Recently we were with friends in San Diego, CA and walking through Old Town when the need to quench our thirst became so overpowering we stopped in at the Old Town Saloon. It was by unanimous consensus that a round or two of lime margaritas was going to be the drink of the afternoon. The only requirement that was asked of the bartender was that the margaritas not be too sweet.
What proceeded to happen was witnessing a bar tender make a Lime Margarita with Salt on the Rocks from scratch. Scratch, yes, from scratch, homemade without the use of previously made mixtures from liquid concentrate or powders. I will admit, I was fascinated as the bartender prepared the lime margaritas in the cocktail shaker.
- 1 Shot of Tequila
- 1/2 Shot of Triple Sec
- 10 – 12 Lime Wedges Hand Squeezed (equivalent of the juice of 2 Limes)
- Margarita Salt
- Fill cocktail shaker with ice
- Salt the rim of a tumbler, wiping the inside of the rim free of salt
- Fill the tumbler with ice
- Pour the tequila and triple sec into the cocktail shaker that is filled with ice
- Squeeze the juice of 10 – 12 Limes Wedges / Add the juice of 2 Limes
- Shake vigorously thoroughly mixing and chilling all of the ingredients in the cocktail shaker
- Strain mixed contents into the prepared tumbler, add a wedge of lime and serve
Seriously, it was that simple. I have drank my share of margaritas over the years, but I never realized how simple and how refreshing a lime margarita made from scratch could truly taste. Too often in bars and restaurants the sour mixture is previously made or comes from the soda gun and is of dubious origins and ingredients.
There are infinite combinations and adjustments that can be made to these ingredients. In lieu of a no name, no brand Triple Sec, one can use a finer orange liqueur (Cointreau or Grand Marnier) to supposedly impart a finer orange flavor with the sweetness. Likewise, some portion of the lime juice can be replaced with lemon juice or instead of using a standard Tequila, you can raise the cost of the drink and use of premium brand Tequila. The bottom line is that the quality of the ingredients in the cocktail is all about personal preference. What can not be replaced is the simplicity of the ingredients and the preparation for this easy to make and satisfying cocktail.