19 August, 2010

Senorita, Margarita?

There are some people who "can't do tequila" a statement often accompanied by a horror story involving an "insane night" where things went "so wrong so fast"; I am not one of those people. I would go so far as to say I like tequila. It's a versatile liquor; you can spring for expensive tequila like Patron or 1800 to sip or grab a mid-range Tequila which will prove a flavorful addition to a number of tequila based mixed drinks. But lets just be honest here.. there is only one tequila mixed drink, the Margarita, because there doesn't need to be anything else (okay so maybe that's not true, there are other tequila based drinks, but this blog entry isn't about them and there's a reason for that).
The International Bartender's Association lists a margarita as a 7:4:3 ratio of tequila, triple sec, and lime juice, but a more common ratio is 2:1:1.
Often the lime juice is replaced by sour mix which is a mix of lime juice and sugar which, in my opinion, is never a good idea. Sour mix is cheaper and often on a bar tap where as squeezing limes by hand might just be a little too time consuming for some places.
The margarita, in its purest form is an elongated tequila shot. As anyone who's ever been to Mexico or college can tell you, a shot of tequila is normally accompanied by two things, a lime and salt.
This tradition came from Mexicans using salt and citrus juice to dilute the after burn of the tequila.
By adding sugar and mixing the lime juice into the tequila the margarita became the modern man's sip-able tequila shot.
Now where the margarita comes from is a bit of a mystery; most stories concur that a bartender (somewhere in Mexico) was inspired by an actress or otherwise beautiful woman and thus created this cocktail in her honor, sometime in the early to mid twentieth century. One story even suggests that the cocktail was invented in Galveston, Texas (which is upsetting on several levels). Though the romanticism of it all is appreciated I would venture to say that there is no real story of the invention of such a cocktail. Much like inventing the sandwich or buttered bread rolls; how can one claim responsibility for a combination so natural?
Margaritas come in all shapes, colors, and sizes. There are the traditional lime margaritas, which come frozen, on the rocks, or straight up (without ice at all). Flavored margaritas are also offered at many places and usually are the product of frozen fruit being added to the margarita when blended with ice. In places like Texas there have been many deviations in the margarita front, due to the large number of Mexican restaurants all hoping to offer something unique. Here are a few of my favorites:
    The Margatini (Orlando's)
    • 2 parts tequilla
    • 1 part amaretto
    • 1 part olive juice
    • 1 part sweetened lime juice
    • touch of vermouth
    • olives
    Served shaken from a martini shaker into a martini glass with salt on the rim.

    The DosaRita (Ruby Tequila's)
    • A traditional frozen margarita with a DosXX's beer turned upside down in the glass.
    The Pineapple Infusion Margarita
    • 2 parts pineapple infused tequila (where pineapple has been left in the tequila for an amount of time)
    • 1 part grandmanier
    • piece of vanilla bean
    Served on the rocks with salt (or sugar) on the rim.

    The Purist Margarita
    • 2 parts 1800 tequila
    • 1 part fresh lime juice
    • 1 part Grand Marnier
    • lime wedges squeezed and left in the glass
    Served on the rocks with a salted rim, on the beach, with a smile.

    03 August, 2010

    Name that cookie...

    Bored in the bakery and started a new trend of decorating; name that cookie!!
    Because sometimes spinning on the big wheeled drums of powdered sugar gets old.