Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >
Mar 3, 2006 11:02 AM

The Perfect Margarita?

  • s

Around my house, Friday night is marked by a quick run to the Taco Wagon, and shaking up a couple of perfect Margaritas.

After many years of experimenting, several years ago we arrived at the very simple formula of...

1/3 Fresh Squeezed Lime juice
1/3 Triple Sec (Bols)
1/3 Tequila (Sauza Hornitos)

It's a ratio recipe so you can make any amount you wish

Pack a Pint Glass with crushed ice, and fill with the above mixture. They are also great strained up in a chilled Martini glass if you prefer. Salt or not is up to the individual.

I feel strongly about not using gold tequila, or brandy based orange liquers, which always seem to give a carmelized character. Also, we have found that there is great variation in the quality of Triple Sec.

What's your recipe?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Very hard to go wrong with fresh-squeezed lime.

    Our ratio is 5:3:1 (Lime, Tequila, Triple Sec), we always have it strained/up.

    A high quality 100% Agave Silver (Blanca) gives a nice fresh brightness to it. But I appreciate the character that using a Reposado (such as Don Julio) gives.


    1. the CI recipe is great, but a little extra effort.

      I was looking for the poster who first turned me on to it and recipe, but couldn't find it I'll paraphrase from memory:

      1/2 cup lemon juice w/ zest
      1/2 cup lime juice w/ zest
      1/2 cup sugar (i use 1/4 cup as I usually have meyer lemons on hand)
      pinch of salt
      let marinate 4-24 hours. (24 is best... always fresh squeezed.

      strain, mix w/ 1 cup tequila, 1 cup triple sec.

      serve w/ crushed ice. makes very delicious, and very strong margaritas.

      1 Reply
      1. re: withalonge

        this is my favorite margarita as well. i generaly use sauza reposada for it. fwiw, the original recipe calls for super fine sugar.

      2. I only use white tequila in margaritas. Reposados and anejos taste completely off.

        For three (which we share between the two of us), I juice 4 small or 6 large limes, add a shot of simple syrup, blend with a third blender jar of ice, and add tequila afterwards and blend again. I find the blender does a better job of evenly slushifying the ice cubes if I don't start out with too much liquid.

        It's hard to say favorites because price has so much sway over my decisions when it comes to making mixed drinks, but: Lapiz, Herradura, Corralejo, and Pura Sangre white tequilas have all been great in margaritas. The Pura Sangre was the best bargain. On sale for $15 at Bevmo, then found some more at a local discount liquor store for $17. I think it retails between $30-45, and tastes like it.

        I don't always add triple sec. Which is your favorite?

        5 Replies
        1. re: nooodles

          Honestly I don't think there are any really good triple Secs in existence, but have found that the really cheap versions taste extremely artificial. Bols is the one we use the most, and it works just fine.

          1. re: nooodles

            I'm in the Herradura Silver fan club, as well.

            1. re: nooodles
              JK Grence (the Cosmic Jester)

              I had an amazing margarita at Cafe Poca Cosa in Tucson that used Licor 43 (said in spanish- cuarenta y tres), an orange vanilla liqueur. The bartender paired it with Lapiz tequila, and a mix of fresh squeezed orange and lime juices. Wow. I have yet to have a better margarita.

              Where on earth have you found Lapiz tequila? I thought that stuff went out of production years ago, and have been trying to track it down ever since.


              1. re: JK Grence (the Cosmic Jester)

                I'm pretty sure we got it at the Bevmo on Geary in San Francisco. But I'll ask my boyfriend, who is the real tequila hound. It is hard to find; wherever he got it it was the last bottle.

                Try pura sangre. I didn't do a side by side with the Lapiz but I found the Pura Sangre much more fragrant than the Corralejo, which would hopefully put it in the same league as Lapiz. Lapiz is fantastic, but it's so expensive I'm loathe to mix it with anything at all.

                1. re: JK Grence (the Cosmic Jester)

                  Using your hints, we created the perfect margarita...The Hake in La Jolla now calls this the "Marilyn Margarita":

                  1/3 Fresh Squeezed Lime and Orange juices (mostly lime)
                  1/3 Licor 43
                  1/3 Corralejo Clear Tequila

                  THE BEST MARGARITA! (Haven't tried Pura Sangre yet, but I'm on the hunt...)

              2. Two parts tequila
                One part Grand Marnier
                One part fresh lime juice

                On the rocks, no salt

                1 Reply
                1. re: Junie D

                  That's the proportions we use. No sugar, no simple syrup, no OJ, etc., etc. We use Triple Sec. If the limes are especially tart, I may add a little more Triple Sec. Most margaritas are waaaay too sweet - this proportion is perfect.

                2. My wife makes what she calls the "Killer Maggie." Fresh squeezed lime juice (we're lucky to have a lime tree in the backyard), teauila (she likes gold), Cointreau, Grand Marnier and a splash of OJ. All is stirred in a very large glass with crushed ice. As far as ratios, normally twice the tequila as the other two liquers however sometime it takes at least one or two to get the conbination exactly right. They are wonderful.

                  And, if you're only going to used that bottled lime juice, just don't bother.