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Where Did the Margarita Come From?

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Consider the Margarita. It is perhaps the first drink you come up with when thinking about Mexican cocktails. It is almost synonymous with Cinco de Mayo and a must for any event celebrating Mexican cultural holidays. But would it surprise you if we told you that the Margarita might not even be Mexican? As a matter of fact, we’re not 100% sure where or how it was invented. What we do know is that there are some interesting stories that might shed light on where this classic may have originated.

There are at least a few Mexican bartenders who have laid claim to this concoction. Carlos Herrera, an owner of a Tijuana restaurant, claims it as a product of necessity. He says that he created it in 1938 for a restaurant goer who was allergic to every other spirit other than tequila, but wanted a cocktail rather than the standard tequila shot. Just goes to show that sometimes a picky customer can be the inspiration for some great things.  Another Mexican bartender, Don Carlos Orozco, insists that he created it in 1941 after a daughter of a German ambassador taste tested his experiments and fell in love with one in particular. Her name: Margarita Henkel. 

Ms. Henkel wasn’t the only Margarita to insist the cocktail was named in their honor. Margarita Sames of Dallas says she was in Acapulco in 1948 when she invented the Margarita and named it after herself. Being friends with Tommy Hilton helped her popularize her claim when he put the cocktail in his hotel menus. People taking credit for this tequila-filled-beauty is not an uncommon thing, however there might be an even simpler explanation for its existence. 

The Daisy was a popular drink in America during the days of prohibition. It was very similar to the Margarita, except that it used brandy instead of tequila. For those of you who aren’t bi-lingual among us, “margarita” means “daisy” in Spanish. 

Perhaps none of these stories reveal the real origin of the drink, but no matter who invented it we are just glad that they did. The Margarita has transformed from an excellent cocktail with a mysterious past, to its own genre of drink. So although we weren’t able to definitively tell you the true story behind it, the least we can do is share with you a few of our favorite versions of this “Mexican” classic

The Altos Margarita

Ingredients:

  • Altos Tequila Plata 2 parts
  • Lime Juice 1 part
  • Agave syrup 1/2 part
  • Lime Slice

Directions:

Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake well. Pour over ice in glass. Garnish with lime Slice.

The Classic Frozen Margarita

Ingredients:

  • Altos Tequila Plata 1 part
  • Lime Juice 1 part
  • Triple Sec 1 part
  • Simple Syrup 1/2 part
  • Ice Cubes 5
  • Lime Wedge

Directions:

Rub the rim of a glass with a cut lime and dip it in salt to lightly coat it. Chill the glass. Blend all the ingredients with ice. Pour into the glass. Garnish with lime wedge.

The Altos Margarita Anaranjada

Ingredients:

  • Altos Tequila Reposado 2 parts
  • Orange Juice 1 ½ parts
  • Lime Juice 1 part
  • Orange Liqueur 1/2 part
  • Honey Teaspoon
  • Orange Wedge

Directions:

Rub the rim of a glass with a cut lime and dip it in salt to lightly coat it. Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake well. Pour over ice in glass. Garnish with orange wedge.

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