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margarita cocktail, agave nectar, limes, Patron Silver, Grand Marnier, shaker set

At last the day has arrived. I welcome the Big Guy, Ben, my other, taller half, to Gypsy Mind. He’s brought us a brand spaking new column on a topic dear to his heart: mixology. It’s “a little less gypsy,” as he puts it, but a whole lot of fun. So, sit back, sip, and relax. -Shannon

Cinquo de Mayo is gone, but margarita season is just beginning. To make a truly excellent margarita, observe one simple rule: No Sour Mix Allowed. Sweet and Sour mix is an abomination in small quantities and in large quantities worse. Fresh lime juice with some form of sweetener will pull your drink from yellow-tinged mediocrity to a cocktail worthy of respect.

To make my ultimate margarita, you will need the following:
A juicer/squeezer of some sort
Simple Syrup or Agave nectar (optional)
Patron Silver, or as close to it as you can afford
Orange Liqueur: Grand Marnier is best, Gran Gala is close for ½ the price
Shot glass for measuring, the bigger the better
Coarse salt to rim glass if desired
Cocktail Shaker
Plenty of ice

To prepare:
Squeeze 2 limes (exact amount depends on how juicy they are) into shaker
If you want to rim a glass with salt, one of the smushed limes will come in handy to rub on the edge of the glass and make it sticky.
Add a healthy dose of tequila, a shot and a half or so, 2-2.5oz for those who like measurements
Dump in a shot or so of your orange liqueur.
Add simple syrup or agave nectar if desired. Just a healthy splash to smooth out the bite of the lime.
Shake vigorously
Pour into your favorite glass. I like a rocks glass.

If you prefer your margaritas as frozen slushies, this is not the recipe for you. This is a cocktail for sipping, but it doesn’t take itself too seriously, so feel free to play fast and loose with the recipe to suit your own tastes. The only unbreakable rule: say no to the sour mix.

p.s. Shannon here again. You should also know that Ben writes here and here. xoxo