It just sounds good, doesn’t it? It whips up visions of a tuxedo-ed bartender planted behind rows of bottles and glasses at a Gatsby-esque bash in a lush green backyard, or of sturdy tumblers filled with lime-pierced spirits sipped on a dock in northern Minnesota, or of crisp white wine poured on our deck as the sun begins to sink, or of bottles of beers cracked open at the beach, sand stuck to your toes.
Unfortunately, though, cocktail hour, to me, is not a creature of the winter (though winter, at least in Chicago, is perhaps the time when we’re most in need of said cocktail hour) and I’m pretty sure it has something to do with winter’s daylight. Or, more accurately, its lack thereof. Cocktail hour happens before dark, don’t you think? If you’re on vacation, in fact, it happens well before dark. At its latest, cocktail hour skirts up against the minutes just after the sun sets, casting its colors across the sky, even though the sun itself had dipped out of sight. And, during the past few winter months, darkness settled in at an hour at which cocktails are deemed indecent (unless on vacation; see above), eclipsing all opportunities for a proper cocktail hour.
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
2/3 cup ginger beer, chilled (if you can’t find ginger beer, I think ginger simple syrup mixed with club soda would work well)
Garnish: a lime slice