Margarita Recipes [Split from Margarita bar thread on Calif]
If I'm jonesing for a good maggie, I always sit at the bar and participate in the construction. Otherwise, you're going to get lots of sweet and sour, and even worse, Rose's lime juice.
Like Sean, I make my own, using 4 oz. decent tequila (Hornitos or better), 2 oz. of my own blend of lemon juice/simple syrup, 1/2 oz. cointreau (or to taste), 1/2 oz. OJ, 1 oz. fresh lime juice (or to taste). The key for me is that the maggie be 1/2 tequila, so you can actually taste it. Stole and then tweaked this recipe from the champion mixologist at the Bellagio (more tequila, less cointreau and OJ), and we love it, though a second may require surrendering car keys.
oj in a margarita noooooo! pomegranite margarita double nooooo! That is like putting ketchup on a chicago style hot dog, it just ain't right.
Like you, I'm a 50% tequila man. But I keep it simple, if sour: 3 parts tequila, 2 parts fresh lime, 1 part cointreau. No sugar. No simple syrup.
As for getting a really good margarita in a SD restaurant . . . I've given up on that one. Ten years ago Guava Beach had great margaritas, cheap too. Now when I get one in a restaurant, I just make sure the tequila itself is good quality. And if it's not too sweet I'm content.
OJ and/or Rose's lime juice are fine in a good Margarita, as long as a quality tequila remains as the top note. I like fresh lime juice sometimes on a hot day, but its flavor tends to overwhelm the tequila, IMO.
I go very classic with mine. 2oz Tequila, 1oz fresh lime juice, 1 oz Grand Marnier or Cointreau, shaken and served up or on the rocks with salt.
I'm always tinkering, but a few things are constant: shaken over a lot of ice, served up in a chilled cocktail glass. Ingredients include a 100% blue agave blanco tequila (El Tesoro Platinum is my current best bang for the buck), fresh juices, and good orange liqueur.
I recently switched from a longstanding reliance on Cointreau to Marie Brizzard Triple Sec, about 30% cheaper, not too sweet, delicious, unlike cheap Triple Secs. I used to use pure lime juice, have found a small amount of fresh OJ is actually very nice, a trick I copied from a neighborhood bar (Boston's Tremont 647) that does a great Margarita.
My current proportions:
1 fresh OJ
2 simple syrup
3 fresh lime juice
4 Marie Brizzard Triple Sec