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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

September Cocktail - Margarita


Margarita. It's something most of us have pretty average experiences with. Think hard. Can you remember the last time you had a great margarita? If so, how much of that "great" connects to the place, the people, or time of year? My point is that a pretty average margarita can taste great on the first warm day of June after a long workday, especially when shared with great company.

I set out to try and make a great margarita even if drank alone, on a rainy night in September.

Three rules I learned through my tests:
  1. You must shake a margarita vigorously. It needs the intense chill and the aeration.
  2. Cointreau is much better than standard triple sec. It's a little extra, but worth it.
  3. A salted rim adds positive complexity.
I tried a few tequilas and preferred Puro Verde. I'm not enough of an expert to describe why, but this produced the margarita I expected. There's no harshness in this tequila.

Ingredients for 1 margarita:
  1. 2 ounces tequila (preferably blanco)
  2. 1/2 ounce lime juice
  3. 1/2 ounce Cointreau
  4. 2 dashes citrus bitters (I used Bitter Truth Grapefruit)
Technique:
  1. Use the spent lime rind to moisten the lip of a rocks glass.
  2. Roll the glass through a plate of kosher salt.
  3. Add ice to glass
  4. Combine all ingredients with ice in a cocktail shaker
  5. Shake vigorously (more than you think you need to)
  6. Pour into rocks glass.
  7. Garnish with lime wheel