. Order accordingly. Dan Toulgoet photo

You’re thirsty. There’s a bar full of things to drink. You’d think nothing would be simpler than quenching your thirst, right? Not so fast.

We’ve all had those disappointing cocktails that left us wondering what went wrong. That’s because there’s an art to ordering a drink, a good drink at least, and it’s both simple and complex.

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Harry’s Bar French 75

Shaun Layton’s version of the Harry’s Bar French 75. Dan Toulgoet photo.

At Coquille Fine Seafood, Shaun Layton’s bar program focuses on “light, crushable drinks” that pair well with the menu. This variation on the classic French 75 comes from Harry’s Bar in Paris: “Until I went to Harry’s Bar, I never knew they served it long on the rocks with a bit of Ricard,” Layton says.

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