The Perfect Margarita

This puts the “Happy” in Happy Hour…

Last week was the first week of school for my boys. It was a little hectic for us all to adjust to the new schedule and give up our lazy summer days. By Friday I was ready for happy hour in a big way. I have made some fun and fruity cocktails over the summer like my Mango Margatini, but I always like to go back to my favorite classic margarita.

A good margarita is as simple as can be. You need fresh citrus juice and good tequila. I like to make my margarita mix with a combo of limes, lemon, and orange or tangerine. Most of the mix is lime, but I like to add some lemon and a orange for some sweetness. I also add a little agave syrup to mellow out the tartness. As for tequila, I love Patron Silver. I think a silver tequila works best in a margarita and there are lots of good ones out there…just make sure it is 100% agave tequila.

I bought this juicer a while back when I got tired of hand squeezing citrus for margaritas. Sadly, I don’t think I have ever made anything other than margarita mix with it. It has definitely been put to good use though! It’s a Breville brand juicer and I have been very happy with it.

There is just no comparison between a margarita made with a sugary, artificially flavored mix and one made with fresh citrus. Ever had a killer margarita hang over? It was probably from drinking Cuervo Gold with a bad sugary mix!

The orange liqueur you use makes a difference too. Coitreau is my favorite. Patron makes a good one too called Citronge. Don’t bother with Tripple Sec…too sweet and the real orange flavor just isn’t there. My recipe is on the strong side because that’s the way the Hubs and I like them. You can adjust the ratio a bit to fit your taste (if you are a wimp). 🙂

The Perfect Margarita

Margarita Mix

This makes enough for about 4  margaritas, depending on how much mix you use. Depending on the size of your fruit, you end up with about a cup of mix.

  • Juice of 4 limes
  • juice of one small lemon (the ones from my backyard tree are humongus, so I use 1/2 of a lemon.
  • juice of one orange or 2-3 tangerines (3 if they are the little ones)
  • 2 tablespoons of Agave Syrup

Mix all of the ingredients together and refrigerate until ready to use. This keeps for 2-3 days, but is best used the same day.

For the Margarita:

Makes 2 margaritas

  • 2 jiggers of Patron Silver (3 ounces)
  • 1 jigger of Cointreau (1 1/2 ounces)
  • 3 jiggers of home made margarita mix or more to taste (4 1/2 ounces)

Measurement Note: I use a stainless steel bar jigger that is 1 1/2 ounce on one side and 1 ounce on the other and I am using the larger side for my measurements. A shot glass is more like 2 ounces, so don’t use 3 “shots” of tequila or your drink will be too strong.

In a cocktail shaker filled half way with ice, add Patron, Cointreau, and margarita mix. Shake well and pour over ice in a salted glass. Garnish with a lime wedge. Enjoy!!

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Happy Hour!

It’s Friday…and what better excuse to have a cocktail? Actually, we don’t really need an excuse around here…and if we feel like we do, we just make one up. So for tonight’s happy hour, I’m going with a Mango Margatini. We really like our tequila around here…especially the good stuff. For this cocktail I’m using Patron Silver, a little Cointreau, some fresh mango juice, and a little fresh key lime juice. When your are dealing with good tequila, it would be a shame to mix it with anything other than really good fresh juices and quality liqueurs.

I made the mango juice in my  juice press. You could also puree it in a blender, but it will have a slightly different consistency. I bought a jumbo pack of cut up mango from Costco so I didn’t have to deal with too much prep work.

I used key limes for this. I squeezed about 10 limes to get 4 ounces of juice, and yes…it is totally worth it!

Mango Margatinis

Makes 2 martinis

In a cocktail shaker filled half way with ice, combine the following ingredients:

  • 3 ounces good silver tequila (like Patron)
  • 1.5  ounces Cointreau
  • 3 ounces fresh mango juice or puree
  • 1 ounce of fresh lime juice

Give it a good shake – you want this to be really well chilled since you don’t serve it over ice. Serve in a chilled martini glass with a lime garnish.

CHEERS!!