The origin of the Margarita cocktail continues to be a mystery. While one legend states that it was invented in Texas in 1948 in honor of chanteuse Peggy Lee, others assert that it was created in 1941 at Hussong’s Cantina in Ensenada, while Jose Cuervo claims the drink was invented in 1938 by a bartender in honor of a Mexican showgirl. Another story declares that the Margarita was invented in Chihuahua in 1942 by a bartender before he moved to the US to become a milkman.
Whatever the origin, the Margarita is an undisputed classic. In honor of National Margarita Day on February 22, why not create the beloved drink at home? See below for four inspired takes on the tequila-based libation.
Perfect Pineapple Margarita
Pineapple juice, along with a Tajin rim, put a spin on the classic cocktail, here served with Patron Silver.
1.5 oz Patrón Silver
.5 oz Citrónge Orange Liqueur
1 oz Pineapple juice
.5 oz Lime juice
Lime wedge for garnish
Method: Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake until combined and chilled. Strain into a Tajín-rimmed rocks glass filled with ice. Garnish with a lime wedge.
Though orange liqueur is a standard margarita ingredient, Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge adds depth to the classic margarita thanks to its inclusion of cognac.
1 part Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge
1 part Tequila
.5 part Fresh Lime Juice
Method: Fill a wide, shallow dish with 2-3 mm of fine salt. Cut a lime in half at the width and rub around half of the rim of a margarita glass. Cut a thin, crosswise slice from one of the lime halves for garnish. Holding glass upside down, dip wet half delicately into the salt. Shake Grand Marnier, tequila and lime juice with ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain into glass and apply lime garnish to the rim.
Gran Centenario Watermelon Grape Margarita
Created by James Beard Award-winning chef Pati Jinich, this twist on the classic contains two less-than-expected, but very refreshing, types of fruits.
1 cup Gran Centenario Plata Tequila
2 cups Frozen Watermelon
2 cups Frozen Red Seedless Grapes
3/4 cup Fresh Lime Juice
1 cup Simple Syrup
1 cup Ice
2 slices Seeded Jalapeño or Serrano Chile (Optional)
Garnish: Lime Wedge and Red Grapes
Method: Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Garnish with lime wedge and fresh red grapes. Recipe serves 4.
The lightly floral notes of St. Germain elderflower liqueur adds a certain je nais sais quoi to this margarita recipe.
1 1/2 oz Tequila Cazadores Blanco
1/2 oz ST-GERMAIN elderflower liqueur
1/2 oz agave nectar
3/4 oz fresh lime juice
Method: Combine all the ingredients with ice. Shake and serve over the rocks in a 12 oz. bucket glass. Garnish with lime wheel.