Musings On The Gin & Tonic

Why, you ask, would I discuss the quintessential summer drink as we rush headlong into winter? Well, I just returned from sunnier climes, and I had the opportunity to drink many of these sometimes wonderful drinks. Unfortunately, when bartenders are left to their own devices, they will almost always slap together an altogether mediocre drink that is devoid of the flavors of gin and lime, with an overdose of tonic (other than that they are perfect). But with a bit of careful instruction — tempered always by your wife glaring at you for being an impossibly pompous drink pedant — it is possible to get a marvelous drink. The trick is to get the bartender to:

1. Use actual, real live limes, and…

2. Get him to muddle those limes in the bottom of the glass, and…

3. Add a double shot of gin.

Yes, it is that simple. But good luck, because the recipe for a crappy G&T is ingrained in most bartenders and it will take real effort to convince them that their bar-tending Yoda was actually part of the Empire!

9 Replies to “Musings On The Gin & Tonic”

  1. IANAC, have you tried Beefeater 24? I can’t figure out if the idea is inspired, or an abomination, but I’ll continue drinking it until it comes to me.

  2. I gotta say, the cocktail book from the folks at Employees Only uses this stuff a lot.

    And since they’re from the big city and all, you can trust their judgment!

    Had a cocktail at the Park West Tavern tonight with bitters from The Bitter Truth. They make some interesting stuff. I think we both need to step up the game.

  3. The bitters game is too complicated for me. My bet is that compared to 10 years ago, when there were just a few (Angostura, Peychauds, and maybe one or two more), now there are dozens.

    I was at The Wine Library last week and they had at least a dozen!

  4. A man once asked me “what is the most important part of your body?” I responded “My brain!”. He said “Very good…but just remember which part of your body is telling you this!”.

    Then I made lively dry rub that consisted of cayenne, cumin, pepper, salt, cumin, paprika, brown sugar, cumin. and some other things I don’t want to talk about right now.

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