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Some things just go together -- and the obvious accompaniment to food is drink. Welcome to Booze52, in which we explore all manner of libations that do much more than just wash down a meal.
Today: Mix up a little bit of summer in winter.
If there is one thing to say about a margarita, it’s that you can’t make just one; the citrusy, tequila-based drink is not designed for solitude. Many a football-watching party on February 3rd will have margaritas made by the pitcher, alongside the requisite guacamole. And they will be welcomed -- there is no better spread for spectator sports.
Though they seem made for each other, the drink came to be long before the Super Bowl. Rumor has it that an enlightened bartender mixed up the first margarita in Rosarita Beach, Mexico, for a showgirl named Marjorie King who was allergic to all liquor except tequila. “Margarita” is the Spanish equivalent of Marjorie. Whether or not liquor allergies like Marjorie's exist remains to be seen, but until we manage to get drinks named after ourselves, we’re drinking to her.
4 ounces tequila
2 ounces Cointreau
2 ounces fresh-squeezed lime juice (plus spent lime rind)
½ ounce agave syrup
Coarse sea salt
Additional lime wedges (for garnish)
Know Your Tequila
• There are five types of tequila: blanco (white), joven (gold), reposado (rested), añejo (aged) and extra añejo (ultra aged). To really savor tequila’s signature flavor, choose one that is made with 100 percent agave sugars, versus Mixto versions, which only require 51 percent agave.
• We like our margaritas with a smooth, tasty reposado (lightly aged), such as Cazadores Reposado.
• Freshly concocted tequilas like blanco (white, unaged) and joven (or gold, usually a white with coloring and spices added) pack a punch but can be a bit harsh.
• Añejo (aged) and extra añejo (ultra aged) exhibit much more complexity and depth. They are best sipped neat.
Photos by James Ransom