The Margarita: The History and Original Recipe

I always have a wonderful time, wherever I am, whomever I’m with.

Hola, mis amigos. May 5th is Cinco de Mayo, which commemorates Mexico’s unlikely victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Celebrating an important historical occasion calls for a cocktail that is itself steeped in Mexican history, so of course we’ll be toasting the occasion with an original margarita.

The Margarita: The History and Original Recipe

Rumor has it the original margarita was created in Acapulco in 1948 by Texas socialite Margarita Sames. As the story goes, Sames was hosting a summer fiesta at her villa in Acapulco when she set about creating the perfect poolside drink using tequila, her favorite spirit, and Cointreau, her favorite liqueur. Known as “The Drink,” and then “Margarita’s Drink,” and ultimately “The Margarita,” the cocktail became all the rage when the socialite’s friends—Joseph Drown, owner of the Hotel Bel-Air, and Conrad Hilton, Jr., whose father owned the Hilton Hotel chain—began serving it in their hotel bars. The rest, as they say, is history. Here’s how to make it. Salud!

Margarita’s Original Recipe

The Margarita: The History and Original Recipe

Photo: Pioneer Woman

Ingredients

2 parts white tequila from the Jalisco state of Mexico. (We like Casa Dragones, a 100% blue agave tequila, for its smooth taste and authenticity and because it’s hands-down the prettiest bottle of tequila we’ve ever seen.)
1 part Cointreau
1 part fresh lime juice

Preparation

Chill a rocks glass. Then run a piece of lime around the rim of the glass. Pour salt onto a paper towel and dip the rim of the glass into the salt. Don’t twist the glass in the salt; Margarita always felt that people over-salted their margaritas. Pour all ingredients into a pitcher and stir. Fill the glass with large ice cubes and pour in the mixture. Garnish with a slice of fresh lime and enjoy.

The Margarita: The History and Original Recipe

Elizabeth Taylor and Mike Todd in Acapulco, 1957

here are a few more story topics we think you’ll enjoy:

Festive and delicious winter margarita recipes

Fun and refreshing cocktails for summer parties


The Original Margarita

Welcome Photo and Quote Mashup

Welcome photo: Rita Hayworth, Errol Flynn, and Orson Welles in Acapulco circa 1940
Welcome quote: Harvey, 1950

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