Gin and Tonic, extra lime.
That’s my signature drink. It has been since I was 20 and tired of drinking sweet so-called girly drinks like Long Island Iced Teas and the like. Ordering Long Island Iced Teas basically tells the bartender that he should check (and double-check) your I.D.
I was tired of this. I wanted to be grown up. So, I asked my older brother and cousin what drink I should order that would be classic and sophisticated. My cousin suggested either vodka and tonic or gin and tonic, but ever since I attended a crazy party in which copious amounts of vodka were consumed, vodka has not been my friend. I turned to my brother who concurred with the gin and tonic answer, advising me to ask for an extra lime.
I decided right then and there that even if I didn’t like the taste, gin and tonic would now become my drink. Forever. With an extra lime.
The first time I ordered it, I was a bit nervous. Would I like it? And then as soon as I took my first sip, I had my answer–I loved it. I’ve never strayed in the almost 20 years since I started drinking it. Well, that’s not entirely true. I have on occasion decided to throw caution to the wind and order some new-fangled lychee martini or other such nonsense, but I am always disappointed. And nowadays I’m more likely to pour myself a glass of wine than mix myself a gin and tonic (mostly due to lack of limes in the fridge), but if I go out, it’s always the same: gin and tonic, extra lime.
There’s only been one time that I’ve been disappointed with my drink, and I blame it on myself, not on the drink. I was at The Horseshoe, a dive if there ever was one, where most people either drank beer or straight whiskey. At The Horseshoe ordering a gin and tonic was pretentious. Extra lime even more so. Still, I was 23 at that time and didn’t care. The waitress looked at me with disdain as she brought me my drink, and proceeded to squeeze two large squirts of Realime Juice from the lime shaped plastic container into my glass. Gin and tonic, extra lime, she said.
Aside from that one time, I have never been disappointed in my choice of beverage. To me, the extra lime makes all the difference. I love the feeling of crushing the lime wedge between my fingers and then dropping it in my glass, only to crush it some more with my straw. And then I perform the entire ritual again. Extra lime.
To be honest, it really is best on a hot summer day, but I’ll take it any time of the year, any time of the day. So I’ll happily raise my glass to my signature drink: Here’s to gin and tonic–clean, clear, smelling ever so slightly of Pine-Sol . . . with an extra lime!
Note: I just recently discovered a WordPress site that gives daily prompts for those of us who sometimes need a little nudge. This was the daily prompt for three days ago, but since I don’t always like following the rules, I wrote it today.
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