I have the best margarita recipe ever! Everybody says it but only I have it.
My quest for the world’s best Margarita recipe began my first day behind a new bar. I was the newbie on the block and everyone had advice to give and, truth be told, I was happy to listen. I got some great advice and some not so great too but the strangest thing I heard was when a bartender much senior my position instructed
me on how to make an “awesome” margarita.
“The trick is to just shake it until the tin sticks to your hand”
When you shake a drink, as the liquid inside the shaker cools so does the shaker tin – and with excessive cooling a thin layer of ice forms on the outside of the tin causing your hand to sick. It’s not unlike when Ralphy’s tongue meets the flag pole in A Christmas Story. I knew what he meant but wasn’t sure I believed him.
Drinking is a sensory experience and all five are included. The sounds of creating the drinks, the sight of an adorned glass, the fragrance of the ingredients as they play together in the cup and above all is the taste of the drink.
When drinks are made too cold, however, the experience lacks taste. Sure all flavors are still technically there but the tastebuds go numb and can’t really do their jobs (ie ice cold Miller Lite, Coors, and all the other junky beer). It may still be refreshing, but certainly not all it could be. In mixology ice cold is bad. Chilled is good. So here’s how to make a perfect and flavorful margarita.
The Orange Dilemma.
There are a zillion margarita recipes out there. Some are better than others but almost all use the same three ingredients; tequila, triple sec & lime juice. But you wont find that there.
I can already hear the public outcry. Relax. it’ll be delish.
In my recipe I omit the triple sec. When it comes to orange liquors you have a few options. First is the el cheapo option which generally means anything that includes the words “triple sec” on the bottle. These liquors (if we can even call them that) are nothing more than neutral spirits with chemical, artificial flavoring added. Yummy. The premium options will run you a pretty penny – Grand Mariner & Cointreau. Both options are delightful in their own right – I drink Grand Mariner over ice – but I haven’t really loved either for my margaritas. Cointreau is strong – at 80 proof the sweet, orange liquor adds a boozy wallop to the drink that I’d just as well not have. Grand Mariner uses a cognac base and has a bitter bite to it – again a well made liquor just maybe not in a margarita.
What’s a Mixologist to do?
Skip it. That’s right, I pass on the orange liquor and choose instead to add orange bitters and simple syrup to my recipe. I like that I can control the orange flavor/fragrance without overpowering the delicate drink with alcohol. Want more orange? Add another dash.
I use the 50-50 blend (half Regans orange & half Fee Bros.) and usually go 3-4 dashes per glass. And it’s just perfect for me. Add all into a shaker, add ice and shake until you feel the considency of the liquid inside change. You’ll be able to hear the crack of shaken ice soften into a mild slosh and you’ll know you’re done. Strain it out & toast to summer.
Got a good Margarita Story? Share Below.
- 1 1/2 oz Resposada tequila
- 1 1/2 oz fresh Lime Juice
- 1 oz Simple Syrup
- 3 dashes Orange Bitters
- Salt or sea salt for the rim (optional)
- Rim glass with salt if desires
- Add all ingredients into a shaker
- Add ice
- Shake for 10 - 15 seconds
- Strain into rimmed glass