When looking at the Bramble Cocktail, it seems like one of the early-age cocktail recipes. The blackberry-flavored drink is restrained, with a limited amount of ingredients, and tastewise right on point.
Quick Facts Bramble Cocktail
- Method: shaken
- Flavor profile: well-balanced, notes of berries
- How to serve it: over crushed ice
- Glassware: Old Fashioned Glass
- Alcohol content: ~ 17.5% ABV, 22.5 grams of alcohol per serving
The name "Bramble" also does sound like one of the vintage cocktails. However, the recipe really is a creation of the 1980s.
- 1 Cocktail Shaker
- 1 Hawthorne Strainer
- 1 Jigger
- 2 oz Dry Gin
- 1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
- 0.5 oz Sugar Syrup
- 0.75 oz Crème de Mûre
- Add your Gin, fresh lemon juice, and sugar syrup into a shaker with ice.2 oz Dry Gin, 1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice, 0.5 oz Sugar Syrup
- Shake until the drink is well-chilled and strain it into an Old Fashioned glass over crushed ice.
- Gently pour the crème de Mûre over the crushed ice - remember it has to be "in a circular motion".0.75 oz Crème de Mûre
- Garnish with fresh blackberries and lemon wheel.
Ingredients for the perfect Bramble Cocktail
The Bramble recipe calls for four ingredients. Mainly, it is about picking a suitable type of gin, squeezing fresh lemon juice, and getting a quality Crème de Mûre:
- Gin: A classic Dry or London Dry Gin works well for the Bramble Cocktail because you don't want to take away from the beautiful blackberry notes of the Crème de Mûre. I recommend a Rutte Dry and the Sipsmith or one of another of our favorite gins for the Bramble.
- Crème de Mûre: When it comes to the sweet and fruity blackberry liqueur, you can't go wrong with Giffard or Merlet. Both work beautifully in a Bramble Cocktail.
- Lemon juice: it's all about freshness here. For your drink to turn out perfect, you definitely need fresh lemon juice. Don't take a shortcut and use store-bought juice.
- Simple syrup: the sugar syrup with one part sugar and one part water is easily made at home. However, cutting corners is perfectly fine here, and you can also go with a bottle from the supermarket.
- Crushed ice
Tips for Mixing
Making a great Bramble Cocktail isn't too difficult. Still, there are a few things to consider before you start mixing:
- You serve the drink over crushed ice but shake it with ice cubes. If you put crushed ice into your shaker, it will water your cocktail down too much.
- Instead of adding the blackberry liqueur to your shaker, you pour it over the crushed ice in a circular motion in the last step. That creates the perfect visual you want for your Bramble Cocktail.
- Use a glass that keeps the drink cool as long as possible because crushed ice melts faster than cubes.
What glass for the Bramble?
The best option regarding the glassware is an Old Fashioned glass or a Tumbler. Their designs keep the contents chilled longer than, for instance, a coupe glass would. And that's what you want for a cocktail recipe that calls for crushed ice.
Variations of the Bramble recipe
Another way to alter the recipe is to opt for another base spirit. Try pisco or Rhum Agricole and keep the measurements from the recipe above - 2oz (60ml).
If you prefer to keep the gin in the cocktail but want to make it more refreshing, you can also make a Bramble Fizz. The basic way for that would be to add soda water. Should you feel a little fancy, you can take this fizz to the next level. Use champagne instead of soda water for a Royal Bramble.
History of the Bramble Cocktail
British bartender Dick Bradsell invented the Bramble Cocktail during his time at Fred's Club in London. He created the recipe in 1984 when he experimented with a new blackberry liqueur the bar had received shortly before that went under the name Crème de Mûre.
The result was nothing short of extraordinary. With only a few ingredients, he produced something that was similar to a blend of a traditional Gin Sour and a Singapore Sling. It was a perfect balance between sweet, sour, and fruity flavors.
The recipe Bradsell created for the Bramble is simple yet elegant. It is easy to make and delicious.
By the way, the Bramble isn't his only famous creation. He also invented the world-famous Espresso Martini. With his creative approach to cocktails, he revived London's bar scene and got credit for why coffee liqueurs like Kahlúa are so successful today.
What does Bramble mean?
The term Bramble in old American English refers to "a thorny" shrub. In the UK, it's a common synonym for blackberries.
When Bradsell was sent this new blackberry liqueur - the Crème de Mûre - he was instantly hooked on the taste. It reminded him of the brambles he ate as a child. Hence, he decided to go with this self-explanatory name. That's how the "Bramble Cocktail" got its name.