The Gin and Tonic: An Endangered Species

Last summer I noticed a failing that became chronic:
No one anymore knows how to make a gin and tonic.
It’s really quite simple if you have the right ingredients
and don’t resort to shortcuts as a matter of expedience.

For tonic, don’t give me that stuff out of the squirt gun.
I’m having a cocktail, man—I want to have fun!
No, you have to pour the stuff straight from the bottle
or a bartender’s neck I’m likely to throttle.

I saw a guy a while back whose style made the point;
he brought his own little Schweppe’s into a wayward joint.
Not for him quinine that flows through a scuzz-filled hose,
You want it fresh and sparkling, so it tickles your nose.

You need a real lime, not juice from a green plastic fruit;
if you try that on me, I’ll give you the boot.
Oh, and the tonic bottle should not say “diet”
or else you’re likely to touch off a WASPy riot.

Finally, there’s the gin, and people have their quirky preferences.
Mine’s Tanqueray, but other forms of “blue ruin” get good references.
I can’t imagine anyone needs to be told how to make one
but I’m always surprised at the publicans who try to fake one.

I’ve gotten to the point where my interest in the drink is so flaggin’
That I’m ready to jump back onto a moving wagon.
So I beseech bartenders, far and near,
Shape up or I’ll be forced to drink—light beer.


5 thoughts on “The Gin and Tonic: An Endangered Species

  1. My husband remembers his finest gin & tonic. He ran through all sorts of renditions … altering the tonic, the lime, the gin. Finally, after he quit drinking, he came on the answer… a touch of vermouth.

    I once won a bottle of Tanqueray in a bet on a Military Exercise at Green Flag at Nellis AFB. (Viva Las Vegas!) I saved it a year before having the motive to open the bottle. We were heading overseas again and I didn’t want to carry the bottle along.

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