The margarita is a Mexican cocktail consisting of tequila mixed with triple sec and lime or lemon juice, often served with salt on the glass rim. It is the most common tequila-based cocktail in the United States. The drink is served shaken with ice, on the rocks, blended with ice (frozen margarita) or without ice (straight up).
Margaritas come in a variety of flavors and colors.
The IBA (IBA Official list of Cocktails) standard is 7:4:3, that is, 50% tequila, 29% Triple Sec, 21% fresh lime or lemon juice.
Other than triple sec, other types of orange-flavored liqueur are sometimes used, such as Patrón Citrónge (produced in Mexico), Controy (produced in Mexico), Cointreau (produced in France), blue curaçao yielding the blue margarita.
The "top shelf," "grand", "royal", or "Cadillac" margaritas often contain a premium citrus liqueur such as Grand Marnier or Gran Gala. Such higher quality or "top shelf" margaritas will usually use a premium grade of tequila as well. When sweeter fruit juices or freshly puréed fruits are added to the margarita, the amount of orange-flavored liqueur is often reduced or it is eliminated entirely. In addition to orange-flavored liqueurs, secondary liqueurs may occasionally be added to the cocktail, including Melon-flavored MIDORI, black raspberry-flavored Chambord.
Fresh squeezed lime juice is the key ingredient. The most common lime in the U.S. is the thick skinned Persian lime. However, margaritas in Mexico are generally made with Mexican limes (Key limes). These are small, thin skinned limes and have a more tart and an often bitter flavor compared to Persian limes. Margaritas made with lemon have a softer taste, especially when Meyer lemons are used.
Alternate fruits and juice mixtures can also be used in a margarita. Many recipes call for a splash of orange juice. When the word "margarita" is used by itself, it typically refers to the lime or lemon juice margarita, but when other juices are used, the fruits are typically added as adjectives in the name; with lime juice or lemon juice added like a condiment (and a wedge of lime often added to the glass).
Margaritas may be served in a variety of glasses, most notably the stereotypical margarita glass, a variant of the classic Champagne coupe; this is particularly associated with blended fruit margaritas, and the glass is also used for dishes such as guacamole or shrimp cocktails. In formal settings margaritas are often served in a standard cocktail glass, while in informal settings, particularly with ice, margaritas may be served in an old-fashioned glass.
Here is how I make my Rose Margarita:
- 1/3 cup (or to desired sweetness) Rose syrup (available at local Indian grocer)
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/8 cup orange juice
- 3/4 cup tequila
- 1 cup Cointreau or Grand Marnier or other Orange liqueur
- 1 and half cup ice cubes
- 1/4 cup lime juice to coat sugar on rim of serving glasses
- 1/4 cup sugar to coat the rim of serving glasses
- Lime slices or fresh red/pink rose petals for garnish