Celebrating the Day the Margarita Died (In the City That Killed It)

Categories: Drinking

450px-Blended_Margarita.jpg
Sunday is National Tequila Day, a "holiday" Dallasites can celebrate with extra exuberance as residents of the city that fucked up margaritas forever. Mariano Martinez birthed the margarita machine here, 40 years ago, after a frightening opening night nearly handed him his ass. Turns out his bartenders couldn't figure out how to make a three-ingredient drink consistently.

Stressed and hungry, Martinez walked into a 7-Eleven (presumably for a chili dog), saw the Slurpee machine, and the rest is hungover history. ABC's Nightline put together a feature that details the "invention" that turns out to be a soft-serve ice cream machine. A recipe boasting extra sugar helps the alcohol freeze into a slushy mess. It also helps you feel like shit in the morning.

"One hundred eighty thousand margaritas consumed every hour in the United States," says Martinez, between clips of him sipping frozen goo from goofy glasses in a posh golf club and walking his frou-frou dog in California. Thankfully, ABC provides a recipe for a real margarita at the end of the story. It's happily devoid of sugar, rail liquor and yellow No. 5, and is a recipe City of Ate happily endorses. Tequila, lime juice and Grand Marnier: That's the stuff of the margaritas we enjoy.

Really, the best margarita is one that someone else makes for you. I just have to figure out who's making mine this Sunday. Here are a few options, from the expert drunks around the office:

Cedars Social: Gets a little crazy with the agave nectar, but rose and orange blossom water is good stuff. 1326 South Lamar Dallas, 214-928-7700.

The Libertine Bar: 2101 Greenville Ave, 214-824-7900.

Central 214: Indulges muddled strawberries for their house margarita. Ask them to leave the fruit out. 5680 North Central Expressway.

Windmill Lounge: Charlie's a no-nonsense kind of bartender and anyone who can turn a panini into a taco has to make a decent margarita. 5320 Maple Ave., 214-443-7818

Follow City of Ate on Twitter: @cityofate.

Location Info

The Libertine Bar

2101 Greenville Ave., Dallas, TX

Category: Music

Central 214

5680 N. Central Expressway, Dallas, TX

Category: Restaurant

The Cedars Social

1326 S. Lamar St., Dallas, TX

Category: Restaurant

Windmill Lounge

5320 Maple Ave., Dallas, TX

Category: Music


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33 comments
Dickles
Dickles

Best margaritas are at McCone's in Carrollton. He was a bartender at Marianos back in the day.

G_David
G_David

Opinions on margaritas are like those on BBQ and hamburgers - I don't really give a rat's ass about yours, but I know what I like.  So there's really no need telling me where to go to get the"best" margarita.  I'll probably think it sucks, so I'll either find it myself or I'll make 'em at home.

Jason
Jason

Go to Booger Reds in the stockyards and order the Nita Rita...you're welcome!

Timothy
Timothy

who gives an "s" how you make it, all that matters is that it's tasty, and not too sugary or watered down,  oh, and brings a good buzz.  really no need to exude you're uber-elitist knowledge upon those of us who know...Dallas didn't kill it, we INVENTED itl, so CELEBRATE it!

Fplus
Fplus

Mattito's Top Shelf...cmon guys. 

Heather Buen
Heather Buen

A great margarita must contain three primary ingredients: 100 percent agave tequila, real orange liqueur, and real, freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice. It must also be correctly hand-shaken with ice. Some 100 percent agave tequila recommendations are: Herradura Silver, el Jimador, Patrón Silver or Don Julio Blanco. Expensive aged tequila is not necessary for margaritas, but don't buy by price alone. Cheap tequila can contain grain alcohol, so stick with 100 percent agave tequila for the best margaritas.Continue reading on Examiner.com July 24th is National Tequila Day - Dallas native invented the frozen Margarita - Dallas Culture & Events | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/cultur...

brian
brian

I'm a fan of the ones at ojeda's...not frozen but rocks

Eam0061
Eam0061

Frozen margaritas are lame simply for the fact it takes longer to drink.

Dailyreader
Dailyreader

Matt 1, I'm with you on the no salt route.  It seems to drip into my 'rita and change the taste. The 'ritas I order come in a pint glass, no salt and the basics and let the tequila run over the measuring cup for a couple of seconds. (always request not too sweet).  No frozen ones for me thanks. 

Lee
Lee

With this and the no BS approach to guacamole, I am beginning to like you already.  I hope this trend continues.  I can't wait to hear what you think of the Grape!

Jharris
Jharris

Maximo's. They have a great jalapeno margarita.

Nick
Nick

Wow... the first paragraph is a bit of an overreaction. If you don't like frozen margs... don't order them. It's not like they took the place of traditional on-the-rocks margs... it's just another option. I almost always prefer my margaritas on the rocks and as simply made as possible (lime juice, tequila, agave nectar), but every once in awhile... in 105 degree heat... a mambo taxi from Mi Cocina really hits the spot.

TM
TM

Tequila, Lime Juice, Agave Nectar and your choice of orange liqueur. I like Laura's Texas Orange.  Shake it with ice, dump into a salted glass.  If you are feeling a little frisky top it off with a splash of Presidente Mexican Brandy.    My preference is Kosher Salt.

MattL1
MattL1

I 100% agree with the author.  

However, I must ask, what's everyone's opinion on salt?  I'm not a fan, but am I committing some kind of mortal sin by omitting it?

Jon Daniel
Jon Daniel

This post is BigJonDaniel approved. So is the use of the word "fuck"

New Guy
New Guy

Dropping F bombs is a weak crutch of the writing impaired.

Coleman
Coleman

You know, I'm ok with the frozen margarita. it's a good indicator for people who don't know how to actually drink.

elbueno
elbueno

Scott Reitz. Clearly a purist.

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

Sounds like you have a crush on this guy and really love his stories about the good ole days, maybe you should see him outside of work

Montemalone
Montemalone

I fell like Shirley MacLaine.I've been channeled.

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

So you use high dollar sipping Tq for your margaritas ? Isnt that like mixing single malt scotch with diet coke

chevytexas
chevytexas

You have got to be kidding... They have gone to a chemical mix and frankly, unless it's frozen, the gasoline all rises to the top. We've all agreed this is to push the 'top shelf' (read: real) margaritas. Even then, they can't mix the ingredients. Otherwise, we grew up with Ojeda's and eat all their food. We just drink beer there.

Chevyvtexas
Chevyvtexas

If you have to request 'not too sweet' you are not drinking a margarita, you're drinking a tequila daiquiri.

elbueno
elbueno

totally agree. Frozens have their time and place. Yes, many of them are terrible but c'mon...whats better at your average TexMex dive A) a house margarita on the rocks or B) a house margarita frozen. My experiences always lean towards B.

For those of us that can't afford to always order the option with the quality ingredients, frozen is usually the way to go. 

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

Presidente makes everything better, especially high school drinking in an old Chevy pickup

brian
brian

too bad fuck is such a good useful word for describing things here. examples "fucking parkies" or "how can dallas fuck this up?" weak maybe but so is the word very and if it works it works.

G_David
G_David

It is the sincerest form of flattery after all.

TM
TM

Never order house unless you ask what tequila is in there. Cuervo is not tequila and most places use a cheap, plastic bottle mixto.  Not good.

MattL1
MattL1

Thanks. I still won't use salt, though.

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