I love me a good margarita on the rocks, but my stomach and head the next day usually disagree with me, unless I’ve managed to stick to only one cocktail….not one TYPE of cocktail, but one margarita the whole evening. I recently took my mom to Cesar’s Old Mexico on Sunshine street, and I have to say their food is amazing, and so are their margaritas. Not being a big day-drinker, I decided “What the hell,” and partook in a margarita or two with my mom. First and foremost, her liver is much more seasoned than mine is, and secondly, while the margaritas were outstanding, I spent the rest of the day in a haze.
Naturally, when I had a girlfriend from Ladies’ Night Out want to meet up and talk about sponsorship opportunities, I asked her to meet me at Cesar’s Old Mexico for a margarita a couple of nights later. This place is absolutely amazing – but get there early, or you will have to wait to be seated (this place is always packed)!
Back to the topic at hand here, margaritas are a beautiful blend of citrus and salty flavors with a bit of booze…OK, a LOT of booze. The good news is this drink easily does the work of two…or at least it feels that way when made right.
Is a Margarita an Acquired Taste?
I am going to have to say that it is a “50/50” sort of drink. It isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but it is still popular. Not everyone likes tequila (or can stomach it), but it IS one of the better tasting drinks. You can still taste the alcohol but it doesn’t make you cringe when you take a gulp. It leaves a bubbly, sour, limey taste on your tongue while simultaneously warming your stomach.
Foods that Go with Margaritas
Depending on who makes the margarita, it usually consists of a lot of citrus flavors with a bit of sweetness to it. Pairing foods that are opposite in nature, such as smokey, cheesy and spicy aromas, can bring out the subtle tastes lurking within this diabolical delight.
Obviously Mexican food goes great with margaritas, such as tamales, spicy salsa and chips, guacamole, burritos, tacos, etc…. but there are other foods that compliment le margarita cocktail just as much. As with any food/alcohol pairing, you either want to go similar or completely opposite.
For example, cocktail weenies are a great match for margaritas, or jerk chicken on skewers. You could also pair shrimp dishes such as shrimp cocktail or grilled shrimp with an on-the-rocks margarita.
History of the Margarita
One of the earliest stories is of the margarita being invented in 1938 by Carlos Herrera at his restaurant Rancho La Gloria in Mexico. He created this drink for a customer and former Ziegfeld dancer named Marjorie King. This story was related by Herrera and also by bartender Albert Hernandez, acknowledged for popularizing a Margarita in San Diego after 1947, at the La Plaza restaurant in La Jolla.
A commonly accepted origin story of the Margarita is that it was invented in October 1941, at Hussong’s Cantina in Ensenada, Mexico, by bartender Don Carlos Orozco. One afternoon, Margarita Henkel, the daughter of the then German ambassador visited the cantina and Don Carlos who had been experimenting with drinks offered her one. The cocktail consisted of equal parts of tequila, Mexican orange liqueur called Controy and lime, shaken and served over ice in a salt-rimmed glass. As she was the first to try the drink, Don Carlos decided to name it after her and the “Margarita” was born.
Regardless of whoever first concocted this tequila-ladened drink, I salute you. It is a fabulous drink which men and women can enjoy the world over, and leaves us needing a bloody mary to escape the hangover the next day!