Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >
Jan 29, 2007 01:59 PM

Tequila for Margaritas

Hey everyone, I'm new to the whole tequila thing, but I had some jose cuervo with their margarita mix and I loved it,so I want to try some different margaritas. So, I'm curious what are everyone's favorite tequila to be made with margaritas. Thanks for all your help, have a good day everyone.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. if you search you'll find a couple of threads on this - I would recommend a decent, silver 100% agave, from which there are many to try - I'd start with Don Julio or Centenario - and, more importantly, avoid margarita mix and go fresh

    1. A really good margarita takes a really good tequila, in my opinion. El Tesoro is a good one. Here's my favorite margarita recipe

      1 shot El Tesoro
      1 shot fresh squeezed Lime Juice
      1/2 shot Cointreau

      Shake with ice and pour into salt-rimmed glass.

      1. The original comment has been removed
        1. I may have to swim upstream a bit here.

          I'm all for fresh mixers, Grand Marnier, and Cointreau in my margaritas. If you're just going to get started for the first time, though, I think you'd be just fine with a $20 bottle of Cuervo Tradicional as a $40-50 bottle of El Tesoro, Don Julio, Casa Noble, etc. Granted, the orange liquers will set you back quite a bit, but there are plenty of other drinks those can be used in.

          1. I use Hornitos Reposado. When you are choosing spirits for cocktails, the only requirement is that it's as cheap as possible and not spirity (that sickening rubbing alcohol taste that Cuervo has).

            My parents always taught me to use lemon for margaritas and lime for daquiris. Surely enough, that's the way it was intended. Americans have a weird anti-lemon prejudice that I have a hard time understanding.

            8 Replies
            1. re: mjmmm

              We also use Hornitos Reposado though we've also made margaritas with 1800 Reposado or Sauza Gold.

              1. re: tlegray

                Sauza Gold is a Mixto, which means that it contains less than 100% Blue Agave (and pump in sugars to make up the difference) ... Although Sauza Gold is one of the better mixtos on the market, I tend to avoid them (as I do not enjoy the headache after a drinking session). Spend an extra $5 and go with Sauza Hornitos.

                1. re: hawkeyeui93

                  Did not know that about Sauza Gold. Maybe that is why I get headaches with some tequilas and not others. Our house tequila (for margaritas) is Hornitos Reposado but some friends prefer 1800 or the Gold which is why we may use them.

                  1. re: tlegray

                    Or just get el jimador (or any number of other decent tequilas) for about the same money (less here in NC) and avoid anything from Sauza. I have a bottle of Hornitos Plata I am having trouble finishing, it's so bad. And it was not cheap, on sale for $22 (reg $25).

                    1. re: ncyankee101

                      That's interesting Yankee, because I don't think much of El Jimador ...

                      1. re: hawkeyeui93

                        I hadn't actually had el jimador til tonight, I had just been going on hearsay and ratings at, and assuming it had to be better than Hornitos. I can't actually do a direct comparison because only the Jimador repo is available here and I have Hornitos Plata.

                        I haven't had the chance to taste the El Jimador on a clean palate yet so can't form an opinion, but I was not blown away by it's big brother Herradura silver (at its price point) so we will see.

                        In any event I have had many tequilas at lower price points than Hornitos which are miles better - Camarena, El Ultimo, 30-30, Espolon, even El Charro at $15 is at least as good.

                        Note that i am basing my opinion on how it tastes neat, I just get a weird cheap aftertaste, it's not bad in drinks because it does have some upfront flavor and the finish is less noticeable - but I will not be buying another bottle because I would rather use brands as mixers that I also like to drink neat

                        1. re: ncyankee101

                          NCYank: I drink the Hornitos Reposado and not the Hornitos Plata, which I have yet to try. I wanted to like the El Jimador Repo due to it being under $20, but found it to have a strange aftertaste [even in margs]. For the $15 range in my rural state, the best buy is Sam's Club Private Label Calle Azul ... BTW, my sister-in-law got me a bottle of Herradura Double Barrel Reposado. Have you tried it yet? This is a mighty fine sipper!

                          1. re: hawkeyeui93

                            The only Herradura I have had is the silver, I didn't like it when I first opened but apparently it is another one that improves with a couple days of air. It has an unusual flavor which took a little getting used to, and I don't think it is in nearly the same class as Casa noble, but at the moment my opinion is that it is interesting enough to not start mixing it.

                            I am finally tasting the El Jimador repo, I do notice an aftertaste but I don't find it all that obtrusive, maybe I am not as sensitive to whatever it is as you are. I do think it has a fair amount of agave flavor but maybe is not an outstanding sipper, but not bad for the price. Going to try it in a marg next.

                            Not bad in a margarita either, all in all I would say a decent tequila for under $20, though not on par with my other faves in that category, 30-30 Espolon and Camarena.