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Jan 21, 2009 09:16 AM

tasty margarita recipe from Pujol restaurant (Mexico City)

hi everyone,

my wife and i had the pleasure of eating at Pujol in mexico city a couple months back. my wife ordered the margarita and it was very good. here's what the waiter said the recipe was:

- 3 parts Milagro 100% agave tequila (blanco/silver), available @ Trader Joe's for $19

- 2 parts limon (mexican green lemons/key limes, not the yellow american lemons)

- 1 part Controy (less-expensive alternative to cointreau/gran marnier)

- 1 part jarabe (mexican simple syrup, many brands available)
shake with tons of ice, strain then serve in a martini glass

i have made many many margaritas in the past few months using this recipe, and it is great at home. i personally increase the tequila by 1 part and reduce the citrus by 1 part to suit my taste buds, but my wife likes the standard 3-2-1-1 recipe.

also, i don't strain the margarita and instead serve it on the rocks in an old fashioned glass. personal perference.

it might be hard to find the Controy and jarabe in the US. your best bet would probably either be trying a mexican grocery/liquor store in the US, or have someone you know bring back a bottle of each the next time they go to mexico, which is what i did. if you can't find controy i would try that patron citronge liqeur. at $15 (at trader joe's) it is WAY cheaper than Cointreau, which is wildly overpriced in my opinion.

i'm not claiming this to be the definitive or authentic margarita recipe. i just wanted to share it because we've really enjoyed making these margaritas at home.


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  1. Interesting. Here is what I have settled on recently after two great experiences:

    3 parts tequila
    2 parts Cointreau
    2 parts juice (mixture of lemon and lime)

    What I do now is start with the juice. I juice one regular yellow lemon and two typical limes. This is slightly more lime than lemon, but not 2:1 because the lemon is much larger than the limes. Then when I have that amount, I measure an equal amount of Cointreau. Then I take 1.5 times that amount and measure the tequila. Shake this with ice and serve on the rocks in whatever glass works, old fashioned or now I have some new margarita glasses got as a gift. I salt the rims. Personally I don't always care, but my girlfriend goes for the salt. The amount above (using the one lemon plus two limes starting point for measures) makes two good sized drinks.

    The tequila in the house right now is in fact Milagro silver (i wish I could get it that cheap, usu. about 26 bucks here, but I did get an extra bottle as xmas gift) plus a bottle of Corralejo reposado (another gift, what fun, from someone who has tasted more than I have and he thinks it's the best readily available in the PA state store). I like it both ways I've found, with the sharper bite of the silver or the somewhat mellower but still readily apparent taste of the reposado. The Cointreau gives it just enough sweetness. At this ratio I can clearly taste everything, the fresh juice, the hint of sweet orange and the tequila. I'm not hopeful it will taste as good with any other orange liqueur. I have tried the Patron Citronge and the bottle is languishing in the cabinet in favor of the Cointreau, but I might still try others when the Cointreau runs out. ;-) (Unfortunately the final piece of the xmas gift was only a 375ml bottle of Cointreau, hehe.)

    After a few more of these at home I'll be ruined for being able to have a margarita anywhere else, I suspect.....

    3 Replies
    1. re: CrazyOne

      i do the same thing as you in terms of the citrus. i mix yellow american lemons with green mexican key limes (limones), but doing all key limes also works since they're so cheap at the mexican stores here.

      your posting is the second time someone has mentioned corralejo reposado tonight. that's actually my new favorite sipping tequila. i got a bottle at a wal-mart in Moroleon, GTO Mexico a couple months ago for about $12 or so. BEST. PURCHASE. EVER. it's incredibly smooth yet flavorful, and goes great with a side of lime to chew on.

      have you tried lowering the amount of cointreau and replacing it with simple syrup? to me it seems like the triple sec's main job is to add sweetness to the drink, and Cointreau is a VERY expensive way to do that. to me it seems like the tequila should be the most expensive part of the cocktail, not the cointreau (regardless of how tasty cointreau might be).

      1. re: ceviche

        I'm too lazy to squeeze key limes. ;-) Yeah, the couple who gave me the Corralejo only drinks it for sipping as well. So far I haven't found that I enjoy that as much, although I did taste it once to see and will probably do so again. But even if I mix it, I can appreciate the differences between it and others, or so it seems anyway. To get it for 12 bucks is really fantastic, but of course that makes sense given you were in Mexico at the time. :-)

        I have I think made previous versions of the drink with a somewhat less proportion of the Cointreau. I'm still experimenting, still fairly new for me to make these. I intend to try a cheaper triple sec as well. So far I only know that equal recipes have tasted better with Cointreau vs the Citronge. The tequila IS still the most expensive part of mine anyway, given the prices of the tequilas and the Cointreau here (around the same, about $30 for 750ml). But yeah, if I can make one I like as much with something other than the pricey Cointreau I'd be all for it. In the summer I will probably experiment more, because for a while we were having them every weekend. In the winter, not so much. :-)

        1. re: ceviche

          Take a shot of Cointreau sometime ... I don't find it is the sweetness that makes a margarita special, but instead the shock it brings to your palate, which IMHO allows one to enjoy the peppery flavor of tequila so much more.