As we prepare to celebrate the third annual London Boutique Bar Show, it seems like a good time to celebrate a London modern classic and recognise the part it has played in making this great city the leader of the cocktail culture.
Contrary to most classic cocktails, the origin of this concoction can be traced to a single man, place and time. Namely, Dick Bradsell at Fred's Club in Soho, London, in the mid 1980s.
Like most classic cocktails its greatness lies in its simplicity. The Bramble features gin, lemon juice sugar syrup and Crème de Mure combined to create a smooth, yet complex drink.
Understanding its greatness involves looking beyond the drink itself and at the rationale behind it. For those who know their drinks, mixing gin, lemon juice and sugar results in the basis for the Tom Collins, Gin Fizz and many more classic cocktails.
However, the brilliance of the Bramble lies in taking ownership of a celebrated combination and then reinventing it for the modern palate, in this case by building it over crushed ice and adding a blackberry liqueur to sweeten it.
Its invention was part of a movement towards making classic drinks more palatable, an initiative that helped quality cocktails regain their commercial popularity after the devastation of the 1970s' premixes.
This movement can be said to be directly responsible for the popularity of today's classic cocktails and the pride and dedication of its practitioners, which we will gather to celebrate on 21-22 September at the Royal Horticultural Hall, Westminster, at the London Boutique Bar Show.
(Original Recipe George Sinclair)
• 37.5ml Plymouth gin
• 20ml lemon juice
• 12.5ml sugar syrup
• 20ml Crème de Mure
Build, over crushed ice, in an old-fashioned glass and drizzle the crème de Mure over the top. Garnish with a slice of lemon and 2 raspberries.
Robbie Bargh, director, Gorgeous Group
020 7091 7492