This recipe appeared in the New York Times in 2002 and immediately became an excellent reason to invite anyone over for a pitcher of gin and tonic. Its popularity reached a peak in our family in 2013, when seven consecutive pitchers were consumed in one evening.
Former bartender Toby Cecchini wrote an accompanying story with the recipe, originally his dad’s. Large plump room-temperature limes, rolled on a cutting board before juicing them, are important. The tonic water should be chilled as well as the highball glasses. Ideally the ice is cracked, but no one has ever complained about our manufactured ice.
5 limes, room temperature
16 ounces of gin
1 liter tonic water, chilled
Knead 4 of the limes on a cutting board, then juice. Slice used limes into thin strips.
In large pitcher, combine gin and rinds and muddle for two minutes. Add lime juice and let stand for five minutes.
Fill pitcher halfway with ice. Slowly add tonic water. Mix carefully, and pour into tall chilled highball glasses. Garnish with lime rounds cut from the remaining lime.