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Why the gin and tonic is the ‘summer blockbuster of mixed drinks’

Bad news, hipsters: If you're not drinking gin and tonics this summer, you're drinking the wrong thing. Both The New York Times and Slate recently published pieces making the case that the classic cocktail is the libation of Summer 2013.

"A new golden age for a classic cocktail has arrived," the Times says, at least on Twitter. Slate calls it the "summer blockbuster of mixed drinks."

Both outlets agree that the main impetus for the drink's resurgence is the current fad for high-end mixology. Classic drinks such as the old-fashioned, the sidecar and the Manhattan have made a comeback, and bartenders have taken to making their own bitters and tonics.

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But there's more than mere nostalgia with the gin and tonic: It has, and always will have, a cachet in literary society as the drink of choice for slightly (or completely) dissolute upper-class, preppy protagonists.

"If the cocktail has an equivalent in the American literary canon, it has to be The Great Gatsby, the Jazz Age staple by F. Scott Fitzgerald," writes the Times.

As for Slate, the literary antecedent is more recent. The author of the article enthusiastically agrees with a drinking partner who calls the G&T "the Whit Stillman film of mixed drinks."

As usual, food and drink blogs were the first to spot the trend (click here and here for examples cited by Slate).

Also true: People who have spent their lives loving the alchemy created when gin, tonic, lime and ice are mixed in a glass don't need the media to tell them how good it tastes when consumed on a patio, porch or dock at evening time. The rest of the world is merely catching up to them.

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