Saturday, April 28, 2012

Margarita fun time

I had my first Margarita on my first trip to the US. I think it was in Texas and my "cowboy" friend warned me if I got drunk and he will just throw me at the back of his truck. Found this article of how to make Margarita.
1. Siesta 2. Joey's Margarita 3. The Classic Margarita 4. Tommy's Margarita 5. Sangre de Cenobio 6. Breakfast Margarita

1. Siesta
A bright and fresh margarita variation for those who like things a little more tangy. The Campari and grapefruit juice round things out with just the right amount of bitterness.
1½ ounces blanco tequila
¾ ounce fresh lime juice
¾ ounce simple syrup
½ ounce fresh grapefruit juice
¼ ounce Campari
Orange twist
Shake liquid ingredients with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange twist.
From Juilan Cox of Rivera, Los Angeles
2. Joey's Margarita
It is a little-known fact that green Chartreuse partners well with tequila. The French liqueur adds a beautiful je ne sais quoi to this cocktail while the egg white gives it a sophisticated, airy body. A grown-up's margarita.
2 ounces blanco tequila
1 ounce fresh lime juice
½ ounce green Chartreuse
¼ ounce agave nectar
½ ounce egg white
Shake ingredients without ice to emulsify egg white. Add ice, shake again and strain into a rocks glass over ice. Salted rim and lime garnish are optional.
From Giuseppe González of Golden Cadillac, New York
3. The Classic Margarita
Ask five bartenders for their classic margarita and you'll get five slightly different recipes. That's OK. The margarita aims to please. Consider this recipe a base line. Too sweet? Use ¼ ounce more lime. Too tart? Add agave, ¼ ounce more orange liqueur or both. Too boozy? Delete a ¼ ounce tequila. (We find serving it on the rocks covers up slight imperfections.) A request: When you make a slam-dunk margarita, try it with no ice and no salt. You'll make the cocktail gods happy.
2 ounces tequila
¾ ounce orange liqueur
¾ ounce fresh lime juice
¼ ounce agave nectar (optional)
Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a cocktail glass or over ice into a rocks glass. Salted rim and lime garnish are optional.
4. Tommy's Margarita
Julio Bermejo, the state of Jalisco, Mexico's "Ambassador of tequila to the United States" invented this drink 15, 16 or 17 years ago—"Things get blurry over the years," he said—because he didn't feel like saccharine triple sec was doing tequila justice. Instead, he swapped it for agave nectar to create a classic in its own right. Once you try this seminal margarita variation, you may never pick up another bottle of triple sec again.
2 ounces 100% agave tequila
1 ounce fresh lime juice
1 ounce agave nectar syrup (1 part agave nectar to 1 part water)
Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.
From Julio Bermejo of Tommy's Mexican Restaurant, San Francisco
5. Sangre de Cenobio
This elegant margarita variation uses dessert wine (a Lacrima or Sauternes is recommended) instead of triple sec to give the drink a surprising, complex sweetness. The black lava salt is a nice theatrical touch and a nod to the volcanic soil where agave plants commonly flourish.
Black lava salt
2 ounces tequila
¾ ounce dessert wine
1 ounce fresh lime juice
½ ounce agave nectar
Lime peel
Rim glass with black lava salt. Shake liquid ingredients with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with lime peel.
From Brian Means of Fifth Floor, San Francisco
6. Breakfast Margarita
A 'rita that's fresh and light enough to have instead of a bloody mary or a mimosa with breakfast.
1½ ounces blanco tequila
¾ ounce Cointreau
1 ounce mango nectar
1 ounce fresh tangerine juice
¾ ounce fresh lemon juice
¼ ounce ginger juice
Tangerine wedge
Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a rocks glass over ice. Garnish with a tangerine wedge.
From Nate Wales of La Condesa, Austin, Texas

---------The Margarita Experimentation Guide
It's simple: Use the classic recipe above, follow the tips below and say hello to your perfect margarita.
1. Choose Your Tequila
Look for 100% agave on the tequila label.
Key words to look for on the label: 100% agave. Anything else is for the spring break crowd.
Blanco This is how the drink is classically made, giving the margarita the bright, green, peppery freshness it's come to be known for. Generally, a highland tequila like Ocho Plata (40% ABV, $50) will give you more spicy, citrusy notes while a lowlands one like Partida Blanco (40% ABV, $50) will be crisper and fruitier. At around $20 a bottle, Espolón (40% ABV) is a steal.
Reposado This is a tequila aged for two to 11 months, which accounts for its slightly woody flavors. Siete Leguas (40% ABV, $43) has great balance between sweet agave notes and oak.
Añejo Some say using a tequila aged over a year is a waste in a cocktail, but if you like oakiness, go for it. Most can get pricey, but Milagro Añejo is a good option for a margarita (40% ABV, $33).
Mezcal Technically not a tequila, but still made from agave, mezcal is generally smokier and more savory. The fruit-forward, easy-sipping Del Maguey Vida (40% ABV, $34) is an approachable introduction to the spirit. Those seeking more spice and smoke should stock up on Sombra Mezcal (40% ABV, $32).
2. Pick an Orange Liqueur
An orange liqueur delivers the margarita's rich sweetness.
This is what delivers the margarita's rich sweetness. Don't make it an afterthought: Avoid generic-looking triple secs.
Cointreau Pure and clean, Cointreau is the top-shelf standard when it comes to margaritas (40% ABV, $40).
Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao Newly developed from an old recipe with the help of cocktail historian David Wondrich, this orange liqueur has pleasant Cognac-like elements and a nose of orange zest and blossoms (40% ABV, $26).
Combier This has become the choice of the craft bartender set as it offers a more subtle orange taste with a hint of bitterness (40% ABV, $40).
3. Stick to Fresh Lime Juice
Squeeze lime halves in a hand juicer.
We know, it's so much easier to use mixes. But none of them are going to beat freshly squeezed lime juice. To yield the most liquid, use room-temperature limes, gently roll them on the counter to loosen the pulp (but not too much or they'll turn bitter) and squeeze lime halves in a hand juicer such as this one from Chef'N ($20). Limes vary in tartness. If your margarita is too tart, try adding a bit of agave nectar to even things out.
4. Season It Right
The only rule: Don't use table salt. It tastes funny and the grains are too small. Other than that, be creative. Kosher salt is the standard and sea salt is a lighter option. Smoked salt works well with a mezcal margarita. Spice fans should add morita chili to their salt (a coffee grinder helps mix them evenly). The citrusy, spicy, salty Tajín, a Mexican fruit seasoning, works wonders too. has a wide selection of salts.

[illomarg] Jason Lee for The Wall Street Journal
How to Salt the Rim of a Glass: Step 1
1. Take a quarter out of an orange so that it resembles Pac-Man. Rub the outside edge of the glass on the orange pulp.

2. Roll the glass rim in a plate of salt—make sure there's a plentiful amount; it's just salt, after all—and try to keep the coverage even. Consider salting only half the rim. That way you'll have the option of sipping with salt or without.

3. If the salt is uneven, use a cocktail napkin to tidy up the rim. Make sure there's no salt on the inside of the glass. Stick the glass in the freezer. This will help the salt crystallize.


4. Enjoy your margarita masterpiece.

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